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Media Release by The Hon Bill Shorten MP

Australian Disability Enterprises show their wares to Government departments and agencies

Parliamentary Secretary for Disabilities and Children’s Services, Bill Shorten, today opened the Purchasing with Purpose Expo for Australian Government Buyers in Canberra.

The expo is designed to raise awareness of Australian Disability Enterprises – commercial businesses that employ over 20,000 people with moderate to severe disability across Australia.

Mr Shorten said the Government was helping boost employment opportunities for people with disabilities by increasing its purchase of products or services from Australian Disability Enterprises.

“Just because you have an impairment doesn’t mean you should miss out on the benefits that productive work brings,” Mr Shorten said.

“ADEs are competitive businesses that also give people with disability the chance to experience the satisfaction and camaraderie that work brings. They allow people with disability to participate in work, and become more financially independent.

“They provide great products and services as well as a social benefit.

“Today’s expo helped raise the profile of Australian Disability Enterprises with government departments and agencies and let them know about the opportunities they can provide.”

Potential Government buyers were today able to view over 20 stalls showcasing the wide range of industries in which Australian Disability Enterprises specialise. These include design, printing and packaging, to manufacturing, laundry and landscaping.

“The Rudd Government has made significant changes to make it easier for government departments to purchase products and services from Australian Disability Enterprises, and I encourage all departments and agencies to think about how they could use ADEs,” Mr Shorten said.