27 June 2019
Social purpose organisation Life Without Barriers has pledged that 12 per cent of its new recruits will be people with disability by 2022, and is encouraging others in the industry to redouble their efforts to boost employment opportunities for people with disability.
Life Without Barriers is a community services organisation that employs 6,600 staff and provides a wide range of services including disability; child, youth and family; aged care; and mental health for around 20,000 people each year.
As well as 12 per cent of new recruits being people with disability, its new employment target also aims to ensure that 9 per cent of its overall workforce is comprised of people with disability in the longer term. These targets are included in its new Access, Inclusion and Employment Plan just released.
“People with disability are twice as likely to be unemployed and are missing out on the personal, social and financial benefits that work provides,” Life Without Barriers Chief Executive Claire Robbs said.
“And conversely, we as employers are missing out on the unique contributions and perspectives that people with disability can give our workplaces.”
Ms Robbs said she would particularly encourage other community service organisations to consider how they can employ more people with disability.
“1 in 5 new jobs created in Australia today are in the community services sector, so if organisations in our industry can boost their numbers, that will go a long way to increasing the overall numbers of people with disability in employment.
Ms Robbs said that while it’s an equity issue, it also makes business sense.
“We recognise that as a provider of disability services, we not only have a responsibility, but it also just makes sense for us that we are employing more people with disability. Having people with lived experience of disability helps us to improve the services that we provide to people.
Studies have long shown that people with disability work harder, make more reliable employees and are likely to stay longer in an organisation than the general workforce.
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