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Down Syndrome NSW
Level 6/410 Church St, North Parramatta
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T: 9841 444

Friday, 1 May 2015

Updates ... affordable housing, employment

News on two big issues for people with intellectual disabilities:

Survey a wake-up call on affordable, accessible housing
People with Disability Australia, 30th April 2015
The 2015 Rental Affordability Snapshot, released by Anglicare Australia confirms the doors to affordable, accessible housing are closed for people with disability.

According to the Snapshot, less than two per-cent of Australian rental properties are affordable for people with disability and in metropolitan areas the situation is even worse, with just 51 of 51,357 properties affordable for people on the Disability Support Pension (DSP).

“The housing affordability crisis is further exacerbated for people with disability because housing that is affordable is often inaccessible or located in areas that further isolates people with disability”, said Ms Therese Sands, Co-Chief Executive Officer at People with Disability Australia (PWDA) ... Click here to read more

Govt gets more time for disability wage
9 News, 30th April 2015
Employees with intellectual disability working in Australian Disability Enterprises will continue to be paid reduced wages after the federal government was granted more time to create a fair wage scheme.

The Australian Human Rights Commission granted the government a four month exemption to rules that could have made it discriminatory to pay workers in Australian Disability Enterprises (ADE's) a productivity-based wage ...

Human Rights Commission grants Disability Enterprises interim exemption
Senator Mitch Fifield (media release), 30th April 2015
In response to the Government’s application for both an interim and temporary exemption for the Business Services Wage Assessment Tool (BSWAT) from elements of the Disability Discrimination Act, the Australian Human Rights Commission has today granted an interim exemption for Australian Disability Enterprises (ADEs) using the tool.

The interim exemption will ensure there are no issues with the payment of wages to supported employees in Australian Disability Enterprises who have already been assessed under BSWAT for four months as an interim measure, or until a decision is made on the Government’s application for a temporary 12-month exemption.

This is a welcome provisional step from the AHRC, ensuring that people with disability employed in ADEs that used the BSWAT can continue their employment with confidence they their employer is operating within the law ...

Added 4th May 2015:
Outrageous decision on disability wages - joint media release from People with Disability Australia, Inclusion Australia and AED Legal Centre, 4th May 2015
“It was outrageous to see the AHRC grant this exemption without giving disability advocates representing workers in ADEs any notice or opportunity to provide input,” said Samantha French, of People with Disability Australia (PWDA).

AAP, 9 News, 27th April 2015
People with a disability could soon be allowed to negotiate jobs directly with employers in a digital marketplace. That's just one of the ideas being floated by the federal government as it develops a new disability employment system to come into effect post-2018.

Time for real action on jobs for people with disability
People with Disability Australia, 17th April 2015
This week there has been a renewed focus on economic participation for people with disability with the launch of an Australian Human Rights Commission inquiry into employment discrimination and an address on disability employment by Senator The Hon. Mitch Fifield, Assistant Minister for Social Services.

PWDA welcomes this renewed focus and looks forward to working with governments and business to make sure there is real action on jobs for people with disability.

There have been a number of inquiries and reviews into disability employment issues in the past, but there has not been enough action. PWDA believes this week’s developments must be a catalyst for the creation of a long overdue jobs action plan ... 
Click here to read more

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