Higher NDIS prices for providers

In July 2019, the NDIA introduced the Temporary Transformation Payment (TTP) for providers of Assistance with Daily Living and Community Participation. The payment is only available to registered providers and is conditional to a set of obligations. The increase was welcomed by providers who continue to struggle financially with the administrative burden of the NDIS and the introduction of the Quality and Safeguard regulations and the associated compliance and audit requirements.

In a national survey among 381 disability service providers, 76% of organisations stated that they are worried that they won’t be able to provide NDIS services at current prices (NDS 2019). The TTP payment is set at 7.5% above the base price, however given the previous Temporary Support for Overheads of 2.5% was removed, it is merely a 5% incentive and this will reduce by 1.5% each year.

Continue reading…


NDIS update (from October 2019)

The NDIA announced a long list of changes and updates late last month. Here is an overview in case you have missed these:

New Price Guide and Support Catalogue valid from 1 October 2019


Disability-related health supports

The new NDIS Price Guide (version 1.2) introduces disability-related health supports as agreed by the COAG Disability Reform Council meeting in June. The NDIS will now fund health supports where the supports are a regular part of the participant’s daily life and result from the participant’s disability. Funded disability-related health supports include dysphagia supports, respiratory supports, nutrition supports, diabetic management supports, continence supports, wound and pressure care supports, podiatry and foot care supports and epilepsy supports. More information about these supports can be found in the Price Guide (page 20).

Continue reading…


Economic and Community Participation (ECP) Grant 2019-2020 and Mainstream Capacity Building (MCB) Grant 2019-2020

The NDIA has opened up two ILC grant programs for economic participation and capacity building.

Economic and Community Participation (ECP) grant program

The Economic and Community Participation (ECP) grant program offers two streams to create opportunities for people with disability to contribute and participate in community life. People with disability experience higher unemployment rates, longer duration of unemployment and a lower level of income (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2019).  The Economic Participation stream is targeted at employers to create new pathways to employment and increase their ability to employ people with disability and build inclusive workplaces. The grant program also offers funding for programs that foster entrepreneurship to create opportunities of successful self-employment and innovative approaches that lead to increased employment.

The Social and Community Participation stream aims to create opportunities for people with disability to participate in the same community activities as everyone else, with a focus on arts, culture, sport and recreation. Eligible activities include pilots for new pathways to leadership and civic participation, improved inclusive approaches of local communities, inclusive playgroups and/or staff and volunteer development to better work alongside people with disability.

Application that focus on activities for ILC Priority Cohort Groups (Aboriginal and Torrens Strait Islander communities, CALD communities, LGBTIQA+ cohort and communities living in rural and remote areas) are particularly encouraged to apply. The ECP grant program offers a total of $30 million over three years with a minimum funding amount of $100,000 per year. More information is available here.

Mainstream Capacity Building (MCB) grant program

The Mainstream Capacity Building (MCB) grant program funds activities that build the capacity of health organisation and services to ensure people with disability can use and benefit from the same mainstream health services as everyone else. Many people with disability experience difficulties in accessing mainstream health services. One in six people with disability have experienced discrimination by health staff (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2017).

The grant program is designed to help remove barriers within the heath system, including better training for health care staff about disability and inclusion, better collaboration among different sectors and improved service culture and attitudes. The funding priorities vary depending on the jurisdiction where the ILC program will be delivered. Grants start at $100,000 per year or up to $300,000 for three years. The maximum funding amount that applicants can apply for is $750,000 per year (or 2.25 million over three years). Nationally, a total of $32 million will be awarded through this program.

More information about the Mainstream Capacity Building (MCB) Grant Program 2019-2020 is available here.

Specific guidelines for each program are available on Community Grants Hub and Grant Connect. Applications are open until 21 October 2019.

For questions or support please contact:


Dr Ellen Schuler
Business Consultant
Email: eschuler@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364


Royal Commission into violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability

First public sitting

The Royal Commission into violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people with disability (DRC) is holding its first public forums in September. The community forum in Townsville on the 9 September will be followed by the first public sitting in Brisbane on 16 September where the Commissioners are formally introduced. This will allow the public to hear how the Commission will operate, what the DRC hopes to achieve and how people can engage. Anyone can attend the events with prior registration. Live webcasts of both events can be accessed here.

Terms of reference

The Royal Commission was established on 4 April 2019 and will cover all forms of violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation of people living with disability, in all settings where they occur. The Commission is led by six Royal Commissioners and the Australian Government has committed $527.9m for the inquiry, which is expected to run for three years. In comparison, the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety was led by two Royal Commissioners for 1.5 years and a $110m budget. The large budget for the Disability Royal Commission recognises the additional support needs of people with disability to participate in the inquiry. It acknowledges the wide-ranging scope, which considers what can be done by governments, institutions, providers and the community to

  • prevent, and better protect, people with disability from experiencing violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation
  • achieve best practice in reporting, investigating and responding to violence, abuse, neglect and exploitation
  • promote a more inclusive society that supports the independence of people with disability.

People with disabilities and stakeholders will have many opportunities to provide evidence and information and share their experiences. Anyone can make a submission and can receive legal advice and advocacy assistance.

Reactive or proactive response?

The outcomes of this Royal Commission will impact on all sectors that are supporting people with disabilities and will hopefully lead to wide ranging recommendations and reforms. During the investigation people with disabilities will share traumatic events and experiences and organisations may be summoned as witnesses before the Commission to give evidence or produce documents and information. The Commissioners have wide ranging powers to interrogate and to obtain evidence which can involve rights of entry and phone tapping.

The way your organisation chooses to act in the lead up and during the Royal Commission is an individual matter, however it may be perceived as an indication of your true colours and attitudes towards best practices and protecting people with disability. 

You may choose to bury your head in the sand and pretend that the DRC is not happening nor impacting on your organisation.  Alternatively, you may take a ‘wait and see’ approach, and only react if needed.

Choosing a proactive approach by anticipating the challenges and opportunities that lay ahead will differentiate your organisation. Your response may help to protect your credibility, reputation and consumer confidence if you decide to choose a clear position on the issues and demonstrate this in your actions.

Is your organisation proactively preventing abuse and neglect? How does your organisation deal with incidents and risks? How does your organisation work to eliminate restrictive practices? How do you recognise and acknowledge mistakes and learn from them? Is everyone involved in the response, including the board? What is your organisation doing to actively support the outcomes of the DRC?  How do you support your clients and their families who may choose to speak out?  How do you involve and assist staff and other stakeholders? And how to you prepare in case you will receive a notice to produce documents, or your organisation will be invited as witness? Are your records in order and accessible? Who will lead a response and who can assist (insurance, legal support and communication)?

A disturbing finding from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety was that organisations had passed their accreditation standards despite very poor standards of care. This is highlighting that quality and safety is more than a tick box exercise and requires oversight and on-going commitment to standards that uphold fundamental human rights.

Zero Tolerance is an initiative led by National Disability Services (NDS) to assist disability service providers to understand and prevent abuse. NDS is also providing information and workshops for disability service providers in preparation for the Royal Commission.

For questions or comments please contact:
Dr Ellen Schuler 
Business Consultant 
Email: eschuler@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364


ILC Individual Capacity Building

The NDIA recently opened grant applications for Individual Capacity Building funding. This is the first of three ILC programs that will open in August and September, with forthcoming programs for mainstream capacity building and economic and community participation opening on 9 September.

The Individual Capacity Building (ICB) program is open to organisations run by people with disabilities and their families and carers, and for priority cohort groups working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander, Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) and LGBTQIA+ communities. The focus on these groups reflects their challenges in accessing community, mainstream and NDIS services for people with disabilities. For example, the NDS Quarterly Report to COAG for June 2019, showed that only 8.4% of NDS participants were from CALD communities, indicating that they are underrepresented amongst NDIS participants.

Grants under the ICB program are intended to support individuals to build the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to set and achieve their goals. They will fund peer support and leadership and professional development opportunities that will help people to speak for themselves when accessing services and engaging in their communities.

The focus on organisations that are run by people with disabilities and people from the priority cohort groups sends a powerful message that the grant program itself is practising what it preaches when it comes to inclusion – the focus is on funding organisations run by people with disabilities to build the capacity of people with disabilities.

Welcome features of the program include the introduction of a small grant stream for organisations to access grants of up to $30,000 pa for three years via a simplified application process. These funds can be used to support small scale and pilot projects – allowing organisation to test ideas. The learning that will come from projects funded under this stream will be invaluable for scalable and system-based solutions to improve inclusion. Also welcome is small scale funding for peer led groups and for place based or community of interest capacity building. These local solutions are vital for engaging people in their own communities, and funding through this ILC program is important recognition of their value and the real costs of facilitating this kind of activity. Finally, the program includes funding for organisations run by people with disabilities and their families to develop their own organisational capacity, alongside the individual capacity building work. Funding based on project interventions rarely allows for organisational development, so this is a welcome aspect of the Individual Capacity Building grants and continues a practice from previous ILC programs.

CBB is currently running a program of support – ILC Ready – to help organisations to understand ILC funding and develop their ideas for a disability inclusion project. The release of this Individual Capacity Building round has clearly caused some confusion around eligibility for ILC funding amongst some of the organisations we’ve been working with. Although grants in the Individual Capacity Building program are limited to organisations run by people with disabilities and their families and carers, and for priority cohort groups, our expectation is that the eligibility will be broader for the forthcoming rounds of economic and community participation and mainstream services. Organisations that have an idea for a project, but aren’t eligible for Individual Capacity Building funding, should study the grant opportunity guidelines for the new programs when they are issued this month, to see if they offer a better fit. In addition, we expect further ILC funding rounds to be opened in 2020, so there will be more opportunities next year for organisations who don’t have a suitable, or sufficiently developed, idea for the current grant rounds.

For more detail on the Individual Capacity Building, please see our detailed analysis HERE. Applications are via the Community Grants Hub. Details of future ILC programs will be published on the Community Grants Hub as they are released.

Jane Arnott
General Manager, Consulting and Business Services
Email: jarnott@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364

 


ILC Individual Capacity Building Program Grant Opportunity 2019-2020

The NDIA recently opened grant applications for Individual Capacity Building funding. This is the first of three ILC programs that will open in August and September, with forthcoming programs for mainstream capacity building and economic participation. See below for our summary of the grant program.

  • Grants for:
    • Disabled Peoples Organisations/ Families Organisations (DPO/FOs)
    • Priority Cohort Led (PCL) Organisations
  • Opening date: 19 August 2019
  • Closing date: 30 September 2019 11pm
  • Outcomes for people with disabilities to
    • increase the skills and confidence to participate in and contribute to the community and protect their rights.
    • feel motivated, confident and empowered to act.
    • increase participation in and contribution to community activities.

1.   Disabled Peoples Organisations/Families Organisations (DPO/FOs)

DPO/FOs are organisations run by or for people with disabilities and/or their families. For organisations with paid staff and a board, the participation of people with disability and/or their families as board or staff members (or both) must be at least 50%. If the organisation has no paid staff, at least 50% of the organisation’s volunteers must be people with disabilities and/or their families. The DPO/FOs must actively demonstrate their commitment to the social model of disability which seeks to remove barriers to access mainstream services and live an ordinary life.

Total funding available: $80 Million (excl. GST)

Activity:

Individual Capacity Building (ICB)

  • activities that guide the capacity of people with disability by ensuring they have the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to set and achieve their goals.
  • for the primary and direct benefit for people with disability, and developed and delivered in collaboration with people with disability.
  • ICB activity maximum funding: $600,000 per year up to three years (total of $1.8 m)

 Organisational Capacity Building (OCB)

DPO/FOS who apply for Individual Capacity Building (ICB) activities can in addition apply for Organisational Capacity Building (OCB) activities.

  • OCB activity maximum funding: $50,000 per year up three years to (total of $150,000)
  • Smaller organisations can alternatively apply for small grants up to $30,000 per year (GST excl.) for up to three years by using a simplified process (without the requirement to demonstrate the capability of the organisation). The grant can be used for ICB activities only or for a combination of ICB and OCB. The total of $90,000 for the grant life cannot be exceeded.

2.   Priority Cohort Led (PCL) Organisations

a) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities or organisations, who must be registered with the Office of the Registrar of Indigenous Corporation (ORIC)
b) Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) communities
c) LGBTIQA+

Total funding available: $20 Million (excl. GST)

Activity:

Individual Capacity Building (ICB)

  • activities that guide the capacity of people with disability by ensuring they have the knowledge, skills and confidence they need to set and achieve their goals.
  • for the primary and direct benefit for people with disability and developed and delivered in collaboration with people with disability.
  • ICB activity maximum funding: $600,000 per year up to three years (total of $1.8m)

Smaller organisations can alternatively apply for small grants up to $30,000 per year (GST excl) for up to three years using a simplified process (without the requirement to demonstrate the capability of the organisation). The grant can be used for ICB activities only. The total of $90,000 for the grant life cannot be exceeded.

What activities can be funded?

Individual Capacity Building

  • Peer led support groups for people with disability
  • Peer led support groups for parents, carers and siblings of people with disability
  • Capacity building activities that enable people to speak for themselves
  • Leadership and professional development activities (individual or group based)
  • Other activities to develop the capacity of individuals with disability
  • Scaling or extending previously ILC funded individual capacity building activities

Organisational Capacity Building

Only DPO/FOs can apply for three of the following activities, in addition to their Individual Capacity Building activities:

  • Upskilling, training or developing existing or potential staff, volunteers, board members
  • Developing and delivering strategies and activities to strengthen the involvement of people with disabilities and/or families and careers
  • Developing and delivering strategies and activities to support knowledge and skill transfer between board members
  • Establishing and maintaining partnerships to collaborate with other organisations
  • Improving organisational systems or processes to deliver organisation efficiencies
  • Strengthening the quality of organisational activities
  • Strategies to upskill the organisation
  • Developing organisational strategy
  • Scoping and developing a business case for revenue generating services that lead towards financial independence

Grants up to $90,000 over total grant period

Projects are likely based in local communities and provide support for

  • existing peer led groups for the costs associated with running the group
  • small scale projects or pilot projects that contribute to building the capacity of people with disability in the community
  • capacity building of a place-based community or community of interest, while also strengthening the infrastructure of the group.

Applicants who are currently receiving ILC funding through a previous ILC grant round may apply under this grant, however they cannot apply for funding that duplicates activities or projects that have already received ILC funding to deliver. Applicants can submit a maximum of two applications under this grant round when they apply once in their own right and the second application as the lead of a consortium. Acting as an auspicor does not count towards the number of applications that an organisation is eligible to submit. The detailed grant requirements are outlined in the Individual Capacity Building (ICB) Program Grant Opportunity 2019-2020 here.


Dr Ellen Schuler 
Business Consultant 
Email: eschuler@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364


Get ready for the upcoming ILC grant rounds

The NDIS has announced the upcoming ILC grants totalling up to $222 million across three grant rounds.

  • Individual Capacity Building Program 19 August – 27 September 2019
  • Mainstream Capacity Building Program 9 September – 18 October 2019
  • Economic and Community Participation Program 9 September – 18 October 2019

If your organisation is planning to apply for an ILC grant it is advisable to review potential fit now and start planning ahead. Grant applications will only be open for five to six weeks and good preparation can help reduce the stress of preparing and writing your grant application. Specific details of each program will be available in the Grant Opportunity Guidelines on the Community Grants Hub when the grants are open for application.


Need help with an ILC idea?

We’re running a series of free workshops across South Australia in August 2019 for organisations that are interested in applying for an ILC grant. 

Register now.


Individual Capacity Building Program:

  • Focus on organisations run by and for people with disability (DPOs) or their families and carers (FOs).
  • Organisations who are not DPOs/FOs may be funded if they support a specific community of people (so called Priority Led Organisations) e.g. cultural or linguistically diverse groups.
  • Grant application period: 19 August – 27 September 2019
  • Grants will start in February 2020 and can provide funding for up to three years.

The grant activities seek to achieve outcomes for people with disabilities to:

  • have the skills and confidence to participate and contribute to the community and protect their rights.
  • have increased motivation, confidence and empowerment to act
  • participate in and benefit from the same community activities as everyone else.

Activities must build the capacity of people with disabilities by ensuring they have the knowledge, skills and confidence to set and achieve goals. Activities must be for the primary and direct benefit of people with disabilities and developed and delivered in collaboration with people with disability.

DPO/FOs can also apply for funding to improve their organisational capacity to deliver their mission and the ILC program. The Organisational Capacity Building funding is exclusive to DPOs/FOs and can only be funded as part of a broader project to build the capacity of individuals with disability.

Mainstream Capacity Building Program

  • Focus on mainstream health interfaces
  • Grants application period: 9 September – 18 October 2019
  • Grant will start as of March 2020 with funding up to 2 years.

The grant activities seek to achieve outcomes for people with disabilities to use and benefit from the same mainstream services as everyone else.

For this round, activities must support improvements in the delivery of accessible and inclusive mainstream health services. They should help overcome barriers to inclusion such as lack of knowledge, information or skill, attitudes and culture, governance and administration, infrastructure and resources, communication or remote location.

Economic and Community Participation Program

  • Economic participation stream focus on employment
  • Social and community stream focus on community life
  • Grants application period: 9 September – 18 October 2019
  • Grant will start as of March 2020 with funding up to 3 years.

The grant activities seek to achieve outcomes for people with disabilities to:

  • participate in and benefit from the same community activities as everyone else
  • actively contribute to leading, shaping and influencing their community
  • have the skills and confidence to participate and contribute to the community and protect their rights

Activities in the Economic Participation Stream include capacity building for employers, pathways to employment and fostering entrepreneurship.

The Social and Community Participation Stream seeks activities that establish education resources for the community sector to improve contemporary understanding of pathways to participation and leadership. Activities could also enhance the capacity of local communities to identify areas to improve inclusion practices and to create tools for change. Funding is also provided to increase awareness and understanding of disability, e.g. in sporting associations or specific sectors, or to create networks that connect people to opportunities. Training for volunteers to better relate to, or work with peoples with disabilities can also be provided through this grant program.

We expect a third Economic and Community Participation Program potentially this year and more grant rounds available in 2020/21. The Activating Community Inclusion stream aims to address community attitudes towards disabilities and provide opportunities for people with disabilities to be included in everyday life. 

The outcomes of the National Information Program (which closed in May 2019) have not yet been announced.

To date the ILC program has awarded 350 grants to community organisations to a value of $138.5 million (GST exc.).  More information about the ILC program is available on the NDIS website and CBB webinar series.

CBB will be running free workshops across South Australia in August helping organisations learn how to design and plan for an ILC project. Following the grant announcement from NDIA we have extended the registration dates.

Organisations can also apply for one on one support which, is designed for organisations who need more time and input to develop their project proposals, ready for when the 2020 grant rounds open.

If you have any questions on the program, please just drop us an email at ilc@cbb.com.au.


Dr Ellen Schuler 
Business Consultant 
Email: eschuler@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364


Inclusion projects – what do they actually do?

Inclusive Sport SA
Image credit: Inclusive Sport SA

In my blog last month, I wrote about disability inclusion and the human right for people with disabilities to live an ordinary life. 4.3m Australians live with some form of disability, and 2.5m of them are under 65. You don’t have to be a great mathematician to work out that that’s a lot more than the 460,000 people with disabilities who will be supported by an NDIS plan. And that’s why inclusion is so important.

The NDIA’s information, linkages and capacity building (ILC) grant program provides funds for projects to improve inclusion of people with a disability. Pretty much any type of organisation can apply for a grant, and you don’t need to be a registered NDIS provider, or even a disability services provider.

So what do inclusion projects actually do?

Over the last month we’ve been running a series of webinars as the first part of our ILC Ready program to help organisations understand ILC funding, and to develop their project ideas and project proposals. As part of these webinars we’ve spoken to a range of organisations who have received an ILC grant to understand more about their inclusion projects. In this month’s blog, we’re looking at different ways of improving inclusion, through some examples of inclusion projects in practice.

Overcome barriers to accessing services

When Anglicare SA noticed that they had a much lower uptake of their services from people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) communities, they decided to do some research into the issue with Flinders University. The research found that stigma was the biggest barrier to people from CALD communities accessing disability services. Some of our views on disability are heavily influenced by culture and experience, so Anglicare SA applied for an ILC grant to develop a video to tackle stigma around disability. The video is called “In our own words” and features people from different cultural backgrounds talking about their experience of living with disability, or caring for a family member with disability. Anglicare SA is sharing the video with communities and other service providers to improve understanding of the needs of culturally diverse communities.

Similarly, City of Playford, in Adelaide’s north, also noticed that people from CALD communities were not accessing services. They took a slightly different approach to research, working alongside residents through the process of accessing services, and observing the barriers that they were facing. These included cultural, language and system barriers. They tested out these assumptions, by reaching out to the other local service providers to find out if they’d noticed the same things. They had. Together, they realised that all these pain points had something in common: they were happening at the frontline, across many different service systems. City of Playford, City of Salisbury, and the Department of Human Services decided to work together, by applying for an ILC grant to create a CALD toolkit for frontline staff working across different social services. Their aim was to empower the first person in the frontline to work around cultural, language and system barriers, so the person seeking help would get the support they needed the first time.

Engage people with disabilities in communities and organisations

HCO were already running Neighbourhood Links group in Mount Barker, based on a UK program called the Keyring model. Neighbourhood Links brings together a group of up to eight people with intellectual disability, who are living independently or intending to move out of home, with a facilitator who also lives in the area. All participants live within close distance of each other, creating a linked-up support network. Each month, one of the Neighbourhood Links participants hosts a meeting to catch up and talk about issues that are important to independent living, or different topics of interest, such as the Federal Election. For the Mount Barker group, this created an opportunity to develop knowledge about our electoral and government system and how to vote. The facilitator builds a relationship with each of the participants, and helps them to come up with their own solutions to daily living problems both independently, and as part of meetings. They provide on-call and drop in support to participants and attend the monthly meeting.

The evaluation of the existing HCO program showed that participants were more engaged in their local community and less socially isolated. HCO was awarded ILC funding to expand the model from the Mount Barker group to five further groups across the Adelaide Hills and surrounding area.  

Inclusive Sport SA have a good understanding of the barriers to inclusion of people of all abilities in mainstream sports and recreation.  One of the main challenges happens again, at the frontline. When people in community sporting clubs are unsure about how to include people with different abilities, and are concerned about doing it ‘right’, the result can be that nothing is done, and the person with disability ends up leaving the club.

Inclusive Sport SA’s ILC project addresses inclusion from three perspectives.

  • For the community: Inclusive Sport SA are surveying club members, parents and participants of mainstream sports clubs to benchmark the current attitudes in sport. In addition, their Well Played campaign uses the message “Play Together Play Well” with social media content, such as their Humans of Sports in SA stories, to help people see the benefits of including people of all abilities in sport.
  • For people living with disability: there is a self-driven Participant Advisory Group of six local and high performance athletes and coaches with lived experience of disability, as well as resources developed by people with disability, for people with disability. The advisory group’s aim is to help the sector implement initiatives that take the views of people with disability into account.
    Inclusive Sport SA are working with people with disability to make short videos on topics like: how to deal with an umpire’s decision, how to meet people at your club, and what to expect as a player.
  • For the sport and recreation sector: Inclusive Sport SA met with key state sport administrators about inclusion of people with disability in club sport. They found opportunities to share knowledge, provide training to the sector, and bring together the many great resources already available to improve inclusion in sport.

They are building an online hub where major sporting bodies, community clubs, service providers, prospective participants and their families can connect with each other, and share supports, events, competitions and strategies that work.

Inclusive employment

SACID used its ILC grant to establish SA Inclusion Point, an information service. SA Inclusion Point employs people with intellectual disability as inclusion workers to

  • Speak with groups about how to include people with disability
  • Help make easy read information
  • Set up groups for people with intellectual disability so they can have their voice heard
  • Help at workshops and events

Making this inclusion meaningful included ensuring recruitment and employment processes are accessible to people with disability, such as presenting position descriptions in an easy-read format; and paying award rates for the work. The inclusion workers have developed workshops focussed on skills development and the right to safety (which was their own suggestion).  SACID have also received an additional ILC grant that will see people with intellectual disability have a greater voice within the organisation and wider community through the establishment of a reference group that will advise the Board, and peer action groups focused on creating more inclusive communities.

Tennis player and TV presenter Dylan Alcott has launched Remove the Barrier, a campaign to tackle the unconscious bias that makes it difficult for people with disabilities to secure employment. Currently only 54% of the one in five Australians living with disability are employed, which is twice the general unemployment rate. The campaign includes tips on actions you can take to remove the barriers to employment, including wording of job advertisements and flexibility in your recruitment process. Whilst Alcott’s campaign is not ILC funded, it’s a great example of work to improve inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace, and has the support of big name brands like Nike, ANZ and Medibank.

Creating inclusive environments

Given the number of Australians living with disability, it makes commercial sense for businesses to include them as customers. Autism SA’s Autism Friendly Charter is a website for businesses and organisations to access online training, and sign up as an autism friendly business. Autism SA has been funded through ILC grants to make the charter national, and to design an app mapping safe, autism friendly spaces, activities, businesses and services. Similarly, Beyond Bank are also designing new branches to be more inclusive for people with disability, as you can see in this video about engaging people with disability in the design of a new Canberra branch.

Feeling inspired?

You can learn more about the ILC projects discussed above by watching our webinar recordings here. You can also book onto one of our ILC workshops, touring South Australia in August. These will help you to develop your inclusion ideas into potential projects. If you’re based in and/or operating in South Australia, you can apply for one to one support from our team of business consultants here, to help you develop your ILC project proposal. We will be providing one to one support to 20 South Australian organisations from October to December.

This program is funded by the South Australian Department of Human Services through its NDIA Community Inclusion and Capacity Development Grant to provide support to South Australian organisations for ILC readiness. It is free for participating organisations.

If you have any questions on the program, please just drop us an email at ilc@cbb.com.au.


Jane Arnott
General Manager, Consulting and Business Services
Email: jarnott@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 284 364


National NDIS worker screening database delayed

The NDIS Commission has postponed the introduction of a national NDIS worker screening database until 2020.

In the interim, and since the introduction of the NDIS Commission in all Australian states and territories (except Western Australia) on 1 July, there are transitional requirements for NDIS Worker screening in each state. Workers continue to require a current check in the state or territory in which they work. Details for acceptable checks in each state are listed on the Commission website here.

Interim requirements in South Australia

In South Australia, existing workers in a ‘risk assessed role’ must have a valid clearance for a

  • Department of Human Services Disability Services Employment screening (issued in the last three years)

OR

  • Department of Human Services Child-related Employment Check SA child related employment screening (issued in the last three years and before 1 July 2019).

New workers in SA or workers whose check expires after 1 July 2019 will need to apply for a Department of Human Services Disability Services Employment Screening check. A Working with Children Check alone will no longer be acceptable for providing NDIS supports. If workers are working with children they will also require a new Working with children check.

Checks can be lodged by the individual or the organisation. Organisations are required to register with the Department of Human Services Screening Unit.

Records of your workers

NDIS providers will be audited to ensure relevant checks are in place, and also on the record keeping of all workers who engage in ‘risk assessed roles’. Records must be accurate, complete and in line with the NDIS (Practice Standards-Worker Screening) Rules 2018, updated regularly and kept for seven years. The Commission website outlines the details that the list of workers needs to include.  

Contracts with your contractors

NDIS providers who engage contractors and other organisations in the provision of NDIS supports or perform work on their premises need to be aware of additional obligations. NDIS providers must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the worker of the contractor who engages in a ‘risk assessed role’ holds the necessary check. An up-to-date contract with the contractor must be in place. This needs to impose a range of obligations on the contractor that are outlined in Section 13 (4) of the NDIS (Practice Standards-Worker Screening) Rules 2018. The NDIS Commission can request access to the contracts and records relating to contractors, and your audit may review how you meet your obligations.

Risk assessed roles

All risk assessed roles in an organisation will require a screening check including

  • key personnel (including board members, senior executives, manager, team leaders)
  • roles for which the normal duties include the direct delivery of specified supports or specified services to a person with disability
  • roles for which the normal duties are likely to require more than incidental contact with people with disability, including volunteers and subcontractors.

It is the obligation of the NDIS provider to assess each roles within the organisation (including contractors) to identify all ‘risk assessed roles’.  The NDIS Commission website lists three helpful examples to illustrate what is considered ‘more than incidental contact’.

Action plan for providers

Although organisations have been engaging in worker screening for a while, many providers have not yet taken notice and implemented the NDIS (Practice Standards-Worker Screening) Rules 2018. Here is an action plan for your organisation:

  • Assess all roles in your organisation, including subcontractors, and establish a list of ‘risk assessed roles’
  • Understand the interim screening rules in your state
  • Ensure checks are up to date and in line with the interim requirements
  • Ensure your record keeping is in line with the rules
  • Review if your CRM is capable of recording all necessary fields. Have you discussed your recording requirements with your software provider?
  • Establish responsibilities for maintaining all records. Are suspensions, expulsions and incidents recorded and responded to? Is your organisation alerted before checks expire?
  • Communicate the new requirements to your contractors and update your contracts
  • Update all relevant policies and procedures e.g. your staff intake policy.
  • Communicate the change to your staff and your board

When you have worked your way through this list it is advisable to conduct an internal audit, not only of your records but also your internal controls and risks that the worker screening might not capture.

For questions or feedback, please contact CBB’s Business Consultant Dr Ellen Schuler.

NDIS consultant


Dr Ellen Schuler
Business Consultant 
Email: eschuler@cbb.com.au
Phone: 1300 763 505


ILC Inclusion

I grew up in an era when my peers with disabilities were educated in a different ‘special’ school. In our regional high school with over 800 students, we had two pupils with a visible disability. Even children with dyslexia were taken out of their classes and bussed to a different site for extra lessons to support their literacy. People with disabilities were excluded from mainstream services and therefore marginalised, creating a sense of difference, of ‘otherness’, between those of us that are temporarily able-bodied, and people with disabilities.  No-one benefits from this model – not people with disabilities, not their families and carers, and certainly not society as a whole.

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