Group of people holding a parachute.

D. Work with employers to change attitudes, and increase the information and support available

352 people provided feedback on this proposal.

Level of support for proposal

What we plan to do in 2014/15 and later years:

  • 94 people strongly agreed
  • 178 people agreed
  • 50 people neither agreed nor disagreed
  • 15 people disagreed
  • 15 people strongly disagreed.

The order we are planning to do them:

  • 70 people strongly agreed
  • 176 people agreed
  • 68 people neither agreed nor disagreed
  • 23 people disagreed
  • 16 people strongly disagreed.

Suggested changes to the long term plan

There was varying support for a Disability Confidence conference. Those who supported it said it was a great way to show case success stories. Other ways to do this may include participating in an already established conference. Those that did not support the conference felt there were better ways to encourage a change in attitude of employers (such as meet and greet sessions with disabled people and employers).

A Sector Wide Consistent Workplace Education Pilot was suggested as an alternate to the confident workplaces trial and the Disability Confidence conference involving Work and Income, Business Leader and Employer Networks, the Disability Employment Forum (DEF), employment agencies and other stakeholder representatives.

Changing attitudes is much more than just disability confidence, which should include:

  • promotion of the skills and attributes of disabled people
  • prevention of injury or onset of common mental health conditions
  • early intervention
  • effective rehabilitation
  • return to work strategies and support.

Work should initially be done with a few employers (including small employers) and then build on the experience and lessons with more employers.

Disabled people should lead this work.

This work should be ongoing into later years.

Suggested actions for Work and Income

Work and Income need to:

  • build on existing knowledge in this area. Contracted providers have been doing this for some time - Be Accessible (Be Employed) is also doing work in this area
  • focus on connecting people to appropriate skills training to match employer needs and expectations.
  • provide more funding to Supported Employment providers so they can place more disabled people and people with health conditions – this will provide a positive experience for employers and show success.
  • Work and Income need to employ specialist staff that can develop long-term effective relationships with employers and promote the employment of disabled people and people with health conditions.
  • Work and Income needs to liaise with disabled people and/or their representatives around employment of disabled people. Too much focus is put into liaising with disability employment service providers.
  • Need to remember to include older people.
  • One person commented that we can over estimate how much employers are really interested in this issue. What employers want is people who can do the job. Instead of doing this work, give more funding to contracted providers so they can support more disabled people into work. This will provide positive success stories which can be shared with employers.

Suggested actions for government agencies

Employer confidence needs a whole of system approach. Interagency collaboration is required to do this effectively. Government needs to lead the way on the employment of disabled people and people with health conditions.

Expectations that disabled people can work needs to be developed in schools.

Back to content page | Previous page | Next page

Group of people holding a parachute.
Print this page.