PSA commends “how to” guide for supporting disabled people into work

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The publication of Employment Support Practice Guidelines this week by the NZ Disability Support Network has been welcomed by members of the Public Service Association’s Deaf and Disabled members’ network.

“As the Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, observed at this week’s launch, the issue of ensuring disabled workers receive at least the same pay and conditions as everyone else in their workplaces has been left parked for too long without getting the attention it deserves,” said PSA network convenor Candace McCabe.

“The network supports the point made in the guidelines that employment means having a job where you are paid an amount equal to the minimum wage or more, and that this is all about the provision of ‘real’ jobs for ‘real’ pay.

“The potential for these guidelines to help to inform and guide expectations of disabled people and family members, as well as to help to drive improvements by employment support service providers, funders, training providers and independent auditors and evaluators is exciting”.

“Related issues such as progress to remove breaches of human rights in areas such as minimum wage exemption are of central interest to the PSA and its members. The sooner those exemptions end, the better”.

The PSA Deaf and Disabled members’ network also commended the work of the governance group of NZDSN, Platform, Inclusive.nz, SAMS, PeopleFirst, the Disabled Persons Assembly NZ and MSD in instituting a significant step forward for benchmarking better practice.

The network supports the fact that this work has been built on an evidence based set of principles and practices, and the call it makes in its companion document for employment specialists, managers and leaders of employment support provider agencies to keep appraised of the importance of moving away from lower wages that perpetuate inequality.