- Disability Workforce Development and Retention Fund will help address workforce challenges in the sector
- Funding will enable providers to expand their workforces
- Focus on finding and retaining workers with the right skills, values, and attributes
Over $2.5 million in funding has been extended to 13 disability service providers across Western Australia to help address workforce challenges in the sector.
Disability Services Minister Don Punch today announced the recipients of grant funding under the State Government’s Disability Workforce Development and Retention Fund, funded via the Sector Transition Fund.
The Workforce Development and Retention Fund will support NDIS registered providers and funded services in identifying and trialling innovative ways to expand their workforces and retain workers with the right skills, values, and attributes.
The Department of Communities engaged National Disability Services WA to administer the fund with a requirement that two-thirds of funding be allocated to providers delivering services in regional areas, and one-third to metropolitan providers.
Initiatives funded include:
- attracting allied health therapists looking to transition from the aged care sector and enhance their skill levels to work in the disability sector;
- supporting disability support workers in achieving a formal qualification through the Recognition of Prior Learning process; and
- growing the employment of Aboriginal disability support workers through skills training and workplace mentoring to provide culturally appropriate disability support services.
As stated by Disability Services Minister Don Punch:
“Disability service providers across Western Australia are experiencing workforce challenges.
“As a State Government, the best thing for us to do is empower disability service providers to identify and implement their own solutions, particularly at local level.
“The Disability Workforce Development and Retention Fund builds on the previous Regional and Remote Expansion and Development Fund, with a specific aim to help build the disability support workforce in regional WA as well as in metropolitan Perth.
“Just as importantly, a number of programs funded will focus on culturally appropriate disability support services for Aboriginal people and people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.
“All Western Australians, regardless of location and cultural background, should be able to access good quality disability support and the Disability Workforce Development and Retention Fund is helping ensure it’s available.
“It’s more than a training fund, it’s an investment in the knowledge and capability of the community services sector.”