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Impacting Supported Employment BuyAbility

Impacting Supported Employment BuyAbility

The BuyAbility Social Impact Measurement Tool went live late November 2016, with many pledged members excited to start using this innovative tool. The BuyAbility Team have shared and continue to snowball this enthusiasm through these early successes for a sector that is under threat. Kerrie Langford, the National Employment Manager for National Disability Services, reflected this sentiment at the annual CEO conference in Melbourne early this month. 

‘What is really exciting in all of this is currently we now have over 10,000 supported employee’s with all the pledged organisations that have signed up who we now have the capacity to get data to go into the tool. Now, that's actually over half the supported employees nationally.’  Kerrie Langford, National Disability Services

Our Supported Employment Enterprise Members contribute to ensuring a future employment avenue for people with disability through the beneficial and simple records maintained on the tool. 

Sally Powell, CEO of Bedford Group, is a strong supporter of the BuyAbility campaign. Sally emphasises that it is now time that Government, unions and the community see what Supported Employment Enterprises do and how important they are. She says: ‘the tool… will be able to demonstrate collectively to the Government just how expensive it is, not to have us [Supported Employment Enterprises] around.’ In reference to the campaign, she highlights to organisations considering to join the initiative that the pledge amounts are, ‘measured so that you can afford to be part of this and that you can benefit from it… We couldn’t afford to have these tools if we were going it our own. Together we can. Together we are much stronger then individuals.’ Bedford Group’s interactions with the tool, along with other pledged members, are able to verify the important and beneficial impact the tool will have on the sector.

The data produced provides information surrounding:

• Annual savings in Government spending on alternate disability supports;

• Savings on Disability Support Pensions (DSP) expenditure through income test recoveries from supported employees;

• Economic benefit to the Australian economy from increased participation of people with disability in the workforce;

• Enhanced life outcomes derived from the benefits of work for supported employees;

• Measures of happiness and well-being of supported employees; and,

• The value of work conducted by supported employees for customers.

The BuyAbility Team expects an inflation of job possibilities for people with a disability within the next 12 months as a direct result of this initiative. The impact tool enhances opportunities for supported employers to engage with stakeholders and further develop and improve internal management performance. Kerry Langford comments that the tool aims to ‘…demonstrate to the advocates and the unions that really, supported employment is a very very important pathway for people with disability, a very very important employment opportunity and for supported employment not to exist would have quite vast and devastating impact.’ Each day the BuyAbility campaign takes a step closer to securing a future for Supported Employment Enterprises and ensuring that people with disability have access to the full continuum of employment forever.

SEE ABILITY, WHY NOT BUYABILITY?

Are you a Supported Employment Enterprise? Become a member today and find out your sectors potential. Want to get involved? Buy from our Supported Employment Enterprise Members network. 

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