Link August 2017 - Page 46

intellectual disability advertorial a full life S tatistics tell us that people with intellectual disability do incredibly well in open employment* when given the right job match in the right working environment with the right support by a trained professional. So why are people with intellectual disability still under-represented in the workforce? with routine. Same person, same because they’ve got a great routine time, same place suits them well, and great support from people who so obviously the right type of post- know what they’re doing.” placement support is vital. they’re doing when it comes to Post-placement support is more Indeed, NOVA knows what than driving around to the workplace finding award-wage employment for at any old time, asking how the people with intellectual disability. Of person with a disability is going and the 1492 job seekers with intellectual then driving off. It is an easy trap to disability who signed up with NOVA think, Oh Bessie did well last week. since 2010, over 50% have found I’ll give her a miss this week. work that lasts for over a year. NOVA more of the above conditions are strives to find good jobs that lead to absent or are of variable quality. post-placement support for people economic independence. Unfortunately, this is not uncommon, with intellectual disability is delivered Why is independence important? and results in people with intellectual by a well-trained support worker who Every person with disability has the disability being seen to be less liaises with all of the stakeholders right to live as full a life as they aspire effective workers than they really are. in the person’s life – employer, to. The more real choice in regards to In turn, this limits our expectations of colleagues, parents, carers and the travel, socialising, leisure and work, people with intellectual disability. person themselves. the closer people come to living this full life. This is particularly so for work, Challenges arise when one or Consistency is key. Effective This has to stop. People with intellectual disability Martin Wren, says, “We have people because it sustains us emotionally, who have been in work for 20 years intellectually and financially. thrive in a supportive environm ent NOVA Employment’s CEO, NOVA achieves success by ‘aiming high’ on behalf of job seekers with intellectual disability. From the CEO down, NOVA staff have an inviolate trust in the ability of people with disability to live fully, believing that the way into this full life is through open employment alongside everyday workers. The organisation takes a genuine interest in job-seeker skills and passions, finds a job that suits in an understanding workplace, then provides carefully considered support to both the employee and employer for as long as required. * Open employment is that which pays award wages in a mainstream workplace alongside able-bodied workers. Daniel Di Cristo has been working with his boss, Mick Wasson, for 16 years. 44 intellectual disability linkonline.com.au