Waste of money to start job preparation at year 10

The NDIA are going to start investing in disability employment services a year earlier, in year 10.

This will be a complete waste of effort, time, resources, money ($130 million!) and good will. It won’t make a scrap of difference.


Because the nature of our jobseekers is that skills learnt in year 10 rarely transfer to the following year and these skills even less transferrable across a change of context, such as from classroom to workplace. The majority of our clients require specific workplace training according to the roles they are seeking to fill. This is why work experience placements are part of any solid transition-to-work program.

More often these programs prepare our young people for play, not work. They offer no progressive skills training, like work placements, just entertainment. This means young jobseekers with disability do worse than if we left them alone – the few skills they did have are lost through leaving them idol.

Instead of trying something new that might sound fancy, why don’t we look at what we have done that works? We could try by asking the top five service providers for their tips and strategies for placing young people with psychiatric illness, intellectual disability and autism spectrum disorder.

Take that $130 million and allocate it to providers that are already achieving great results. Then watch the statistics and, more importantly, the benefits for each individual change before your very eyes.