IncludeAbility is a national project led by Australia’s Disability Discrimination Commissioner, Dr Ben Gauntlett, which aims to increase access to meaningful employment opportunities for people with a disability. The project will achieve this by building greater capacity among public and private sector organisations to address employment barriers for Australians living with disability.
The Commission is grateful for the financial support of the Paul Ramsay Foundation to implement this Project. The Includeability Project was launched with the first Network meeting in April 2021.
Why focus on employment?
More than 4 million people in Australia have a disability, yet this significant part of the population are being left behind in the labour market. In 2011, Australia ranked 21st out of 29 countries in the OECD for the employment of people with disability, and little has improved since. Currently, the labour force participation rate for people with disability aged 15-64 years is 53%, compared with 84% of people the same age without disability.
The benefits of improving employment opportunities for people with disability are four-fold, including benefits for:
Individuals – contributing to financial independence, identify and self-worth, and upholding the right for individuals with disability to have job, as enshrined in the Disability Discrimination Act 1992
Business – leading to 28% higher revenue and 30% higher profit margins in companies with leading disability initiatives
Society – creating a more inclusive society, where the diversity of employees reflect the community they work for
The Australian Economy – boosting GDP by approximately $50 billion by 2050 by increasing labour force participation of people with disability to 70%
To achieve these aims, the IncludeAbility Project focuses on four key components:
An Employer Network of executive leaders from some of Australia’s largest organisations and businesses
An Ambassador Advisory Group, comprised of people with lived experience of disability
A web portal hosting a range of employment and workplace resources to support the Employer Network and employers with disability more generally
The opportunity for Employer Network members to participate in innovative pilot employment programs
For more information on IncludeAbility, and to access a range of free resources, visit https://includeability.gov.au.