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Disability representation in the workplace is a national disgrace

Tuesday, 28 November 2017

Almost one in two Australians living with a disability are unemployed compared to the national average of 5.4 per cent, a national disgrace according to Australian Greens Disability spokesperson Senator Jordon Steele-John.

“It is abundantly clear from Senator Fifield’s lacklustre response in question time today that the Turnbull Government has no plans to seriously address high rates of unemployment amongst the disability community,” Senator Steele-John said.

“There has been no suggestion that the government take up proactive public sector targets for people with a disability and no suggestion of an innovation fund to enable the employment of people with a disability.

“I find this so concerning because our own human rights commission has indicated that discrimination in relation to disability comprises 37 per cent of all complaints received annually.

“Given these statistics, the government must make a concerted effort to ensure that employers act in a non-discriminatory way towards people with a disability and understand their obligations under the law.

“Furthermore, whilst the NDIS and the Disability Support Pension are critical safety nets in our society, they are not an answer to nor a replacement for meaningful employment!

“It is time this Parliament took proactive steps to address the entrenched discrimination felt by those with a lived experience of disability in relation to employment, and I will make it my mission along with the Australian Greens to bring about positive change in this sector.”

Media contact:

Tim Oliver - 0448 316 387

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