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Planning the future of the NDIS Workforce in Townsville

Planning the future of the NDIS Workforce in Townsville

Local NDIS workforce challenges, opportunities and priorities for the broader Townsville region will be the focus of the NDIS Workforce Forum that will be held today in Townsville.

Hosted by WorkAbility Qld, the forum will see a range of stakeholders come together to hear, explore and share insights and strategies to ensure that the broader Townsville region has the right people, with the right skills, in the right place, at the right time to achieve full implementation of the NDIS.

WorkAbility Qld has been developed through a partnership between the Queensland Department of Communities, Child Safety and Disability Services (DCCSDS) and a consortium of peak bodies including:

  • National Disability Services (NDS),
  • Community Services Industry Alliance (CSIA), and
  • Queensland Council of Social Services (QCOSS).

The Strategy aims to work collaboratively with the sector, government and the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) to deliver both local and state-wide workforce solutions to meet the identified needs of the sector in Queensland, and to build the sector workforce supply and capability to meet demand under the NDIS.

Richard Nelson, Queensland State Manager of NDS says the rollout of the NDIS in Queensland will require significant growth in the number of workers across the sector, as well as the range of skills and abilities required to meet new demand, expectations and needs as a result of the transition to the NDIS.

“The NDIS is expected to create up to 13,000 additional jobs between 2016 and 2019, with an anticipated job growth of 650 FTE in the North Queensland region by full implementation of the NDIS.

“The transition to the NDIS will change the way many employees work in various ways, depending on their roles and the types of services and supports that NDIS participants seek as the NDIS rolls out,” Mr Nelson said.

Doug Evans, says that this forum is a key component in preparing, strengthening and growing the local workforce to meet future demands as a result of the transition to the NDIS through identifying local solutions for local needs via collaboration with key stakeholders in the region.

“This forum will provide perspectives and insights about workforce transformation; explore and contribute to local intelligence about workforce gaps and priorities; and provide a deeper understanding of, and possible solutions to the cultural change and workforce transformation impacts of NDIS implementation,” Mr Evans said.

Belinda Drew, CEO of CSIA says we recognise the NDIS workforce challenges, opportunities and priorities will be different across the state.

“These regional NDIS Workforce Forums will provide an opportunity for employers; training, education and employment organisations; and a host of other stakeholders to discuss the local opportunities, challenges and solutions for workforce supply, capability and utilisation, and will help to develop shared insights and workforce strategies for each region.

“Discussions from these forums will form a basis for the development of regional workforce plans, which will provide a local blueprint for action on workforce priorities for each region,” she said.

Mark Henley, CEO of QCOSS says participants at the forum in Townsville will get to hear valuable insights and knowledge from keynote speaker Rob Watkins, General Manager NSW/ACT, House with No Steps (HWNS).

“Rob will share his experience and intelligence from his prior work for the National Disability Insurance Agency in the capacity of Launch Manager for the Hunter trial site, as well as the ongoing workforce challenges experienced by HWNS as the scheme is rolled out across the regions.

“Participants will also have the opportunity to hear a range of perspectives on workforce expectations under the NDIS, including the voices of NDIS participants Peter Gurr and Daniel Flynn, who are the local convenors of the Queenslanders with Disability Network (QDN) in Townsville,” he said.

The WorkAbility Qld NDIS Workforce Forums will be held in each region as the NDIS is rolled out across the state from July 2016 to June 2019.

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