Western Sydney Nepean Blue Mountains Disability Advisory Committee

Directorate: Western Sydney, Nepean, Blue Mountains

Division: Child Protection, Permanency, District and Youth Justice

Project summary

Focus Area:

Building positive community attitudes and behaviours

Project objective

The Disability Advisory Committee (DAC) will provide staff with new communication channels, peer group support and an increased understanding of issues faced by people with a disability in the workplace, as well as focusing on key action areas including support for staff with disability and promoting mental health awareness.

Quarterly meetings to provide the District with an overview of how best to support, retain and employ people with disabilities in our district.

Why is this important?

The benefits include:

  • To empower and provide a voice for staff with disability to enable them to have equal opportunities and work together with staff without disability;
  • To highlight the resilience and valuable contribution staff with disability provide to the workforce and removing stigma by changing the way staff with disability are perceived in the workplace;
  • To increase understanding of the needs of staff with disability and enable them to access the required supports;

Increasing the skills of staff through training to competently communicate with staff with disability and support inclusion

Planned actions

Inaugural meeting occurred on 28 February 2020 with 10 District representatives who were successful through an EOI process from Housing Services, Community Services and Commissioning and Planning.

Length of membership for the WSNBM DAC is 12 months with meetings occurring every quarter face-to-face and via  MS Teams.

A survey of WSNBM staff was developed in October 2020 to capture the aspirations and challenges of working either as a person with a disability or working with people with disability in the District.

Four articles written by WSNBM DAC members about their own personal experience with mental health or as a carer and tips on how to manage emotional health and wellbeing, sent out to the District each week in October 2020 for Mental Health Month October.

International Day of People with Disability (IDPwD) event pack, including Trivia questions and celebrity matching games were released to WSNBM District staff on 3 December 2020.

The key findings and summary of the recommendations for the WSNBM DAC survey results were developed by the WSNBM DAC in February 2021.

  • The survey had 72 respondents. Common themes across all responses on ways to support employees with disability were:
    • Equality, inclusion , a workplace free from discrimination;
    • Workplace adjustments required for employees with disability to perform effectively at work including office modifications and technology;
    • The need for education and awareness for all staff to support employees with disability;
    • The need to be consulted, listened to and having a voice in the workplace and compassion and empathy for employees with disability;
    • Workplace flexibility including flexible working hours and working from home option;
    • Creation of employment opportunities for employees with disability.

Endorsement of recommendations and development of an action plan from the results of the WSNBM DAC survey was developed in March 2021.

Upcoming actions for the WSNBM DAC, will include working with District HR representatives on resources to support development opportunities for staff with a disability; and resources for managers to understand reasonable adjustments in the area of WHS.

Status report

Current Status: Progressing

Date: September 2021

Status Notes: 

See above for actions up until September 2021

Last updated:

01 Mar 2023

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