Disability Employment Australia. Represent, Support, Resource

About Us

Disability Employment Australia is the peak industry body for Australia's Disability Employment Services (DES).

We are recognised internationally as the preeminent organisation representing, supporting and resourcing the disability employment sector throughout Australia.

As a membership organisation, we exist to represent the interests of Disability Employment Services at a national level to government and a range of other stakeholders, such as consumer and employer groups.

Disability Employment Australia supports the Australian Government to deliver high quality employment support to people with disability in Australia.

We have a unique responsibility to foster innovation and flexibility of service within the Disability Employment Services program.

We support our members to achieve best practice service provision in their role to find employment outcomes for people with disability.

We advise, advocate, train, inform and undertake events to strengthen and promote the sector.

We believe in the right of every member of society to be included fully in the community, and to have control over their own life
choices. Participation in the open labour market is a crucial factor in recognising this goal.

We strive to inspire, challenge and celebrate the Disability Employment Services sector.

What do we do?

Disability Employment Australia undertakes a range of functions designed to support our members to achieve best practice service provision in their role to find employment outcomes for people with disability. We advise, advocate, train, inform, as well as undertake events to promote the sector.

We have a particular focus on:

  • government policy relevant to disability employment
  • issues impacting the viability of the industry
  • removing barriers to workforce participation for people with disability
  • promoting best practice and innovative ways to assist people with disability into real jobs.

Working from a social inclusion perspective, Disability Employment Australia approaches its work from a society-wide perspective and is committed to identifying opportunities to get a ‘better deal’ for job seekers and employees with disability. We also work to educate the public about issues related to disability employment.

Disability Employment Australia has played an active role over many years in providing advice on increasing workforce participation rates for people with disability and has worked hard to establish itself as the peak organisation in relation to disability and open employment.

Disability Employment Australia works closely with government ministers and departments, and inputs significantly to consultations and reviews in the area of disability and employment.

Working groups

Disability Employment Australia works directly with DSS to gather industry views and feed these into the policy and procedure making process.  We are represented on a number of key government advisory groups, including;

  • DES Reference Group (Convened by the Minister)
  • Employment Partnership Committee
  • DES Operational working Group
  • DES Evaluation Strategy Working Group
  • IT Advisory Group (responsible for new ESS IT System covering both JSA and DES)
  • DES Transition Reference Group
  • DES Technical Advisory Group
  • Contract Management and Quality Servicing Working Group

Disability Employment Australia has a critical role in monitoring the DES program implementation to ensure that the program achieves outcomes consistent with the objects of the Disability Services Act 1986 and the Disability Service Standards.

Find out more about us

Acknowledgement of country

Disability Employment Australia acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land and community. We pay our respect to them, their cultures, and to their elders both past and present.

National Compact Partner

The National Compact reflects the commitment of the Third (not-for-profit) Sector and the Government to find new and better ways to work together. This collaborative relationship will allow us to work on the challenges we face, build a stronger Third Sector in Australia and through this, drive innovation, wellbeing and sustainability in our communities.

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