Disability and Mental Health
The Disability Discrimination Act which came into effect in 1992 makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person on the grounds of disability. In the workplace, this means that employers must offer equal employment opportunities and that if a person with a disability can undertake the essential activities or inherent requirements of a job he or she should be given just as much of a chance to do that job as anyone else.
Employers should, therefore, choose the best person for a job whether that person has a disability or not. They should base this decision on the person’s ability to perform the essential activities of the job (e.g. educator, clerk, cook) rather than what they assume a person with a disability can or cannot do.
Disability Employment Services from DSS
Disability Support Pension provides financial support if you have a physical, intellectual, or psychiatric condition that stops you from working, or if you are permanently blind. If you are eligible, you may receive this payment along with other benefits, including a Pensioner Concession Card If you start work, you may still receive this payment, depending on the number of hours you work and how much you earn.
Mobility Allowance helps if you have a disability, illness or injury and cannot use public transport without substantial assistance, either permanently or for an extended period. To be eligible you must be looking for work or participating in paid or voluntary work, study or training. You are not eligible for Mobility Allowance if you are receiving a funded package of support through the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
Youth Disability Supplement provides additional financial support to young people with physical, intellectual or psychiatric disability who receive certain income support payments.
See the Department of Human Services website for more information
The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) is an independent statutory agency. Our role is to implement the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), which will support a better life for hundreds of thousands of Australians with a significant and permanent disability and their families and carers. The priority of the NDIS is to ensure people with disability continue to get the support they need. The changes that are required to existing disability support systems are significant. Arrangements are being made to ensure the scheme can be introduced gradually, ensuring a smooth transition for people with disability and support providers. Read about the trial and roll out and what this may mean here.
To find out how the NDIS can assist you in your state and to check your eligibility, visit their website and look at the NDIS access requirements.
Many employment agencies specialise in assisting people with a disability or severe and prolonged mental illness to find and apply for employment and will also provide additional support and training.