South Australia in Focus by Janine Lenigas, May 2023
Anticipation is running high among South Australian members as 2023 moves towards its midway mark. The federal budget has delivered some welcome news, but the devil might be in the detail. Similarly, Minister Shorten delivered a six-point plan for the NDIS at the National Press Club a few weeks ago, but no one knows exactly how it will affect providers on the ground. In the meantime, the NDIS Review and the Disability Royal Commission will be handing down their recommendations before the summer.
So, there are a lot of unknowns and an entire disability sector wanting to see what its future looks like. All I can promise is that NDS members will receive all the detail and analysis of developments through our news updates and social media as soon as they come to hand.
If you know someone with a passion for the rights and wellbeing of people receiving services in mental health and disability in South Australia, the Community Visitor Scheme is looking for volunteers. Working in pairs, the volunteers visit participants to ask questions about the services they are receiving and try to resolve issues they might have. If you know someone — perhaps retired from disability services or working towards a qualification in the sector — this would be a great way to use and develop skills in disability advocacy. The next training days are on 21 and 21 June and all the information you need is on the scheme’s webpage.
New federal work health and safety regulations came in on 1 April on employer obligations for psychosocial risks. The new regulations outline how employers must identify and manage risks to worker's psychological health and safety. This includes the design and management of work, work environment, personal issues outside the workplace affecting a person at work, workplace interactions (colleagues or clients), as well as more prescriptive ways to assess potential risk mitigation measures.
There are three network meetings coming up. The NDS in SA Quality and Safeguarding meeting on 25 May at 10:00am will deliver national and state updates and look at the new Quality and Safeguards Framework.
The Housing and Supports Network meets on 15 June at 10:00am, with presentations about ILO from providers in WA.
And the Workforce Network meeting on June 22 at 10:00am will include presentations on staff drug testing, as well as updates of state and national issues.
I look forward to speaking to you at any of these events.