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Double the representation of people with disability from 2.7% to 5.6% by 2025

To provide the best healthcare, our workforce should be as diverse as the community we serve and represent. Embracing diversity in ability as an employer helps us to:

  • attract and retain staff from the widest talent pool possible
  • counter workforce trends such the effects of an aging and shrinking workforce
  • build a more engaged and productive workforce.

What can employers do to achieve the target?

Engage a Disability Employment Service

Disability Employment Services are a network of organisations which provide assistance for employers to recruit and retain employees with disability, injury or health condition. These services provide assistance and ongoing support in managing an employee's condition in the workplace, as well as information about workplace modifications, assistive technologies, disability awareness training and wage subsidies.

Further information and a list of providers can be found on JobAccess or by phone 1800 464 800.

Utilise the JobAccess hub

JobAccess is the Government’s national hub of employment information and advice for employers and employees. Job Access provides details regarding the Employment Assistance Fund for workplace modifications and support, an employer engagement service which includes use of the National Disability Recruitment Coordinator (NDRC) to help larger employers employ individuals with disability, as well as dedicated telephone hotline.

Further information is available on JobAccess or by phone 1800 464 800.

Provide workplace modifications/reasonable adjustments

Employers have a responsibility under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 to make reasonable adjustments to the workplace so that a current or future employee with disability can do their job effectively. The Australian Government’s Employment Assistance Fund (EAF) provides funding to cover the costs of workplace adjustments and conducts free workplace assessments to determine modification needs. Disability Employment Services are also equipped to provide advice regarding workplace adjustments.

Woman wiping a tableGiven the individual nature of disability, workplace adjustments will vary according to the needs of an individual. Examples of reasonable workplace adjustments are listed on the Australian Network on Disability website.

Provide disability awareness and inclusion training programs

Providing opportunities for employees to participate in training and awareness programs that provide education on the experiences, needs and communication methods for those with disability helps develop understanding and support settlement into the workplace.

The Australian Network on Disability provides a number of learning solutions including disability confidence training.

HETI have also developed a number of eLearning modules that provide information about meeting the needs of those with a disability who access health services as well as strategies to build an inclusive and equitable workplace. Modules can be found by searching the HETI training database.

The NSW Public Service Commission has developed eLearning modules to improve disability awareness among staff in the NSW public sector. The modules aim to create a more inclusive and accessible workplace by providing information about what staff should know, say and do to confidently and effectively work alongside colleagues with disability.

Modules developed for managers, as well as the Disability Awareness Training Implementation Guide can be found at Public Service Commission - Disability Awareness - Managers.

South Asian man holding a try of sandwichesAdditional examples of training programs (at cost) include:

Develop a campaign about disability inclusion

Raising awareness of disability inclusion in the workplace should start within the organisation. Sharing the stories and accomplishments of current employees and managers who live with disability may contribute to greater visibility of the matter, increased acceptance, and encourage individuals to speak up and share their experiences. Video testimonials provide an engaging and relatable medium to allow disability champions to share their experiences of working with disability, the supports provided in the workplace and the achievements they have made.

Woman with hands in gloves, holding a trolley full of cleaning supplies

Statement of commitment

NSW Health welcomes people from diverse backgrounds. We are committed to having a workforce that reflects the communities we serve.

  • Disability inclusiveness in the workplace – Benefits from an employee perspective

    Disability inclusiveness in the workplace – Benefits from an employee perspective

    ​Providing employment opportunities for people with disability contributes to a sense of self-empowerment and identity, leading to positive health outcomes for the individual as well as a potential decreased reliance on social service dependence which has greater economic impacts.


    Read more about the employee perspective

  • Living with a disability is not a barrier to success

    Living with a disability is not a barrier to success

    Jarrod Thatcher is a proud Aboriginal man and a COVID-19 screener at Manning Hospital. He was also born with spina bifida and has been in a wheelchair his whole life.

    Find out more about Jarrod's work with HNELHD

Download the full version of the Diversity Inclusion Belonging Guide

Current as at: Thursday 9 December 2021