When you get the right employment support, good things happen!

Media Statement, Thursday, 16 June 2016 

21 DES services for people with intellectual disability show the way forward

People with significant intellectual disability can work in the open labour market when they get the right support, (Commonwealth Evaluation of Disability Employment Services 2010-2013, p. 110).

The DES Outcome Rates by Disability Type report shows that some DES providers are achieving high rates of open employment outcomes for people with intellectual disability.

Twenty-one (21) providers are achieving 26-week employment outcome rates greater than fifty percent (>50%) for people with intellectual disability, with the highest performing provider achieving eighty-four percent (84%), (DES Outcome Rates by Disability Type, December 2015).

The highest performing provider had the following distinguishing features, (Commonwealth Evaluation of Moderate Intellectual Disability Loading 2010-2012. p. 26);

  1. Structured job search to customise a job specifically for a person with intellectual disability and building a compelling business case to the employer.

  2. Undertaking job analysis to establish the employer’s needs for job performance.

  3. Systematic job training by qualified staff at the work site to achieve the required job performance.

  4. Ongoing support with the employer and employee to maintain the quality of the job.

DES providers that adopt evidence based employment support for people with intellectual disability are demonstrating high rates of employment outcomes from 5 to 8 out of 10 persons with intellectual disability getting jobs that last at least six months.

The Commonwealth should be congratulated for;

  • focusing on rewarding providers who achieve good results,

  • introducing consequences for providers who achieve poor results, and,

  • publishing provider results by disability type, and creating an informed market.

The Executive Director of Inclusion Australia (formerly the National Council on Intellectual Disability), Mr Mark Pattison said,

“High performing DES providers deserve our recognition for their excellence in assisting people with intellectual disability get and keep jobs in the open labour market. It is encouraging to see a growing number of providers achieving 26-week employment outcome rates beyond 50%.”

These results indicate that future reform of Disability Employment Services must ensure that good practice remains viable and expanded to reach a greater number of people with intellectual disability across all regions who need the right support to get a job in the open labour market.

For inquires, contact Mark Pattison; mark.pattison@inclusionaustralia.org.au; 0407 406 647


National table of DES-ESS provider 26-week outcome performance for people with intellectual disability, December 2015.

DES Outcome Rates by Disability Type (MS Excel Spreadsheet).