Release type: Media Release


First programs start under new Disability Employment Broker program


The Hon Kate Ellis MP
Minister for Employment Participation
Minister for Early Childhood and Child Care

Minister for Employment Participation Kate Ellis today announced the organisations to receive funding under the Australian Government's Disability Employment Broker fund to match jobseekers with employers.

Ms Ellis said the fund will provide brokers across the country with an opportunity to link up job seekers with disability to employers.

"We know many employers see the value in employing a person with disability, once they are made aware of the benefits – this broker fund will help organisations to act as brokers and actively engage employers," Ms Ellis said.

"Every Australian deserves the dignity, financial security and opportunities that come with having a job.

"That's why we want to build on what we're already doing with the sector to look at new and better ways to match job seekers with disability with employers."

Ms Ellis announced three organisations to receive funding in an address to the National Disability Services Employment Forum in Perth today, including:

  • $99,000 to Tasmanian Life Long Learning—Tasmania
  • $130,000 to TAFE NSW–North Coast Institute—New South Wales
  • $99,000 to Pathways Rehabilitation and Support Services—Victoria.

These organisations will target small to medium employers with less than 100 employees in regional areas and will find employment opportunities for jobseekers with disability in retail, hospitality, accommodation, agriculture and forestry.

"People with disability are not only potential assets to individual businesses, they are also a huge untapped skills resource and an asset to the Australian workforce and the economy,” Ms Ellis said.

"Last year, the Gillard Government invested more than half a million dollars across several initiatives to help raise employer awareness of the business benefits of employing people with disability.

"By raising awareness in the business sector we are getting results – the Australian Government's new Wage Connect program has placed more than 5,000 very long-term unemployed Australians, who identify as having a disability, into jobs since January.

"Since introducing the Disability Employment Services in 2010, the Australian Government has worked with the industry to help place more than 126,000 jobseekers into employment.

"We want to continue to work with the disability sector to build on our success together to get more Australians with disability into work and make a real difference to people's lives."

To read the Minister's address on the Australian Government's improvements to the disability employment sector visit:

To find out more about the program, visit: