On Tuesday, locals working in the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) sector, along with their clients, will be holding a rally in Broken Hill to get portable training and portable leave in a bid to attract and keep more workers in the sector.
The rally will be held locally on at 4pm on Tuesday at the AJ Keast Park in Gypsum St, will provide an opportunity for the community to hear why members of the Australian Services Union (ASU) are campaigning for portable entitlements to be recognised in New South Wales.
ASU says, “portable entitlements will mean all community and disability workers have access to the same basic entitlements as other essential workers like nurses and teachers”.
“Portable entitlements mean that all workers can access entitlements like leave regardless of how they are employed, where they work, or if they change jobs,” the ASU says.
In Queensland, Victoria, and the Australian Capital Territory, portable entitlements already exist which means all community services employees are eligible for long service leave based on the years they have been engaged in the sector, not simply the years they have been engaged with a particular employer.
A decade since the Gillard Labor government introduced the NDIS, local disability workers have raised important issues relating to the functionality of the scheme, such as the lack of portable entitlements.
Local disability workers who are members of the ASU are also calling for action by the federal government to stamp out wage theft across the industry.
Despite the significant growth in demand for NDIS services in recent years, the sector experiences an extreme attrition rate, with up to 25% of workers leaving the industry annually.
The ASU is the national union for disability workers, and nationally the union has been organising and coordinating events in support of their campaign.
ASU Organiser responsible for Broken Hill, Sam Parker, will visit town next week to discuss the campaign with community service and disability workers.
Natalie Haylett, a local disability support worker and current member of the ASU, said “we are taking action for our sector, our careers and for the people we support. We want the NDIS to be the best it can be.”
Ms Parker can be contacted for more information on 0498 657 615, or via [email protected]. She, along with the many locals who are part of the campaign, are urging the public to attend Tuesday’s event to support their fellow support workers.