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Review points to new ways to help Australians back to work.

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Minister for Human Services > Media > Media Releases > Review points to new ways to help Australians back to work

Media Release

13 August 2008

Review points to new ways to help Australians back to work

The Minister for Human Services, Senator Joe Ludwig, has today announced Rudd Government plans to improve the quality of the assessment unemployed Australians receive to ensure they get the right assistance to get them back to work.

The new approach will see higher quality assessments in more locations made by better trained assessors.

It will also include new performance benchmarks to ensure jobseekers receive the best quality interventions.

Senator Ludwig outlined the strategy in opening the National Conference of the National Employment Services Association in Cairns today.

The Government’s response is based on contributions from community and industry groups to the review of the Job Capacity Assessment process - the basis of how people are assessed for employment support.

“The Job Capacity Assessment is a gateway used to assess and refer people with significant barriers to finding work,” Senator Ludwig said.

“It’s about helping people to access employment support services for their situation which will ultimately lead them to re-engage with the community.”

The plan includes:

z New quality assurance frameworks for those who carry out Job Capacity Assessments.

z New performance measurements for assessors.

z An overhaul of training materials and methods to focus on the competency of assessors.

z 5000 extra Job Capacity Assessments a year to help disability support pension recipients access

employment services.

z Changes to support and improve services in remote and regional communities.

“We are also working hard with Job Capacity Assessment providers to ensure people see the assessor or a combination of assessors best placed to assist them,” Senator Ludwig said.

Senator Ludwig also praised the many responses from employment sector stakeholders to the review of the Job Capacity Assessment process.

“The practical improvements to the Job Capacity Assessment process highlighted by this review are critical to reducing the barriers faced by many Australians in finding a job.”

“This would not have been possible without the support of the many contributions provided by professionals in the employment sector,” Senator Ludwig said.

Responses were received from a wide range of organisations, representing employment service providers, job capacity assessors, specialist disability advocates, allied health professionals, mental health groups and review

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and complaints bodies, such as the Commonwealth Ombudsman.

More information / downloads

z Responses and the review summary paper are available on the Human Services website.

z View the Minister’s speech to the NESA Conference

z Download Media Release in PDF format (34k)

Media Contacts

Joe Scavo — 0413 800 757.

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