Do Board Members “Get” the NDIS ?

Following on from my last post about NDIS readiness for disabilities professionals, there is a very important group of people that need to have a better understanding about the NDIS than they do.

I’m referring to Boards and Board members of not-for-profit organizations.

A lawyer colleague of mine, Geoff Donovan and I are delivering a seminar on the Board’s leadership role in the new NDIS world for disability service providers.

Time : 5-6 pm Wednesday 25th of May 2016

Location : Purpose Law Level 17, 31 Queen Street Melbourne

Cost : $65.00  (plus GST & booking fee)

BOOK EVENT : https://www.eventbrite.com/e/is-your-board-ndis-ready-tickets-24383010240

Promotional Video https://youtu.be/2U85nG1ENmE

Geoff’s legal expertise is in the area of “Good Governance” with a particular focus on Directors duties for community and corporate organisations.

I will be giving my views looking through the “participants” lens.

As I have been a governance member on a number of boards I believe the NDIS will challenge some board members in understanding a different way of thinking which is now required as we move from a welfare model to an insurance model.

Leadership by the Board is crucial in these times of transformational change in the disability sector which requires a definite mindset shift by Board members.

When I encourage people to embrace “choice and control” when choosing a provider, I suggest that they look closely at 3 aspects.

  1. Does their board really understand the NDIS?
  2. What is the culture of the organisation?
  3. Are people with disabilities represented with in the organisation?

NDIS Insurance pic

Professional Peer Networks for “Connectors” Yes or No?

Planners, Case Managers, Coordinators & Facilitators play a crucial role when organising supports for people with disabilities and their families.

For the purpose of my brief commentary, I’m going to put all of these roles together and call them “Connectors”.

Whilst Connectors do have specific duties as part of their role they also have areas that overlap.

The one common goal for all Connectors is to help people with disabilities and their families have a better life.

Connectors experience 5 common challengers regularly based on my observations.

  • Having limited time to fully understand the needs of the clients that they support as their life changes
  • Being across the new services that are continually evolving
  • Having to continually suggest the same service providers based on their reputations, existing relationships and the level of trust.
  • Limited knowledge of evolving technologies and how they can be applied to assist clients
  • Not being encouraged to think innovatively by management due to service provider culture and risk management issues.

Interestingly, professions such as speech therapists, occupational therapists, and many other similar professions do have established peer-to-peer networks that allow discussions where similar topics are discussed.

As the National Disability Insurance Scheme evolves with new business and existing service providers rethinking their approach, we need to openly talk about the challenger’s connector’s experience.

Connectors are one of the keys for a successful roll out NDIS, so why aren’t they being supported?

When a peer-to-peer network is created, it is essential that people with disabilities are actively involved.

Choice and control will only happen if connectors are supported.

Communication

Hon Christian Porter MP (Minister for Social Services) agrees more disability employment consultation is needed

I am on a roll, a couple weeks ago I caught up with Premier of Victoria the Hon. Daniel Andrews, now with the Hon Christian Porter MP (Minister for Social Services).

Who’s next?

The Minister mentioned during visit to the VALID Inc. Having a Say Conference in Geelong that the findings from the Disability Employment Framework Consultation demonstrate the need for attitudes to change so that people with disabilities can enter the workforces.

For more details about the Disability Employment Framework Consultation click on the link below.

Disability Employment Framework Consultation

In light of all the action happening with the NDIS I think its crucial that disability employment consultation continues , as I believe there should be many opportunities out there right now.

I must acknowledge the efforts made by The National Disability Insurance Agency to employee people disabilities.

The Hon Christian Porter MP position is “Social Services” as I was googling these words I became aware that Saturday 20th of Feb 2016 is World Day of Social Justice,

The first World Day of Social Justice was observed on 20 February 2009.

 World Day of Social Justice 20th Feb 2016

“It aims to contribute to the efforts of the international community in poverty eradication, promotion of full employment and decent work, gender equity and justice for all.”

As a person with a disability, my head is full of NDIS, and how potentially it can help many people with disabilities,  so for me the World Day of Social Justice is a good reminder that the NDIS is not a fix for everyone & there are many people out there who struggle with a variety of challenges.

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