Employ their Ability – Fay Jackson


I'm the General Manager of Inclusion at Flourish Australia.

I've been an advocate and activist in mental health for 20 years.

I used to be an artist. That's what I thought I was born to do.

But when I was diagnosed with my mental health issue, I was put on lithium.

It caused these tremors in my hands and so I lost my fine motor skills.

I lost my art as well as getting this diagnosis.

I needed to find what else I could bring that was beautiful to this world.

My job keeps me well, you know, because I've got meaning and purpose and I have to keep going and I don't have time to be looking inwardly too much.

It's a wonderful thing to have meaning and purpose in your life.

I feel very blessed and I'm very lucky.

I'm the Chief Executive Officer of Flourish Australia.

People who have a lived experience are a big part of our workforce, and we want to say to everybody that we value you.

So we include all of those sorts of things that we might need to provide flexible work practices or reasonable adjustments into all of our policies because everybody has times when they might need additional supports.

We're talking to employers and potential employers about Job Access all the time, and how they might be able to actually learn about how they might need to tweak some of their internal policies and procedures or their approaches to jobs to make them more accessible to people with disability.

Fay offers great hope to people who access our services and people with lived experience on staff. And Fay is an embodiment of that hope, of what can happen. And the influence Fay has is dramatic.

No matter where Fay goes, people talk about the experience of encountering Fay and hearing Fay.

We're a value-add, you know. We're usually creative thinkers. We're very visionary.

We can often see different ways of solving problems.

We often recognise problems before other people do. I believe every human has a role to play.

We're all here to do something valuable with our lives, and workplaces are missing out on the value that we can bring.

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