With support from CRRS, Fiona gets a new job closer to home and in her chosen career path

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* Represents name has been changed for privacy.

An effective relationship between Disability Employment Services (DES) providers and their participants is vital to create successful employment opportunities for people with disability. The Australian Government’s Disability Employment Services caters to the unique needs of each participant, ranging from job preparation through to ongoing workplace support.

However, sometimes, a participant may feel that they are not getting the support, or services to help to find and keep a job. This could include DES providers not agreeing to fund activities requested by participants, or feeling their capabilities are not well understood.

This is when the Complaints Resolution and Referral Service (CRRS) is there to help.

Fiona* is registered as a DES participant with a local provider. She lives with a mental health condition (Borderline Personality Disorder) which can impact her ability to manage her emotions. She is currently studying and working part time. After Fiona moved to a new home, she found it challenging to continue with her current job because of the distance.

As a DES participant, she informed her EC about the situation and requested to transfer to a new DES provider closer to her home. Despite her efforts, the EC did not respond to her requests.

That’s when she contacted the Complaints Resolution and Referral Service (CRRS) for assistance and support.

The CRRS is a free, independent, and impartial service for people with disability who are users of Australian Government funded Disability Employment Services (DES), Australian Disability Enterprises (ADE), and/or Disability Advocacy services.

The CRRS provides free, confidential advice and support to people with disability and those acting on their behalf. It helps resolve complaints, whether you are not getting the right pay, working in unsafe or poor conditions, or feeling disrespected.

Taking an outcome-focussed approach

Paul Karusoo- Musumeci, CRRS Client Support Adviser, assisted Fiona with a successful resolution of the matter.

After Fiona lodged the complaint regarding her EC, Paul listened to and documented her case and focused on identifying the right resolution outcome.

“Paul allowed me to explain my complaint without judgement and ensured that all information noted by him was correct.”

CRRS then contacted the DES provider and explained Fiona’s situation. The same day, the DES provider contacted Fiona and transferred her to a new provider. In a quick turnaround, a new EC was appointed to help Fiona find a new job closer to her home.

Fiona’s new EC supported her in updating her resume and organising job interviews. The consultant also provided her with three referrals, based on her skills and experience.

As a result, Fiona successfully found a new job, closer to her home and in her chosen career path.

The new job is closer to my home and easily accessible via public transport. I am much relieved now and happy with the outcome of the complaint.

– Fiona

Fiona’s DES provider also spoke to her former employer and informed them about her reason of leaving the job.

Fiona said, “The service experience with CRRS was incredible. Their assistance helped me to connect with the right consultant, who provided the best support to me.”

Paul’s assistance was fantastic and really helped me. Thank you for your time and energy, Paul.

– Fiona

Tammy Cesana, CRRS Client Support Manager said, “DES providers are required to meet the National Standards for Disability Services. Suggestions may be made to the service if CRRS believe they have breached the National Standards for Disability Services (NSDS).”

In Fiona’s case, the CRRS provided two service improvement suggestions to the DES provider, which were acknowledged and implemented.

Furthermore, the DES provider ensured that they would provide training to the former Employment Consultant and the Manager, so that no participant would face similar issues again.

“Based on our experience, DES providers also gets benefit from our team’s investigations. This helps them to focus on getting positive results and provide them with skills to handle complaints and achieve better issue resolution.” concludes Tammy.

Have an unresolved issue? CRRS is just a call away.

Since 2012, the CRRS and National Disability Abuse and Neglect Hotline (the Hotline) have logged more than 17,000 complaints or reports of abuse. CRRS assisted DES participants with quick, easy and impartial resolution process.

Contact the CRRS on 1800 880 052 (toll-free), to make a complaint or submit an online form. Visit the JobAccess website to know more about the service: The Complaints Resolution and Referral Service.

Related pages

The Complaints Resolution and Referral Service

The National Disability Abuse and Neglect Hotline

Read other JobAccess stories

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