Disability Works Australia

About DWA

Business Enterprise Centres promote disability employment

Disability Works Australia has established a positive working relationship and strong credibility with industry through its partnership with Business Enterprise Centres Australia.

Offering access to its network of 130 offices and about 200,000 member businesses, the BEC network has the ideal organisational infrastructure to incorporate DWA services nationally.

In Victoria, co-locating with the Brunswick Business Incubator (BBI) has resulted in a highly successful partnership for DWA.

In the past 12 months, businesses associated with the BBI have employed 12 people with a disability in a variety of roles and industries.

Funded by the Federal Government and the Moreland City Council, the incubator is closely involved with about 60 emerging networks, which also benefit DWA.

Garry Benson, DWA State Manager for Victoria, said that as the businesses grow and move out of the centre, they take their employees with them and are then replaced by new start-ups.

"Because the incubator deals with a wide range of businesses, new employees with a disability are moving into varying and non-traditional sectors," Mr Benson said.

Graeme Walker, General Manager of the Brunswick Business Incubator, said having DWA on site gave new businesses an understanding of the importance of creating diversity in the workplace.

"Businesses that have taken on an employee with a disability have been very pleased with the results and the support that DWA provides," he said. When BBI itself recently had a vacancy for a Cleaning and Maintenance Manager, Mr Walker went straight to DWA. Mr Benson said DWA and BBI also work closely together to identify sectors in which people with a disability are not well represented.

"Last year it became apparent that there were few people with a disability working in the local construction and building industry," he said. "We worked with Melbourne Safety Skyways in particular, which now employs six people in a range of roles, from administration to steel fabrication."

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