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Taskforce to help supported employees as Activ Foundation moves ahead with work site closures

Jacinta CantatoreSouth Western Times
Family members and disability advocates will be part of a newly created taskforce to help Activ Foundation’s supported employees as the organisation progresses closure of its large-scale industrial work sites, including in regional centres of Bunbury, Busselton and Geraldton.
Camera IconFamily members and disability advocates will be part of a newly created taskforce to help Activ Foundation’s supported employees as the organisation progresses closure of its large-scale industrial work sites, including in regional centres of Bunbury, Busselton and Geraldton. Credit: Chris de Blank

Family members and disability advocates will be part of a newly created taskforce to help Activ Foundation’s supported employees as the organisation progresses closure of its large-scale industrial work sites, including in regional centres of Bunbury, Busselton and Geraldton.

The Transition Taskforce was formed to guide and oversee the process of helping find alternative work opportunities for supported employees of Activ Foundation, with a focus on giving the supported employees real choice and control over their futures.

In May, Activ Foundation announced plans to close its large-scale industrial work sites in WA, where more than 750 supported employees with disability currently work.

The rapid closure was delayed after Premier Mark McGowan and the newly elected Albanese Government brokered an agreement to allow the closure to take place over an 18-month period instead.

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At the time, the Commonwealth provided $7.8 million in funding to Activ Foundation, to give employees more time to make other arrangements, while the State Government provided $4m to WA’s seven other independently owned and operated Australian Disability Enterprises.

The new Transition Taskforce will help to manage the closure process, with input from the Department of Communities’ WA Office of Disability, the Australian Department of Social Services, the National Disability Insurance Agency, Activ Foundation, National Disability Services and other WA Disability Enterprises.

This taskforce includes family members of Activ Foundation employees who are part of the Activ Advocacy Action Team.

Disability Services Minister and Bunbury MLA Don Punch said the taskforce would be aimed at finding suitable employment options after what had been an “incredibly stressful” few months for Activ employees and their families.

“One of the main aims of the Transition Taskforce will be to ensure a strong voice for people with disability as the Activ Foundation transition progresses,” he said.

“Importantly, people with disability need choice and control over what happens to them during this process.

“These options may include supported employment at another Australian Disability Enterprise, open employment, and for some, alternative opportunities to remain connected to friends and social groups may be the priority as they near retirement age.”

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