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DPA's Information Exchange - 3 October 2020


In this week's Info Exchange:
Posing for the photo under a sign that reads ‘Haere Mai’ are the Mahi Tika- Equity in Employment team Rodney Bell, Tim Young, Angela Desmarais and Prudence Walker with Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni, Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero and Ike Rākena, Mana Whenua, Enabling Good Lives
Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment was launched by the Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni and Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero in Hamilton on Monday. The Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment Team are (from left) Rodney Bell, Angela Desmarais, Tim Young and Prudence Walker, pictured here with Minister Sepuloni, Paula Tesoriero and Ike Rākena, Mana Whenua, Enabling Good Lives

Mahi Tika – Equity Employment Launch

From DPA Chief Executive Prudence Walker:


Kia ora koutou,

It’s been a busy week! We had the Disability Sector Election Forum on Thursday and at the beginning of the week, we launched the Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment project in the Waikato. 


Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment is designed and led by disabled people, for disabled people who seek sustainable employment. It has been developed in partnership with Waikato Tainui and aligns with the Enabling Good Lives principles of mana enhancing and self-determination.

Over the course of the programme, we’ll support a minimum of 25 disabled people in the Waikato into employment or training of their choice.

Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment will focus on bridging the gap between employers and disabled people who have many skills to offer. It aims to increase employment opportunities for disabled people who are significantly underrepresented in the workforce.

Throughout the programme, we will work with disabled people in the Waikato region on their employment journey and towards work or training in the industry of their choice. We will also support people who participate in the programme to become mentors to other disabled people in their employment journeys.

The project will be supported by a strategic advisory group made up of board members of DPA, and industry partners, and myself. The project in the Waikato will run for two years and we will evaluate it throughout.

In a Waikato Times article Minister for Disability Issues Carmel Sepuloni said of employment for disabled people: "This really is no small issue... it is complex because as an issue it hasn't been resolved yet but I'm confident that Mahi Tika will deliver better outcomes for the disability community in the Waikato."

The Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment team consists of myself and: 
Kaitiaki | Enhancers Rodney Bell – Ngaati Maniapoto and Tim Young; and Angela Desmarias in the role of Manaaki | Support.

Angela was previously employed in the role of Auckland Kaituitui and will now support the Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment programme providing evaluation, administration, and communications support.

In talking to the Waitomo News this week Rodney summed up the role the team will play with his words, "Mahi Tika for me means enhancer, walking alongside disabled people to help to be mentors on their road to employment.”

You can read more about Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment at www.mahitika.org.nz.

We are also holding an online Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment Disabled Persons Information Session aimed for disabled people who live in the Waikato Region and would like to learn more about the programme.

If you live in the Waikato and would like to attend, please register and we will email you the Zoom details for the event.
 

Ngā mihi,

Prudence Walker
DPA Chief Executive

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DPA welcome Tim Young and Rodney Bell


We welcome Tim Young and Rodney Bell who have joined DPA's Mahi Tika – Equity in Employment team. 

Tim Young
Kaitiaki | Enhancer

Tim is passionate about providing equality of opportunity to everyone, but in particular using technology to solve accessibility issues after facing many accessibility issues in his own experiences as a tetraplegic.

He has a background in educational psychology, research, and app development.

Tim has long struggled to find employment since his spinal cord injury, including not being able to get a job as an educational psychologist due to a lack of accessible workplaces.

As a result, he started two businesses to gain experience in the workforce, including Smart Access, which completes accessibility audits of infrastructure for local governments. He's also a part-time research assistant with the Burwood Academy of Independent Living. 

Tim is looking forward to helping people find employment they can be excited about, and helping workplaces become more inclusive.
 

Rodney Bell – Ngaati Maniapoto
Kaitiaki | Enhancer
 
Rodney Bell is of Maaori descent from the Tainui Waka and Ngaati Maniapoto is his Iwi.
 
Rodney is a performing artist with a disability and is internationally renowned for integrated dance.  Rodney started his career with Touch Compass in the late 1990s, then left to pursue a career in integrated dance on the international stage.

In collaboration with diverse teams of designers and artists, Rodney enjoys creating multidisciplinary work, exploring contemporary issues to do with, travelling, identity, perception, experiences, time, and our connections to place, people and the cultural and political body we all inhabit.

Rodney acquired his disability as result of a motorbike accident as a young adult and has no feeling or control from the chest down.  Through his lived experience of disability, employment exploration, advocacy and mataauranga Maaori,  Rodney wants to utilise that experience by working alongside Whaanau Hauaa (disabled communities/peoples)  to pursue the career they desire and live the life that they want.

He raa ki tua  (better times are coming)
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A video still from the election event shows the five candidates seated at a long table with microphones and a sign language interpreter in a window in the corner of the screen

Disability Sector Election Event


With the usual DPA involvement in election forums around the country being disrupted this year by Covid and bad weather, of the five originally planned, only two have taken place - one online in Auckland a few weeks ago, and one this week in Wellington.

The Disability Sector Election Event that was held in Wellington and online on Thursday can now be watched on YouTube.
 
The candidates on the panel were Labour MP Greg O’Connor, Greens MP Jan Logie, Erika Harvey from New Zealand First, Simon Court from ACT and National MP Brett Hudson. 

With a quarter of the population of Aotearoa New Zealand being disabled, it was disappointing that none of the party leaders chose to attend the event, as was covered by One News.

However, there were some interesting responses from the candidates to questions on a range of topics including inclusive education, housing, employment, the Minimum Wage Exemption, individualisation of benefits and Access Legislation. 

You can also watch a recording of the My Voice Matters election forum that was held on on 29 August. Originally to be held in Auckland, the forum was held online due to Covid restrictions. 

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Video still showing a man signing and reading: Smoke Alarms NZSL. Public consultation for the revision of standards NZS 4512:2010 Fire detection and alarm systems in buildings and NZS 4514:2009 Interconnected smoke alarms
Standards New Zealand have put out a NZSL summary of a draft Standard for interconnected smoke alarms for houses. Watch the video

Public consultation for the revision of fire alarm standards - NZSL summary


A New Zealand Sign Language summary of a draft Standard for interconnected smoke alarms for houses is now available.

The draft is now available for public comment, the closing date for comments is 27 November 2020. To submit a comment visit the Standards New Zealand website

All comments submitted during this period are reviewed by the standards development committee before the standard is balloted on.

NZS 4514: 2009 sets out the requirements for the installation and commissioning of the externally-powered interconnected smoke alarms. It also provides information on the selection, installation, and maintenance of smoke alarms.

This sign language translation is a summary of the content of DZ 4514.

This revision of NZS 4514:2009 Interconnected smoke alarms for houses is a partial technical revision and supersedes NZS 4514:2009.

Provisions for visual/tactile alerting for those who are deaf/hard of hearing have been added.

Allowance has been made for long-life batteries and wirelessly interconnected smoke alarms. Changes have been made for ceilings with exposed framing members. Testing requirements have been simplified. The appendices have been edited and updated to provide more clarity and guidance on the selection and location of smoke alarms.

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MoH Carer Support and Individualised Funding flexibility extended 

The Ministry of Health (MoH) are extending the flexibility for Carer Support and Individualised Funding (IF) until 30 November 2020 (extended from 30 September 2020).

While the ministry are engaging with DHBs about these changes, these rules only apply if you are allocated Carer Support and/or IF through the Ministry of Health (not your DHB). Please contact your DHB for information about other supports.

Carer Support – funded by the Ministry of Health

This means that if you receive Carer Support from the Ministry of Health:
•you must work within your current funding allocation
•you can continue to spend Carer Support on any support or service that helps you have a break from caring from your family member with a disability or to provide a break for the disabled person

•you cannot use your Carer Support for the following:
- paying family carers who are either a family member living with the disabled person or a parent or a spouse
- illegal activities, gambling or alcohol
- to pay for things that are not disability supports like rent/mortgage, food, personal debt, gifts, power, usual household items etc.

As it is up to you to choose what support or services to buy, it’s your responsibility to make sure the respite is of good quality and covers all your requirements.
You will need to keep a simple record of what you have spent the money on and when you buy items, keep the receipts.

Individualised Funding – funded by the Ministry of Health

This means that if you receive Individualised Funding through the Ministry of Health:
•you must work within your current funding allocation
•you can continue to spend your Individualised Funding on any disability support or service that helps you to live your life or makes your life better, so long as it is reasonable and cost-effective, and not funded through other funding options such as a Disability Allowance. You can talk to your IF Host or Coach about what is reasonable for you to buy and you can find out more information on the Ministry of Health website.

•you cannot use your Individualised Funding for the following:
- paying family carers who are either a family member living with the disabled person or a parent or a spouse (see exception below)
- illegal activities, gambling or alcohol
- to pay for things that are not disability supports like rent/mortgage, food, personal debt, gifts, power, usual household items etc.

You can only pay a resident family member to provide household management and personal care supports for those disabled people assessed as having ‘high’ or ‘very high’ needs. You cannot pay resident family members to provide respite.

As it is up to you to choose what support or services to buy, it’s your responsibility to make sure that the support or service is of good quality and covers all your requirements.
You must keep a record of what you have spent the money on and when you buy items, keep the receipts.

Remember that you must continue to honour any employment contracts that you have. You can find out more about terminating an employment agreement at: www.employment.govt.nz/ending-employment/.

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Be. Lab Talent Shop


From Be. Lab:

Looking for permanent employment? We can connect you with meaningful opportunities with leading employers across New Zealand.
 
What we offer:

  • Wraparound support and coaching
  • Professional and personal development tailored to where you are at on your employment journey
  • The opportunity to access an external mentor
  • Connection with employment opportunities that match your skills and experience
  • Ongoing support
Who we are looking for:
  •  You have a great attitude and are willing to give things a go
  • You have experience, qualifications, or are passionate about working in the following industries: Tech, Health, or Professional Services
  • You have an access need or health condition and are on a main benefit

For more information download the flyer. (Word Doc)
 

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Cyberbullying and the Law - free legal education series

Register now for Auckland Disability Law’s (ADL) next free legal education series on Zoom.

This introductory session will cover our cyber bullying law and where to get help. It is a great opportunity to learn how to keep ourselves and those around us safe online.

ADL’s Cyber Bullying and the Law series is designed for disabled people and supporters. The session is repeated, so please only book one date per person. To register or for more information, email info@adl.org.nz, or text 027 457 5140, or call 09 257 5140.

Thursday 8 October 2020, 2pm – 3pm

Register by 1 October 2020

Wednesday 21 October 2020, 6pm – 7pm

Register by 14 October 2020

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