Agenda


The DEA 2024 Conference is the ideal gathering place for you, the people seeking to influence this generational change in policy, planning, and practice in rapidly evolving landscape of the disability employment sector.

This is a significant opportunity for you to engage directly with what is going on in disability and employment. Following an optional Practitioners’ Forum and Tender Readiness Workshop, we will have two days full of the latest and best analysis of the current sector developments, leading edge practice program ideas and thinking about future changes.

In addition to impressive keynote speakers and panels, our breakout sessions have garnered a reputation as the engine room of the Conference. There is always a lot going on during these sessions and DEA is delighted to platform an eclectic range of experts to inform our own thinking.

As we’ve noted elsewhere, this is an absolutely critical time for DES, for disability employment policy and for providers. The DEA Conference is the right place to meet, engage, contest, network and build your capability.

To that end, we are seeking your contributions and are now calling for papers to be presented at this year’s Conference. We have listed a range of core themes and invite papers on these. Please click here for more information.

We are looking for evidence-based, best practice, results-driven presentations. This is your chance to showcase your initiatives that demonstrate improved employment outcomes for people with disability.

For more information click here.

As you know, the program drives discussions across the event. In breaks and drinks, coffee catchups and the Gala dinner, the pulse of the Conference is networking. Representatives from DSS and NDIA will be here, so take your opportunity to network with our peers in those departments and agencies. Across a lectern or a coffee, this is your chance to be involved and have your voice heard!

Tuesday 11 June 2024

Workshop, Forum & Welcome Reception

12:00 pm1:00 pm

Forum/Workshop Registration & Lunch

1:00 pm3:00 pm

The Residence

DEA’s Practitioners’ Forum in Association with genU Training

Wayne Herbert Director of Progress and Property, LEAD Disability Services

Matt Levy OAM Author, gold medal winning swimmer, motivational speaker & inclusion advocate

Lauren Peacock CEO, Institute of Capacity Building

Dan Gavin National Business Development Manager, GenU

Paul Diviny CEO, Prospert

Rana Kordahi Reverse Marketing Sales Coach, Employment Services Training

Keryl Neville CEO, Lead Employment

Mayfair 1 Room

Tender Writing Workshop

Darren Coppin CEO & Chief Behavioural Scientist, Azurum

Jess Barwood APAC Account Manager, AutoGen AI

Malene Rohde Chief Operating Officer, Prospert

Peter Bacon Chief Executive Officer, Disability Employment Australia

Tim Flowers Principal, Insight First

3:00 pm3:20 pm

Afternoon Tea

6:00 pm8:00 pm

The Residence

Welcome Reception

Wednesday 12 June 2024

Conference Day 1

8:00 am9:00 am

Exhibition Area

Registration

9:00 am9:10 am

Savoy Ballroom

Welcome – Day 1

Brett de hoedt MC, Hootville Communications

9:10 am9:20 am

Savoy Ballroom

Welcome to Country

Colin Hunter Wurundjeri Elder

9:20 am10:00 am

Savoy Ballroom

The Disability Royal Commission: what did we learn?

Alastair McEwin AM Disability Consultant

10:00 am10:30 am

Savoy Ballroom

The Australian economy in 2024, labour market movements, trends and indicators for disability employment

Callam Pickering Senior Economist, Indeed Hiring Lab

10:30 am11:00 am

Exhibition Area

Morning Tea

11:00 am11:45 am

Savoy Ballroom

Diversity Pathways: co-designing an accessible and inclusive workplace with employers and people with cognitive disability in the hospitality and retail industries

Dr Jung Yoon Research Fellow, Centre for Social Impact (CSI), College of Business, Government, and Law, Flinders University

Dr Claire Hutchinson Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Social Impact (CSI), College of Business, Government, and Law, Flinders University

Lachlan Dunn Community Researcher, Centre for Social Impact (CSI), College of Business, Government, and Law, Flinders University

Michelle Strudwick Project Officer, Centre for Social Impact (CSI), College of Business, Government, and Law, Flinders University

Mayfair Ballroom

Shaping the workforce of tomorrow

Natalie Turmine, GAICD CEO, Service and Creative Skills Australia

Bristol Room

Building employer confidence to recruit and retain employees with communication disability and low literacy

Ashana Comport Project Worker, Speech Pathologist, Communication Access Consultant, Scope (Aust.), Australia

Jacob Matthew Project Worker, Scope Australia

11:45 am12:30 pm

Savoy Ballroom

IncludeAbility – Ensuring equality in employment

Rhiannon Walker Director, IncludeAbility, Disability Rights Team, Human Rights Commission

Erin Wilson Centre for Social Impact, Swinburne University

Savoy Ballroom

Unlocking Potential: NDIS to Open Employment, Empowering Participants and Employers

Rebecca McIntyre Employment Services Manager, The Disability Trust, Australia

Mayfair Ballroom

Update on Workforce Australia

Speaker to be confirmed Department of Employment and Workplace Relations

Bristol Room

Creating a Future Together: The Journey Towards Fully Accessible Digital Spaces

Aamir Qutub CEO, Enterprise Monkey

12:30 pm1:30 pm

Exhibition Area

Lunch

1:30 pm2:15 pm
2:15 pm3:15 pm

Savoy Ballroom

Panel Session – Unpacking DES Reform

Catherine McAlpine CEO, Inclusion Australia

Mathew McIntyre Executive General Manager, The Disability Trust

Dr Ann Nevile Social Policy Researcher, ANU

Peter Bacon Chief Executive Officer, Disability Employment Australia

Suzanne Colbert AM, GAICD Advisor, NED, Founder and former CEO of AND, and Inaugural DEA chairperson

3:15 pm3:45 pm

Exhibition Area

Afternoon Tea

3:45 pm4:20 pm

Savoy Ballroom

Pop Culture & Policy – Why Visibility of Disability Matters

Lisa Cox Inclusive Communications Professional

4:20 pm5:00 pm

Savoy Ballroom

In our words

Wayne Herbert Director of Progress and Property, LEAD Disability Services

Yenn Purkis Autistic author and advocate

Alastair McEwin AM Disability Consultant

6:30 pm11:00 pm

Savoy Ballroom

Gala Dinner & Hall of Fame Ceremony

Thursday 13 June 2024

Conference Day 2

8:00 am9:00 am

Exhibition Area

Registration

9:00 am9:15 am

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

Welcome & Acknowledgement of Country

Brett de hoedt MC, Hootville Communications

9:15 am10:00 am

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

DES Reform

Kellie Spence General Manager – Disability Employment Group, Department of Social Services

10:00 am10:30 am

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

Creating Neurodivergent Inclusive Workplaces

Sonny Wise Author, advocate and public speaker

10:30 am11:00 am

Exhibition Area

Morning Tea

11:00 am11:30 am

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

Getting ready for the sub 8 hour benchmark participants – how do we effectively work with these clients?

Catherine McAlpine CEO, Inclusion Australia

Luke Nelson Policy Officer, Inclusion Australia

11:30 am12:30 pm

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

Employer Panel

Professor Jo Ingold Professor, Australian Catholic University

Daniel Valiente-Riedl General Manager, JobAccess, Australia

Saraya O’Connell General Manager, Hotel Etico Australia

Dr Karina Davis CEO, Jobs Bank

Joshua Bamford Human Resources Director, M&H Ward Group

Rebbecca Jurkiewicz Training And Placement Specialist, Chapter 1 Employment

12:30 pm1:15 pm

Exhibition Area

Lunch

1:15 pm2:00 pm

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

A systemic change approach: explore and improve school to work transition for young people with disability

A/Prof Sue Olney UoM-BSL Principal Research Fellow, University of Melbourne, Australia

Sinead Gibney-Hughes Senior Policy Officer, Brotherhood of St Laurence, Australia

Michelle Wakeford Senior Advisor Youth Transition Disability, Brotherhood of St Laurence, Australia

Mayfair Ballroom

Performance measures and other program updates

Pene Futcher Branch Manager, Department of Social Services

Savoy Room 3

Getting workplace adjustments out of the “too hard” basket

Dr Catherine Maitland Research Lead, Australian Network on Disability Ltd, Australia

Bristol Room

Vocational supports within a person’s primary human service- the headspace experience

Carolyn Watts Head of Vocational Programs, headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation, Australia

Fletcher Karen National Manager for Work and Study Online, headspace National Youth Mental Health Foundation

2:00 pm2:45 pm

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

The importance of employment in the NDIS

Mary Hawkins Director of Engagement, Employment Outcomes, National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA)

Mayfair Ballroom

Partnering with employers

Suzanne Colbert AM, GAICD Advisor, NED, Founder and former CEO of AND, and Inaugural DEA chairperson

Savoy Room 3

New tools for commissioning services for complex clients

Professor Mark Considine Australian political scientist

Bristol Room

DES Reform and what it means for the Sector

David Best Policy Manager, Disability Employment Australia

2:45 pm3:15 pm

Exhibition Area

Afternoon Tea

3:15 pm3:45 pm

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

My journey: from Sri Lankan Civil War to the cutting edge of AI and employability

Balendran Thavarajah CEO, GetMee

3:45 pm3:55 pm

Savoy Rooms 1 & 2

Closing Remarks

3:45 pm4:15 pm

Exhibition Area

Networking