What’s next for Disability Employment Services

Ms Katrina Chatham will provide an overview the current disability employment ecosystem and of some work being led by the Department of Social Services to improve employment outcomes and opportunities for people with disability, including the reform of disability employment services, a new quality framework for the Disability Employment Services (DES) program and early plans for the Disability Employment Centre of Excellence.

Ms Chatham will also provide an update on several pilots which the department is working on:

  • the NDIS DES Pathways Pilot – working with the National Disability Insurance Agency and Services Australia to improve pathways into the current DES program for people without mutual obligation requirements
  • the Visitor Economy Disability Employment Pilot – which seeks to connect jobseekers with a disability to small business employers in the tourism industry
  • the Business Council of Australia (BCA) Disability Employment Initiative Pilot – working with BCA to increase employment and improve career pathways for people with disability.


Katrina Chatham A/g Group Manager, Disability Employment and Carers Group, Department of Social Services

Katrina Chatham is the A/g Group Manager of the Disability Employment and Carers Group. Her responsibilities include overseeing the current Disability Employment Service program and the design of reforms to disability employment services to deliver better employment outcomes for people with disability. She is also responsible for policies and programs to support unpaid carers.

Katrina joined the Department of Social Services in January 2020. She has previously worked in the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Department of Education.