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The importance of employment in the NDIS

This session will discuss the importance of employment in the NDIS and what we can all do to help more NDIS participants who want to work, get a job. Mary will look at some recent NDIS research in employment that will inform better planning and supports for participants, what we are doing to activate the NDIS employment support providers and how we can work with DES to ensure participants have the best chance to achieve their goals. Mary will also give an overview of changes to employment supports for young people and update on the NDIS-DES Pilot.



Mary Hawkins

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

Mary is a qualified Rehabilitation Counsellor who has occupied senior management positions in WorkCover NSW, the Motor Accident Authority of NSW and with CRS, a large national provider of vocational rehabilitation services.

Mary has held a number of roles with the NDIA, including assisting with the roll out of the early transition of the NDIS in Nepean/Blue Mountains in NSW, with the start-up of the full scheme in NSW and also worked as Director Stakeholder Engagement for the NSW Central region and Director Strategic Initiatives, Provider & Market Engagement. In the past 12 years, Mary has received the inaugural Award for Outstanding Contribution to Injury Management by an Individual from the Personal Injury Education Foundation and she remains a significant contributor to their education and events subcommittees. Mary has also been made a fellow of the Australian Society of Rehabilitation Counsellors, having been one of the initiating members of that Society and her work was recognised by the University of Sydney’s Faculty of Health Sciences who granted her the Alumni Award for Services to Humanity.