Pain and mythology: disability support pension recipients and work

University of Sydney
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Australian Review of Public Affairs, 2006, 7 (1), pp. 41 - 59
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The Australian Government recently reformed policy on disability and work to make people who are assessed as capable of working at least fifteen hours a week ineligible for the Disability Support Pension (DSP). This article reports on a study based on six focus groups with DSP recipients, illustrating that the new policy could have dire implications for the people subject to it. Focus group participants were sceptical about the possibility of finding employment and some expressed the belief that discrimination by potential employers against people with a disability was common. The perceptions and experiences of the participants suggest that to increase the employment of current recipients of the DSP would require a major shift towards policy informed by the social model of disability, and that the idea that current policies can increase workforce participation is in the realm of mythology.
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