Disability is an umbrella term. Persons are considered to have a disability if they have a limitation, restriction or impairment, which has lasted, or is likely to last, for at least six months and restricts everyday activities. (Australian Public Services Commission, APSC)

Here at atWork Australia, we support people with disability, injury or health condition find good work. All of our Disability Employment Services (DES) clients differ in their disability, experience and reason for requiring support to find work.

A disability can be visible, or invisible. A person is considered to have a disability if they have a limitation, restriction or impairment. (Australian Institute of Health and Welfare). This includes:


• loss of sight (not corrected by glasses or contact lenses)
• loss of hearing where communication is restricted or an aid to assist with or substitute for hearing is used
• speech difficulties


• difficulty learning or understanding


• mental health conditions or conditions requiring help or supervision (e.g. anxiety disorders, mood disorders and more)
• memory problems or periods of confusion that restrict everyday activities
• social or behavioural difficulties

Head injury, stroke or acquired brain injury

• head injury, stroke or other acquired brain injury, with long-term effects


• asthma or breathing difficulties
• blackouts, seizures or loss of consciousness (e.g. epilepsy)
• chronic or recurrent pain or discomfort that restricts everyday activities
• partial use of arms/fingers or feet/legs
• difficulty gripping or holding things
• restriction doing physical activities or work
• disfigurement or deformity


• receiving treatment or medication for any other long-term conditions or ailments and still restricted in everyday activities (e.g. asthma, cancer)
• any other long-term conditions resulting in a restriction in everyday activities
(Australian Public Service Commission, APSC)

We recently helped Robert, who lives with a mental health condition, to find meaningful employment after 12 years of unemployment.

Robert from Salisbury, SA found an ideal role as a Delivery Driver and Storeman. Before approaching atWork Australia, Robert felt like his skills were outdated and was worried employers might be looking for someone younger.

After registering for support, Robert partnered with Disability Employment Services Job Coach Kara. Kara and Robert worked together and identified training options to increase Robert’s skills, increase Robert’s self-belief, and to find Robert meaningful work. Through the support of the local atWork Australia team, Robert was equipped for employment and not long after, Robert received good news that he got a job in a local warehouse.

When Robert began work, his confidence increased and he felt purpose again, this purpose encouraged him to improve his life in other ways he never thought possible, including losing 6 kilos since starting work. “Never say never, anything is possible”, said Robert.

How do I access Disability Employment Services (DES)?

Disability Employment Services (DES) can be accessed by those who have disability, injury or health condition.

If you meet the below requirements you may be eligible for Disability Employment Services:
• I have a diagnosed disability, injury or health condition
• I’m aged between 14 and the Age Pension qualifying age
• I’m at or above the minimum working age (check the laws in your state)
• I’m an Australia resident
• I’m not studying full time (unless I’m an eligible school leaver)
• I’m able to work at least eight hours per week (with support if I need it)
• I’m not currently working at or above my assessed employment capacity

We can help you explore your eligibility, just give us a call.

No matter your barrier to finding working, our Disability Employment Services are here to help with a tailored plan for each and every client, designed to find you the right job with the right employer.

atWork Australia are disability employment specialists, well experienced in helping people with disability find good, lasting work. Call us on 1300 192 638 or visit https://www.atworkaustralia.com.au/register/ to discuss your eligibility, and find out how we help people with disability find the right job with the right employer.


Sources: https://www.apsc.gov.au/definition-disability, https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports-data/health-conditions-disability-deaths/disability/glossary, https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/0/C258C88A7AA5A87ECA2568A9001393E8?Opendocument, https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports-data/health-conditions-disability-deaths/disability/overview