Inclusion of People with Disability in VET

Skills for Australia is leading the development of training in the cross sector area of Inclusion of People with Disability in VET.

Why skills to improve the inclusion of people with disability matter

There are 2.1 million people with a disability, of working age, in Australia, and research indicates that people with disability are significantly underrepresented in education and employment. Only around half of working age Australians with disability are in the labour force, compared to 83 per cent of those without disability. As well, students with a disability make up only 4.3 per cent of all students undertaking vocational education and training (VET) in Australia.

PwC’s Skills for Australia has been commissioned to investigate how the VET sector and industry can address poorer education and employment outcomes for people with disability, and build skills to support the inclusion of people with disability in three contexts: VET, employment and customer service.

About the Inclusion of People with Disability Cross Sector Project

The Inclusion of People with Disability in VET project is the first time government and industry have come together to explore how the development of training packages could increase the participation of people with disability in VET and the workplace. This cross sector project aims to equip vocational educators, employers and customer service providers with the skills and knowledge they need to better include people with disability in education, employment and service contexts. It is expected that this project will result in a reduction in duplication across the national VET system by developing common training components on disability-related matters that can be used across multiple industries.

Project overview

Work on the Case for Endorsement commenced in October 2017 and involved:

  • Establishment of a dedicated ‘Inclusion of People with Disability in VET’ Project Reference Group (PRG), consisting of various Industry Reference Committee (IRC) members from a diverse range of industries, subject matter experts, and people with first-hand experience of disability;
  • Extensive desktop research and environment scan to understand the what is happening both here and internationally (best and better practice), what training already exists, and the evidence base to develop cross sector training – see the ‘Environmental Scan’ report;
  • Nationwide consultations with industry and stakeholders at various stages throughout November 2017 to August 2018 with stakeholders from across a range of industries, geographies and stakeholder types to ensure input of multiple perspectives (including industry, people with disability themselves, government bodies, training providers and subject matter experts) – see the ‘Summary of Consultation Outcomes Report’;
  • Development of draft training products (3 new ‘communication’ units of competency and 2 new ‘teamwork’ units of competency that can be applied across multiple industries); and
  • Preliminary quality assurance, editorial and equity reviews, with the intention of soon progressing through a second review of draft training products by the eight state/territory training authorities.

Click below to download a copy of the Environmental Scan and summary of outcomes from national consultations.

What’s next?

The Inclusion of People with Disability in VET cross sector project is currently at the quality review stage. The Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) have agreed to implement interim arrangements to house new cross sector training products in the most relevant training package, as determined by the developing Project Reference Group. As such, over the coming months, we will work under the direction of the existing Inclusion of People with Disability in VET Project Reference Group and the nominated Industry Reference Committees (yet to be determined) to finalise and submit the Case for Endorsement for consideration by the AISC. If approved, the proposed new cross sector units will be publicly available for download from the National Register.

How can you get involved?

To stay updated about the project’s progress, including outcomes following AISC meetings, you can subscribe to our website. For general enquiries and feedback, email us any time at