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Services and Support for People with Disability Print Disability

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					Services and Support for People with
             Disability


 Print Disability Services Program


        Program Guidelines
Foreword
One of the significant barriers to participation in the community is a lack of
access to information. The Australian Government’s social inclusion agenda
recognises that in order to be socially included there must be opportunities to
access services, secure a job and connect with people and communities. For
people with print disability it is critical to ensure the best possible access to a
wide range of information in alternative formats in order to strengthen their
ability to participate actively.

Current estimates indicate that almost 20 per cent of Australians are unable to
read standard print information. This includes those who are blind or have
low vision and those who are unable to read standard print with ease due to a
physical disability or a learning disability. Previous estimates have indicated
that only five per cent of material available to the sighted community could be
accessed by people with print disability but this does not take into account
recent technological advances and improved availability through the internet.

The Print Disability Services Program (the Program) aims to ensure the
provision of information in alternative formats for people with print disability, to
enable them to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life,
including work and education. The Program provides funding to print
disability services to produce printed material in alternative communication
formats for people who, by reason of their disability, are unable to access
information provided in a standard print medium.

Our vision is that people with print disability will have ready access to the
same material and information available to everyone in the community.
Therefore a priority of the Program is to ensure that there is access to
material in the alternative format of their choice and delivery/access method.




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Table of Contents



FOREWORD ....................................................................................................2

PREFACE.........................................................................................................5

PART A – INFORMATION ABOUT THE SERVICES AND SUPPORT FOR
PEOPLE WITH DISABILITY PROGRAM.........................................................6

1     PROGRAM OVERVIEW............................................................................6
1.2      Program Component Objectives.............................................................................................6

1.3      Program Key Performance Indicators ...................................................................................6

1.4      Program Deliverables ..............................................................................................................7


2 RESPONSIBILITIES AND ACCOUNTABILITIES UNDER THE
PROGRAM .......................................................................................................7
2.1      FaHCSIA responsibilities and accountabilities .....................................................................7

2.2      Service provider responsibilities and accountabilities ..........................................................8


3     RISK MANAGEMENT STRATEGY...........................................................9

4     PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT AND EVALUATION...........................9
4.1      Performance framework and reporting .................................................................................9

4.2      Financial Reporting ...............................................................................................................10

4.3      Evaluation ...............................................................................................................................10

4.4      Records management.............................................................................................................10


5     COMPLAINTS .........................................................................................11
5.1      Service Provider .....................................................................................................................11

5.2      Client/Customer .....................................................................................................................11


PART B – INFORMATION ABOUT THE PRINT DISABILITY SERVICES
PROGRAM .....................................................................................................13

6     ACTIVITY AND MANAGEMENT DETAILS ............................................14
6.1      Target group...........................................................................................................................14




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6.2     Funding for the program.......................................................................................................14

6.3     Service provider eligibility.....................................................................................................16

6.4     Specialist requirements (e.g. Legislative requirements) .....................................................16

6.5     Information technology..........................................................................................................16


7     FUNDING AGREEMENT ........................................................................17

8     CONTACT INFORMATION .....................................................................17




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Preface
These Program Guidelines provide the framework for the implementation and
administration of Print Disability Services Program, a service strategy under
the Services and Support for People with Disability Program. The guidelines
provide the basis for the business relationship between the Australian
Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and
Indigenous Affairs (FaHCSIA or the Department) and the funding recipient.
They should be read in conjunction with the Standard Terms and Conditions.

The Program Guidelines include:
•   The purpose of the Print Disability Services Program;

•   FaHCSIA expectations of service providers including performance
    expectations;

•   Monitoring and funding management arrangements including
    accountabilities and program governance arrangements for FaHCSIA and
    the service provider; and

•   Other relevant information pertinent to the successful delivery of the Print
    Disability Services Program.

FaHCSIA reserves the right to amend these guidelines from time to time by
whatever means it may determine in its absolute discretion and will provide
reasonable notice of these amendments.




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Part A – Information about the Services and Support
for People with Disability Program

1 Program Overview
1.1 Services and Support for People with Disability Program
Objective
The Services and Support for People with Disability Program aims to provide
supported employment and improve access to information, advocacy and
services for people with disability so they can develop their capabilities and
actively participate in community and economic life.

1.2 Program Component Objectives
Services for People with Disability

The program component Services for People with Disability provides social
support and community-based care for people with disability, their carers and
their families, to promote independence, self reliance and participation in the
community. This is achieved through providing supported employment
services, improving access to information and advocacy (including through
peak bodies), and assistance to practical services.

Services for People with Disability (Special Account)
The purpose of the Services for People with Disability Special Account is to
manage receipts and expenses on projects which relate to the National
Disability Agreement.

1.3 Program Key Performance Indicators
    • Percentage and number of individuals, parents and carers who report
      they were assisted to access choices and options that enabled them to
      manage their needs;
    • Percentage and number of supported employees that achieve an
      employment outcome (at least eight hrs per week for at least 13 weeks
      from commencement in a supported employment place);
    • Percentage and number of supported employees / clients with reduced
      reliance on income support payments (sufficient income to affect DSP);
    • Percentage and number of people with disability receiving support
      services;
    • Percentage and number of clients from Indigenous or Culturally and
      Linguistically Diverse backgrounds; and
    • Percentage of clients reporting that the services received were
      appropriate to their needs as parents / carers.


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1.4 Program Deliverables
Activities include a booking service for Auslan interpreting services,
employment assistance, advocacy, print disability services, postal
concessions for the blind, respite and outside school hours care, Autism
Spectrum Disorders (ASD) early intervention services, education and support
services, ASD playgroups and ASD website.

2 Responsibilities and accountabilities under the Program
2.1 FaHCSIA responsibilities and accountabilities

FaHCSIA must act in accordance with the Australian Public Service Code of
Conduct and the Financial Management and Accountability (FMA) Act 1997.

Under this program FaHCSIA National Office is responsible for:
   • Expenditure of Australian Government funds under the Program;
   • Developing program documentation and reporting templates such as
     the Program Guidelines, selection documentation and data collection
     template;
   • Developing funding agreements and schedules;
   • Ensuring the program is managed in a transparent and accountable
     manner;
   • Undertaking program analysis;
   • National stakeholder, relationship and issues management;
   • Reporting to the Australian Government on program performance;
   • Identifying suitable service providers to deliver the Program;
   • Providing the service providers with clear and concise funding
     agreements;
   • Working in partnership with the service provider to ensure that the
     Program is implemented;
   • Providing clear and concise advice to the service provider in relation to
     the Program;
   • Ensuring that the outputs and outcome contained within the Program
     Guidelines are being met;
   • Evaluating the service providers’ performance against the Program
     outcome; and
   • Evaluating the Program.




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2.2 Service provider responsibilities and accountabilities
Under this Program the service provider is responsible for the following:

    • Understanding and complying with their obligations under the Funding
      Agreement and administering funding in accordance with the Funding
      Agreement;
    • Working collaboratively with FaHCSIA to deliver the Program;
    • Complying with all relevant legislation;
    • Providing a complaints handling mechanism;
    • Conducting the service consistent with any Code of Conduct that may
      apply within the Program;
    • Operating within the Program Guidelines;
    • Providing print disability services to the appropriate target group;
    • Providing quality services which are effective, efficient, and
      appropriately targeted. This includes the conversion of a broad range of
      subject matter, not sole subject matter or specialist topics (i.e.
      educational or religious material);
    • Contributing to the overall development and improvement of the
      Program such as sharing best practice and demonstrating collaboration
      across the sector (including sharing resources and implementing
      strategies to reduce duplication);
    • Complying with quality and accessibility standards as recognised by
      the Round Table on Information Access for People with Print
      Disabilities;
    • Being informed of current issues affecting the lives of people with print
      disabilities, including the use of new technology to deliver better
      outcomes; and
    • Advising the Department immediately of any event which may affect
      program delivery such as change of legal entity, insolvency or closure
      of agency for any reason.

It is important that providers note that under their responsibilities and
accountabilities FaHCSIA expects the following:

Governance:

Funded agencies will have in place sound corporate governance which
includes processes and controls to maximise operational efficiency and
ensuring the appropriate use of Australian Government funding. Key
elements of good corporate governance include, but are not limited to, sound
record keeping practices, transparency in decision making and adherence to
all relevant laws and regulations governing the industry within which the
provider operates.




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3 Risk management strategy
Monitoring of service delivery will focus on addressing areas of risk that have
the most impact on the Program outcome.

As part of the overall risk management strategy for the Program, FaHCSIA
requires service providers to:

   •   Identify and document risks in delivering services related to the
       Program;
   •   Identify and document risk control strategies; and
   •   Implement adequate and effective policies and procedures to manage
       risks and achieve the control strategies through the funding period.

As part of FaHCSIA’s Common Business Model, funding agreements are
managed according to a risk management approach. Funding recipients are
assessed to identify low, moderate, high and extreme risks with appropriate
treatments identified. Risks are assessed in regard to governance, financial
management, viability, performance management and issues management.

Treatments vary depending on the nature of the risk and include options
relating to payments, acquittals and performance monitoring. For funding
recipients that deliver multiple activities, treatment options may be applicable
to the one Program activity or to all Program activities depending on the
nature of the risk.

For example, a risk associated with the implementation of a new Program
activity by a high performing funding recipient may have increased reporting
requirements for that new Program activity only. Other risks, such as financial
viability, are likely to require the application of treatments across all activities
delivered by the funding recipient.



4 Performance management and evaluation
4.1 Performance framework and reporting

FaHCSIA’s Performance Indicators (PIs) focus on three key questions:

   •   Did it make a difference?
   •   How well did we do it?
   •   How much did we do?

The service provider is required to report half yearly on the PIs as set out in
the Funding Agreement. A template is provided with the Funding Agreement
for reporting purposes.



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In addition to PIs, FaHCSIA also collects information that can be used to:

   •   Monitor the ongoing operation of the Program for evaluation of
       services; and
   •   Track issues that may affect the operation of the Program.

The service provider must provide information annually to the Disability
Services Census conducted by FaHCSIA. Information about the Disability
Services Census and a Data Guide for Disability Services Providers will be
made available each year on the website at www.fahcsia.gov.au.
The data collected will inform national reporting purposes under the National
Disability Agreement (previously the Commonwealth State Territory Disability
Agreement). This information is provided to the Australian Institute of Health
and Welfare for collation into the Disability Services National Minimum Data
Set (DS NMDS.)

4.2 Financial Reporting

The Program will be managed to ensure the efficient and effective use of
public monies. This will be consistent with best value in social services
principles, the FaHCSIA Funding Agreement and will aim to maintain viable
services and act to prevent fraud upon the Commonwealth.

The service provider must only use public funds for the purpose for which they
were provided and act responsibly to prevent fraud upon the Commonwealth.

The service provider is required to submit either a certified or independently
audited (dependent upon level of funding) financial acquittal report by the due
date set out in the Funding Agreement.

4.3 Evaluation

FaHCSIA may periodically undertake or commission a review or evaluation of
the Program. The Department will give reasonable notification to service
providers of any review or evaluation that may take place.

The service provider is required to provide information through regular
reporting milestones outlined in the Funding Agreement. This information will
be used to evaluate performance, value for money and track any issues that
may affect the operation of the Program.

4.4 Records management

The service provider is required to store records in a secure place and
dispose of them in an appropriate manner. They should retain a copy of all
reports, records or account books in original form in accordance with the
provisions written in the Funding Agreement.




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The service provider is also required to ensure that records containing
personal information are retained for five years following the expiration or
termination of the Funding Agreement.

5 Complaints
5.1 Service Provider

The service provider can contact the complaints service with complaints about
FaHCSIA’s service(s) or the service of another FaHCSIA funded service
provider.
Details of what constitutes an eligible complaint can be provided upon request
by FaHCSIA. The service provider can lodge a complaint through the
following channels:
       Telephone: 1800 634 035
       Fax: (02) 6204 4587
       Mail: FaHCSIA Complaints
             PO Box 7576.
             Canberra Business Centre ACT 2610
If a provider is at any time dissatisfied with the Department’s handling of a
complaint, they can contact the Commonwealth Ombudsman at
www.ombudsman.gov.au or 1300 362 072.


5.2 Client/Customer

It is expected that all service providers would have a complaints process for
clients. The availability of the complaints procedure must be clearly
communicated to clients.

The service provider’s internal complaint mechanism must:

   •   Have commitment from all levels of the organisation;
   •   Be fair to all concerned, including the complainant and the
       organisation;
   •   Ensure that the complainant does not suffer retribution or intimidation;
   •   Be accessible – promoted internally and externally, in alternative
       formats, in English and other languages as appropriate;
   •   Have flexible methods of making complaints with assistance available
       to complainants as necessary;
   •   Be responsive – a full impartial and timely process with fair and
       reasonable remedies;
   •   Be effective – must address individual complaints, use information to
       improve overall service delivery and inform planning decisions;



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•   Be open and accountable so Program participants can judge for
    themselves whether the system is working effectively;
•   Provide for privacy, dignity and confidentiality;
•   Be provided free of charge; and
•   Ensure that information about alternative avenues for complaint are
    provided to the complainant for any complaint that cannot be resolved
    internally (including referral to FaHCSIA).




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Part B – Information about the Print Disability
Services Program
The Print Disability Services Program (the Program) provides funding to print
disability services to produce printed material in alternative communication
formats for people who, by reason of their disability, are unable to access
information provided in a standard print medium. People with print disability,
for the purposes of the Program, are those who are unable to read standard
print with ease due to vision impairment, a physical disability or a learning
disability. Print disability services are eligible for funding under the Disability
Services Act 1986.

One of the barriers to participation in the community is a lack of access to
information, and for these Australians it is critical to ensure the best possible
access to a wide range of information in alternative formats. Only a very
small amount of information is produced in alternative formats and for people
with print disability access to everyday information is a daily struggle.

Current estimates indicate that almost 20 per cent of Australians are unable to
read standard print information. This includes those who are blind or have
low vision and those who are unable to read standard print with ease due to a
physical disability or a learning disability. As life expectancy increases and
more people are living longer the number of people suffering deterioration of
their eyesight will continue to increase.

Funding under the Program is directed to the production of digital masters of
print material, to reflect the uptake of recent and emerging technology and to
ensure the best quality material is available to the end user. A priority of the
Program is to ensure that there is access to a range of material in the
alternative format of choice and delivery/access method.

The outcome of the Program is that people with print disability have increased
and timely access to a broader range of print material in alternative formats to
enable them to live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life
including work and education.




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6 Activity and management details
Under the Disability Services Act print disability services means services to
facilitate access to, or the use of, printed materials by persons who, because
of disabilities, are unable to read, hold or manipulate printed materials in
standard form.

Service providers funded under the Program are required to convert a range
of print material, covering a range of subject matter, into digital masters which
can be readily converted into alternative formats to meet the needs of people
with print disability.

Material created using Program funds should be in a file format that can be
accessible on a range of platforms, for example: XML (electronic files) and
MP3 (audio files) structured in an alpha numeric sequence.

The range of materials can include:

   •   Fiction/non-fiction publications; newspapers and manuals.

Funded service provider(s) will be expected to:

   •   Advertise their services for clients, advising of matters regarding
       access and eligibility; and.
   •   Comply with the Disability Services Act 1986.

The Program is managed by the Disability and Carers Programs Branch of
FaHCSIA National Office.

6.1 Target group

The target group for the Program are people with print disability - those who
are unable to access information provided in a standard print medium with
ease due to vision impairment, a physical disability or a learning disability.

6.2 Funding for the program

Funding is available for organisations that currently provide print disability
services to produce digital masters of print material that can easily be
converted into an alternate format of choice for the target group of people with
print disability.

The total amount of funding available for the Program in 2010-11 is
$1.4 million. On the Application Form you must tell us how much funding you
are applying for and provide a proposed budget.




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Funding will be provided to service provider(s) subject to:

   •   Application for funding through an open competitive selection process;
   •   Financial viability and risk management assessment;
   •   Signing the funding agreement and complying with all terms and
       conditions; and
   •   The provision of funds through the annual appropriation of funds by
       Parliament.

In the event the funding requested by successful applicants exceeds the total
funding available, FaHCSIA will make the final decision about the amount of
funding offered to each successful organisation. This decision will be final.

6.2.1 Eligible activities

The following list identifies activities that are eligible for Program funding.

   •   A minimum of 80 per cent of funding is to be used for the production of
       digital masters (covering a broad range of print material);
   •   Program administrative costs. This may include operating expenses
       directly related to the delivery of services, such as office materials,
       utilities, insurances, office equipment, telephones, and audit;
   •   Costs associated with the production of digital masters of print material
       including quality control of digital masters i.e. editing, noise reduction,
       and format shifting;
   •   Staff salaries and on-costs which can be specifically and directly
       attributed to the provision of print disability services under the Program;

   •   Recruitment and training of volunteers; and
   •   The provision of training and education strategies to increase access
       for consumers.

6.2.2 Ineligible activities

The following list identifies activities that are not eligible for Program funding:

   •   Production of digital masters where the entire FaHCSIA Program
       funding would be limited to specific or specialist areas, for example
       only educational or religious material;
   •   Material that is eligible for funding by or is the responsibility of another
       sphere of Government;
   •   Costs that are not directly and specifically related to the delivery of the
       Program activity (e.g. ongoing staff wages, rent, overheads and
       administrative costs of existing operations);
   •   Business set up or establishment costs;



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   •   Playback devices;
   •   Purchase of equipment or assets (including motor vehicles) as per
       Funding Agreement conditions;
   •   Travel and accommodation;
   •   Capital works; and
   •   Hospitality.

6.3 Service provider eligibility

Eligible organisations delivering print disability services under the Program
must be not-for-profit and one of the following:

   •   Incorporated association
   •   Incorporated cooperative
   •   Aboriginal corporation
   •   Organisation established through specific Commonwealth or
       state/territory legislation
   •   Company (Incorporated under Corporations Act 2001)
   •   Partnerships
   •   Trustee on behalf of a trust

6.4 Specialist requirements (e.g. Legislative requirements)
Service providers must comply with:

   •   All applicable service standards under the Disability Services Act 1986
       (Cth) at all times during the Activity Period;
   •   All relevant state and territory legislation;
   •   The Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) in performing the obligations outlined in the
       Funding Agreement;
   •   The Copyright Act 1968 (the Act) in regards to undertaking the activity;
       and
   •   The National Standards and Guidelines agreed by the Round Table on
       Print Disability.

6.5 Information technology

Agencies are expected to have systems in place to allow them to meet their
data collection and reporting obligations.




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7 Funding Agreement
The Program is funded through appropriations made in the Federal Budget
and in accordance with the Clause 9 of the Disability Services Act 1986
(Commonwealth).

The Program will use the FaHCSIA Funding Agreement and Terms and
Conditions. The Terms and Conditions of the Funding Agreement cannot be
changed. All funded agencies must sign a FaHCSIA Funding Agreement.

Agencies are required to administer the Program in accordance with the
Terms and Conditions of the Funding Agreement and with due regard to legal,
managerial and ethical responsibilities of governance.

Funding will be provided to agencies subject to:

•   Compliance with the Terms and Conditions of the Funding Agreement;

•   Complying with the Program Guidelines; and

•   Meeting all performance requirements.


8   Contact information
Print Disability Services Program
Disability and Carers Programs Branch
Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs
DE2 Tuggeranong Office Park
PO Box 7576
Canberra Business Centre ACT 2600

Website: www.fahcsia.gov.au

Email: printdisabilityservicesprogram@fahcsia.gov.au




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