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L.I.S.A Inc
LISA... is a parent support and lobby group, for parents and families with a family member having an intellectual or multiple disability, and living in a supported accommodation group home in the State of Victoria, Australia.
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Tuesday, May 01 2012

Students of TAFE Certificate 4 in disability, receive significant theory and practical instruction in PCAS and PBS {Person Centred Active Support and Positive Behaviour Support), throughout the course.

Most students are keen to practice their new found skills of providing intellectual and developmental skills to the residents of group homes and the clients of day services, both during their work experience times, and when they get work after the course.

Rather similar to police recruits, who are equally keen to get into practical work on the streets, but are told by the station sergeant to sit quietly at a desk, and not go looking for work on the streets which will cause paper work. Those with, or doing Cert-4, are told, mainly in government direct care, that their role is basic minder care, not all this intellectual and developmental rubbish.

These keen new workers, ex TAFE students, are frequently told on their first day in a government direct care group home, if you do this PCAS/PBS rubbish, we will all have to do it. So sit quietly, mind the residents, enjoy the TV, have a coffee and a chat. And what is especially relevant, you are not paid enough to do other than basic minder care!

This is how the traditional institutional mindset of ‘minder-care’ is maintained throughout the ‘group home in the community’ concept.

Young people, just off the TAFE course, with the energy and enthusiasm to really help people with a disability develop a real quality of life are often so disillusioned that they leave the field, having failed to convince government direct care reactive management of the need to help people with a disability in the way their TAFE course showed them.

Government direct care management see their primary role, to keep the majority of direct care staff happy in doing whatever they want, or don’t want to do. The residents are no problem, they will not, and mostly cannot complain. If they do, they will not be believed!

The following extract from a Community Visitor Report, Victoria, illustrates what is quite common

​Community Visitor Visit Reference XXXXX (extract) Issue 6.

Community visitors concerned with staff not following instructions regarding active support because of staff conflict.

Response 6:

Active support has been an issue since its introduction to XXXXXXX. Some staff have objected to active support as it "forcing the residents to do things they do not want to".

There was a letter produced by an unknown person stating that "active support was not in the basic care that DDSO workers provide".

My response to this situation is that the residents need to be engaged in meaningful activity that will reduce the amount of boredom and to motivate the residents to take an active role in their daily lives.

The skills the residents have can be built on as well as retaining the skills they already have. By staff doing everything and sticking by a "basic care" attitude, the residents will never be able to "own" their own lives.

We are here as DDSO workers and not the residents in our workplace. If there is a further issue you wish to discuss with this one I will be more than happy to sit with you and discuss it.

This applies for any of the staff you would like to discuss this with as well.

The concerns with staff conflict is a very real one and as the house supervisor I have been trying to resolve this issue for 12 months.

Again I would ask you to contact the house again if you would like to discuss this and I will ask management to come along so the situation can be discussed with all concerned..

Posted by: Hatton AT 04:21 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

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LISA Inc   ~   Phone: 03 9434 3810   ~   Email:   ~   Address: 73 Nepean Street Watsonia VIC 3087

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