Published on 01 August 2023

APM Employment Services are partnering Australian Retailers Association (ARA) - Queensland Office to assist them to deliver their Retail Ready and Able program - aimed at empowering and upskilling Queenslanders who face employment barriers because of a physical, mental, or emotional challenge.

The ARA program, funded by the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training in Queensland, is also aiming to address stigmas and shift mindsets among retailers when it comes to employing those with varying disabilities.

The ARA will work with APM as an Employment Service Provider to recruit and match potential employees with suitable retail employers across Queensland, and to deliver comprehensive education and awareness programs pre- and post-employment to both jobseekers and employers.

The Retail Ready and Able program is aiming to employ at least 100 jobseekers within the next six months.

Training via free webinars for employers will commence early next month, as well as face to face jobseeker training sessions to prepare them for work in Retail focussing particularly on confidence, resilience and reliability; communication skills, handling difficult customer strategies and understanding resources/supports available in a typical workplace; build digital literacy, and WHS.

Jude Mare, Project Manager (Workforce Connect QLD) from ARA - Queensland Office, said, "this project is about linking genuine jobseekers with a disability with employers who are hiring people of all abilities, into the right position with employment, across the broad spectrum of Retail opportunities such as sales, stock control, merchandising, visual merchandising, transport, logistics, warehousing, and night fill.

"The ARA will be focussed on highlighting the advantages of employing a person with a disability and working together with APM Employment Services to help us connect with jobseekers and to share their expertise on employing people with disability with our members."

Michael Dobbie-Bridges, Strategic Advisor - Disability from APM, who will be working together with ARA to deliver the Retail Ready and Able program said, "improving employer confidence and understanding of disability is a critical component in providing greater employment opportunities for people with disability.

"Our training will provide insights into the existing support available to employers while busting the misconceptions that exist about people with disability in the workplace.

"We look forward to the successful outcomes of this pilot project and ultimately assisting people with disability to find and maintain employment with educated and supportive employers."

For more information, please visit retail.org.au/retailreadyandable.

Author

Anna Burchfield

For media enquiries, please contact

corporate.affairs@apm.net.au

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