‘It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest. We address ourselves. Not to their humanity but to their self-love, and never talk to them of our own necessities but of their advantages.’
This is a quote from Adam Smith, from Wealth of Nations. Smith uses self-interest with self-love, but neoliberals use self-interest with selfishness.
Yooralla has persistently, over the six years, demonstrated their consistent misunderstanding of my speech and disability; this problem has reached a devastating point. I acknowledge that it will not be easy to provide care for me. I am in the later stages of Friedreich’s Ataxia, but I have an outstanding IQ that has and will allow my communication methods to lead to improvements in useful communication technology. Of course self-interest goes hand in hand with communication technology; this is why I feel like my contributions are often hindered.
Why do self-interested people never look to or see the big picture concerning people with severe disabilities/ people with high support needs? Instead of understanding our true needs, they focus on pursuing the self-interested actions of capitalism.
This brings us to the matter at hand: I have a couple of questions for Yooralla’s hierarchy of management. Firstly, on many occasions over last few months, Yooralla has only had three support workers working at a time, when there should be at least four in the morning and the afternoon. I know the service management was under great difficulty to find workers to fill in the shifts, but my problems with all of this, is that the residents are the only ones who mainly suffer from a reduction of support staff. Therefore, should not the person who pays rent allowance in a shared support accommodation – be subject to a pro-rata reduction of rent, which DHHS pays around $46 per hour for disability services. I want to know the reasoning behind this.
My next question relates to the hours of work and the difference between part time and full time work of support workers. As a direct employer of funding from DHHS myself, I have a bit of knowledge and experience concerning WorkCover Insurance, and for the life of me cannot understand why Yooralla cannot put two or three of these support staff on full time rates. As mentioned earlier, Yooralla receives around $46 per hour for support workers from DHHS, and management (who do little in this situation). I have illustrated on numerous occasions, in my previous blog posts as well as in other articles, why consistent support staff are vital for people with disabilities with high support needs. In this situation, there is a need for the well-known support workers to do their job effectively.
So why can’t this be done?
A special thanks to Christina Irugalbandara for her excellence in academic support work.