Implementation of the Workforce Strategic Framework
The Mental Health, Alcohol and Other Drug Workforce Strategic Framework 2020-2025 has now been released by the Minister for Mental Health.
It aims to guide the growth and development of an appropriately qualified and skilled workforce that will provide individualised, high quality mental health and AOD services, and programs for the Western Australian community.
An additional $1.2 million has been initially allocated by the State Government to build workforce capacity in the mental health, alcohol and other drug community sector.
The funds will support key areas as identified by peak bodies, service providers, stakeholders, consumers and carers, covering key focus areas of need including building the peer workforce; Aboriginal culturally secure services; building capacity in trauma-informed care; and providing employment pathways.
More than 450,000 people are supported by government-funded mental health, alcohol and other drug services across WA each year.
The Framework will support the many projects currently underway across the sector, to ensure we have appropriately skilled staff ready to deliver them.
The following initiatives have been allocated funding as part of an initial $1.2 million package to implement the Framework.
1. Aboriginal Workforce Development initiatives
Aboriginal Leadership and Sector Development (Mental Health)
WAAMH will employ an Aboriginal Community Mental Health Sector Development Lead for 12 months to contribute to WAAMH’s sector development activities, with the aim of identifying and delivering strategies to support the mental health community sector to provide enhanced access and improved outcomes for Aboriginal service users, families and the community.
The Aboriginal Community Mental Health Sector Development Lead will offer guidance to service providers to enhance culturally secure practice; support the delivery of culturally secure and appropriate training; facilitate the dissemination of culturally appropriate tools, frameworks and resources to the sector; and coordinate Aboriginal leadership on sector policy and strategy.
Aboriginal Leadership and Sector Development (Alcohol and Other Drugs)
WANADA will employ an Aboriginal Alcohol and Other Drug (AOD) Coordinator for 12 months to contribute to WANADA’s sector development activities, with the aim of identifying and delivering strategies to enhance access and improved outcomes for Aboriginal service users, families and the community.
The Aboriginal AOD Coordinator will contribute to recruitment and retention strategies for an increased Aboriginal workforce; and coordinate Aboriginal leadership on sector policy, planning, development and reform.
2. Peer Workforce Capacity Building
Building the capacity of the peer workforce
The MHC will develop a co-designed approach and strategies to build the capacity of the peer workforce across the mental health and AOD sectors.
AOD consumer engagement training
The MHC will deliver foundational and advanced training to support AOD consumer representatives to participate in a range of consumer engagement activities cross the sector.
Consumers & Carers Co-design Community of Practice (CoP)
WAAMH will establish a Consumer & Carers Co-design CoP, in partnership with Mental Health Matters 2 and wellrounded, to build the capacity of consumers and carers to participate effectively in genuine co‑design experiences and increase their capacity to build on current co-design practices.
Pilot ‘Peer Work Positives’ training program
COMHWA will develop and deliver co-designed training that supports community and clinical services to work genuinely in a peer-work-informed way, and post training support to translate learning into practice.
3. Employment Pathways and Organisational Capacity Building
Capacity building resources for National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) psychosocial disability services
The MHC will develop and promote an online repository of resources which support psychosocial disability services providers to develop organisational capacity to operate under the NDIS funding model.
Pilot pre-employment training program
WAAMH will develop and deliver a pilot pre-employment training program, in partnership with the Mental Illness Fellowship of Western Australia, to attract people to the community mental health sector by providing sector specific information, skills training and opportunities to connect with employers.
Pilot Organisational Development Program (ODP)
WAAMH will provide a targeted ODP that responds to individual organisation’s specific workforce development needs, with a focus on supporting organisations who experience workforce capacity challenges.
The ODP comprises free tailored and targeted training and post training support to mental health community organisations.
Expansion of the Volunteer AOD Counsellor’s Training Program
Delivery of an additional Volunteer AOD Counsellor’s Training Program which provides participants with a 15-week intensive training program and 12 months supervised volunteer placement at an AOD service provider.
AOD sector workforce planning
WANADA will employ a Workforce Development Officer for 12 months to undertake sector development activities that result in increased AOD practice-relevance in appropriate tertiary courses.
4. Training in Trauma-Informed Care and Practice
Expansion of MHC delivered trauma-informed care and practice (TICP) workshops
The MHC will deliver additional workshops to support human services agencies to embed TICP into their service delivery to more effectively meet the needs of their clients/target groups.
Expansion of TICP training for the community mental health sector
WAAMH will deliver free TICP training targeted at the community mental health sector, with ongoing access to professional support to guide implementation of trauma-informed principles and ways of working.