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9.9.5 DVA Support During a Work Trial
While a client is on a work trail, they will continue to receive incapacity payments, rather than a wage from their host employer. This may limit the client’s ability to purchase essential equipment or uniform that may only be required for a short period.
Where there is the potential for employment after the work trial DVA may consider support with:
- basic essential equipment and uniforms required to perform the work trial duties, or address a client's level of injury;
- Workplace Health and Safety equipment or clothing not supplied by the employer. and
- reasonable travel expenses to and from the workplace, but only where there is clear evidence that significant financial hardship is being experienced by the client which is limiting their ability to get to their work trial site
Where essential equipment, uniforms or Workplace Health and Safety items are being requested for a work trial, the following issues must be considered:
- whether provision of the item/s requested is reasonable or above the level that would normally be required for an employee in that workplace;
- the likely time the items or services will be required e.g will they be required for the full duration of the trial;
- the cost in purchasing the item compared to alternative arrangements such as, leasing, hiring or the possibility of negotiating a cost sharing arrangement with the work trial host employer;
- potential improvements to the client's work opportunities after the work trial, general functioning, or psychological wellbeing; and
- the impact on future liability if the client is offered a permanent placement with the host employer.
DVA may also provide ergonomic equipment and other workplace aids and appliances that the client requires to be able to safely fulfil the requirements of their role during the work trial. In this instance, it is likely that lease or hire of equipment will be most cost effective than purchase, given that there is no guarantee that the client will secure employment after the trial. Further information about workplace aids and appliances can be found in section 10.7.4 of this library.
Where DVA purchases uniforms and/or essential equipment to enable the client to undertake a work trial, then these items become the property of the client. The expectation is that the client uses the items to maintain themselves in the same industry following their work trial.
For further information about uniforms and essential equipment for clients who have secured permanent employment please refer to section 9.12.3 of this library.