What they do
Disability services officers provide care and support for individuals with intellectual and/or physical disabilities and assist them to integrate into the community. They assess client needs and monitor and report on the progress they are making.
Disability services officers may work as social trainers, teaching people living with a disability the skills to live independently in the community. They may organise social and leisure activities for clients to assist them with integration into the community. They may also work as a support worker for an employment service that helps people living with a disability to find a job, and offer support and training on the job for as long as it is needed.
Disability services officers may travel to visit people with disabilities in independent living facilities, at work in supported employment, or in their family home to develop lifestyle plans, routines and training programs.
Disability services officers may be required to work outside of business hours, depending on the nature of the training involved. They may take clients to social events or leisure activities to help clients get out into the community.
Tools and technologies
Disability support workers regularly use office equipment to record and maintain services provided to clients. They may use charts, lists or labels to help clients learn the steps involved in a new skill or routine. They may require a driver’s licence to travel to clients and provide transport within the community.
How do I become one?
Education and training
To become a disability services officer, you usually need to gain a qualification in disability.
The Certificate IV in Disability is offered at TAFE colleges and other registered training organisations throughout Western Australia. To find a training provider near you, browse the Jobs and Skills WA website or visit the My Skills website.
You can also undertake a traineeship in disability work (level 4). The disability work (level 4) traineeship usually takes 24 months to complete.
Apprenticeships and traineeships
As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer, enabling you to complete training towards a nationally recognised qualification. You spend time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider.
You can do an apprenticeship or traineeship if you are a school-leaver, re-entering the workforce or as an adult or mature-aged person wishing to change careers. You can even begin your apprenticeship or traineeship while you're still at school.
If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.
Required registration and licensing
To work as a disability services officer in Western Australia, you may need to obtain a current Working with Children Check issued by the Working with Children Screening Unit of the Department of Communities. You may also require a National Police Certificate from the Australian Federal Police.