Tasmanian Community Services Industry Plan (2021-31)

A community services industry built for the future.

In 2021, The Tasmanian Government and the community services industry released a ten-year Tasmanian Community Services Industry Plan (2021-31) to guide industry development, recruit and train our growing workforce and to futureproof the delivery of much-needed services to Tasmanians in need.

The Industry Plan is immensely significant as it provides a vision for the community services for the next decade, which is shared by peak bodies, community service organisations and the Tasmanian Government. It provides an overarching framework to guide strategic industry development and transition planning.

The Industry Plan’s vision is for a connected community services industry that supports all Tasmanians to live a good life and enriches our state’s social, cultural and economic wellbeing.

Overall, the Industry Plan contains three strategic priorities: 

  • Strategic Priority 1: Local Solutions for Tasmanians
  • Strategic Priority 2: Workforce Development and Training
  • Strategic Priority 3: Leading for Impact

The Workforce Coordination Project is the first project to be funded under the Industry Plan. 

To register to receive regular updates about the Community Services Industry Plan, the Workforce Coordination Project and activities of the Workforce Coalition Network, please click here.

Community services is one of the largest and fastest growing industries in Tasmania, employing approximately 28,000 local workers statewide in roles ranging from education and care (childcare), home care and allied health workers, to strategic project managers and experienced CEOs. The industry is also supported by a workforce of around 46,900 (formal) volunteers

The economic value added by the community services industry in Tasmania is $1.9 billion each year.

The industry is currently experiencing a critical workforce shortage and with a predicted increase in service demand, together with other global factors, workforce shortages remain a key priority.  To this end, in 2021 the Tasmanian Government committed $3.3 million over three-years to the Workforce Coordination Project to address this skills shortage.  This project is the first stage of the Industry Plan implementation.

The implementation of the Industry Plan is overseen by a governance structure comprising three bodies:

  1. The Industry Advisory Council, which provides high level oversight and endorsement.
  2. The Industry Development Steering Committee is responsible for steering and advising, reporting to the Industry Advisory Council.
  3. The Workforce Coalition is responsible for actioning Strategic Priority 2: Workforce Development and Training, reporting to the Industry Development Steering Committee.

Each of these groups is informed by input from community and consumer groups.

The Community Services Industry Plan Advisory Council comprises the following members:


  • TasCOSS President, Alex McKenzie
  • Minister for Community Services and Development, the Hon Jo Palmer MLC

Appointed members:

  • University of Tasmania Vice-Chancellor, Professor Rufus Black
  • TasTAFE CEO, Grant Dreher
  • Australian Government representative (to be confirmed)
  • Local Government Association of Tasmania (LGAT) President, Mick Tucker
  • TasCOSS CEO, Adrienne Picone (ex-officio) 
  • Department of Premier and Cabinet, Community Partnerships and Programs Deputy Secretary, Mellissa Gray (ex-officio)

Experienced chairpersons of community service organisations (four members):

  • Lady Gowrie Tasmania CEO, Mat Rowell
  • Lifeline Tasmania CEO, Debbie Evans
  • Nexus CEO, Mark Jessop
  • Anglicare Tasmania General Manager (Housing and Community Services), Noel Mundy

The Industry Development Steering Committee comprises the following members:


  • Department of Premier and Cabinet Deputy Secretary, Mellissa Gray (ex-officio)
  • TasCOSS CEO, Adrienne Picone

Appointed members:

  • Skills Tasmania General Manager, Alexandra Paterson
  • Department of Education, Children and Young People, Director of People Capability and Development, Shari Rieder
  • Department of Premier and Cabinet Director (Community and Disability Services), Ingrid Ganley (ex-officio)

Executive industry partners:

  • University of Tasmania: Executive Dean and Pro Vice-Chancellor of the College of Arts, Law and Education, Professor Kate Darian-Smith
  • TasTAFE: Representative (to be confirmed)
  • Local Government: Local Government Association of Tasmania CEO, Dion Lester
  • Australian Government: Department of Social Services Tasmania State Manager (Community Grants Hub), Evan Trevor-Jones,

Selected members:

Peak body representation (two members):

  • Shelter Tasmania CEO, Pattie Chugg
  • Mental Health Council of Tasmania (MHCT) CEO, Connie Digolis

CEOs of community service organisations (two members):

  • Self Help Workplace General Manager, Donna Bain
  • Relationships Australia (RA) Tasmania CEO, Michael Kelly

Service user representation (two members):

  • Alcohol, Tobacco and other Drugs Council (ATDC) Tasmania Lived Experience Advocate, Jo Murphy
  • Baptcare Mental Health Peer Practitioner, Denise Duncan

Workforce representation (one member):

  • Unions Tasmania Secretary, Jessica Munday

Volunteering Tasmania representation (one member):

  • Volunteering Tasmania CEO, Shirleyann Varney

By invitation:

Chair(s) of the Workforce Coalition or working groups for the lifetime of the project (ex-officio):

  • Red Cross State Director (Tasmania), Sharon Wachtel
  • Lady Gowrie Tasmania General Manager (Business Growth and Improvement), Lee Veitch
  • Anglicare Tasmania General Manager (People and Organisational Development), Brenton West

The Workforce Coalition comprises the following members:

Chairs (2 chairs):

  • Lee Veitch – Lady Gowrie Tasmania
  • Brenton West – Anglicare Tasmania

Appointed members (3 members):

  • Monique Parsons – Skills Tasmania
  • Ingrid Ganley | Tricia Males – Department of Premier and Cabinet
  • Sue Howard – Workforce Coordination Project Manager (ex-officio)

Peak bodies that employ a Workforce Ready Team member (3 members):

  • Cathy Beswick – Aged & Community Care Providers Association (ACCPA) Tasmania
  • Annette Barwick – Early Childhood Australia (ECA) (Tasmania Branch)
  • Lizzie Castles – National Disability Services (NDS) Tasmania

Social services peak body representation (2 members):

  • Simone Zell – Neighbourhood Houses Tasmania (NHT)
  • Daniel Vautin – Alcohol Tobacco and other Drugs Council (ATDC) Tasmania

Strategic workforce planning specialist (1 member):

  • Position vacant

Strategic training and development specialist (1 member):

  • Position vacant

Education provider (tertiary/VET) (2 members):

  • Nita O’Callaghan – University of Tasmania
  • Danielle Morgan – TasTAFE

Workforce representation (1 member):

  • Robbie Moore – Health & Community Services Union (HACSU) Tasmania

Service user representation (1 member):

  • Brigid Wilkinson – Council on the Ageing (COTA) Tasmania


  • Workforce Coordination Project Manager, TasCOSS
  • Skills Tasmania