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Information for families and friends of the people we support Friday 5 August 2022

Information for families and friends of the people we support

Update as at Friday 5 August 2022

Farewell to Muriel Kirkby, Director DHS Disability Services

I am writing to let you know that after 12 years with DHS Disability Services, including six years as Director DHS Disability Services, Muriel Kirkby has decided to move on from the Department of Human Services (DHS).

Muriel will be finishing with DHS on Friday 2 September 2022. She is planning to take some time out to spend with her family before exploring opportunities in the non-government sector.

A tireless worker and leader within DHS, Muriel has been instrumental in reshaping DHS Disability Services to where we are today. This work includes the significant restructure of the service in 2018 and 2019 and preparing the groundwork for the reform required for us to fully transition to the NDIS by June 2023.

Muriel also initiated the development of the Zero Tolerance to Abuse and Neglect of People with Disability Framework and strived to change the way we deliver services to have the client at the centre of everything we do.

Another key achievement driven by Muriel was the successful closure of Highgate Park, the last government-run disability institution in the state. The closure was significant in allowing people with disability to reach their full potential and have better life outcomes.

Most recently Muriel has led our 1,600-strong workforce in DHS Disability Services through our response to COVID-19. This has been a significant period of time for the department and the 530 South Australians we support in the service.

As DHS Disability Services progresses towards full transition to NDIS, a new leadership structure will be introduced. We are actively recruiting for a newly created role of Director Quality and Clinical Services. Muriel’s role as Director, DHS Disability Services will evolve to Director, Supported Independent Living, which will put us in the best place as we continue to reform to become a fully registered NDIS provider.

We will keep you informed as we move forward with the recruitment of these positions.

I would like to say thank you to Muriel for her significant energy, enthusiasm, and commitment in supporting people with disability to lead their best lives at home and in the community.

If you have any further questions, you can email me at

Joe Young
Executive Director, Disability Services

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Page last updated : 09 Sep 2022

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