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Toni is currently Executive Director at Anti-Poverty Week.  She is also continuing consulting in disability employment policy, research and advocacy. She recently left a role leading Policy and Projects for the Australian Network on Disability.

Toni is a Sydney-based employment and social policy consultant and commentator, who has advised governments, employers and non-profit organisations in Australia, Britain, the United States and Japan. Her vision is to increase employment opportunities for disadvantaged Australians through research, policy development and advocacy. She has broad and deep experience across a range of policy areas and is recognised as a leading expert in demand-led employment policies.  

Prior to joining AND in July 2015, Toni had undertaken a study of the Partnership Broker program delivered by The Smith Family in six locations across Australia. The program aims to increase young people's transition from school to education or work. Study out now, click here for a copy.

Toni's recent speaking engagements include the Long Term Unemployment conference in August 2014, the ACOSS Conference in June 2014 and the Sydney conference "Partnerships for Employment Outcomes" on 26 February 2014. She spoke at the Sydney consultation for the review of Indigenous employment undertaken by Andrew Forrest on 21 November 2013.  Click here for a copy of her submission.  Toni was engaged by ACOSS, the Business Council of Australia and the ACTU to advise them on their Demand-led Roundtable held in December 2012.  Click here for a copy of her submission to the JSA 2015 Review of Employment Services, lodged 22 March 2013.


In 2013, Toni's focus has been working on increasing employment for people with disabilities.  Watch Australian Story Monday 12 August ABC1 at 8pm for a personal insight. See 'In the Media' and 'Recent Work' for more.

 Toni was engaged by The Benevolent Society in 2011 to look at pathways to education and employment for their family clients. Click here for a copy of the published paper Our clients are your clients - bringing employment and child and family services together to tackle family joblessness.  She has also recently completed work for the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) on demand-led strategies for the Family Centred Employment Project (FCEP) project in Goodna, Queensland and Broadmeadows, Victoria.


Toni spoke at the 2011 ACOSS National Conference on Increasing workforce participation for low income and disadvantaged job seekers. Click here for a copy of the full paper.  Toni's book More Forces at Work for Jobs Australia was launched on 29 October 2010 at the JA National conference in Melbourne by the Minister for Employment Participation, the Hon Kate Ellis MP. The book profiles 10 of Australia's leading nonprofit employment and training providers. It ties in nicely with the major submissions Toni wrote on behalf of ACOSS for the Productivity Commission Inquiry into the Not for Profit Sector. 


See Recent Work and Advice for more on Toni’s work and consulting offering and Experience for more on Toni’s work history. 


“Toni Wren has enormous and very valuable experience in the areas of employment policy in particular, and social policy, generally.  Her experience spans research, policy development, policy advice, advocacy and media.  She is highly skilled in all these areas – and good to work with towards a shared goal!”- Michael Raper, Director of Services and International Operations, Australian Red Cross and former ACOSS President


“I thank ACOSS for their thoughtful submission to the Productivity Commission Inquiry - their recommendations have been largely taken up in our Draft Report." - Denis Trewin AO, Associate Commissioner, Productivity Commission, speaking at the ACOSS Future of the Sector Day, 12 November 2009.




NEWS: Click below for Toni's recent Radio Interview on Poverty 16 May 2019


Globally, over 700 million or 11% of the world's poulation live on less than $2 a day - defined as extreme poverty.

Over half of these people are children, many living in sub-Saharan Africa and Asia.

Australia, one of the wealthiest countries in the world, has more than 3 million people living below the poverty line including1 in 6 or 740,000 children.


Poverty exists.

Poverty hurts us all.

We can all do something about it.


Follow Toni on Twitter for links to new reports on poverty and important disability news.

Stay tuned for the updated Anti-Poverty Week website for more on key information, updated resources and plans for APW which takes place from 13-19 October  in 2019.


The purpose of Anti-Poverty Week is to strengthen public understanding of the causes and consequences of poverty in Australia and globally and to encourage action by individuals, communities, organisations and governments to alleviate it.





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