Workers at the Castlemaine Copy Centre were devastated last week following the announcement that the centre would be closing at the end of the year.
The copy centre, which has serviced the local community for two decades, is operated by the community based organisation Windarring, which aims to eliminate barriers to participation, inclusion and acceptance for people with disabilities in their local community. The centre is run predominately by staff members who have a disability.
Windarring CEO Chris O'Connor said Windarring had made the difficult decision to close both the Castlemaine Copy Centre and Gisborne Copy Centre for reasons of financial viability.
He said the copy centres no longer provided an essential service and therefore the same level of meaningful employment for people with disabilities was not evident.
Mr O'Connor said changes to funding for disability services with the introduction of the NDIS had also affected Windarring's ability to afford the heavy subsidy for its copy centres.
"Windarring continues to focus on great outcomes for individuals, and although it is incredibly sad to see the closing of the copy centres, it allows us to focus on new opportunities," Mr O'Connor said.
But hope it seems is not lost for the Castlemaine Copy Centre. Concerned local Glenn Braybrook said he went into the copy centre to find the people upset, and when told the news he was spurred into action.
"I was really angry when I left and sad for the people who work there. To see these people upset that the copy centre was closing made me feel really crap, and I felt I had to do something. I put a post up on Facebook and it went viral," he said.
Mr Braybrook said he had contacted Bendigo West MP Maree Edwards and planned to contact federal MP Lisa Chesters to see what could be done to save the Castlemaine Copy Centre.