June 2013

DWP has published its latest performance statistics for the Work Programme. The figures cover the period June 2011 to March 2013 and show an improved performance compared to the last data release. The percentage of those people for whom a job outcome payment is received is substantially higher for JSA customers than for ESA groups.

The Chancellor has announced a tougher regime for job seekers, saying they will have to visit the JobCentre every week to spend more time with advisors. There will also be a seven day wait before people can initially claim benefits. The changes were announced today as part of the 2015 spending review.

"Those first few days should be spent looking for work, not looking to sign on," said Mr Osborne. "We're doing these things because we know they help people stay off benefits and help those on benefits get back into work faster."

The advertising and creative design agency Work Club has launched a UK version of Creative Spirit, the successful disability recruitment campaign run in Australia within the advertising and creative industry.

Government Ministers have outlined plans to make it as easy as possible for employers to take on work experience students. Some employers have thought that they have to do special risk assessments for young people, and even had to repeat the same assessment for every young person they offer work experience to, even though the circumstances were exactly the same.

Leading charities Papworth Trust and Workwise are planning to join forces to achieve more for disabled people and for mental well being.

"By working together Workwise and Papworth Trust will be able to offer more brilliant services to more people in the future," said Adrian Bagg, Chief Executive of leading disability charity Papworth Trust. "In the meantime, I want to reassure people that it will be business as usual."

Link http://www.papworth.org.uk/news-detail.php?aid=430

House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts Department for Work and Pensions: Responding to change in jobcentres

The Scottish Government has produced a new learning disability strategy in Scotland, following on from, and building on the principles and successes of The same as you?, the original review of service for people with a learning disability, published in 2000.

The Government has announced a further review of Work Capability Assessments (WCA). The Fourth Independent Review is being led by Dr Paul Litchfield and will be launched on 1 July and will report by the end of 2013.

It will be published at www.dwp.gov.uk/wca-review and will run until 27 August. It will be one of several methods used to gather information during the review and is aimed at organisations and individuals who have information on how the WCA is operating and further changes that may be needed to improve the process.

Consultation outcome- Extending labour market interventions to in-work claimants

Summary of responses received on how the Government can support people in work and in receipt of Universal Credit to :

• increase their earnings
• develop the skills and qualifications
• achieve financial independence

Increasing options and improving provision for children with special educational needs (SEN) The SEND pathfinder evaluation report published today is an interim evaluation which covers only the process and implementation of the pathfinder programme. It describes and analyses the new approaches developed over the course of the programme as outlined in the research brief. An impact evaluation will be published in autumn 2013 which will provide an assessment of the experiences and outcomes achieved by the initial cohort of families.