Ther Chancellor, Philip Hammond, has been criticised for suggesting that more disabled people finding jobs is partly responsible for UK’s falling productivity. He was responding to a question about a 0.1 per cent fall in UK productivity earlier this year.

A £1.7m project hopes to tackle poverty in communities across Herefordshire. The programme will see people in deprived areas who are struggling to find jobs receive one-to-one help and support to gain confidence and learn new skills. Led by training and supported employment organisation, Landau Limited, the project will be delivered by more than 10 partner providers.

The Government has announced a package of support worth nearly £45 million to provide additional help for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

The package of funding includes:

  • £29 million to support councils and their local partners to continue pressing ahead with implementation of the reforms to the SEND system;

The government has set out plans to help more disabled people into work over the next decade. Under 50% of people with a disability are in work compared with 80% of non-disabled people. These employment rates fall to just 5.8% for people with a learning disability.

We are expecting further investment in supported internships and Access to Work will be "significantly enhanced" over the coming year. The paper also points to "new targeted support for learning disabled social service users and secondary mental health support service users".

InWork GM, a new alliance partnership between the Manchester Growth Company and ingeus UK, has been chosen to deliver the Work and Health Programme in Greater Manchester.

The number of workers starting apprenticeships over the last quarter of the 2016-17 academic year has fallen by 59% compared to last year's figures. The fall is being blamed on the introduction of the apprenticeship levy earlier this year.

Figures from the Department of Education have revealed that only 48,000 people started an apprenticeship in the last three months of the 2017 academic year, compared to 117,000 for the same period in 2016.

Two innovative projects have been launched to help young people with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition get the vital support they need. The projects were made possible by funding from Together for Short Lives’ Transition Awards Programme. 

Greater Manchester Talent Match is seeking support from specialist organisations to provide advice, guidance and direct support to Talent Coaches and young people on Greater Manchester Talent Match.
The provider will be required to:

  • Increase the awareness and knowledge of Talent Coaches relating to mental health and emotional wellbeing services and interventions
  • Direct support for young people in managing their mental health and wellbeing
  • Support the evaluation on the impact of the Talent Match programme.

The BASE conference was a resounding success last week. 220 delegates heard a variety of presentations and 20 workshops were available for delegates to attend.

Minister for Disabled People, Penny Mordaunt, was unable to appear after being called back to Downing Street while ion her way to the conference but her speech was ably delivered by Hugh Pullinger, Head of DWP's Disability and Work Opportunities Division. A number of positive announcements were made about the future of supported business. 

Sarah Newton has replaced Penny Mordaunt as MInister for Disabled People. Penny Mordaunt was called to Dopwning Street minutes before she was due to present to the BASE conference in Brightonb and has been named as the new Secretary for International Development.