News

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have launched an expression of interest exercise for local authorities to jointly deliver a Local Supported Employment proof of concept.  Expressions of interest should be submitted by 27 March 2017.  

BASE has submitted a written response with a number of recommendations to the Improving Lives green paper. Our response was formulated following discussions with members.

The full document runs to 19 pages but we have summarised our main recommendations below:

The Work and Pensions Committee has published its report about the Disability Employment Gap. The report recommends a greater focus on retention, better use of specialists, and again calls for a senior disability work coach role to be reintroduced. It suggests that employers who recruit people with disabilities could receive National Insurance incentives.

DWP has released more details about Greater Manchester and London's devolved powers to procure and deliver the Work and Health Programme. The two cities will receive funds to develop, procure and deliver localised versions of the new Work and Health Programme to fit the needs of their residents. The Work and Health Programme is expected to start from late 2017 in England and Wales.

The Department for Education is seeking evidence on the experiences and outcomes of children and young people in residential special schools and colleges. Responses should be sent to Lenehan.Review@education.gov.uk by 17 March 2017.

Steve Hawkins, CEO of Pluss, has written a blog about employment support which we reproduce below.

The Prime MInister has announced a new partnership with employers to improve mental health support in the workplace. The initiative is part of a renewed emphasis on addressing the inequalities faced by people experiencing mental health problems.

Learning and Work Institute (L&W) are conducting research on behalf of the Department for Education to explore solutions to overcoming recruitment barriers for those with learning difficulties and disabilities (LDD) to entering apprenticeships. The research will support the Government in implementing the recommendations made by the Maynard taskforce, convened to explore access to apprenticeships for those with LDD. The research aims to:

The Department for Education is consulting on the draft strategic guidance document from Government to the Institute for Apprenticeships for 2017-18. The consultation closes on 31 January 2017.

The Government has set out a programme of reform to raise the quality and quantity of apprenticeships. To underpin these reforms, the Institute for Apprenticeships will be established as an independent body to act as the guarantor of the integrity of the apprenticeships system, with a mandate to assure quality and provide objective advice on future funding for apprenticeship training.

A new Work and Pensions Committee report says former offenders leaving prison face a "cliff edge" drop off in support offered to help them re-enter normal life and find work, and that even while in prison, education and employment support are fragmented and good practice is "patchy and inconsistent".

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