News

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has lost more employment tribunals for disability discrimination than any other employer in Britain since 2016. BBC's Panorama found that the DWP lost 17 of 134 claims of discrimination against its own disabled workers from 2016-19. It paid out at least £950,000 in both tribunal payments and out-of-court settlements in that time.

DWP employs over 80,000 staff, over 11,000 of whom have decared a disability. The DWP said it was "shocked" by the data but was reviewing its processes to ensure all staff were treated fairly.

The DWP Local Supported Employment trailblazer will be listed on the Test & Learn dynamic purchasing system (DPS) on 16 March. The opportunity will be open for expressions of interest until 7 April. The new programme is scheduled to go live in early August. The trailblazer follows on from the Proof of Concept that ran during 2018-19.

Cooper Gibson Research (CGR) has published a research report looking at how Supported Internships are delivered. The research, commissioned by the Department for Education (DfE), aimed to explore: 

  • The models and approaches to delivery of supported internships available for young people with EHCPs in England. 
  • The factors perceived to be associated with success for supported internships. 
  • Perceived barriers to the success of supported internships, and how these may be overcome. 

The Centre for Social Justice has published a new report, Commissioning Excellence in Disability , that examines DWP's nationally contracted disability employment provision. 

The report is critical of performance over recent years and highlights some of the problem areas including commissioning processes, funding models and supply chain management. It suggests ways of making better use of the expertise within the voluntary sector and makes a series of recommendations.

Public Health England has issued updated statistics for the Public Health Outcomes Framework. They should that the disability employment gap for people with a learning disability and people in contact with secondary mental health services stands at almost 70% across England. The gap has increased by nearly 7% over the last 7 years.

Two BASE members, Pembrokeshire County Council and Vision Products, have received awards for their Disability Confident work. The awards were presented on 5th February by the Department of Work and Pensions at the Hospitality Wales Confident about Disability Awards.

Pembrokeshire County Council has been named an ‘Inspirational Employer’ at the Cardiff ceremony for Welsh employers. 

DWP has announced market engagement events for the Local Supported Employment (LSE) Trailblazer in the run up to the issuance of the Invitation to Tender.

The events are now confirmed as follows:

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) are seeking views from providers who have an interest in subcontracted delivery to inform their thinking about reforms to subcontracting arrangements.

The Welsh Government has confirmed that it will not be continuing with the planned new Job Support Wales Programme. The programme was due to begin delivery in April and aimed to amalgamate the five Welsh Government Employability initiatives into a single tailored offer.

Following early pre-market engagement and surveys, DWP announded that they had reviewed the timeline for applications to join the Employment & Health Related Services Umbrella Agreement (EHRSUA) and would be issuing two separate Invitations to Tender (ItT); one tender in respect of Tier One and Tier Two and a further tender for Tier Three, at a later date.

Pages