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Education Minister, Justine Greening, has announced changes to the way apprenticeships will be funded from May 2017. The latest changes include:

BASE supports the general point made within the ERSA/WPI report, More than words-Rethinking employment support to disabled people that more resources need to be invested in providing appropriate specialist support to disabled people. The Government has set an ambitious target to halve the disability employment gap and this will require a comprehensive approach to support both the recruitment and retention of all people who have a disability and who aspire to work.

DWP has published changes to the procurement process for the Work and Health Programme and issued a revised indicative timetable for the process.

DWP has issued the following statement on the Bravo Solution website:

Thank you for your interest in the Work and Health Programme. DWP is very keen to work with the market and listen to your views, ensuring that we in are in a position to create the most suitable and effective programme for the customer group.

The Local Government Association has issued a press release calling on the Government to ensure it avoids repeating the mistakes of its flagship Work Programme when it's replaced by new Work and Health Programme (WHP). Thousands more disadvantaged jobseekers and people with disabilities and health conditions would be supported into work if funding and responsibility for the new Work and Health Programme (WHP) is devolved to all local areas, councils say today.

More than 120,000 Scottish adults with a learning disability are in need of help finding work, according to a new report from the Scottish Commission for Learning Disability. The estimate, based on the number of school leavers who education authorities say have a recognised learning disability, is a huge increase on previous estimates.

Around 26,000 people with a learning disability are known to Scotland's councils, but they tend to be those with the highest needs in receipt of social services.

The Government is being urged to do more to help people with disabilities secure jobs after new research revealed that one in 10 businesses felt unable to support an employee with a disability or long-term health condition.

DWP has published two evaluation reports about pilot projects.

The first report evaluated the Intensive Activity Programme (IAP) trial which aimed to help new benefit claimants move into work sooner.
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/intensive-activity-programme-...

DWP documents posted on the Bravo Solution website seem to confirm that the new Work and Health Programme (WHP) will only cater for those jobseekers who are considered close to the labour market. BASE is disappointed by the tone of the document which seeks to identify a tool that will categorise people into one of 4 groups:

  1. Willing and able to work
  2. Willing but not able to work
  3. Unwilling but able to work

The Disability Apprenticeships taskforce led by Paul Maynard MP has published its recommendations. BASE submitted views earlier this year.

Recommendations

The House of Commons library has published a briefing report that highlights some key statistics related to the disability employment gap.

The 2015 Conservative Party manifesto included a commitment to “aim to halve the disability employment gap” by transforming “policy, practice and public attitudes, so that hundreds of thousands more disabled people who can and want to be in work find employment.”

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