News

NHS England has launched a new transformation fund for Individual Placement and Support (IPS) services. It aims to support the expansion of IPS services so that more people who experience serious mental illness (SMI) can find and retain employment. This investment is part of NHS England’s objective to double access to IPS by 2020/21 as outlined in the implementation plan for the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health

Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) wish to invite providers to a market engagement event for the provision of the Greater Manchester Working Well Early Help Programme. The event takes place on 7 Feb 2018 (11:30am - 1pm) at Cotton Room, Manchester Conference Centre, Sackville Street, Manchester M1 3BB.

Children and Families Minister, Nadhim Zahawi, has written to local authorities to give information about the transfer of funding for two Section 31 grants relating to special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).  This includes the Preparation for Employment Grant 2018.  The letter has been sent to all local authority Chief Executives, Directors of Children’s Services, Lead Members for Children and Chief Finance Officers in all local authorities.

More than a half (53%) of employers who pay the apprenticeship levy want to see it replaced with a training levy, according to new research by the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development. Among those already paying the levy, just one in five (17%) support the existing system.

Please note that our office is now closed for Christmas and will re-open on Tuesday 2 January.

We'd like to wish all our members and friends a very Merry Christmas and we send our best wishes for 2018.

The Work and Pensions Committee has criticised the Government response to the Second Independent Review of the Personal Independence Payment Assessment, conducted by Paul Gray CB.

Commenting on the Government's response Frank Field MP, Chair of the Committee, said:

The Work and Pensions Committee published its Seventh Report of Session 2016–17, Disability employment gap (HC 56) on 3 February 2017.

The Government’s response was received on 30 November 2017 and is attached. 

https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201719/cmselect/cmworpen/652/652...

The Work and Pensions Committee has launched a new inquiry into assistive technology, following up on its inquiry into the Disability employment gap (DEG). This will lead to the second in what will be a series of reports aimed at getting the Government offering disabled people real opportunities to get into work.

"Assistive technology" includes a range of products, equipment, and systems that enhance learning, working, and daily living for people with disabilities. 

This inquiry is about the role all types of assistive technology can play in removing barriers to work and helping disabled people stay in work. It could be accessible hardware and software, developments in apps, wearable technology - technology that helps people get to work, or use the building once they do, as well as things that facilitate work itself. 

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 funding will be distributed among local authorities through a Section 31 grant. Letters have been sent to each local authority in January 2018. This funding is not ring-fenced and we advise that members urgently approach your local authority education department to discuss how the funds will be used.

The package of funding includes:

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".

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