News

29th March to 4th April 2019 is World Autism Awareness week and we're again highlighting some of the resources available to support employers make workplaces more autism-friendly.

  • The National Autistic Society has a wealth of resources to aid employers with the recruitment, training and retention of autistic staff.

Now is the Time. As we move towards publication of a national disability strategy, it is timely to reflect on how things stand within the Supported Employment sector. It is telling that 40 years after the introduction of Supported Employment to the UK, we have still not seen any national funding of a sector that is predominantly funded through local authorities and charitable sources.

The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) Disability Commission has published a comprehensive report, Now is the Time, that examines disability policy across education, employment, housing, transport, and access to goods and services. BASE fed views into the report's development. We welcome its recommendations and expect it to influence the development of the National Disability Strategy.

The report has large chapters on education and employment with specific sections devoted to apprenticeships, Supported Interrnships and Supported Employment. The report also contains recommendations around support for employers, Access to Work, Disability Confident, workforce reporting and government procurement.

Department of Education have confirmed that Supported Interns who were not able to meet the core aim of their internship in the 2020-21 academic year may continue their internship into the 2021-22 academic year. This will also apply to 2019-20 interns who continued into 2020-21 and  have not yet completed their internships.

We've now has confirmation that Access to Work will be extended to cover supported interns who are repeating their course.

DWP has issued new Access to Work guidance for education providers and supported Employment providers involved in delivering Supported Internships. They have also revised the application form and support plan. Note that these forms are subject to ongoing change as they are refined by DWP.

The Government has published its 2021-2022 prospectus for the Community Renewal Fund. The £220m fund is designed to help the UK prepare for the introduction of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. The Government has identified 100 priority places for investment based on an index of economic resilience across Great Britain which measures productivity, household income, unemployment, skills and population density.

Image of strategy and link to download itThe European Union has published its new Strategy for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2021-2030. The new strategy builds on its predecessor, the European Disability Strategy 2010-2020, and contributes to the implementation of the European Pillar of Social Rights for which an Action Plan will be adopted by the Commission this week.

The final stage of Restart Programme ITT has been launched. DWP have issued Stage 3 (full and final offers) documents for bidders on the CAEHRS Framework relating to Restart.

Applications are now open for Digital Lifeline funding. This is an emergency response project to get devices, data and digital skills support to people with learning disabilities within tight timescales. Digital Lifeline is funded by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and delivered by Good Things Foundation, in partnership with AbilityNet.

The project is also supported by trusted expert organisations such as Learning Disability England, the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG) and Digital Unite.

Open Statement from Disabled People’s Organisations and Allies (February 2021)

 

Coronavirus has hit disabled people hard. 60% of deaths from coronavirus have been those of Disabled People. Disabled People have struggled to access healthcare, social care and food and many have been left without the £20 weekly uplift given to those on Universal Credit. We ask Government and the NHS to recognise the enormous impact of coronavirus on the lives of Disabled People.  

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