Rob Grieg, Chief Executive of the National Development Team for Inclusion, has written a blog for the Guardian about Rosa Monckton's proposal that people with a learning disability might be paid at less than the national minimum wage. We fully support his views which are reproduced below.


Edward Timpson, Minister for Vulnerable Children and Families, has announced a £215 million funding boost to transform the lives of thousands of children with special educational needs and disabilities, by increasing school capacity and making it easier for them to access good school places.

Every local council’s allocation is at least £500,000 to enable them to expand and improve their special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) provision, with more than half receiving at least £1 million.

The Merlin Standard is currently undergoing a refresh, to ensure that it remains fit for purpose.  To aid the refresh, a consultation has been planned for stakeholders to provide feedback on the content of the Standard as well as user experiences relating to Merlin. Any comments should be sent to by 5th April 2017.

Together for Short Lives is launching a ground-breaking new Transition Awards Programme to fund innovative transition projects. There is an urgent need for new initiatives to transform the experience of young people with life-limiting conditions as they move from children's to adult services.

Gateshead Council is looking for a training provider who can teach its staff to assist people with learning disabilities into work in a hands on practical way. It aims to do this through the use of an accredited Training in Systematic Instruction (TSI) provider. Interested parties should express interest before 9 March.

Further information is at


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.  

The Learning and Work Institute are running two workshops in March 2017 to bring together those delivering support for people with LDD, those delivering apprenticeships and supported internships, and policy-makers. They want to share best practice and practical solutions and focus on how the sector as a whole can further support implementation and ensure everyone fully benefits from the Maynard recommendations. 

The London Borough of Barnet has placed the following notice at

They are initially seeking to complie a list of approved providers before going to tender. The tender may be split into more than one lot and seeks providers to deliver employment retention support as well as recruitment services across a range of disability customer groups.

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.