New specialist employment scheme will double the number of disabled people in work

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An estimated 1,000 more disabled people a year will benefit from specialist employment support thanks to a new scheme.

The Specialist Employability Support (SES) programme will ensure 1,700 disabled people will receive annual work-related support across the UK. The programme is expected to help 1,250 disabled people into work over the course of an initial two year contract.

The announcement came in light of recent statistics which revealed a year-on-year increase of 141,000 disabled people in work. That’s the equivalent of nearly 400 more for every day of the year.

Minister for Disabled People, Mark Harper said:

“While the improvement in the disability employment rate is fantastic news, there is of course more we need to do to support disabled people into work. That is why we are bringing in this new programme, opening up more places for disabled people – as well as more choice in how they access support.”

The programme builds on the foundations set out by the Residential Training college (RTC) model and includes most of the existing nine institutions currently delivering provision for 800 students with mainly on-site courses offered. SES will more than double this figure, offering more choice and more convenient support.

Harper adds:

“Through this approach we will continue to break down the barriers for disabled people in work, so they can provide themselves with the security of a regular wage.”

SES will target those who need the most support to enter work or undertake work-related courses and activities. Using outreach and partnership, it will offer specialist support to people with disabilities across the UK.

People will be given the choice of two types of support through the programme, the SES will consist of intensive, end-to-end provision which will support candidates all the way to employment. The SES Start Back will cater for people who need a little extra support to prepare them but initially will have their needs met by other provisions.

The scheme will also build better links with Work Choice and Work Programme providers as well as specialist voluntary organisations in order to offer a better service. The new provision is set to be implemented on 1 September 2015.

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