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Multi-Million Pound Fund to Help Tackle the Disability Employment Launched
July 18, 2018
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A £4.2 million challenge fund to support people with mental health or musculoskeletal conditions to stay in work has been launched by the Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, Sarah Newton, and the Minister for Mental Health and Inequalities, Jackie Doyle-Price.

The fund is the latest in a range of government measures that are part of a 10-year strategy which aims to see 1 million more disabled people in work by 2027.

The challenge fund, run by Rocket Science on behalf of the government, is aimed at testing new approaches to help people experiencing mental ill health or musculoskeletal issues to remain in employment.

They might be at risk of losing employment because of the effects of their condition, or may already be temporarily off work through ill health.

Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work Sarah Newton, said:

We know there is a gap between disabled people who want to work and those who have the opportunity to do so.

With 78% of people acquiring their disability or health condition during their adult life, it’s crucial that we support disabled people who want to work to stay in or return to employment.

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Consultation: Universal Credit
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The Social Security Advisory Committee (SSAC) has launched a public consultation on proposals for moving all existing claimants of a working age income-related benefit to Universal Credit.

From next year DWP will begin the process of moving claimants in receipt of one or more of the following benefits to Universal Credit:

  • Working Tax Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Income Support
  • Housing Benefit

The wide-ranging draft legislation, which was presented to the committee for scrutiny at its meeting on 20 June 2018, sets out the government’s proposals on:

  1. requirements for claimants on existing benefits to make a claim for Universal Credit (including the deadlines for doing so) and arrangements for ending their existing benefit
  2. the calculation, award and ongoing treatment of transitional protection

The task of safely moving around 3 million claimants (in around 2 million households) from legacy benefits to Universal Credit raises important questions about the delivery challenge facing the department and the potential impact on claimants.

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Employment Rate Remains at Record High
June 13, 2018
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Britain has a joint record high employment rate of 75.6% with 32.39 million people now in work according to the latest official statistics.

The unemployment rate is now 4.2% – down 0.4% since last year – with the number of people out of work falling by 115,000.

The figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) come as Black, Asian and minority ethnic employment (BAME) is at a record high. The BAME employment gap – the difference between the employment rates of the ethnic minority population and the overall population – is at an all-time low of 10.1% points.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Esther McVey said: Read more

Personal Independence Payment Customer Journey Films
April 26, 2018
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DWP has published 5 short videos to help give people an overview of the process of claiming Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

As part of the government’s commitment to continuously improving our services, today (26 April 2018) the Department for Work and Pensions has launched 5 short videos to help give people an overview of the process of claiming Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

The videos offer more choice to people who may prefer to consume information about PIP through online channels, as and when they want it.

The films aim to support claimants at each stage of the PIP claim. They provide a clear and simple overview of the process – so that people understand what to expect at each step of the way and what they need to do when making a claim.

Each can be watched as a standalone film or together in sequence. So, whether someone is thinking about making a claim for PIP and wants to find out more before they decide, or if they need some more information about how long things may take and what they need to do next, the films can provide guidance.

These videos are in addition to the range of support going through the claims process, such as GOV.UK information and the PIP Enquiry phone line on 0800 121 4433.

What the videos are about
1. Is PIP for you or someone you know?

This film focuses on the steps before the claim and an overview of who might be eligible. Read more

Grant to Support Disabled People in the Workplace Rises
March 21, 2018
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Hundreds of disabled employees are to benefit from a £15,000 rise in Access to Work grants to assist them at work, following new measures introduced in Parliament on 20 March 2018.

From April 2018, people will be able to claim up to £57,200 annually to help pay for additional support that they may need in the workplace – approximately £15,000 more than the current cap of £42,100.

Access to Work provides financial support to ensure someone’s disability or health condition doesn’t hold them back at work and can cover workplace adaptations, assistive technology, transport and interpreters.

Increasing the amount people can receive annually will ensure that more disabled people, particularly from the deaf community, are able to benefit from the grant and achieve their career aspirations.

The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Esther McVey, said:

We believe that disabled people should have every opportunity to thrive in the workplace, and the tailored support of Access to Work caters to every individual’s unique needs.

By extending this grant we’re ensuring that many more disabled people can reach their career potential, which is a key part of our commitment to getting one million more disabled people in work by 2027.

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New Employment Programme Begins in England and Wales
November 30, 2017
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The government’s new Work and Health Programme to help disabled people into employment started this week in north west England and Wales.

The entire programme is expected to provide specialised support to around 245,000 people with disabilities or health conditions, and also people who have been unemployed for over 2 years.

Participants will get personal support to help them find sustained employment. The support may include:

  • identification of employment needs
  • matching skills to work that’s available
  • putting participants in touch with employers
  • managing health problems to reduce their impact on work

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Unemployment Remains at 40-Year Low
November 16, 2017
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Official figures show that unemployment has remained at 4.3%, the lowest rate since 1975.

The figures, released by the Office for National Statistics, also show that employment remains at a near record high, with 32 million people in work.

Increases in full-time and permanent work are behind the figures. In the last year the number of people on zero hours contracts has fallen by 20,000.

Minister for Employment, Damian Hinds said:

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