New government support package to help more disabled people into work.
- New package of support to help thousands of disabled people into work as government builds back fairer.
- 15 Jobcentre Plus sites to trial framework to become more autism-friendly.
- 26,000 work coaches are undergoing accessibility training to improve job centre services for disabled people.
Minister for Disabled People, Chloe Smith, has today announced that 15 Jobcentre Plus sites will be testing an autism framework, designed with the National Autistic Society (NAS), to transform the service available to jobseekers on the autism spectrum. The framework pilot will aim to help people with autism find, retain and progress in fulfilling jobs.
This comes as 26,000 work coaches in jobcentres across the country are undergoing specialist accessibility training, delivered in partnership with Microsoft, in a further effort to help more disabled jobseekers secure employment.
The work coaches will look at how they can support disabled jobseekers with tools including immersive readers, magnifiers and automated captions, which will not only improve their daily work but will also help with the completion of job applications and interviews.
One in 100 people are autistic and there are around 700,000 autistic people in the UK, according to the National Autistic Society. Not all autistic people will be able to work, but the charity’s research found that the vast majority want to.
Working age autistic people are often locked out of employment due to a lack of understanding and knowledge from employers and colleagues, and anxiety-inducing environments that can be distressing. It is hoped that the framework will help to break down these barriers and see more autistic people in jobs they love.