Cheltenham's MP, Alex Chalk, is set to host a 'Disability Confident' event to encourage local employers to take on people with disabilities.
The event, which is being organised by Mr Chalk and the Department for Work and Pensions, is part of the Government's 'Disability Confident' campaign aimed at helping employers to remove barriers, increase understanding and ensure that disabled people have the opportunities to fulfil their potential and realise their aspirations. Since the launch of the campaign in 2013 the number of disabled people in work nationally has increased by 365,000.
Employers attending the information event, which will take place from 2.30-4.30pm at St Vincent's and St George's on 2 September 2016, will give Cheltenham employers the opportunity to hear from a number of different stakeholders, including the Government's approved Access to Work providers, who provide funding and training to help disabled people re-enter the workplace, local employers who have a track record of employing disabled people and can offer an honest assessment of the benefits and challenges they faced, as well as the DWP themselves, who will be on hand to answer any other questions. The hope is that the employers will sign a pledge during the afternoon to actively encourage people with disabilities to apply for work at their company.
Speaking following the announcement of the event, Mr Chalk said ''While we have made considerable progress in removing barriers to work for disabled people, there is clearly more still be done and I am keen to ensure that Cheltenham becomes as welcoming as possible to those people with disabilities. A key part of that is ensuring there are sufficient job opportunities available to allow disabled people to live ordinary and fulfilling lives. I would strongly encourage employers who are interested in supporting this campaign to come along and get more information.''