More than 670 public sector organisations including all government departments are now signed up to Disability Confident, a scheme launched one year ago to help employers recruit, develop and retain disabled people.
The initiative, developed by the Department for Work and Pensions alongside leading employers and disabled people’s representatives, aims to challenge attitudes and remove barriers in the workplace for disabled people, who make up nearly a fifth of the working age population.
All ministerial departments have now passed level three of the Disability Confident scheme, meaning the actions they have taken to ensure they actively attract and provide opportunities for disabled people, and remove any barriers to their progression, have been independently validated.
Level two involves a self-assessment designed to enable employers to focus on what they are doing to create a more supportive workplace for disabled people and what additional steps they may need to take.
The largest proportion of organisations to sign up to the scheme, at 1,233, are from the voluntary, charity and social enterprise sector, followed by 772 from education and teaching. There are 672 organisations signed up from the administration, office and public sector, and 508 from health.
Commenting on the scheme’s one-year anniversary, minister for disabled people, health and work, Penny Mordaunt, said: “Disability Confident status sends a powerful message to potential employees that they will get the support they need to thrive in the work place.
“One year on from the launch of the scheme, we’re already helping more than 5,000 companies to create a more inclusive workforce.
“By demonstrating the benefits these employers have seen, simply by recognising disabled people for their skills and talents, we can help transform attitudes among businesses across the country.”
Last week a government-commissioned review of mental health and employers was published with the civil service was one of the first organisations to agree to implement a package of measures that support employees and help promote good workplace mental health.