Westminster Employment Forum

For booking-related queries or information on speaking please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk, or contact us: +44 (0)1344 864796.

Priorities for supporting inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace

Morning, Friday, 1st December 2023

This conference will examine priorities to support the inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace.

It will be an opportunity to discuss key issues following the Chancellor’s spring budget announcements, including:

  • the Transforming Support: Health and Disability White Paper - with proposed change to fit to work tests
  • the Back to work Budget - targeting parents, over 50s, disabled people and their careers to fill labour shortages in the UK

The conference will bring stakeholders together with policymakers to assess priorities in ensuring that both businesses and individuals have the resources, knowledge and opportunities to create an inclusive and safe work environment, where disabled people are able to succeed in fulfilling careers.

Sessions will examine opportunities to support the recruitment, retention and return of employees with disabilities, and discuss ways to reduce barriers into employment.

Delegates will also look at lessons learned from the National Disability Strategy, and how the Disability Action Plan can be taken forward following its publication in July.

We are pleased to be able to include keynote sessions with: Eleanor Gall, Policy Manager, Disability and Ethnicity, Equality and Human Rights Commission; Rick Brunt, Director, Engagement and Policy Division, HSE; and Mark Hodgkinson, Chief Executive, Scope.

Overall, areas for discussion include:

  • policy:
    • assessing proposed government reforms to benefits and work assessments - alternative options for policy
    • implementation of key measures in the new Disability Action Plan - opportunities for representation in decision-making processes
  • workplace support and priorities for employers:
    • strategies for employers for improving inclusivity - support for SMEs - flexible recruitment programmes
    • best practice for retention of staff with disabilities - supporting sickness-related absences and return to work
  • reducing barriers for disabled people: understanding different conditions - innovation in accessibility - the impact of new flexible working reforms
  • addressing employment inequalities:
    • creating opportunities for disabled people to progress into leadership positions
    • tackling the concerns surrounding digital accessibility and the disability pay gap

The conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who are due to attend from the Department for the Economy, NI; Department of Public Expenditure, NDPD and Reform, ROI; Department of Social Protection, ROI; DfT; DHSC; DWP; HMPPS; HMRC; Home Office; HSE; and the Welsh Government.

Keynote Speakers

Mark Hodgkinson

Chief Executive, Scope

Rick Brunt

Director, Engagement and Policy Division, Health and Safety Executive

Keynote Speakers

Mark Hodgkinson

Chief Executive, Scope

Eleanor Gall

Policy Manager, Disability and Ethnicity, Equality and Human Rights Commission

Rick Brunt

Director, Engagement and Policy Division, Health and Safety Executive


Sabina Kosek

Disability Employment Advisor, Department for Work and Pensions

Amy Froggatt

National Disability Staff Network Lead, HM Prison and Probation Service


Rick Burgess

Outreach and Panel Development Lead, Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People

Shani Dhanda

Disability Inclusion & Accessibility Specialist, Social Entrepreneur and Broadcaster

Cristian Brownlee

Chief Executive Officer, Adapt Ability

Mark Russell

Inclusion, Diversity and Social Equality Manager, KPMG

Hannah Nicholls-Harrison

Policy Manager, Royal Mencap Society

Angela Matthews

Head of Policy and Research, Disability Business Forum

Fiona Martin

Director and Head of Employment Law, Martin Searle Solicitors

Marnie Samuels

Recruitment Manager, ATW Solutions

David Dent MBE

Executive Director, Parexel