As the new government begins its work, delegates at this conference will examine latest thinking on next steps for policy and organisational practice on what needs to be done to encourage more disabled people into work - and to support and retain disabled employees.
Issues for discussion include:
- Specific measures to reduce barriers - such as statutory sick pay reform, help for SME employers, and a cross-government approach to disability policy formulation;
- Inclusive recruitment, and strategies for staff retention - such as workplace adjustments and support in cases when workers become disabled;
- Concerns about policy targets encouraging short-term employment, and a lack of evidence to support policy choices; and
- The effectiveness of programmes such as Disability Confident and Access to Work.
There will be keynote addresses from:
- Justin Tomlinson MP, Minister of State for Disabled People, Health and Work, Department for Work and Pensions; and
- Neil Heslop, Chief Executive Officer, Leonard Cheshire.
Further confirmed speakers include: Sigrid Fisher, Employers Network for Equality & Inclusion; Esi Hardy, Celebrating Disability; Abigail Hirshman, Acas; Professor Kim Hoque, University of Warwick; Kamran Mallick, Disability Rights UK; Sonali Parekh, Federation of Small Businesses and Gareth Parry, Remploy.
- Government policy on work and disability - providing greater workplace support for disabled employees;
- Evaluating policy and progress made towards reaching government targets - latest thinking on what more needs to be done to increase the number of disabled people in work;
- Reimagining the workplace - overcoming barriers to progression of disabled people in work;
- Responsibilities and actions - what needs to be done to move forward in increasing opportunities for disabled people in work;
- The next steps for policy development and implementation; and
- Case studies: successfully creating inclusive workplace cultures - normalising disability, communicating with and retaining disabled employees, and ensuring routes to progression.
Engagement with policy officials at this conference
This Westminster Business Forum conference has attracted strong interest from policymakers. It will be an opportunity for stakeholders to engage with officials who have reserved places representing: BEIS; Cabinet Office; Crown Prosecution Service; DfE; DHSC; DIT; DWP; Education and Skills Funding Agency; FCO; Government Equalities Office; Government Legal Department; HMRC; Home Office; HSE; MoD; MoJ; NAO and Ofcom.
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