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Access to work (allegedly): If you are also wondering why a group of people apparently having breakfast symbolises access to work for the disabled, you're well on the way to the right level of scepticism about this scheme.

Access to work (allegedly): If you are also wondering why a group of people apparently having breakfast symbolises access to work for the disabled, you’re well on the way to the right level of scepticism about this scheme.

The government is launching a new scheme for the disabled, saying those on traineeships, supported internships, work trials and work academies are to get “additional help” through the Access to Work programme.

After all the persecution of recent years, is it wrong of me to look askance at this?

Here’s the press release; what do YOU think?

“Disabled people will get more support to gain the skills and experience they need to get a job under changes to the government’s specialist disability employment scheme announced today (16 July 2013).

“Disabled people on traineeships, supported internships, work trials and work academies will for the first time get additional help through the Access to Work scheme – which provides funding towards the extra costs disabled people face in work, such as travel costs, specially adapted equipment or support workers.

“Minister for Disabled People Esther McVey said: ‘Young disabled people tell me how difficult it can be to get a job without experience – and they want the same choice of training opportunities as everyone else to help them into work.

“‘We’re opening up Access to Work to do just that – so that more young disabled people can get a foothold in the jobs market, get their careers on track and achieve their full potential.’

Recent changes also mean that businesses with up to 49 employees will save up to £2,300 per employee who uses the fund by no longer paying a contribution towards the extra costs faced by disabled people in work.

“Disabled jobseekers who want to set up their own business through the New Enterprise Allowance are also eligible for Access to Work funding. Access to Work has previously been called ‘the government’s best kept secret’ so to raise awareness of the changes, the government will continue its marketing campaign – targeted at young disabled people and people with mental health conditions.

“Last year the programme helped 30,000 disabled people keep or get employment. Research also shows that around half (45 per cent) of Access to Work customers would be out of work if they did not receive support through the scheme.”

The last paragraph should be ignored because it is a DWP statistic. Even if it was right when it left the statisticians, we cannot guarantee that there hasn’t been interference for politically-motivated purposes.