Today, 2 November 2017, marks the first anniversary of the launch of the revamped Disability Confident scheme.

To celebrate this milestone Disability Confident companies, including major employer Sainsbury’s, are highlighting the benefits that disabled employees bring to their business.

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 workplace. 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.

Almost a fifth of the working age population is disabled, which represents a large proportion of the potential workforce.

Tim Fallowfield, Sainsbury’s Corporate Services Director, said:

We are delighted that 5,000 businesses have signed up to the scheme so far, but this is just the first step. We will continue to encourage employers to sign up and work with the government to give them the tools they need to recruit and retain disabled people.

Andrew, who has a mental health condition, works for Sainsbury’s in Ellesmere Port, Cheshire. Stories like Andrew’s demonstrate the wide reaching benefits of having the right job.

Andrew said:

Sainsbury’s are the first employer I have worked for where I have felt I could say anything. In my previous jobs it would be a case of get on with it; stress was considered a daily part of the job. As a Disability Confident employer, there is a clear signposted process, making it simple to reach out and simply start a conversation.

Sainsbury’s is the largest of 170 businesses in the retail sector to become Disability Confident. The voluntary, charity and social enterprise sector is leading the way with 1,233 Disability Confident organisations.

Twenty four FTSE 100 companies have already signed up to the scheme, including Diageo, ITV and BT. On the first anniversary, the minister has written to the remaining companies, reinforcing her recent challenge to them to sign up to the scheme and to encourage more influential businesses to set the standard on Disability Confident status.

As of today, all ministerial government departments have achieved Disability Confident Leader status.

Last week an expert led review into mental health in the workplace, commissioned by the government, recommended that employers adopt 6 ‘mental health core standards’ that lay the basic foundations for an approach to workplace mental health.

Disability Confident offers employers a simple first step to creating a more supportive workplace. The government’s full response will be published this autumn as part of the next steps following the Work, health and disability green paper.

Read more about Disability Confident

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The FE News Channel gives you the latest education news and updates on emerging education strategies and the #FutureofEducation and the #FutureofWork.

Providing trustworthy and positive Further Education news and views since 2003, we are a digital news channel with a mixture of written word articles, podcasts and videos. Our specialisation is providing you with a mixture of the latest education news, our stance is always positive, sector building and sharing different perspectives and views from thought leaders, to provide you with a think tank of new ideas and solutions to bring the education sector together and come up with new innovative solutions and ideas.

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In May 2020, FE News had over 120,000 unique visitors according to Google Analytics and over 200 new pieces of news content every week, from thought leadership articles, to the latest education news via written word, podcasts, video to press releases from across the sector.

We thought it would be helpful to explain how we tier our latest education news content and how you can get involved and understand how you can read the latest daily Further Education news and how we structure our FE Week of content:

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Our main features are exclusive and are thought leadership articles and blue sky thinking with experts writing peer to peer news articles about the future of education and the future of work. The focus is solution led thought leadership, sharing best practice, innovation and emerging strategy. These are often articles about the future of education and the future of work, they often then create future education news articles. We limit our main features to a maximum of 20 per week, as they are often about new concepts and new thought processes. Our main features are also exclusive articles responding to the latest education news, maybe an insight from an expert into a policy announcement or response to an education think tank report or a white paper.

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FE Voices was originally set up as a section on FE News to give a voice back to the sector. As we now have over 3,000 newsrooms and contributors, FE Voices are usually thought leadership articles, they don’t necessarily have to be exclusive, but usually are, they are slightly shorter than Main Features. FE Voices can include more mixed media with the Further Education News articles, such as embedded podcasts and videos. Our sector response articles asking for different comments and opinions to education policy announcements or responding to a report of white paper are usually held in the FE Voices section. If we have a live podcast in an evening or a radio show such as SkillsWorldLive radio show, the next morning we place the FE podcast recording in the FE Voices section.

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