If you keep doing the same thing you will keep getting the same result. These policies have been tried for eight years now and failed and failed. They will fail again.
Theresa May has announced new initiatives to get a million sick and disabled people into work:
Theresa May has described the aspiration to enable one million sick and disabled people in to work, but Pat’s Petition has noticed a road block in the way.
We acknowledge the progress that has already been made in helping sick and disabled people in to work, but highlight that this is limited to people who can compete in the open labour market using ‘reasonable adjustments’ made by the employer. But many sick and disabled people will tell you that employers say their requested adjustments are ‘unreasonable’, and that they are then excluded from employment.
We question how many employers will make sufficient adjustments to employ one million more people. And suspect, with the current system in place, this initiative by Theresa May will fail. And we also question what happens to the people who can’t make the one million? Will they be subject to sanctions for not being able to meet employers’ requirements?
We ask, why limit help to people who only need reasonable adjustments? Will Theresa May extend the programme to people who need more help? People who need quotas or subsidies or sheltered working. Disability Confident will do nothing to help these people.
This problem has been with us through out the Welfare Reforms: campaigning by one group of sick and disabled people, who are able to work but who are disabled by society’s barriers, is seen in conflict with campaigning by another group, who want to protect the safety net of support they feel protects them. These conflicts are wide-ranging:
Let’s try and get past this conflict, agree that one size does not fit all, and campaign for all sick and disabled people.
If we extend provision to people who need quotas, subsidies or sheltered working there may be some hope of enabling another million sick and disabled people into work. But this needs to stand alongside the removal of sanctions that penalise sick and disabled people who cannot meet the requirements of employers.