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21/12/16 12:00

Support for new powers

Investment will help develop new approaches for employment services.

Around £1 million will be used to develop new ways of integrating and supporting the Scottish Government’s new devolved employment services to help disabled people and individuals at risk of long-term unemployment.

The investment through the 2017 Draft Budget, will look at ways of using new and innovative approaches to join up employability services with other key areas such as health services, and to improve the support that is available to individuals who are out of work.

From 1 April 2017, the Scottish Government will deliver devolved employment support to up to 3,300 disabled people through Work First Scotland, and help up to 1,500 people with a disability or health condition and who are at risk of long term unemployment through Work Able Scotland. 

A 12 month transitional arrangement will come ahead of a full Scottish programme of support from April 2018 which will be flexible, tailored and responsive to the needs of disabled people and those at risk of long term unemployment. 

Minister for Employability and Training Jamie Hepburn announced details of the funding during a visit to see employability projects at Remploy in Edinburgh. Remploy together with the Shaw Trust and Momentum Scotland, will deliver the Work First Scotland programme.

He said:

“This £1 million funding will help develop our approach to join up support for disabled people and those at risk of long-term unemployment and allow us to better integrate and align our new devolved employment services.

“With our new powers, we have an opportunity to do things differently and create new services that generate greater opportunities for the people of Scotland.

“We are currently exploring ways of  joining up devolved employment services with other key areas like health and justice.  Making these important links across Government is vital and will help us to enhance employment opportunities for people.

“This funding forms part of the £20 million we are investing in the first year of devolved services which will help us provide continuity in support for those who are unemployed with significant barriers to work, while building towards a Scottish programme of support from April 2018.”