Minister for Employment Chris Grayling today, 13th December, welcomed initial estimates from Work Programme providers which show twenty per cent of people referred to the Work Programme are receiving support from the voluntary sector.
Voluntary sector organisations are an integral part of the Government’s Work Programme providing specialised support to unemployed people some of whom have very complex needs.
This support can be anything from helping someone beat a substance addiction, overcome homelessness or manage a health condition.
Latest projections show over 650,000 people will be referred to the Work Programme as a whole in 2011/12.
Minister for Employment Chris Grayling said:
"It is still early days, but I am encouraged to see there are people receiving the specialist help they need from the Work Programme.
"These organisations provide a vital service helping us give people the tailored support they need to get into employment. They bring with them specialised skills and expertise to help some of the most vulnerable unemployed people find sustainable jobs.”
"The global economic situation continues to have an impact on the UK’s economy but I am confident we have the right support in place to help people through this difficult time, whatever their individual circumstances may be.
On the same day as the Minister claims that the voluntary sector are robust in the Work Programme supply chain; DWP announced the appointment of emqc Ltd as the Merlin Standard Assessment and Accreditation Service Provider. emqc Ltd has a breadth of experience of delivering assessment and accreditation services across national standards including the Matrix Standard, Committed2Equality Diversity Assured, Customer Service Excellence, LEXCEL, and SFEDI in partnership with Government Agencies and on behalf of public and private sector organisations of all sizes.
Merlin Assessments are to start in spring 2012 with Prime providers delivering the Work Programme will begin the Merlin Assessment process in the spring of 2012 which will itself offer another opportunity to gain the views of voluntary sector supply chain partners as to how they feel things are going.