It was a pleasure to join businesses based across the city at Westminster’s Disability Confident event, coordinated by our local team from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). At a time of heightened party-political tension, it was great to be championing this cause alongside my fellow Westminster MP, Karen Buck, with whom I have worked across the party divide for my 18 years in Parliament on a variety of pan-Westminster issues.
Disability Confident is a DWP initiative aimed at employers, both large and small, that offers training and, indeed, the confidence to recruit and retain disabled people, or those with long-term physical or mental health conditions. The scheme allows businesses to make the most of disabled people's talents by creating inclusive workplace environments, removing barriers and ensuring that they have the opportunities to reach their potential and fulfil their aspirations.
Raising awareness is vital to increasing the public understanding of disabilities and challenging the negative, often misconceived, attitudes toward it. Many organisations are already creating inclusive workplaces and we want this to become normal practice for all employers. Sustainable change will require society-wide action, including efforts from Government, employers, and disabled people themselves. With initiatives such as Disability Confident, I feel we are certainly on the right path to achieving this goal.
If you would like to know more about Disability Confident, or to get your business involved and become Disability Confident, please follow this link: https://disabilityconfident.campaign.gov.uk/