I am very pleased by the First Minister of Scotland’s announcement that one million pounds of new funding has been allocated to support employers in the recruitment of people with disabilities. One in five Scots are disabled and Nicola Sturgeon has recognised the lack of support they receive and reacted immediately.
The funding will help those hiring in smaller businesses receive adequate support, advice and equipment, when recruiting people with disabilities. Like the government, we hope this will help provide more access to work experience, internships and apprenticeships to help people gain necessary skills and career starts.
The British Polio Fellowship recognised the importance of equipping those disabled by Polio with the skills necessary to successfully enter mainstream employment, with the development of a training centre and hostel in Jesmond, Newcastle. The success of this venture proved 50 years ago that disability need be no bar to employment, if those who had Polio and now live with Post Polio Syndrome (PPS) are given the chance to prove it.
The training centre closed as our ideas went mainstream but we now need to see these Scottish initiatives south of the border. Full employment with equal pay is much more than a job – it gives people dignity and self-respect.
National Chairman, The British Polio Fellowshi