Apprenticeship providers helping disabled people to fulfil their potential

Posted on by karen.smith

English | Cymraeg

Work-based learning providers are committed to supporting disabled people to fulfil their potential in the workplace by becoming apprentices, the Disability Inclusion Wales Conference was told.

head shot of Lisa Mytton

Lisa Mytton, NTFW Strategic Director

Lisa Mytton, strategic director for the National Training Federation for Wales, which represents work-based learning providers across the country, outlined the work its members are doing to help disabled people find employment through apprenticeships.

“The Welsh Government has set an ambitious target of 125,000 new apprenticeships during its current term,” she said. “To achieve this target, it recognises the need to encourage and enable many more high-quality, disabled candidates to apply for and start apprenticeships.

“As a federation we are committed to doing all we can to help people with disabilities find apprenticeship opportunities. Helping people overcome barriers to finding an apprenticeship is central to our work.

“This is echoed by Welsh Government’s Employability Plan and their vision for a fairer and more equal Wales where we need to work together to ensure nobody is left behind or held back.

“Evidence shows that disabled people usually have very positive experiences of apprenticeships. Together we need to do more to encourage people with disabilities to become an apprentice and employers to gain the knowledge to recruit them.”

She revealed that, currently a low percentage of apprenticeships in Wales are taken up by disabled people, highlighting that employers are missing out on a valuable skills base. Disabled people are 30% less likely to be in employment.

Lisa highlighted the Welsh Government’s Employer Incentive Scheme, which is available until March 2023, as an ideal way to encourage employers to experience the benefits of recruiting talented people with disabilities.

“Employers are beginning to understand that it’s important to give everyone a fair and equal chance,” she added. “They are also seeing that they can choose from a wider pool of talent.

“Almost all apprenticeships can be made accessible and being disabled should not restrict peoples’ job choices.”

She encouraged people with disabilities or learning difficulties, who are interested in an apprenticeship, to seek help and support from training providers. “You don’t have to accept the word ‘disability’ as a label, but it can be used as a way to get support,” she added.

Lisa ended her address by highlighting 10 reasons why employers ought to consider employing a disabled person, including creating a diverse, creative and loyal workforce with better staff retention and reduced recruitment costs.

Apprenticeships for Disabled People

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