West Berkshire Council

Start date: 2018-11-12
End date: 2018-12-23
Results: 2019-03-05

Budget Proposal 2019/20: Supported Employment for People with Disabilities

Background

This is one of 14 budget proposals for 2019/20. You can view the full list online.

You can also view budget consultations from previous years.


The Supported Employment Scheme provides opportunities for people with disabilities to gain employment-related skills in a supported setting.  The lead organisation providing this service is the Community Furniture Project.

From April 2016 to March 2018, 66 people have been supported through this service.

We currently provide the Supported Employment Scheme with annual funding of £60,000.


Legislation requirements

The Care Act 2014 sets out duties relating to people with care and support needs.  This includes duties relating to a range of eligible needs and their relationship with individuals' wellbeing.  It also sets out duties relating to the prevention of future care and support needs. 

There is no specific duty to support people into employment although it is recognised that there are wellbeing benefits which can be derived from access to employment.


What are we proposing?

To reduce the annual funding to the Supported Employment Scheme from £60,000 to £45,000 (a proposed saving of £15,000 or 25%) from 1 April 2019.

We propose to re-tender for a Supported Employment Scheme with this reduced level of funding once the contract has ended on 31 March 2019.


What do we think the impact will be?

If we're able to commission the same service at a lower cost, then we expect the impact to be minimal. If we're unable to secure the same level of service, then individuals may have to wait longer to access the scheme or have to go elsewhere for support. There may also be a gap in service provision while we go through this process.

Please refer to the pdf icon Equality Impact Assessment (EqIA) Stage One [329kb] for more details.


What else have we considered in arriving at our proposal?

The council's plan is to protect some voluntary sector provision, which is considered particularly effective or critical to the community, or which supports the delivery of a statutory function. Evidence from the West Berkshire Joint Strategic Needs Assessment regarding improvements to quality of life have also been considered.

We are proposing to continue with projects that support vulnerable adults, including the visually impaired, socially isolated and those with dementia through provision of support into employment, home visits, cooking, gardening and social clubs. These continue to support key priorities within the pdf icon Council Strategy 2015-2019 [8Mb] and the district's pdf icon Health and Wellbeing Strategy [2Mb].


Why we want your views

We would like to know how this proposal might impact you and the wider community, and any views you have on how we can minimise the impact of this proposed change.

All feedback will be considered at the Executive Committee on 14 February 2019. Following this, a final decision will be made at the Full Council meeting on 5 March 2019. The recommendations and your anonymised response will be posted on this page.

Please note: Social media discussions will not be monitored/considered as a valid response. Please use the link below to take part in the consultation.

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