Supplementary evidence submitted by the
Papworth Trust after the publication of the Welfare Reform Green
Papworth is a Registered Charity and Company
Limited by Guarantee, which has been providing a number of services
to disabled people for over eighty years.
The Trust helps over 4,500 people each year
to achieve more independence in their lives and employs 240 staff
directly, who are supported by around 40 volunteers to deliver
its services. The organisation operates from seven centres across
the Eastern region and also delivers a number of its services
on an outreach basis in local communities. As an organisation,
Papworth is fairly unique in both the services it delivers and
the clients it supports.
Papworth provides cover the full range of social,
care and work related activities and include specialist housing
(including being a Social Landlord), residential care and employment
related services such as vocational assessment, work preparation,
vocational rehabilitation, and support in to and during employment.
Papworth works with people with physical disabilities,
learning disabilities, mental health conditions and/or acquired
disabilities. Wherever possible, Papworth cooperates with partner
organisations from the private, public and voluntary sectors in
order to offer appropriate expertise and services to its clients.
These organisations include Jobcentre Plus, Social Services, Health
Services, Legal Services Commission, educational establishments,
private employers and other voluntary sector service providers.
They can act as funding providers as well as referral or signposting
Papworth supports the aspiration of Government
to make UK society non-discriminatory, inclusive and with equality
of opportunity for all.
Papworth also support the view that paid employment
is a fundamental means of overcoming disadvantage, poverty and
In Papworth's experience many barriers still
exist for disabled people in finding, securing and sustaining
employment, and that these exist within our work culture and welfare
systems. Whilst Papworth welcomes and supports welfare to work
reform it also cautions Government on a number of issues it has
identified within the Green Paper.
These issues are summarised below and will be
given in further detail when the Trust submits its full consultation
It is the view of Papworth that much of the
reform and initiative proposed in the Green paper are aimed at
supporting the most able and ready to work client group who will
be new claimants of incapacity benefit (IB).
All research has indicated that the longer a
person remains on IB, the less likelihood there is of that person
returning to employment.
Papworth has experience through delivery of
New Deal for Disabled People (NDDP) and its Vocational Rehabilitation
Programme, that people with the most complex needs can be supported
back into employment if appropriate resource is made available.
The Trust is concerned by the lack of detail
within the Green Paper on how people with more complex support
needs will be provided the opportunity to move back into work.
(Papworth has detailed research for its Vocational
rehabilitation programme that it will make available to DWPnot
yet unless you can think of a credible way of saying unpublished
The Green Paper has not put forward proposals
for the development of permitted work within benefit reform.
In the Trust's experience permitted work is
a valuable stepping stone for many people returning to paid employment.
Restrictions on permitted work and benefit disregard should be
removed, so that work under 16 hours can be used as an effective
means of supporting people back into employment. Fully paid permitted
work could be time limited, subject to review.
Fully paid permitted work would be an essential
element in lifting benefit dependency, increasing self esteem
and underpinning the value of paid work for disabled people.
Papworth believes that the capacity and expertise
of JCP frontline staff will be overburdened by the process requirements
of the suggested reforms within the Green Paper.
Issues remain unanswered over the capability
to deliver the Work Focussed Interview process and the expertise
of JCP staff to effectively assess the needs of customers with
often complex needs.
Papworth believes that the handling of these
assessment is crucial, which is an area of significant risk within
the reforms. More engagement of specialist disability organisations
with the appropriate levels of competency to assess customer need
would minimise this risk and would ultimately provide better value
Like many organisations Papworth's experience
of the existing Pathways to Work model is one of high levels of
resource achieving current outcomes. Proposed future investment
supports the view that national rollout of the programme will
be delivered a greatly reduced level which would only be effective
for people who are closer to work, thereby further disadvantaging
customers with more complex needs.