13 August 2014
Partnership to improve access to Modern
Apprenticeships for disabled people
A new partnership project is being launched to increase the
number of young disabled people entering Modern
Skills Development Scotland - the national skills body that
manages the Modern Apprenticeship programme - is working with
Barnardo's and Remploy on the project.
Modern Apprenticeships are jobs with work-based learning which
provide industry recognised qualifications.
Of the 25,000 new Modern Apprenticeships in Scotland each year,
less than one per cent has declared a disability.
The recent Commission for Developing Scotland's Young Work
Workforce set out improving access to Modern Apprenticeships as a
Angela Constance, Cabinet Secretary for Training Youth and
Women's Employment, said: "The Modern Apprenticeship programme
supports young people with training that helps them develop while
"The Scottish Government recognises the value of the programme
and that is why we have committed to providing 30,000 Modern
Apprenticeship starts each year by 2020.
"However, we are aware that those with a disability can often
find themselves cut off from the labour market and the Commission
for Developing Scotland's Young Workforce highlighted the
importance of assisting disabled young people to access training
opportunities such as the Modern Apprenticeship programme.
"This project will help to ensure disabled young people have
equal access to Modern Apprenticeships and the chance to make a
positive contribution to Scottish businesses and help grow our
Ms Constance announced the project during a visit to Remploy's
offices in Edinburgh.
Ms Constance met 15-year-old Ronan Laurie who has been supported
by Remploy through the employability fund and is completing his
Certificate of Work Readiness with Edinburgh-based decorating firm
Skills Development Scotland Head of National Training Programmes
Development, Karen Murray, said: "We know that some groups in
society - including people with disabilities - are
under-represented in the Modern Apprenticeship programme.
"We want to work with partners and employers to make sure that
everyone with different skills sets has the same access to modern
apprenticeships and the benefits they provide.
"This project with Barnardo's and Remploy will see those
organisations using their experience of working with employers and
disabled people to increase Modern Apprenticeship opportunities for
people with disabilities.
"Employers are potentially missing out on a massive pool of
talented people if they are not recruiting disabled people - so one
of the challenges is to support employers to see the benefits of a
"Another challenge is to make sure everyone has the same
awareness of and access to Modern Apprenticeships."
As part of the new approach Barnardo's will support 40 young
disabled people onto Employability Fund and 20 into Modern
Remploy will work with 60 employers and training providers to
support 55 young disabled people onto Employability Fund or Modern
Remploy, Regional Partner Development Manager, Margaret Barton,
said: "We are delighted to be a partner to improve access to Modern
Apprenticeships for people with disabilities.
"Remploy has a fundamental belief that every disabled person
can, with appropriate support and specialist advice, secure
"Programmes like Skills Development Scotland's Employability
Fund and Modern Apprenticeship programmes are crucial to helping
disabled young people take their first steps towards sustainable
Barnardo's Director for Scotland, Martin Crewe, said: "We are
delighted to help deliver this new initiative.
"Getting into employment is a challenge for many young people
but those with disabilities face additional hurdles. With the right
support these young people can develop their skills and contribute
to the economic success of Scotland."
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT:
External Communications - Modern Apprenticeships
Tel: 0141 285 6004