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Access to Work Scheme

Penny Parker

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About the project

Equal Lives is running a project supporting people who wish to use the access to work Scheme.

The access to work scheme is run by the department of work and pensions and can provide funding to overcome barriers to starting or keeping a job, for example:

  • Transport to work
  • Support workers
  • Equipment

Many disabled people and employers have not heard of the scheme, even though it has been available for many years.

With the current emphasis on getting more disabled people into work, the high levels of unemployment amongst disabled people and the increasing number of people being found fit for work under ATOS assessments, it is vital that people know what support is available to them and their employers.

A recent Equal Lives survey showed that many of those who do use the scheme, found aspects of the application process difficult and frustrating.

‘The main problem is not knowing how to handle the process so that you get the help you want. You really need someone who is experienced in the process to show you.’

Our project has trained a team of volunteer mentors with personal experience of the access to work scheme to provide support to, and assist others through the process.

A number of workshops and information sessions are planned across Norfolk to raise awareness and encourage more use of the scheme amongst disabled people. The workshops will also let employers know about the support available to companies when they employ a disabled person.

We hope this will open up more opportunities for disabled people, and reassure employers that employing a disabled person is not always an extra financial commitment.

We are currently filming the experiences of those using the access to work scheme, to share people’s stories, but to also use as a tool to support those who wish to use the scheme now or in the future.

Please contact us if you (as an individual or an employer) would like to:

  • Have more information
  • Share your experience – either online, film, voice recorder or post
  • Train to become a mentor using your experience to assist others
  • Attend a workshop or session in your area
  • Request support from one of our mentors

Mentor scheme

The access to work scheme is run by the department of work and pensions and can provide funding to support you in starting or keeping a job, for example:

  • Transport to and from work
  • support workers
  • support workers

At Equal Lives we have a team of volunteer mentors who have used the access to work scheme to give advice and support to you. Contact the project lead for more information.

Information for employers

We are working with local employers to help them learn more about the Access to Work scheme and how it can benefit employees and their employers. If you would like us to come and speak to you please contact the project lead.

Take the survey!

We have a survey which is open and we would love for you to share your own experiences of the access to work scheme, please follow this link:

Useful Documents

Access to Work customer leaflet (263 downloads) Access to Work factsheet (205 downloads) Access to Work eligibility letter (195 downloads) Employers guide to Access to Work (200 downloads)

Case Studies

Case Study Anne (619 downloads) Case Study Brian (187 downloads) Case Study Daisy (212 downloads) Case Study David (327 downloads) Case Study Debbie (206 downloads) Case Study George (189 downloads) Case Study Graham (204 downloads) Case Study John (201 downloads) Case Study Lorraine (217 downloads) Case Study Lynda (189 downloads) Case Study Martha (194 downloads) Case Study Nigel (183 downloads) Case Study Philip (177 downloads) Case Study Rihanna (203 downloads) Case Study Robin (217 downloads) Case Study Sarah (196 downloads) Case Study Simon (197 downloads) Case Study Steven (182 downloads) Case Study Suzanne (182 downloads) Case Study Tom (196 downloads)

Picture Stories

Story One David (476 downloads) Story Two Jane (198 downloads) Story Three George (187 downloads) Toms picture story (495 downloads)

Supporting Videos