Tackling jobseekers mental health issues is a key priority for Shaw Trust

Shaw Trust logoMind has published the results of their survey looking at people with mental health problems who are enrolled on employment support programmes.

The survey focused on people’s experiences on the Work Programme – a Government scheme that offers personalised support for individuals who need more help looking for and staying in work.

Shaw Trust is a prime provider of the Work Programme in East London. According to the latest statistics, Shaw Trust has supported 10,170 people into sustained jobs across East London, above the national average for Work Programme referral outcomes.

The charity supports people with mental health issues at their Work Programme centres and social enterprises. Shaw Trust is committed to lifting the stigma attached to mental illness and works closely with over 12,000 employers to help bring about a culture change.

Shaw Trust is also a prime provider of 16 Work Choice contracts, and a sub-contractor in seven Work Choice contract package areas.

Work Choice is the national employment programme supporting people with disabilities, health problems or impairments whose needs cannot be met by mainstream provision.

The Trust has supported 18,000 disabled people into work.

Joel Charles, a spokesperson for Shaw Trust, said:

“Shaw Trust welcomes Mind’s survey on people with mental health problems accessing employment support schemes. We believe that mental health should be a public health priority and more work should be done to stop discrimination and prejudice in the workplace. Shaw Trust is a charity committed to supporting disabled and disadvantaged people into work. Last year we supported over 50,000 people on their journey into employment.

“To address mental health issues and a range of other barriers to work, we have launched a new service called Community Hubs to complement our Work Programme delivery. Pilot hubs have been launched in Hackney and Lewisham to support vulnerable people into work. Each hub operates with additional advisors and reduced caseload sizes. Health professionals, including a psychologist, are based at the hubs to support jobseekers contending with severe mental health issues.

“Mind has supported our view that the best way to tackle barriers to work is by maintaining a specialist employment programme, such as Work Choice, as it provides the most effective, personalised support for people with mental health problems. We also believe that Work Capability Assessments should take into account a wider range of factors, including mental health, that impact on an individual’s capacity to work. Upfront funding for jobseekers with mental health problems would help employment support providers to tailor a scheme that addresses their needs. Mind’s work shows that the third sector has a crucial role to play in carrying out employment support schemes that are sensitive to the needs of the most vulnerable people in our society.”

About Shaw Trust:

Shaw Trust is a national employment, learning and skills charity that helps people facing disadvantage into work, gain skills and take control of their futures. Over the past thirty years, the Trust has striven to combine its charitable heart with its commercial brain to provide the very best support to the people it was set up to serve.

Watch the latest Shaw Trust corporate video showcasing who we are and what we do here: www.shaw-trust.org.uk/about-us/corporate-video/. For more information, please visit the Shaw Trust website: http://www.shaw-trust.org.uk/

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