Scheme to help people with disabilities

Wednesday 13th April 2022 7:01 am

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A scheme is being launched to help people with disabilities and long-term health conditions return to work.

Unanimously approved by Tynwald last month, the Manx Reskill Scheme is based on the Manx Restart Scheme – an employment incentive programme introduced in October 2020 for those who lost work as a result of the pandemic – and will specifically target people who have not worked due to illness for at least one year.

It was successful in placing more than 180 individuals into roles with local employers, who could claim 70% of salary and employer’s National Insurance contributions (capped at the rate of Living Wage) for up to 12 months. Now closed to new entrants, the scheme continues to benefit the community as engaged employers continue to reclaim employment costs relating to placements which are already under way, and many placements have now led to sustained employment at the end of the 12 month supported period, according to the government.

For the Manx Reskill Scheme, eligible employers will be provided with a higher level of financial support at the outset. They will be able to claim 100% of salary costs for the first 6 months, 75% for months 7-9 and 50% of costs for months 10-12 (again capped at the rate of Living Wage).

Treasury will then contract a local recruitment agency to provide initial pre-employment support and coaching to individuals, and to undertake the matching and on-boarding services. The agency will also co-ordinate ongoing support and mentoring throughout the supported employment period.

Employers may be able to access government support for any adaptations or aids required to support the successful employment, as well as free training on Mental Health and Disability awareness.

Eligible individuals will benefit from an assessment conducted by the government’s Occupational Health Service.

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