Employment

Employment
Southwark's charities do great work to help people get into employment

 “Last year we worked with more than 220 Southwark residents with learning difficulties/disabilities and of those residents, 118 were in employment. 91 were in sustained employment of more than 1 year’s duration, 5 were placed in new employment having moved on from a previous job, and 25 were placed in new employment during the year"

Southwark has a high rate of unemployment7.8%, compared to 6.7% for London, and 6% for the UK as a whole. As of July 2015, 2.5% of Southwark’s population was claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA), compared to 1.9% for London.

Having a job has been proven to be beneficial to both an individual and to society as whole. The 2006 report “Is Work Good for Your Health and Wellbeing?” which was commissioned by the Department of Work and Pensions highlights the fact that unemployment can lead to poor general and mental health. It also asserts that those with disabilities should be (where appropriate) encouraged to enter employment (or remain in employment). For these people, working can result in better health outcomes, promote participation in society and independence, and improve quality of life and wellbeing.

Encouraging those with learning disabilities to enter the world of work also has clear economic benefit for wider society, which is not explicitly outlined in the respondent’s paragraph.

The description above states that 5 individuals had been placed in new employment, having been moved on from a previous job, and 25 were placed in new employment during the year. The fiscal and economic benefit for a workless claimant entering work can be calculated as £22,327 per individual per year (where that individual had been receiving Employment and Support Allowance or Incapacity Benefit). 

The saving for the 30 individuals referred to is therefore £669,810 per year; and this is just for those who have been described as going newly into employment. It does not take into account the value of helping individuals to stay in employment. The charity worked with 220 residents over the year, so in reality, the true saving is much, much larger.

“We helped 68 young people age 18 to 24 into paid employment or apprenticeships, plus 24 into education”

The average cost of a young person who is not engaged in employment, education or training per year is estimated to be £14,438 per year.

Therefore, we can calculate a cost saving to the public sector of £1,328,296 for the young people the charity works with, if each of them spends just one year in employment, education and training.

Additionally, 96% of employers who take on apprentices report benefits to their business – the average apprenticeship increases business productivity by £214 a week.

Encouraging those with learning disabilities to enter the world of work also has clear economic benefit for wider society, which is not explicitly outlined in the respondent’s paragraph.

"We work with anyone who has a learning difficulty or disability, they do not have to meet FACS eligibility of ‘substantial’ or ‘critical’ [need]. We feel that there is a substantial percentage of our clients who would really suffer if we were not able to work with them, and would then actually have higher needs and complicated issues that would cost more to the council…The client group that we are supporting into employment nationally have an employment rate between 5-15%. However, people with learning disabilities in Southwark have one of the best employment rates for people with learning disabilities in London and we… are the major drivers of this success due to the intensive work that we do with this client group”