Coventry service wins reprieve until December

Coventry's TESS service has been told that funding is now secure until the end of 2015. The service had been under threat of closure due to funding restrictions. The announcement was made just one hour before a public meeting was due to discuss the closure. Leader of the city council, Ann Lucas, said she had asked finance chief Damian Gannon to identify cash which could keep the service going until the end of the year.

Coventry service under threat - updated

Coventry's award-winning supported employment service, TESS, is apparently under threat. The Council’s Place Directorate management are proposing to discontinue the flagship service for vulnerable adults and young people with learning disabilities, autism and severe and enduring mental ill health. In addition the proposals could implement post cuts at the highly successful Job Shop.

ELITE awarded grant for Merthyr social enterprise

Fifteen jobs have been created thanks to a grant awarded to Elite Supported Employment Agency. The £63,500 grant from the EU-funded South East Wales Community Economic Development programme will fund machinery and staff costs in the setting-up of ELITE Paper Solutions in Merthyr Tydfil.

Andrea Wayman, chief executive officer of ELITE, said:

£5m investment in supported internships

The Department for Education have announced that they will be allocating an additional £5m investment into supported internships. The investment will aim to enable local authorities to increase the number of providers of supported internships, increase links with local businesses and develop study programmes for all young people with SEND.

The non-ringfenced funding will be distributed between all local authorities, with a 'top slice' of £15000 allocated to each of nine regional support leads.

Greater Manchester to control health and social care budget

Greater Manchester is to be given control of the region's £6bn health and social care budget. NHS England is to hand spending decisions on regional healthcare to local politicians, clinical commissioning groups and NHS trusts. The devolved power agreement is expected to be confirmed by the Chancellor George Osborne on Friday and the plan will come into force from April 2016.

£11m programme to support London's long-term unemployed

Almost 4,000 people will be helped into employment after Government, the Mayor of London, London Councils and Central London boroughs signed off the details of an £11m scheme that will aim to help people struggling to find work.

Working Capital will run for five years and test a radical new model to support nearly 4,000 central London residents who claim Employment Support Allowance, (the main out-of-work benefit for people with long term health problems) but have left the national Work Programme after two years without finding long term employment.

Local authority SEND grant allocations

The Department for Education has announced it will invest a further £31.7 million in 2015 to 2016 to help local authorities in England continue to meet the costs of implementing the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) reforms.

Children and Families Minister, Edward Timpson, said:

DWP seeks tenders for specialist employability support

DWP has announced that is putting £13m aside to fund specialist employability support from September 2015 until 2017. The Department for Work and Pensions intends to contract for providers of Specialist Employability Support (SES) for disabled people with the greatest barriers to work. The support will be a mix of provision depending on the customer need for either short intensive support to feed into other employment programmes, or for intensive and integrated employment support to help them access sustainable employment.

Govt announces £12m for mental health employment support

The government has announced a further £12 million is to be invested in helping people with mental health conditions return to work. The £12 million investment includes £6 million from the Department for Communities and Local Government and £6 million match-funding from pilot areas.

Youth Employment Initiative funding


Four eligible areas in England will receive funding to support new and innovative youth employment programmes, as well as a further four smaller regions where youth unemployment is also high. Eligibility for the funding was based on the youth unemployment rate in 2012 in NUTS2 and NUTS3 areas. The final allocations are subject to confirmation by the European Commission, but are expected to be in the region of:

Inner London - £35.7 million
Merseyside - £22.2 million
Tees Valley & Durham - £19.8 million
West Midlands - £42.2 million
Hull - £3.7 million
Leicester - £4.1 million

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