Over 60 Businesses Attend First Inclusive Employment Conference

Worcestershire businesses are pledging to become more disability confident following the county’s first ever Inclusive Employment Conference.

The Worcestershire INclusive Employment Conference is a joint series of events between Worcestershire County Council and the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (WLEP). The first one was held on Thursday 30 March at Worcestershire County Cricket Club.

Attendees gained tips and best practices on how to become more inclusive from local and national speakers, with the focus of the inaugural event on how disability and health challenges can affect Worcestershire residents’ employability.

The Inclusive Conference also saw Worcestershire County Council reaffirm its pledge to provide Supported Internships and pledged to double that commitment as an employer, providing employment opportunities for at least 90 people under the Supported Internship programme by 2025.

Judy Gibbs, Head of Service for Skills at Worcestershire County Council, said: “I’m personally very excited about the launch of this initiative between the County Council and the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, looking at how we support our employers and their employees within the county and to ensure that Worcestershire is a connected, creative, dynamic economy for all.

I encourage all Worcestershire business leaders to think differently about disability and to act on how they can improve, recruit, retain and develop individuals within their workforce who have health challenges and disabilities. Worcestershire County Council is keen to see more employers offering opportunities through supported internships, we have pledged to double the number of places we offer for young people in supported internships across the county with our partners by 2025.”

Gary Woodman, Chief Executive of the Worcestershire Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “It was fantastic to attend the inaugural event and promote how all organisations can be more inclusive. I would encourage all Worcestershire employers to find out more about inclusive hiring practices so that not only can their organisation grow, but Worcestershire benefits as a whole.

“If you’re a Worcestershire business who would like to find out more about Inclusive hiring, speak with the Worcestershire Growth Hub team.”

To find out more about INclusive Worcestershire and the support available for businesses, please visit the Inclusive Employment Support pages of the Worcestershire Growth Hub website.