Wednesday, 13 February 2019

Deaf to benefit by increased A2W money...

Department for Work and Pensions image
Well those reliant on BSL will....

Announced by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Sarah Newton MP on the 11th of February, disabled employees will be able to claim almost £60,000 a year to aid them at work. From the 1st of April 2019, people will be able to claim up to £59,200 annually to help pay for additional support that they may need in the workplace through the Government’s Access to Work scheme. 

This can include workplace adaptations, assistive technology, transport and interpreters. Prioritising disability in the workplace has gained considerable momentum in the media recently, as a recent Wildgoose survey highlighted that employees feel as though disability inclusion is most important at work. It comes after the government increased the cap by almost a third last year. Now, more people will be able to benefit, especially those from the deaf community who can get BSL interpreters through the scheme. 

Access to Work provides financial support to ensure someone’s disability or health condition doesn’t hinder them in the workplace and, last year, more than 27,000 people received support. This included adjustable desks, special IT equipment and voice-recognition software. The Minister for Disabled People, Health and Work, Sarah Newton, commented: “Access to Work provides tailored support to thousands across the country, ensuring a disability or health condition is not a barrier to achieve someone’s career aspirations. 

“By extending this grant even more people can benefit from this personalised scheme, and more disabled people can thrive in the workplace.”

Live Music: UK Venues to provide ear plugs on demand?

Hear hear!: Pub operators agree that earplugs should be more readily available at the UK's live entertainment venues
If only a ban on phones existed too!

Landlords in the seaside town of Weymouth, Dorset, have received a letter from the local council asking them to carry out a risk assessment on noise levels. If bar staff are frequently exposed to high noise levels, publicans have been advised that they should make "ear defenders" available to prevent employees from going deaf. 

If licensees do not observe the warning they could leave themselves open to future legal action by their staff, they have been warned. Some landlords described the warning as another example of "nanny state interference", and further bureaucracy that had to be overcome. They also expressed concern that staff would not be able to hear which drinks customers were ordering if they had to wear ear plugs. Mark South, landlord of the Cove House Inn on Chesil Beach, the setting for Ian McEwan's best-selling novel, said he was visited by a licensing officer on April 1. 

"When I mentioned it to the staff afterwards they thought it was an April Fools Day joke," he said. He added: "The risk assessment equates how often you have live music, the rotation of bar staff, and how often they are exposed to the noise. 

Kids acting up?

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