WEST consultation

WEST Consultation

**This consultation is now closed and a report on the results is being written. This will be presented to cabinet in December for their consideration.**

Results are in for the WEST consultation, please see the links below…

service-user-consultation-report-by-grapevine-1

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Warwickshire Employment Support Team (WEST) is a countywide service for people with a learning disability, Autism or Asperger’s who want to find paid work. The specialist team help people find full and part-time employment by providing:

  • expertise on disability employment and benefit issues;
  • personal profiling and job matching;
  • developing the skills people need for employment; and
  • on-going support to employees and employers.

Warwickshire Employment Support Team (WEST), like many other public services currently delivered by the local authority, has to play its part in identifying ways in which to reduce its spending.

Warwickshire County Council has been set a savings target of £92 million from 2014-2018 and, as part of the council’s financial plan, the WEST service needs to save £280,000 per year. This is the full budget for the service. In order to meet this budget reduction, WCC’s WEST service would need to close. We are therefore consulting on the impact of such a decision if it were to be implemented and seeking views on other support that may be available.

For customers who currently use the WEST service or would do so in future we will be looking for ways to make better use of other services to support customers to find a job or stay in work. These could include:

  • Greater use of the Learning Disability Wellbeing Hubs for North Warwickshire, South Warwickshire and Rugby.
  • Signposting customers to support available through Job Centre Plus.
  • Signposting customers to support available from community and voluntary sector organisations such as Scope, Mencap and Remploy.
  • For customers living in an accommodation with care setting; ensuring their commissioned support provider enables them to meet their employment outcomes.

It is important to us to know how this proposal to remove the WEST service would affect you.

To access our on-line survey please click HERE to provide feedback. 

To download an easy read version of the survey please click HERE or complete online HERE.

 If you need help with completing this or would like the survey in an alternative format please contact elainecoates@warwickshire.gov.uk

 We shall also be holding face to face consultation events for current and future WEST customers, details can be found HERE.

This consultation will be available from 1st August 2016.

This consultation will close at midnight on 30th September 2016

The results of the consultation will be included in a report to Warwickshire County Council’s Cabinet in December 2016.

If you have any additional comments relating to the proposed withdrawal of the WEST service please email elainecoates@warwickshire.gov.uk

FAQs

Why are you proposing to close WEST?

Warwickshire County Council has to make large savings. This means difficult decisions have to be made on which services we continue to run and which services are stopped or reduced. The council believes that there are other ways adults with a learning disability, autism or Asperger’s can be supported to find work and stay in work. Therefore in order to make the savings we need to make it is proposed that the service is closed.

Does WCC have to provide services such as or similar to WEST for this group of adults?

There is no statutory duty on the Council to do so. However there is a duty to ensure people have access to information and advice and be signposted to support.

How will this affect people who are currently supported by WEST?

At any one time WEST supports around 150 people. As an alternative to the Council providing this service, opportunities would be sought to link individuals to more universal services and to preserve some of the specialist skills held by WEST staff within other relevant services. All WEST customers will have an individual plan to ensure they continue to have the best possible support from other services.

How will staff be affected?

We are consulting with the Trades Unions and staff who may be affected. We anticipate there will be some redundancies caused by the closure of the service. We would seek to find redeployment opportunities wherever possible.

Appendices:

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