Open Doors Scotland is a consortium of specialist Third Sector or Voluntary Sector employment providers, formed in 2013 to promote wider access to employment for people who have disabilities. It consists of ENABLE Scotland, RNIB Scotland, Scottish Association for Mental Health, Action on Hearing Loss Scotland, The Lennox Partnership and Capability Scotland.
This partnership is the first of it’s kind in Scotland – employability organisations with similar principals, values and services working together to meet a common goal. Our first piece of partnership work was the delivery of Employer Recruitment Incentives (ERI) for Targeted Young People - specifically young people aged 16-24 who have a disability. This Skills Development Scotland programme was won through a joint competitive tendering process and delivered between January 2014 and June 2015. Using the ERI as a platform to promote the benefits of employing young disabled people, Open Doors partners engaged hundreds of potential employers across Scotland. Not only were we able to offer a financial incentive of £1500, but also specialist support for both their business and their new employee. During that 18 months, 237 different employers in 28 local authorities agreed to use the ERI to support their recruitment locally. 92% of these businesses were small-to-medium enterprises who would not normally have had resource to commit to making their recruitment and training procedures accessible. With the support of Open Doors Scotland, 440 young people entered employment, many for the first time.
Scotland's Employer Recruitment Incentive
From the 1st of July 2015 until 31st March 2016, the Scottish Government (SG) is funding Scotland's Employer Recruitment Incentive (SERI), which will deliver the SG's commitment to target support at unemployed young people with additional barriers to enable them to obtain and remain in sustainable employment (including MAs); and to encourage and support micro and small businesses to recruit and sustain young MAs into their work place. SERI is delivered via Scotland's 32 Local Authorities.
A package of additional in-work support is also being funded by Scottish Government to complement and enhance SERI. This commissioned support will be provided by specialist Third Sector organisations and will offer tailored support for a targeted group of young people who:
Open Doors - In-work Support for Targeted Young People
The package of in-work support is available from 1st July 2015 until 31st March 2016, which is consistent with the period covered by SERI, and has been contracted out by Skills Development Scotland for delivery by an expanded 'Open Doors' consortium. The 'Open Doors' consortium is made up of a partnership of Third Sector organisations and includes ENABLE Scotland (acting as lead), Royal National Institute of Blind People; Action on Hearing Loss Scotland; the Lennox Partnership; Scottish Association for Mental Health; Capability Scotland; Barnardos; Action for Children; Carers Trust; Workers Educational Association and Cornerstone.