The latest figures released on 17 May show that between the first quarter of 2017 and the second quarter of this year, the number of disabled people in employment increased by 1.3 million, meaning that that goal—that manifesto commitment from the Conservative party—has been exceeded after five years.
The Government can be rightly proud of unlocking the potential of 1.3 million more disabled people, but the majority of people with disabilities or long-term health conditions will develop those while of working age. What more can the Government do to support employers with their changing workforce?
My hon. Friend has a great deal of experience and wisdom here, and he is absolutely right. It is why we are committed to supporting disabled people to remain in work through, in particular, our Access to Work and Disability Confident schemes. Access to Work in particular is a really important grant that supports the recruitment and retention of disabled people by contributing to the extra costs they can face in the workplace. I would also like the message to go out loud and clear from here that Disability Confident is critical and can help employers and employees and have disabled people’s talents included in economic growth.