The Down’s Syndrome All-Party Parliamentary Group (DS APPG) hosted a presentation of the WorkFit project at the House of Commons on 5 December. Veronica Mulenga (Employment Development officer), Brown’s Hairdressing, an active employer in the project and Kate Powell, editor of Down2Earth Magazine, gave presentations on the project structure, employer and employee perspectives.
Veronica outlined the project’s successes as well as the challenges that arise when making employment a reality for people with Down’s syndrome. These included encouraging Further Education colleges to raise aspirations and provide real work experience opportunities for students to prepare them for work, as well as involving Disability Employment Advisers at an earlier stage. Dr Hywel Francis MP agreed to contact the Co-Chairman, All-Party Parliamentary Group for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning, with a view to arranging a joint meeting.
Chris Evans, PPS to Shadow Environment Secretary and MP for Islwyn invited Kate to write a column for his local newsletter, and also offered to write about the WorkFit project.
Mr Sharma, MP for Ealing and Southall and Chair of the DS APPG offered to send WorkFit project details to all MPs and Lords and invited them to join the APPG group. MPs present were asked to encourage other MPs to promote the project with their local employers.
The presentation was also attended by The Rt Hon Anne McGuire, Shadow Disabilities Minister.