The government has confirmed the closure of 27 Remploy factories, arguing the factories can no longer be subsidised.

Phil Davies, national officer of the GMB union, told the Guardian that “​To close these factories that employ disabled people in the present economic climate is a sentence to life of unemployment and poverty.”​ He confirmed the strikes planned for 19 and 26 July will still go ahead.

As well as the closure of 27 factories, Maria Miller, minister for disabled people, also announced a further consultation on the future of another 9 Remploy factories. She told the House of Commons

“​We are doing everything we can to ensure that Remploy workers will receive a comprehensive package of support and guidance to make the transition from government-funded sheltered employment to mainstream jobs.”​

In its report on the closures the Guardian refers to a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) spokesperson as saying

“​All disabled Remploy staff affected by the change will be guaranteed a package of tailored support to help with the transition;​ £​8m is available for this support which includes a personal case worker with one-on-one sessions and access to a personal budget.”​

The Guardian notes that government policy follows on from a report by Liz Sayce, chief executive of Disability Rights UK which recommended that funding focus on support for individuals rather than subsidies for factory businesses.

The Guardian report can be found here


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