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The Government’s plans for achieving the BME 2020 challenge

In 2015 Prime Minister David Cameron pledged to increase the black and ethnic minority (BME) employment rate by 20% as part of his Vision 2020.

Following this pledge, in February (2016), the Moving On Up Advisory Group Chair with BTEG and Trust for London met with the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) officials to discuss the Government’s plans for achieving this target referred to as “The BME 2020 Challenge”.

According to the Minister for Employment Priti Patel, this challenge needs to be tackled in a holistic way across all Government departments and local authorities. Indeed, to DWP, it is critical to achieve full employment, help people achieve their aspirations and ensure that British businesses make the most of the talent and potential that exists in the BME communities across the United Kingdom.

To help meet “The BME 2020 Challenge”, DWP is launching new guidance for Jobcentres and local partners, developing new approaches to support BME groups and targeting a number of BME unemployment hotspots the department has identified. In addition, DWP will ensure that all national employment programmes support BME groups with suitable services.


DWP guidance for Jobcentres:

Understand your community:

  • Prevalent ethnic groups
  • Consider delivering employment outreach services

Understand your claimants:

  • Understand the barriers to employment of your BME claimants
  • Tailor support to individual needs
  • Understand the different type of racial discrimination
  • Provide English Language support

Understand your employers:

  • Tell positive messages about the business benefits of a diverse workforce
  • Encourage employers to offer mentoring and work experience opportunities
  • Challenge your employers’ recruitment processes
  • Connect employers with community partners

Understand your partners:

  • Partnering with community organisations

Bola Abisogun for Moving On Up

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