Return To Work / Partnership With Employers Working Group

Online (Zoom) 18 April, 15.00-17.00 CEST

EPR in 2023 starts the Working Group Return to Work/Partnership with Employers. The WG has been set up to refocus EPR’s work on services and tools/instruments by our members targeted to support employers, to continue earlier work on return-to-work programmes and to take up, where relevant, activities done in the last years in the framework of the dedicated Disability Management Working Group. In 2022 one thematic focus was on working with employers who aim to support their staff facing the impacts of an accident or chronic disease and their return to work. The second aspect planned was exchanging on tools to support employers with effectively rolling out and implementing disability management in their companies.

The EPR Catalogue of Activities 2023 provides summary information on the new Working Group Return to Work/Partnership with Employers:

  • 2 online meetings (…) discussing barriers, success factors & good practices for return-to-work programmes &, job retention programmes; Invitation of external experts and regulators from the relevant fields;
  • Elaboration of a practice-oriented toolkit for partnerships with employers, including the business case for disability management, drawing from 2019 toolkit – open session for sharing of experience with all interested members;
  • Feeding into European Disability Strategy Employment Package Initiatives “securing vocational rehabilitation schemes” and ensuring reasonable accommodation at work;
  • Feeding into the work of the Inclusive Labour Market Alliance (ILMA) on reasonable accommodation.

This meeting will discuss the revision of the toolkit and discuss input into key Employment Package initiatives, with a focus on reasonable accommodation.

The meeting is for EPR members only.

Participants are asked to fill in the registration form by 14 April 12:00 CEST at the latest.

The draft agenda can be found below.

Dealing more specifically with return-to-work programmes, EPR in 2020 published the study From Care to Employment: A short study on programmes supporting return-to-work focusing on disabilities programmes, services, projects that support clients from illness or the acquisition of a disability into labour market inclusion. EPR’s Public Affairs Event 2020 served to present and discuss those practices and policies supporting the transition from care to employment. On 7 March 2019, EPR, Rehabilitation International and the Belgian Institute for Health and Disability Insurance had organised an event on socio-professional rehabilitation, with presentation of good practices and research from inside and outside of the workplace.

Partnership with employers: Looking at the second aspect covered by the new Working Group, VET providers also have a crucial role to develop services that ensure inclusion and promote participation of people with disabilities in VET. By working closely with employers and taking into account trainees’ capacities, VET providers can develop services – e.g., by means of supported employment or disability management – to progress more people with disabilities into the mainstream labour market. In 2018 EPR elaborated a toolkit on partnership with employers. This work was based on the insight that it is essential for social service providers to build and deepen partnerships with employers when working towards a more inclusive labour greater and to improve the success in the transition of PWD to the mainstream labour market. Another motivation was that employers will gain a better understanding of disabilities and change their mindset the more they employ persons with disabilities and the more this is facilitated by specialised support services for and with employers. On 9 November 2019 EPR had organised a meeting for mutual learning and the identification of good practices and success factors to further build EPR’s online toolkit on partnerships with employers. Mutual learning events had been organised in the years before with EPR members in Germany and Spain.

Information details

Registration form Programme file

Contact person

Mathias Maucher