To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, what outreach work is being carried out to encourage people with special educational needs and disabilities to become an apprentice in the House of Commons.
Throughout the tender process for new training providers, diversity was a key element and continues to be a strong focus for the apprenticeship programmes. We work closely with both our providers and the House of Commons recruitment team to ensure vacancies are published to as broad an audience as possible.
We are working alongside Amazing Apprenticeships who work with over 3,500 schools and colleges nationally to reach those who may not instantly think the House of Commons is for them by creating a short film which will tour schools this year.
We work with Newham College, which is based in one of the most diverse boroughs in London. The College works extensively with parents and local community groups. Where we are not seeing diverse pools of candidates we are continually reviewing where we are advertising and engaging with potential applicants to aim to reach these candidates and improve our approach.
A female apprentice ambassador has been appointed. She will be speaking at school events across London about her experience as an apprentice at the House of Commons and career with the House since. We are also working with our providers and in-House recruitment team to continue their work of female only recruitment and information sessions to encourage women to feel more comfortable about attending these sessions to find out more.
The House will also be represented at an event for teachers and careers advisors to engage them with the work of Parliament and the opportunities for their students.
Our work with Amazing Apprenticeships will be shown across Special Education Need schools as well as schools with a high proportion of students with a disability.