Learning Disabilities, Autism and Neurodivergence Bill: consultation

Closes 21 Apr 2024


Employment can help people to feel valued and contribute to more independent living. While employment should not be seen as the only option to be a valued member of society, opportunities and choices to work are important for everyone.  

The Scottish Government is focused on supporting those furthest from the labour market to progress towards, enter, and sustain employment. We are committed to high quality, fair and inclusive work and employability support.  However, we know that many neurodivergent people and people with learning disabilities continue to face barriers to employment. 

What can the Learning Disabilities, Autism and Neurodivergence (LDAN) Bill do?

Disabled people face some of the most persistent labour market barriers, which is why we have committed to at least halve the disability employment gap by 2038. We agree that more needs to be done to support people with learning disabilities and neurodivergent people to access fair and sustainable employment, particularly in light of the available data which suggests these groups achieve some of the poorest labour market outcomes, even compared to wider disability groups.  

However, given the work that is currently ongoing, and our limitations on changing the law in this area, we are not currently proposing any legislative changes. Instead, we intend to explore the following in order to promote and encouraging more inclusive approaches: 

  • Under our Fair Work First approach, the recipients of public sector grants and contracts can be challenged in new ways to work towards meeting the Fair Work First principles. This includes taking action to create a more diverse and inclusive workplace. We can highlight to employers that it is best practice to ensure they undertake disability equality training, including more specialist training for line managers on individual impairments, such as neurodivergence and learning disabilities, where this would enable appropriate support and reasonable adjustments to be provided to staff. 
  • Training for job coaches on neurodivergence and learning disabilities in the workplace: we are taking forward the Review of Supported Employment within Scotland (2021), which recommended that work continues to support the professionalisation of the supported employment workforce, including ensuring it is well equipped to provide appropriate support to people with learning disabilities and neurodivergent people.
  • We will review the language within impairment level (employability) data that the Scottish Government collects on employability to ensure it is consistent with the language individuals and professionals use.  

Please tell us what you think.

Related information

Consultation Questions

The questions in this document refer to information contained in our consultation document and various alternative formats which can all be found here

You need only answer questions in the sections most relevant to you.

Do you agree with this approach? Please tell us why?