SWD to invite applications for ninth batch of Support Programme for Employees with Disabilities
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     The Social Welfare Department (SWD) will be inviting employers of persons with disabilities to submit applications for the ninth batch of the Support Programme for Employees with Disabilities (SPED) from tomorrow (June 15).

     To support the employment of persons with disabilities, the SWD launched the SPED in June 2013 to provide employers of persons with disabilities with a one-off subsidy for each employee with disabilities for procurement of assistive devices and/or workplace modifications. The SPED aims to assist employees with disabilities in discharging their duties in the workplace and enhance their work efficiency.

     The subsidy is basically capped at a maximum support level of $20,000 for each employee with disabilities. Starting from 2014-15, a grant of up to $40,000 may be considered for deserving cases for which the price of a single item of assistive device and its essential accessories being applied for has exceeded $20,000.

     A wide range of assistive devices and workplace modifications which cater to the special needs of employees with disabilities at the workplace will be considered. Examples include computer accessories or adaptive equipment, optical magnifying device, hearing and assistive devices, Braille products and handrails, etc.
 
     Po Leung Kuk has been commissioned to serve as the SPED Administrator. It will assist in administering and promoting the SPED, provide advisory services and follow up the progress of the subsidised programmes, prepare assessments on the applications and make recommendations to the Committee on the SPED set up by the SWD for consideration.

     Employers may apply for subsidy under the SPED through nomination of the following referring organisations:
(a) non-governmental organisations (NGOs) operating SWD-subvented vocational rehabilitation services;
(b) NGOs running training courses for persons with disabilities or persons recovering from work injuries with the funding support of the Employees Retraining Board;
(c) the Selective Placement Division of the Labour Department;
(d) the Vocational Training Council; or
(e) the SPED Administrator (Po Leung Kuk).

     The deadline for the ninth batch of applications is July 24, 2015. Employers may submit their completed application forms together with the required documents by mail or by hand to SWD through the referring organisations. No application fee is required and each applicant may submit more than one application.

     For enquiries, please contact Po Leung Kuk SPED Office by phone at 3980 9677, by email at [email protected]hk or by fax at 3980 9633.

     Details of the SPED, information notes and the application form can be found and downloaded from SWD homepage www.swd.gov.hk/en/index/site_pubsvc/page_rehab/sub_listofserv/id_sped/.

Ends/Sunday, June 14, 2015
Issued at HKT 15:00

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