The Scottish Union of Supported Employment
The Scottish Union of Supported Employment (SUSE) is the national representative body for supported employment providers and anyone interested in ensuring that disadvantaged people across our country have the opportunity of a working life. We bring organisations together to campaign, network, improve how we work and share our experiences. Our aim is to support people with disadvantages to find and retain paid work by increasing the availability, quality and impact of supported employment services in Scotland.
This is a critical time for our sector. In April 2018 the Scottish Government launched the Fair Start Scotland programme, which over the coming years offers the potential to expand supported employment services across Scotland. In addition, the action plan to tackle the Disability Employment Gap in Scotland (at present only 43% of disabled people are working, compared to 80% of their non-disabled peers) was launched in December 2018. This is a once in a generation opportunity for SUSE to shape the future of employment services for people with disabilities and fundamentally improve the life chances of thousands of people who have been marginalised in our communities.
SUSE started in 1995 and has played a leading role in the employability sector in Scotland most notably by working with government to develop a Supported Employment Framework for Scotland (2010), intended to ensure that providers are working to a consistent model and clients have a guarantee of a quality service.
In 2017 significant changes took place at SUSE. A new Chairperson took up post and the board decided to create a CEO role to take the organisation forward. Since then we have improved the governance of our organisation by developing a new mission statement and vision, recruited new trustees, revised our Articles of Association, developed a 3 year Strategy and Business Plan and launched a new membership offer. We have also reinvigorated SUSE as a campaigning and lobbying organisation and we have hosted a number of successful members’ events and conferences. We are a credible voice with the Scottish Government, local authorities and funders and have played a leading role in the Scottish Government’s Expert Advisory Group on the Disability Employment Gap.
We are now working to:
- Establish SUSE as a centre of excellence for supported employment and a hub for training, research, quality and workforce development.
- Campaign for more supported employment provision and better services for people with disabilities.
- Support our members to grow by piloting new approaches and bringing people together to collaborate and win new business.
The Scottish Union of Supported Employment is a democratic organisation driven by its membership.
As a company limited by guarantee, SUSE has a Board of Directors. Our board has 9 members (including a Chairperson) who are elected at our Annual General Meetings, which are usually held in March each year.
Vision: A Scotland where people with disadvantages have access to supported employment to find and retain paid work.
Mission: To increase the availability, quality and impact of supported employment services in Scotland.
Our objectives for the next 3 years:
- SUSE is an efficient, effective, and financially viable organisation.
- SUSE is recognised as the lead body for supported employment and the representative body for supported employment providers in Scotland.
- SUSE is developing the capability of our members and ability of the supported employment workforce.
- SUSE is working with our members to improve the quality of supported employment services in Scotland.
- SUSE is stimulating, initiating, facilitating and supporting new projects and services to ensure supported employment provision evolves to meet the changing needs of employees and employers.
- SUSE is working with members and others and encouraging them to work with each other, to advance supported employment provision in Scotland.