The minister’s responsibilities include:
- cross-government disability issues
- disability employment and halving the disability employment gap, including Disability Confident, Work Choice, Access to Work, the Work and Health Programme and mental health in the workplace
- support for those at risk of falling out of work, including Fit for Work and Statutory Sick Pay
- financial support for sick and disabled claimants, including within:
- Universal Credit
- Disability Living Allowance
- Personal Independence Payment
- Employment and Support Allowance
- Attendance Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- Carer’s Allowance
- specific welfare and health-related issues, including the Mesothelioma Payment Scheme, Motability and oversight of the Health and Safety Executive
Current role holder: Penny Mordaunt MP
Penny Mordaunt was appointed Minister of State for Department for Work and Pensions on 15 July 2016. She was elected Conservative MP for Portsmouth North in 2010.
She was educated at Oaklands RC Comprehensive School and at Reading University where she read Philosophy.
Penny worked for Conservative Central Office, becoming Head of Broadcasting under William Hague. In 2000 she served as Head of Foreign Press for George W. Bush’s presidential election campaign.
In Parliament, Penny served on the European Scrutiny Committee, Defence Select Committee, and as chairman of the APPGs for Life Science and for Ageing and Older People. In autumn 2013 she was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Secretary of State for Defence, Rt Hon. Philip Hammond MP. She served as Minister of State for the Armed Forces from May 2015 until July 2016.
Career outside politics
Penny worked as an aid worker in post-revolutionary Romania before and during university. She was director of communications at Kensington & Chelsea Council and the Freight Transport Association and was a director of Diabetes UK, the Community Fund and the Big Lottery Fund. In 2004 Penny founded a media company, which she sold in 2010.