Retail and hospitality firms can win a share of £2 million to come up with ways of supporting their lower paid staff to increase their earnings.
Employers in the retail and hospitality sectors are being challenged by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) to develop and test ideas to help their low-paid staff to progress in their careers while benefiting their business.
Lord Freud, the welfare reform minister, has caused outrage after it was revealed that he told a fringe meeting at the Tory conference that some disabled people are "not worth" the minimum wage.
Lord Freud was asked whether it was preferable for someone with a disability, who could not get a job, to be paid less than the minimum wage - and to have their income topped up with benefits - in order to give them the experience of work and boost their self esteem.
Nick Clegg has announced new waiting time standards, bringing treatment for mental health problems in line with physical health.
Iain Duncan Smith has suggested that disability benefits could be taxed, although no official policy announcement has been made, reports The Independent.
Currently, the personal independence payment (PIP) and disability living allowance (DLA) it is replacing are paid at the same rate, regardless of the recipient's income.
The Local Government Association (LGA) has published details of a survey showing that up to three quarters of English local authorities will have to either significantly scale back crisis support for vulnerable people or scrap their provision entirely, if Government goes ahead with its plans to remove funding for Local Welfare Schemes.
Vince Cable has unveiled plans for a national minimum wage for 16 to 17 year olds in work and in their first year of apprenticeships. Speaking at the Liberal Democrat party conference, Mr Cable said: “Thanks to the Lib Dems, apprenticeships are helping to create a stronger economy and opportunities for young people. I want the minimum pay for apprentices boosted by £1 an hour.”
Calls by Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to halt the roll-out of Universal Credit in Scotland has been rejected by Parliament, with the new benefit roll out to continue as planned.
Ms Sturgeon had asked PM David Cameron for a delay while new Scottish devolution powers are considered by Lord Smith's commission.