Choosing to declare
You control how your disability is discussed. By proactively communicating and being open about your disability, you can feel more empowered and confident, and you can get what you need to make the application process and experience in the workplace right for you.
All employers need to adhere to the Equality Act 2010. Some are proactively signed up to the Disability Confident scheme. Also look for employers' equality and diversity policies online as some employers are keenly promoting diversity in the workplace.
Your employer will be able to make adjustments. Under the 2010 Act, employers must consider making 'reasonable adjustments' to enable you to work for them. For example, if your disability makes travel difficult at certain times, then an employer could make a reasonable adjustment by allowing you to work different hours.
Financial support is available via the Access to Work scheme grant to help pay for practical support with your work, advice about managing your mental health at work and money to pay for communication support at job interviews.
You are protected by the Equality Act 2010. It is unlawful for employers to discriminate against disabled people in their recruitment and selection procedures.
You may be asked to complete a medical questionnaire. Omitting details or giving false information may prejudice your application adversely. It may also result in dismissal if your disability comes to light after you start the job.
Before you decide
Before applying for any job and making a decision regarding declaring or not, consider the following:
- The nature of your disability and the work involved in the role; do they impact on one another?
- The terms and conditions of the job; are there any health and safety issues that need to be addressed? Declaring will help your employer deal effectively with these.
- The culture of the employer: do they value or promote diversity in the workplace?
- If your employer is not aware of your disability, they cannot make adjustments to help you succeed in your job. They may also be less flexible in allowing time off for medical appointments.
- The consequences of not disclosing your disability. Could your disability become known in some way in the future? If that happens, how might that affect you? Are there any consequences in relation to your job? What might they be, if any?