Disabilities in the workplace

The Equality Act 2010 protects people with disabilities against discrimination from employers. It's important to know your rights so that you can get the right support.

Disability employment rights

There is no legal obligation to disclose a disability unless it affects:

  • Your performance or ability to meet the requirements of the job.
  • Your ability to work safely and ensure the safety of co-workers.

Talking about your disability can create an open relationship with your employer. It also gives you more control over the support you get.

It is against the law for an employer to discriminate against you at work because of a disability. Some of the themes you get protected under include:

  • Interview arrangements
  • Application forms
  • Job offers
  • Terms of employment
  • Discipline and grievances

We offer a range of support and employment programmes to make sure you get the support you need. 

To find out more about your rights you can get further information from the Equality Act 2010 guidance provided by GOV.UK. 

Reasonable adjustments at work

Reasonable adjustments are adaptations that ensure you aren't disadvantaged in the workplace. The purpose of an adjustment is to enable you to perform to the best of your ability.

Some examples of reasonable adjustments include:

  • Flexible hours or part-time working
  • Making physical changes to the environment to make the workplace accessible
  • Making specialist equipment available if the employee needs adaptations

The government provides more information on reasonable adjustments for workers with disabilities or health conditions.

Access to Work grants

If the help you need isn't covered by reasonable adjustments, you might be able to get help from an Access to Work grant. This can pay for practical support if you have a disability, health or mental health condition.

You'll need to have a paid job, be resident in England, Scotland or Wales and be 16 or over.

An Access to Work grant can help you:

  • Start work
  • Stay in work
  • Move into self-employment or start a business

The grant is not for business start-up costs and how much you get depends on your circumstances. The money doesn’t have to be paid back and will not affect your other benefits. 

Employment support in Northern Ireland

If you're based in Northern Ireland, you'll need to check what employment support is available to you.