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Disabled - would you tell your employer


Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
13 Feb 2012 3:55PM
On the one hand hiding disability I loose the legal right to any accommodations I might need to keep a job (not that I currently need any accommodating)

On the other hand revealing my disability could subject me to discrimination which could limit my opportunities for advancement, but in my case I would more than likely loose my job.

I`ve kept this hidden for 7/8 years now.

What would you do, debate ?

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Carabosse e2
11 39.7k 269 England
13 Feb 2012 4:01PM
Does your disability affect, or potentially affect, your ability to do the job?

If not, I would say it is a medical matter and none of your employer's business.
digicammad 11 22.0k 37 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:05PM
Agree with CB except with the rider that you should check your T&Cs to see if it mentions telling them about things like that.

Ian
kathrynlouise 3 421 1 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:05PM
Hiya Paul. If kept hidden for that long do they really need to know? I'd be inclined to do as you have if i was in the same situation and say nothing. Has something happened for you to now question this after so long?

Kathryn
Chant57 e2
8 391 3 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:16PM

Quote:but in my case I would more than likely loose my job.


Being disabled is not grounds for terminating an employment contract. It would been seen as a form of Discrimination in the eyes of any tribunal. They may try to find other reasons to terminate your employment, but again in all honesty , if you told them and they did terminate your employment citing other reasons, any tribunal more than likely would need some hard evidence of their reasons.
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
13 Feb 2012 4:21PM

Quote:Agree with CB except with the rider that you should check your T&Cs to see if it mentions telling them about things like that


Yes I believe this is mentioned in T&C`s and if I had disclosed the fact that I was disabled It would have been very unlikely that I would have got the job even though the disability in no way effects my ability to do the job.

I`ve found that laws and regulations put in place to protect disabled people often end up working against them, this is just an observation.
cats_123 e2
10 4.2k 25 Northern Ireland
13 Feb 2012 4:21PM
why not just be honest?
AndyLeslie 5 141 8 Wales
13 Feb 2012 4:24PM
Why worry now? Unless the situation has changed recently, you're 7+ years into your career at this employer and all is ok so far by the sound of it.

Carry on!
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
13 Feb 2012 4:24PM

Quote:why not just be honest?


This is not always good.

I`ve been in the job for six months after spending almost a year out of work, being honest did not work in my favor.

However I have a court case cumming up later in the year, its highly likely my disability will be disclosed.
mikehit e2
5 7.1k 11 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:32PM
My wife is an HR Manager and I asked her htis question. Her first response was that if you have been working prefectly well for 7-8 years, there is no reason for them to take action against you. They may level the accusation of 'mutual breach of trust and confidence' but that would be a slim one. The company could not take action with the defence' if we'd have known that at the time...' because the Disability DDiscriination Act was in place at the time. In fact, your defence could be that at the time you took the job you did not declare it because you knew it would not affect your ability to do the job - if they push really hard, you may be able to say that at that time the approach to disabilities was not as welcoming as it is now.
Also remember that any 'death in service' benefits you have may be nulled if you do not declare this condition.

One question: were you even asked to declare any disability when you took the job (as opposed to 'reasons you cannot do the job', which you clearly could)? Companies have changed a lot and a few years ago not many even bothered asking.
When you say 'accommodations' I presume you mean that you may need time off work, or special equipment?

As a HR manager my wife said she would be really hacked off with someone who presented with a long-known condition saying(for example) 'I need to take X days a week off for treatment starting next week' as opposed to someone who is still perfectly able to do the job coming to her and admitting it a few years before it became a necessity. So she would be more lenient with someone who declared it now (and my view is that you will probably get more leeway if difficult times arose).


One rider: not all HR departments are as 'clued up' as my wife and a lot can depend on the market sector. For example, traditional factory industries are often way behind the curve in their employment law.
digicammad 11 22.0k 37 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:32PM
If your disability is highly likely to be disclosed in the court case maybe it's time to sit down with your boss and explain the situation, pointing out that your disability has not (and hopefully you will be able to add and will not) effected your ability to do your job. Leaving it until they find out from somebody else is more likely to cause problems.

Ian
JackAllTog e2
5 4.0k 58 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:33PM
IF that disability is becoming an issue then maybe they now have a duty of care to you.
If you omitted a health question from your initial application or pension/insurance you might no be covered.
If you were a truck driver with epilepsy then other lives may be at risk.
"Advancement" is a company investing in your future with the understanding you are able to fulfil that role.

Lots of questions, but many can bite longer term if you end up not telling the truth and some will end up biting if you do tell the truth though this may be shorter term and limited.
collywobles 10 3.4k 9 United Kingdom
13 Feb 2012 4:36PM
Paul

I honestly do not know what I would do - but the sad thing about your question is that you had to ask it at all. Just goes to show that there is still some predjudice about people with disabillities.
Carabosse e2
11 39.7k 269 England
13 Feb 2012 4:42PM

Quote:I`ve been in the job for six months



Quote:I believe this is mentioned in T&C`s and if I had disclosed the fact that I was disabled It would have been very unlikely that I would have got the job



Quote:However I have a court case cumming up later in the year, its highly likely my disability will be disclosed.


That is more tricky and you really need to seek individual advice. Citizen's Advice Bureau may be a good first step.

Presumably your employers will get to know about it even if you say nothing at this stage?
Paul Morgan e2
13 16.1k 6 England
13 Feb 2012 4:46PM

Quote:I honestly do not know what I would do - but the sad thing about your question is that you had to ask it at all. Just goes to show that there is still some predjudice about people with disabillities


There`s a great deal of prejudice out there, there must be hundreds if not thousands wanting to work were there disability does not effect the ability to carry out the work and the current job situation just adds to these problems.

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