There might be a situation where a potential employee discloses a disability. This means they tell you what their disability is and how it affects them. A disability means a physical or a mental condition which has a substantial and long-term impact on your ability to do normal day to day activities. You need to ensure that both the recruitment process and their role, if employed, are free from discrimination.
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) divide this into six main types of disability discrimination:
•failure to make reasonable adjustments
•discrimination arising from disability
If they do disclose a disability then they can request ‘Reasonable Adjustments’.
Reasonable adjustments can include:
• changing the recruitment process so a candidate can be considered for a job (for example, using forms with a larger font for someone with poor vision);
•doing things another way, such as allowing someone with social anxiety disorder to have their own desk instead of hot-desking, or allowing a diabetic employee additional breaks to monitor and manage their condition if required;
•making physical changes to the workplace, like an audio-visual fire alarm for a deaf person;
•letting a disabled person work somewhere else, such as on the ground floor for a wheelchair user;
•changing their equipment, for instance providing a special keyboard if they have arthritis;
•allowing employees who become disabled to make a phased return to work, including flexible hours or part-time working;
•offering employees training opportunities, recreation and refreshment facilities.
It is important to remember that you can choose NOT to employ someone with a disability IF YOU CAN PROVE THERE IS A CLEAR AND APROPRIATE REASON NOT TO. A person in a wheelchair can be a schoolteacher with some adjustments, much less likely to be a lorry driver.
Additional information on reasonable adjustments can be found on the EHRC Website