Disability in the workplace: what is a ‘reasonable’ adjustment?
Publication: People Management
And how much should employers be spending on it?
Recent reports that retired Paralympian skier Jade Etherington is struggling to find a support worker to enable her to start a new career in teaching highlight the need for employers to make reasonable adjustments to assist disabled employees. But just how far are employers expected to go?
Under the Equality Act 2010, there is a legal duty on employers to make reasonable adjustments for disabled employees where they are placed at a substantial disadvantage by their employer’s policy or practice, by the physical features of the employer’s premises or by lack of auxiliary aids. Where the duty arises, the employer must effectively treat the disabled person more favourably than other employees by making reasonable adjustments to reduce or remove the disadvantage. An employer that fails to make timely, reasonable adjustments is at serious risk of facing a disability discrimination claim.