Monday, 4 March 2019

Reasonable adjustment Passports!

Image result for reasonable adjustment passportA help? or an own goal that sets one disabled area against another by stating no disabled person (regardless of the degree of disablement), has any more right of access than any other?  Looks like a recipe for 'me first'.  

Would it not just end up as a 'confrontational document' like the green cards of old UK disabled had that basically meant employers see you as an issue again?  If you are going to apply for a job waving these in their faces its a cert the job won't be offered to you.  It's not about access or even inclusion, but if you can show you have the skills employers can use.  

Perhaps better CV's better training, higher education, more skill sets, real work experiences, and more independence being shown are more the issue?  Then less need to justify your support.  As with all PC edicts, quoting models of disability are unhelpful and an annoyance that will go over employers heads.  It's not just 'What employers must do for you', but, 'What skills can you offer them?'

'Reasonable adjustments' are a minefield, mainly because of who has to pay for it and what IS 'reasonable' is vaguely defined.  Both the state and the Business areas have been reluctant to foot the bill, despite the 'Deaf' needing sign support in the UK being able (allegedly),  to claim upward of £60K ($79k), per year, a figure few if any employer is going to want to pay for employing us, or even a  percentage of.    Disabled are claiming they are just employed short-term and when cost sharing kicks in, employers hire someone else thus avoiding any contribution to disabled employee access altogether.

E.G.  The Access to Work grant will pay for 100% of the approved costs if you:

(1) Are about to start paid employment
(2) Have been in the job less than 6 weeks

For those employed for longer than 6 weeks the employer may have to pay a proportion of the costs. How much depends on the size of the company.

Employers with less than 50 staff: Access to Work can pay 100% of the approved costs. 

Employers with 50 to 249 staff:  Employer will have to pay the first £500 and Access to Work can then pay 80% of the approved costs up to * £10,000.  

* Deaf are claiming much more than that, £46K was a norm until recently and Deaf said it wasn't enough.. 

What is the employer costs share of support?

When cost sharing applies, Access to Work will refund up to 80% of the approved costs between a threshold and £10,000. As the employer, you will contribute 100% of costs up to the threshold level and 20% of the costs between the threshold and £10,000. The amount of the threshold is determined by the number of employees you have.

The GMB/TUC declaration:

The GMB’s motion at the TUC’s Disabled Workers Conference in 2018 called for the creation of reasonable adjustments disability passports.

The TUC has worked with its Disabled Workers Committee and the GMB and its disabled workers and activists to create this document. Feedback from affiliates and the Equality and Human Rights Commission has also been sought to ensure that the passports meet the needs of disabled members.

The social model of disability:

The TUC has adopted the social model of disability.  The social model of disability focuses on the ways in which society is organised and the social and institutional barriers which restrict disabled people’s opportunities. The social model sees the person first and argues that the barriers they face, in combination with their impairments, are what disables them.

Barriers can make it impossible or very difficult to access jobs, buildings or services, but the biggest barrier of all is the problem of people’s attitude to disability. Removing the barriers is the best way to include millions of disabled people in our society.

The duty to make reasonable adjustments:

All employers have a legal duty under the Equality Act 2010 to proactively make reasonable adjustments to remove, reduce or prevent any disadvantages that disabled workers face.

The law recognises that to secure equality for disabled people work may need to be structured differently, support given, and barriers removed. It means that in certain circumstances disabled people may be treated more favourably than non-disabled people to ensure equality, but one disabled person cannot be treated more favourably than another disabled person.

An employer who fails to meet their legal duty under the Equality Act 2010 to make reasonable adjustments is in breach of the law and could be taken to an employment tribunal.

Public sector employers have an additional legal duty to consider or think about how their policies or decisions affect people who are protected under the Equality Act. This public sector equality duty will include public authorities considering how their policies affect disabled employees and taking steps to mitigate any adverse impact.

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