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Reasonable adjustments for mental health

adneem97 Community member Posts: 2 Listener

I have a question about reasonable adjustments being put in place and I haven’t been able to find much information regarding my specific situation.

I have anxiety (diagnosed at 17 and I’m 25 now so definitely long term!) and work in a front facing service.

I’ve had some pretty bad flare ups which has caused me to miss work due to sickness on quite a few occasions, so my employer has put some accommodations in place,such as fresh air breaks when we’re not busy and some time working in the back office, again while we’re not busy and as long as my colleague (who also works front of house) also gets some time in back office so that it is ‘fair’.

I have had an informal chat with my manager and asked if some hybrid working would be possible for days where I am really struggling. I've been told this isn't possible, but I'm a bit confused as we are allowed to work from home if there are train strikes, or if we have appointments/builders in the house (just a few examples).

It’s really frustrating because having some hybrid working when needed would really help me and also help reduce my absences, and we know that this is possible as it’s been done before for myself on several occasions when there are train strikes.

I’m aware of the Equality Act and that I will be protected under this, I’ve also had a meeting with occ health who are going to recommend the hybrid working as they too think it will really help and is doable as we’ve done it before just under different circumstances. I'm also going to chat with ACAS soon.

Just wondering if anybody has any suggestions or words of encouragement at all!


  • Alex_Alumni
    Alex_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,562 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello there @adneem97 and thanks for reaching out :) 

    As I was reading, you kept mentioning things I was going to suggest for you, like contacting ACAS, and speaking with those involved in your care and wellbeing, these are great steps to take. 

    I can completely emphathise with your point about hybrid working being feasible for train strikes, but when it is an accommodation for disability, suddenly it's not possible, it's frustrating to put it lightly! 

    Keep us up to date with how things go, and I wish you the best for a positive result. Reasonable adjustments are a legal duty for your employer at any rate, which I'm sure you already know!
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  • MW123
    MW123 Scope Member Posts: 558 Pioneering

    Hello adneem97

    You mentioned having an informal conversation with your manager about the possibility of implementing hybrid working. Based on my previous experiences, I would suggest formalising your request for adjustments to your employment contract, particularly if health-related factors are involved, by putting it in writing. It would also be beneficial to clearly state the potential benefits this arrangement would have on your productivity.   

    Your involvement with occupational health was this recommended by your employer or did you independently request their professional services? 

    It seems that your employer has already implemented some reasonable adjustments for you, such as permitting occasional back office work and offering fresh air breaks. 

    Please bear in mind that recommendations for hybrid working, whether they come from occupational health or a doctor, are only suggestions. Ultimately, the final decision on such matters lies with your employer.   If your employer grants approval for hybrid work arrangements, it is important to not solely rely on verbal confirmation. Instead, it is crucial to request their recommendations in writing and insist on a revised employment contract that clearly outlines the agreed-upon changes.

  • adneem97
    adneem97 Community member Posts: 2 Listener
    @MW123 Hi! Thank you for your comment :) The occupational health referral was recommended by my line manager
  • L_Volunteer
    L_Volunteer Community Volunteer Adviser, Scope Member Posts: 7,983 Disability Gamechanger
    edited July 2023
    It sounds like your line manager is supportive of you having your needs met then @adneem97. Am I hearing this right? If so, this should help with them being more flexible in what they will / won't provide as reasonable adjustments, as long as it fits in with the business needs too. Please don't hesitate to let us know if you have any further questions or if there's anything else we can do to help  :)
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