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Being bullied or harassed at work

Alex Scope Posts: 1,305 Pioneering
Scope has released the findings of a poll of working age disabled adults about their experiences of work. A couple of the stats are pretty terrible:
  • 58 per cent of disabled people have felt at risk of losing their job because of their impairment.
  • 53 per cent of disabled people have experienced bullying or harassment at work, 21 per cent of disabled people had been bullied by colleagues and 27 per cent had experienced bullying from their employer.
  • One in five (21 per cent) go as far as not disclosing their disability to employers
You can read the full results here:

What do you think of these findings? Do have you any experiences of bullying or harassment at work? 


  • Sam_Alumni
    Sam_Alumni Scope alumni Posts: 7,676 Disability Gamechanger
    I left a job once as they couldn't understand my illness, they told me to 'plan my day better' when I told them I needed extra time to use the bathroom.  Because they couldn't see my disability, they thought I was playing up and asking for things I weren't entitled to.  There were lots of examples of times when I was let down by my managers, in the end I left the job.

    In hindsight, I wish I would have stood up for myself and demanded they listen, but when you are chronically ill, sometimes the last thing you need is another battle.  I just didn't have the energy to stand up for myself.
    Senior online community officer
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 740 Listener
    edited February 2017
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • bubbly
    bubbly Scope Volunteer Posts: 26 Connected
    A colleague had a very loud conversation over the phone about "the new disabled worker" in the office. my boss spoke to this worker about this and the worker never spoke to me again. Luckily she has left my work place now.
  • bam
    bam Member Posts: 326 Pioneering
    edited February 2017
    I can't work anymore so I'm not experienceing that right now but my neurologist bullying me at every appointment. This is been going on for probably a year now. That really upsets me because that is just o
    creating a hostile environment for me. It seems like my neurologists would understand that I'm going through and act a little more professionally. That just shows you it doesn't matter how much education a person has they always want to assert some kind dominance over someone. I was bullied one time at this job by this older guy. I think I was in my early twenties and he was maybe in his early fifties. This bag will leave me every opportunity he got.I Finally got tired of it and I said listen I'm tired of you trying to bully me. I said knock it off or I'll meet you after work. He said okay how about today. He bullied me for the rest of the day. He got off work probably an hour before I did. When I went out to my car he was standing right there. I told him I was giving one opportunity to walk away. He told me he didn't want to walk away so I walked up to him and before he had a chance I knocked him out with one punch. I'm not saying violence is a solution but I was brought up not to complain about things. it felt really good after being bullied by him for 5 months. He got what he deserved. He went down hard too
  • awindupsgranny
    awindupsgranny Member Posts: 2 Listener
    Hi there. I worked at a very large DIY chain wearing an orange apron for 10 years. Sadly in the end I lost my job because I did nothing wrong except have a physical disability which caused me to have depression and anxiety. All in all I did my job perfectly as they were trying to sack me for two years. I had to renegotiate my position within the company 5 times even though they should have really made adjustments for me to do my original job which was kitchen designing but they could not be bothered so they tried to make me go on the shop floor which I did eventually ended up on a till but then they did not want to alter the till so I went back on the shop floor and I had a chair on the shop floor and use my walking stick. This sound Ludacris in a DIY store however this is the case. The upshot was that in the end I was interviewed whilst I was off sick with suicidal depression over having to re negotiate and fight for my job yet again I'm being bullied by one particular manager who mocked something I had said by mimicking it as they were closing the door the day before. The lawyers what on the phone from head office to the managers that were interviewing me for my return to work and instead of returning me to work and making some very minor adjustments they dismiss me for some other serious reason. Then because they giving me a notice of dismissal believing I would be suicidal as a result there as in fact I was relieved because I was tired of the fight which had been going on for 2 and a half years.. They decided to call the police who came and kicked my door down later that day. The police were called because they were told I had expressed a direct wish to hurt myself or worse. I had said no such thing however after a day off so I really want at the end of my tether. Thankfully I didn't do it because I had some awesome help but they didn't know that however as with other people who have replied above I was so severely mentally ill and in so much pain physically going to court within 3 months was an unrealistic and ridiculous prospect. I'm glad I lost my job as I really was not prepared to admit defeat and would have carried on despite the fact I was in horrendous pain but needless to say I never made a mistake and that means they have no reason to sack me hence the wording some other serious reason!  the manager got away with bullying and they got people to write impact statements backdated up to 2 years and signed and used as evidence by the lawyers to sack me for the impact that I had a had on my colleagues when they were in the managers office on the  frequent occasions when I was interrogated and bullied into changing my role and taking a pay cut Time After Time After Time who wouldn't get upset? I'm sorry for the length and any spelling or grammatical errors as I am dictating this because I'm in pain due to having tried to manage my son putting up a lovely garden bench yesterday lol. I always say risk versus reward and I don't care about the pain as it's going to happen anyway and the tiredness is unavoidable but my mental state is severely affected either up or down by the things that I do so I try really hard to do things even if they hurt as long as they will make me happy LOL.
    Good luck with your interview tomorrow and to everyone else good health and happiness. Happy Valentine's Day
     paul Pengelly
  • Markmywords
    Markmywords Member Posts: 419 Pioneering
    I carried on working through my chemotherapy though a sense of loyalty. That loyalty was undeserved as it turned out.

    A year later, within two weeks of returning, they told me I had become "redundant" whilst off. I was told to stop performing all of my previous duties and they would outsource everything I did, although this never happened.

    No-one else in the company had been reviewed. My responses were noted and then ignored.

    After notifying them that I would be going to the Employment Tribunal, the owner asked me "You can't stay here. How much money would it take to make you walk away quietly?"

    If an employer wants you gone, you will go by fair means or foul. Having a court force them to keep you will just make things worse. So, I stung them financially, forced a good reference out of them and left.

    That said, I have been forced to plan two other Employment Tribunal cases as well which weren't disability related plus a civil case. Life is just tough and I have been extra unlucky.

    Abusive people tend not to be very bright and are poor liars. The public sector is no better than the commercial sector either. It's no wonder the DWP came off worst in my fifth court case.

    Going back to the OP, yes I'm scared and yes I keep quiet day to day (although they do know.)
    My current employment is excellent but I use annual leave for hospital clinics anyway. Do you blame me ?


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