Does your impairment give you skills that are useful in the workplace? — Scope | Disability forum
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Does your impairment give you skills that are useful in the workplace?

Tori_Scope
Tori_Scope Posts: 6,655

Scope community team

Full article: People with dyslexia have skills that we need, says GCHQ (The Guardian)
Apprentices on GCHQ’s scheme are four times more likely to have dyslexia than those on other organisations’ programmes, the agency has said, the result of a drive to recruit those whose brains process information differently.
GCHQ says those with dyslexia have valuable skills spotting patterns that others miss – a key area the spy agency wants to encourage as it pivots away from dead letter drops and bugging towards high-tech cybersecurity and data analysis.
According to Kate Griggs, the chief executive of Made by Dyslexia, GCHQ is a good example of how employers can take advantage of the distinctive ways people with dyslexia process information, an understanding she said was “hit and miss” across industries.

“The main reason that we have a problem is that a lot of things we measure in education and in employment use standardised tests which have been the same for decades. Dyslexic people don’t have standardised minds; we process information differently, which is hugely valuable once we get into the workforce,” she said.

report produced by the charity with the consultancy EY suggested that some of the thinking skills people with dyslexia tend to be especially strong in include complex problem-solving, empathy, communication and critical thinking. These are becoming increasingly valued in workplaces as AI and machine-learning mean that more routine tasks are automated, the authors said.
Has your impairment given you employability skills others may not have? Do you think other employers should actively seek out neurodiverse employees?
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Comments

  • Jean Eveleigh
    Jean Eveleigh Member Posts: 160 Pioneering
    My current role as a Disability Co-ordinator at a local bus company was built around my disability needs and offered to me because I have lived experience as a disabled person and a network of people with various disabilities I can call upon to answer specific questions that aided me to build an entire teaching program around the needs of elder and disabled passengers to aid our drivers to have a better understanding of the challenges our passengers face while traveling on the bus network.

    I have been informed that employing me was one of the primary factors that allowed the company to expand overseas as the county we tendered into was wanting to improve disability awareness and the fact that I was already in position and we already had the disability training established enabled us to win the tender, I then spent weeks liaising with the training manager in that country teaching them how to deliver the training course and what answers they should be looking for from the drivers and how to approach disability and elder organisations to ask them to work with the company to teach the drivers.

    They still contact me from time to time for updates most recently around covid and how to better assist out deaf passengers due to the need to wear facemasks which impede communication.
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,829 Disability Gamechanger
    I daren’t ask which bus company. The attitude of bus companies in Britain to disability is appalling. Very much a tick box exercise.
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0 Listener
    There is a stereotype that autistic people are good at solving puzzles and that they have intuitive thinking. Whether this is true or not is debatable as it is based on anecdotal evidence. There is also a stereotype that people with mood disorders (eg. bipolar) tend to be creative.

    However no matter what scientific and psychological studies manage to prove or disprove this, linking genetic disorders or disabilities with mental traits is considered controversial and politically incorrect.

    As to whether there are instances where the positive traits associated with a disability makes them more likely to be employed in certain jobs, that's a hard question to answer because when an employer is hiring, the applicants typically tend to be a diverse set of people who have a huge variance of strengths and weaknesses. It's hard to link an advantage to a disability in the hiring process, when people who aren't disabled who apply for jobs also appear to vary in strengths and weaknesses as well, just like everyone else.
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community Co-Production Group Posts: 11,066 Disability Gamechanger
    There is a stereotype that autistic people are good at solving puzzles and that they have intuitive thinking. Whether this is true or not is debatable as it is based on anecdotal evidence. There is also a stereotype that people with mood disorders (eg. bipolar) tend to be creative.

    And your references are...?

    However no matter what scientific and psychological studies manage to prove or disprove this, linking genetic disorders or disabilities with mental traits is considered controversial and politically incorrect.


    And the relevance is....? As far as I'm aware, neither being on the autism spectrum, nor having bipolar disorder are necessarily considered as genetic disorders. As with many disorders, they are likely multifactorial. As yet no gene(s) have been implicated with either disorder.

    I do agree that any person disabled or not will have their own strengths & weaknesses.

  • lisathomas50
    lisathomas50 Member Posts: 4,714 Disability Gamechanger
    My partner can't read or write properly  he has a personality disorder cant spell it but he is two people this is controlled but he is very clever with building computers  and fixing computers and fixing cars what he lacks in reading and writing he has gained in other ways by self teaching takeing something apart remembering where they go back to and rebuilding  it 

    I think people find different ways of dealing with things and different ways of learning to get get where they want to be 
  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0 Listener
    edited June 9
    And your references are...?

    People have been saying my assertions for hundreds of years. Just use google to find sources. I didn't want to derail a conversation about hiring people with a disability to turn into a psychology and sociology debate, but if you insist then I can provide sources.

    New study claims to find genetic link between creativity and mental illness | Genetics | The Guardian

    https://conceptually.org/concepts/dual-processing-theory

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/08/070803151245.htm

    As yet no gene(s) have been implicated with either disorder.

    That's because it's not one gene like down's syndrome so the genes are harder to identify, it's hundreds of genes. And often the genes affected are different for each person with the condition, even if they have the same parents.

    As far as I'm aware, neither being on the autism spectrum, nor having bipolar disorder are necessarily considered as genetic disorders.

    The problem with detecting mood disorders like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, is that there are no distinct biomarkers for them. You can't just take a blood test, x ray or MRI scan and then get a clear cut result like you can with a drug test or testing for vitamin deficiencies. This doesn't mean that they don't exist or that there isn't a genetic basis for them. What makes things more confusing is that there's a thing called epigenetics, where a person can be born with a genetic disposition to something, and then because of environmental stimuli or triggers, the gene gets flipped so it becomes turned on.

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2010/01/analysis-shows-genetic-link-between-major-mood-disorders/

    In the olden days autism was considered to be caused by the environment, more specifically from bad parenting caused by emotionally distant or cold mothers who doctors and scientists called refrigerator mothers. With the advancements of science to discover DNA and map the genome using DNA sequencing thanks to the Human Genome Project, it's been found that autism is genetic.The problem is that autism is caused by hundreds of genes and that two autistic children with the same parents can have genes associated with autism that are different from each other, so identifying all the genes is difficult.

    https://arstechnica.com/science/2011/06/more-cases-of-sporadic-autism-tied-to-genetics/


    I've just thought of something else to add that should have been in my previous post. There is a stereotype that people with anxiety have high social skills and are good at reading people.

  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community Co-Production Group Posts: 11,066 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @innocent21 - it's always wise to give references to back up 'your' assertions. Your first 'reference' to a Guardian link on 'New Study claims to find genetic link between creativity & mental illness' had the researcher saying that he 'concedes that his study found only a weak link between the genetic variants for mental illness and creativity.' And this is what other scientists pick up on, as the rest of your link says, 'the genetic factors that raise the risk of mental problems explained only 0.25% of the variation in peoples' artistic ability the study found.'
    Your 2nd 'reference' doesn't appear to have any relevance.
    Your 3rd 'reference is from 2007, so likely out of date, as is your 4th one from 2010, & the 5th from 2011.
    Must admit I don't 'google' to find medical resources, rather use medical databases. I'm aware of epigenetics, thank you. As I said, when mentioning those on the autistic spectrum or those with bipolar disorder 'as with many disorders they're likely multifactorial.'
    You might be interested in reading the following: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7714694/ published online April 2020.

  • innocent21
    innocent21 Posts: 35 Connected
    edited June 10
    Must admit I don't 'google' to find medical resources, rather use medical databases.
    I can assure you that I can find sources in academic journals as well. But seeing as you're going to disregard a source based on the website it comes from (ie. you say newspaper articles don't count only medical databases or academic journals do), then I do not feel the need to continue this debate on this public forum and will end it, because it is no longer productive. If you want to continue this discussion, feel free to private message me.

    [Removed by moderator - personal attacks, and content irrelevant to the thread]

    There is also a lot of people who tend to have a "self determination fallacy" in their mind, where they like to feel that they are the authors of their own destiny. That they have agency over their lives to determine their future, their success, their popularity, etc, and they like to feel that any intrinsic identity that cannot be changed, like sex, disability, age, nationality, sexuality, etc or even more fluid ones like religion and university course and job choice, that there are no distinct mental differences between people, such as intelligence, skills, talents, communication styles, interests, personality, etc. Such people like to believe that everyone is of equal stature of each other regarding mental traits, and that any innate mental differences which suggest that some people are better than X than others is to be point blank denied and disregarded.

    So for someone to claim that a disability can give someone positive mental traits (which is the topic of this thread), that would violate lots of people's "self determination fallacy" and such people will fail to acknowledge any evidence for the contrary, because this self determination fallacy they have is actually a "defence mechanism" people have like other types of superstitious thinking. Because having this belief makes them FEEL good and REASSURES them to feel more insulated in an unfair world with lots of suffering an injustice, like poverty, war, disease, disability, death, discrimination, global warming, etc. You know what they say............ignorance is bliss.

    The nature vs nurture debate has been going on for decades and it is still controversial and politically incorrect to discuss today. The non-PC opinion gets censored with the writer being cancelled, even today.
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,829 Disability Gamechanger
    edited June 10
    Loving the assertion that articles on genetics must be taken as credible because they’re from a newspaper accompanied by the usual assertion of other sources. To point out the obvious, if you have other academic resources then quote them. Quoting a newspaper suggests lazily doing a quick net search to find some articles which support an argument hastily cobbled together for the sake of saying something to prove others wrong. If you have access to academic sources you will have had to subscribe and pay. Why would you not use those unless… well, as per the above. 

    To be clear, there are four main things which make a newspaper article on any science credible.

    1 - they will be quoting a final report rather than a press release. This one ticks that box.

    2 - the report will have studied high numbers (tick) and will have been peer reviewed. Oh dear.

    3 - the report will have shared its data openly to allow others to replicate. Nope, still waiting. 

    4 - the purpose of the study was as originally described i.e. it didn’t set out to test one hypothesis; quickly find no data to support it and then change tack in a panic to find “something” with a correlation in order to justify the monies obtained. Oh dear again. It appears this study didn’t set out with this purpose at all. 

    I suggest @innocent21 starts with Science Fictions by Stuart Ritchie and then moves onto Behave by Robert Saplosky and then comes back and talks science and genetics at us.

    On the genetics front it is simply not true that any trait is linked with a gene or even a set of genes. The sequencing of the human genome showed the exact opposite was true. Indeed if you want to quote from a newspaper article with some degree of accuracy here’s a recent one from the same paper explaining this great fallacy of genomics. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/jun/09/human-genome-genes-genetic-code?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

    Should anyone wish to challenge my knowledge on this area then, feel free to do so but please be aware that whilst I have two autosomal recessive genetic issues I have also worked with genetic counsellors; genomics lecturers teaching at PhD level and was also an ambassador for the 100,000 Genome project. Have lectured to 5th year medical students on the subject and appeared on radio talking about it too.
  • chiarieds
    chiarieds Community Co-Production Group Posts: 11,066 Disability Gamechanger
    I don't appreciate being misquoted. I said, 'Must admit I don't 'google' to find medical resources, rather use medical databases.'You said,' But seeing as you're going to disregard a source based on the website it comes from (ie. you say newspaper articles don't count only medical databases or academic journals do), then I do not feel the need to continue this debate on this public forum and will end it, because it is no longer productive. If you want to continue this discussion, feel free to private message me.'
    I have no wish to PM you, thank you.
    You say, 'So for someone to claim that a disability can give someone positive mental traits (which is the topic of this thread), that would violate lots of people's "self determination fallacy" and such people will fail to acknowledge any evidence for the contrary, because this self determination fallacy they have is actually a "defence mechanism" people have like other types of superstitious thinking. Because having this belief makes them FEEL good and REASSURES them to feel more insulated in an unfair world with lots of suffering an injustice, like poverty, war, disease, disability, death, discrimination, global warming, etc. You know what they say............ignorance is bliss.'
    And your references (from reputable sites) are?
    I have an autosomal dominant disorder associated with another genetic disorder, & whilst I don't have Mike's understanding, I'm fairly good at medical research, & was asked to write a chapter with references (I gave 25) & glossary in the last book about the management of my disorder. References really should back up what you're trying to say.
  • lisathomas50
    lisathomas50 Member Posts: 4,714 Disability Gamechanger
    I expect that some things are genetic somethings are not  maybe I look at things different  but this us how I think we are who we are  and we are all different  I suffer from a number of things one of them being mental illness but I can assure you I am not naturally creative 

    This is only what I think not fact but I think when people have disabilitys they find things that they can do and we look for things to do and learn how to do things so thst we don't feel that we can't do things 

    I expect people who don't have a disability do the same learn how to do things 

    I have read about people who are good with numbers and maths who have certain disabilitys  but I don't know if that's true  I expect there are reasons the brain does this I have also heard of the words genetic disorders  

    Maybe during my physcology  and counselling degree I will learn about some of these things 

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