Reasonable Adjustments being reviewed every 6 months. I'm worried this'll put me at a disadvantage — Scope | Disability forum
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Reasonable Adjustments being reviewed every 6 months. I'm worried this'll put me at a disadvantage

Pea44
Pea44 Member Posts: 5 Listener
edited October 28 in Work and employment
Good morning

I was wondering about the above as I appear to have reached an impasse with my employer since my reasonable adjustment was ‘formally’ (albeit ‘temporarily’) put in place.

I have a long term and incurable functional bowel disorder and mental health issues and have been confirmed as recognised as disabled under the Equality Act 2010.

I have been supported fully by the Occupational Health doctor and my manager to need to work 100% from home (as has everyone in my team since March 2020 due to COVID).

However, my disability is being treated as a medical condition that could be ‘fixed in the future’ and that hopefully I will ‘get better’.  This is unlikely and quite insulting and hurtful in some respects.

My employer has agreed to allow the reasonable adjustment to remain in place to be reviewed every 6 months and I have to see a doctor to confirm I still haven’t been ‘cured’, and can therefore return to the office.

Whilst this is great for me I still am concerned about my contract of employment and the attitude that could be displayed towards me if I was a ‘new applicant’.  

I requested my contract be amended to state my place if work was ‘at home’ but was met with deliberate resistance and dismissive attitudes.  My employer simply stated:

‘This organisation does not have ‘home workers’ so your contract will not be amended in light of your reasonable adjustment.  Your case will be reviewed regularly and be classed as ‘ongoing’ with your contracted place of work being on site as directed’.

My trade union reps are ilof the view that until the employer asks me to return to the office then legally there is no issue.  However having once resigned from this organisation due to ill health and then re-applying years later, I worry that disclosing a disability at interview puts people like me at a substantial disadvantage - if for any reason I leave or am dismissed, it would be very unlikely that I would ever be employed again which I find disturbing for all people with disabilities.

I would really appreciate anyone’s comments or thoughts as I don’t seem to be able to find any information regarding contractual obligations.

Thanks for reading 😊
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Comments

  • Cressida
    Cressida Member Posts: 946 Pioneering
    @janer1967 a member of the forum has experience in HR so hopefully will be along to answer your query. I have a reasonable adjustment in place with work where I can work from home as needed. It is automatically reviewed through our HR online system every 6 months as a matter of course. I have a physical condition which will not improve. 

  • Pea44
    Pea44 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Thank you so much!
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 12,914 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome to the community 

    There is no obligation to amend your place of work on your contract as this is a reasonable adjustments and not a contractual obligation

    It is normal to have a review of the ra every 6 months and is for your benefit too 

    I would suggest that unless you come across resistance to your situation you leave things be 

    As your employer has been supporting of you would suggest they are disability aware and not against employing disabled people 

    That's just my view from the details you have given 
    I have professional experience in HR within public,  private, and charity sectors.  If I can help I will 
  • Pea44
    Pea44 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    That’s great many thanks - I thought this would be the case, will see how things go 😊
  • Fred2021
    Fred2021 Community Volunteer Adviser Posts: 34 Connected

    Hi @Pea44

    A warm welcome to the community.

    Thank you for sharing this with us.  I hope some of the advice suggested has been useful to you.  Please keep in touch and let us know how you are getting on.


    Community Volunteer Adviser.  I have some expertise in the following subjects, gained through professional settings such as employment and high level education: autism, learning disabilities, employment.

  • Pea44
    Pea44 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Hi @janer1967

    Just to update, I received my letter for a reasonable adjustment but HR refuse to use the word ‘disability’ anywhere.  It says ‘ill health’ - I’m not ill as otherwise I wouldn’t be at work.  I have asked why the word ‘disabled’ doesn’t feature but can’t get an answer - could you suggest a possible theory?  Thanks 
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 12,914 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi again 

    I have no theory as to why they are referring to it as ill health but as long as you have the agreement in writing then there should be no issue 

    Just a few things to mention,  there is no longer any form of being registered disabled 

    There is a definition of a disability under the equality act that states 
    (Not exact verbatim wording) 
    A disability is a physical or mental condition that significantly impacts the ability to carry out everyday activities . The condition is expected to last at least 12 months or more 

    If you want your letter to state disability I would write to Hr and state that your condition would be recognised under the equality act and quote or the definition as the reason why and could your letter be amended 

    However the choice is yours my view remains if the ra are in place and they have been supportive just leave it alone
    I have professional experience in HR within public,  private, and charity sectors.  If I can help I will 
  • Pea44
    Pea44 Member Posts: 5 Listener
    Many thanks for your help.  'Just leaving it alone' suggests that it may come back to bite me - which is a valid point.  However, it shouldn't - the law as it stands appears incredibly weak until something bad happens, by which time it's too late.   Having experienced several 'interactions' with HR, the goal seems sadly not to focus on the contribution the employee makes to the organisation, but to shut the situation down entirely and make it go away.  I'm tired of all the 'offers of assistance' plastered on the company website.  It's so insincere it's ridiculous.  
  • mikehughescq
    mikehughescq Member Posts: 7,842 Disability Gamechanger
    Absolutely not “normal” to have RAs reviewed every 6 months. Far from it. Even the EA 10 guidance suggests a 12 month gap and always has. Recent ET decisions about the removal of RAs have also suggested there are lots of circumstances where the review period should be longer than 12 months. 

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