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disclosing disabilities

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by sparklyrainbowfish, Jan 8, 2012.

  1. sparklyrainbowfish

    sparklyrainbowfish New commenter

    Hi all
    A quick question (i hope!)
    A couple of years ago I was diagnosed with a disability which I made my employer aware of as I needed adjustments to be made.
    I have recently been diagnosed with another condition which is also classified as a disability. Do I have to tell? Who do have to tell? Can I just tell Occ Health or do I need to tell my school too? I don't want everyone to know...
    I'm not sure of the legal requirements for disclosing so really don't know what to do next.
    Any help would be appreciated.
  2. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    You don't have to legally disclose unless it has an impact on the health and safety of others. However if you don't disclose you can't then receive any RA. You may not need them though for that condition. If you decide to tell OH although they won't disclose the information the letter they send to work will obviously alert them there is something and you could end up with lots of questions. It depends on what you need now or in the future. DIAL could offer advice.
  3. sparklyrainbowfish

    sparklyrainbowfish New commenter

    Thanks Torey.
    Well work already know I have one condition. I guess as far as they're concerned any further adjustments could be related to that? I just don't want any stigma associated with the condition I've just been diagnosed with... I don't wish to be deceitful or anything, just don't want "sympathy" or for people to look at me differently because of it.
    I wanted to go back to OH anyway as I'm still waiting for my school to provide something they recommended. So I could talk about the new stuff with them too. I suppose they can give me advice on what specifics I should disclose to my school?
    Thanks again
  4. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    It sounds like OH could write a letter that covers both without revealing anything. If school haven't put adjustments because of cost you could contact access to work as they may be able to help.
  5. I have to say my experience of disclosure wasn't too positive. I wrote on the application form for my current job that I have Aspergers Syndrome and dyspraxia but this was not handed on to my manager. When my lack of confidence and assertiveness caused me issues in my first month, I spoke about it in a supervision and my manager asked me to list the problems that my dyspraxia and AS caused me. I did so and he then told me, in no uncertain terms, that he felt that, with the problems I had listed, I would never be successful in a care job and should consider leaving before my 3 month appraisal. I'm glad I didn't follow that advice as I am still in the same job 3 years later and am very good at what I do (not meaning to sound arrogant or anything). Having experienced that, I now think twice before disclosing on job applications.
  6. I'm appalled by your experience, especially as what he said could be regarded as Discrimination under the 2010 Equality Act! By the way, you're right, you don't have to disclose it on a job application anymore, but I do think you should tell someone at some point, so that they can make allowances for you (and so that you're covered in terms of Health and Safety). If anything comes up like this again, you can then take further action.

    By the way, what your manager said to you suggests to me that he's the one who would never be successful in a care job due to his lack of empathy and ignorance of the law. If he's still there and your manager, he's been lucky, imo.
  7. sparklyrainbowfish

    sparklyrainbowfish New commenter

    thank you for your replies.
    Interesting about your experience daydreamer - I was teaching in a different school when I got my first diagnosis. Immediately after I told my line manager about it and the adjustments I needed, she started behaving really strangely towards me. Anything like a relationship had disappeared and it was all matter-of-fact and very dictatorial; like she was trying to catch me doing something wrong. It was awful because only weeks before we had got on absolutely fine and had no issues with each other. Such a shame that some people are that small-minded!
    At my current school, they know about that diagnosis and are great really. I just don't know about this additional one after what happened to me last time... and yes msbrainy I know it's discrimination but it doesn't stop people's attitidues and true feelings from showing sometimes.
    I still have lots to think about.
    And the worst thing is - this must sound like I'm ashamed of my condition. I'm not. Not at all. I'm very happy as I understand me now. I just know that some other people will have a problem with the label.
    Thanks again,
    sparklyrainbowfish [​IMG]
  8. Of course not, which was why I kept the nature of my illness quiet when I was signed off sick this time last year. That's why I made a point of finding out my rights with regards to it.

    Glad you found our responses helpful!

    By the way, what you say shouldn't stop you from getting what you need to 'stay healthy and happy'.

    Loads of luck!

  9. No he's not still there-he ended up having a stress related breakdown and was on sick leave for a year and then resigned. The ironic thing is once I had settled in, he said to me that I was one of the hardest workers there!

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