The Equality Act 2010 protects those with a physical or mental health disability against discrimination when applying for jobs and less favourable treatment when in employment. Employers also have a duty to make 'reasonable adjustments' to reduce or remove obstacles disabled people may face in the workplace and need to ensure that disabled employees are able to carry out their duties without being disadvantaged compared to others.
Support and advice
If you would like to discuss employability issues related to your disability you can book an appointment with a careers consultant.
Careers Network is committed to constantly reviewing and working to adapt all parts of our service to promote equality of access.
Areas we are currently working on are:
- Recordings: From the beginning of 2017-18 academic year, Careers Network will seek to make many of its workshops and activities available via the Careers Courses and Resources page on Canvas.
- Going virtual: Virtual Internships have joined the Virtual Careers Fairs in providing a means for students to access employers remotely.
- Careers Fairs: We know that Careers Fairs can still be daunting places and if you do want to avoid the crowds Careers Network suggests going at the following times:
Students can also seek advice from external organisations including My Plus Students Club and Target Jobs.
Sharing personal information with an employer
For many individuals, telling a future employer that you have a disability or long-term health condition is one of the hardest parts of applying for a job and preparing for an interview. However, not informing them may seriously jeopardise your ability to demonstrate your talent and potential for the job. Even if you are successful in getting your dream role without being open about your disability without the support you require you may find every day a struggle.
Employers primarily want to know whether or not you have a disability so that they can put the adjustments you require in place. They do this in order that you can demonstrate your ability during the recruitment process.
In the main body of the application form, you are likely to be asked: Please inform us if you have any specific requirements during the recruitment process. The information you provide here will be used to implement the adjustments and support you require.
This is separate to the equal opportunities form where you are asked more directly: do you consider yourself to have a disability? This information is separate to the rest of your application and will only be used once recruitment has finished.
For further information on sharing personal information, please see the My Plus Student Club website.
Employers, work experience and bursaries
The following work experience opportunities, employers and organisations may be of interest to students with disabilities and long term health issues:
Gateway work experience bursary
Students with a disability or long term health issue may be eligible to apply for up to £2000 to undertake low or unpaid work experience
Work experience opportunities sourced by the University of Birmingham Careers Network and available for certain priority groups only (including students with disabilities)
Mentoring is a unique opportunity to access the advice and support of someone who has experience, insights and knowledge that can help you to progress in your career journey. Careers Network has successfully matched a number of students with disabilities to mentors.
Internships for autistic graduates at Deutsche Bank
Change100 brings together the UK’s top employers and talented disabled students and graduates to offer three months of paid work experience
The Student Guild’s Disability and Mental Health Association (DAMSA) represents students affected by disability, chronic illness, impairments, learning difficulties & mental health conditions
The fellowship promote equal access and improve the attainment of D/deaf and hard of hearing people, through the sustained engagement of educational institutions and the wider community including enterpreneurialism
A voluntary scheme for employers who are committed to make the most of the talents disabled people can bring to their workplace
For information on wider support services available at the University of Birmingham including information on Disabled Students Allowance
A not-for-profit organisation dedicated to assisting students and graduates with all disabilities, including dyslexia or long term health conditions, into employment
My plus students club
My Plus provides recruitment advice and careers information for students and graduates with a disability or long-term health condition. The aim is to bridge the gap between disability-confident employers and students, and answer all of the questions that students have as they apply for jobs and prepare for interviews
- Add Change 100 interns
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