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Disability Action Kevin Doherty Interim Chief Executive.

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Presentation on theme: "Disability Action Kevin Doherty Interim Chief Executive."— Presentation transcript:

1 Disability Action Kevin Doherty Interim Chief Executive

2 Mission Disability Action works to ensure that people with disabilities attain their full rights as citizens by supporting inclusion, influencing government policy and changing attitudes in partnership with disabled people

3 What is Disability Action? Rights based charity working with and for people with disabilities Only pan-disability Northern Ireland wide organisation Providing services to improve the quality of life for the 300,000 people with disabilities here Campaigning for the rights of disabled people

4 Our areas of work Information & Advice Workplace & Training support Equality & Human Rights Driving Assessments and Lessons Door-to-door & Group Transport Access to Built Environment Disability & Diversity Training ICT suite and loan bank Housing Project Fundraising

5 Your Experience Ever been turned down for a job you know you can do? Ever felt undermined by your boss? Ever felt excluded by co-workers? Ever felt passed over for training or promotion?

6 Experience of People with Disabilities 56% had experienced hostility, aggression or violence Half say they experience discrimination on a daily or weekly basis. 37% said attitudes have got worse over the past year. 58% thought others did not believe that they were disabled 50% felt others presumed they did not work. Scope Attitude Poll – May 2011

7 Scope Research Back drop of negativity – cuts Portrayal of people with disabilities as “scroungers” Decline in tolerance and increased negativity “I don’t know if it is jealousy, resentment or fear but things are definitely getting worse”

8 Outcomes Stress Deterioration – Epilepsy, MS Leave work Litigation – broader impact Mental ill health Reduced work performance Reduced staff morale

9 What can be Done? Trades Unions advocacy, in-work support and awareness raising Support for people facing difficulties in work - Employment Advocacy Support to access or retain work – Workable NI

10 Employment Advocacy Supporting people with disabilities across NI Delivering advice and advocacy Promoting positive actions to employers Focus on early intervention Promoting Self Advocacy and empowerment Working with Union Representatives and other support networks Onward referral

11 What can we do for employees? Provide written / telephone advice Meet with employee (Union Reps & Family) / employers Aim to build confidence and work towards supporting self advocacy Advocate on their behalf where there are no alternative supports

12 What can we do for employers? Awareness raising activities Help target disabled people as employees Develop actions to encourage recruitment and retention of employees with disabilities Raise awareness of programmes and sources of support

13 Future Plans Delivery of support to people with disabilities by people with disabilities Recruiting and training peer advocates Development of best practice resources and guidance Awareness raising with employers on –Disability discrimination –Positive action

14 Case Examples An individual with Asperger Syndrome in a customer service role An individual suffering harassment/bullying by their line manager in relation to their disability A disabled individual redeployed to an unsuitable role An individual unsure about declaring their disability to their employer

15 Employment Advocacy Interim Statistics November 2011 - September 2013 167 individuals contacted the service for support More than 81% faced more than one issue at work 88% of all enquires involved reasonable adjustments 96% of all instances have focused on supporting self advocacy

16 Workable (NI) Department for Employment & Learning Programme Supporting people with disabilities in employment Individually agreed package of support

17 Menu of Supports Effective workplace support to disabled employees Building work skills Monitoring reasonable adjustment Liaison with support networks Training for employer Assistance with development costs

18 Workable NI - DVD

19 Contact Kevin Doherty Interim Chief Executive Portside Business Park, 189 Airport Road West, Belfast, BT3 9ED Tel: 028 90 297 880 Textphone: 02890 297 882 Email:

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