How to Disclose Your Disability at the Workplace

Abilities of disabled workers

There is no right answer for when to disclose a disability to your prospective employer. The decision may depend on whether or not your disability is clearly visible, and how much of an effect it has on your day-to-day activities. Although job seekers have no legal obligation to do so, disclosing your disability to an employer can have many benefits as well. For example, you may need a special chair to sit in during work hours, or you may need your desk to be on the ground floor of the office building – disclosing these facts to the employer could help you become more comfortable and productive in the workplace.

Ultimately, the choice of whether to disclose your disability or not is entirely up to you. Nevertheless, if you do decide to disclose your disability at the workplace, these tips may help:

Research about the Employer

Before you decide to disclose your disability, do some research about the company to find out about its attitude toward people with disabilities. Do they believe in providing equal opportunity? Do they hire a lot of people with disabilities? How is their work culture? A good idea is to find someone who is already working with the employer who can provide an insight into the culture and general attitudes towards people with disabilities in the workplace.

 

Check your Ability to Do the Job

Focus on the job description, and consider whether your disability limits your ability to perform the job in any manner.  Think about what you can bring to the job. If the employer has to make any sort of accommodations to help you do the job, you should discuss this during the interview.

Discuss any Special Requirements You Have

If you need any special accommodation to attend the interview or to perform the tasks required for the job, you may want to discuss this early on with the employer. If the application form asks about your disability, you can use this as an opportunity to disclose more details about your impairments and any accommodations you may need.

Choose When to Disclose Your Disability

It is advisable to disclose your disability before or during the job interview. However, if you have not disclosed your disability and still received the offer, you can talk about your disability with a positive attitude and how you can still perform the tasks with the skills you have.

Sometimes, the employer may not know how to support you. In such a scenario, you can also mention that Access to Work may pay for the equipment and support related to your impairment.

Talk to Your Employer

If you have not disclosed your disability, you may do so voluntarily before joining the company. When doing so, be clear about why you chose to disclose the disability and what your desired outcomes are from doing so. You can also discuss any medications you are taking, and potential impacts/side effects of using these medications in the workplace.

In addition, you can also address the employer’s concerns about your abilities for performing a job. For instance, you can tell them how you can commute on your own, and that visiting the client’s office will not be a problem for you, etc.

Be Prepared For the Questions

Be prepared for what you are going to say and how many details of your disability you want to disclose. If it is not related to the job, you should avoid getting into the details of medications or therapies you are taking. The employer may ask you certain questions related to your job performance, or gaps in your work history. Be prepared for such questions in advance, and be ready to answer them.

And finally, if you want to learn more about equal opportunity employers or look for jobs specifically meant for people with disabilities, visit www.jobfindah.com!