Reasonable Adjustments: Accessing the Untapped Potential of Disabled Candidates and Employees
Why this event and why now?
Equality, diversity and inclusion has never been more important for employers and attracting a wide and diverse talent pool is crucial for organisational success. 1 in 5 people in Northern Ireland have a disability, only 35% of whom are currently employed. An increase of just 1% of people with a disability participating in the workforce would give a £260 million boost to the economy. With unemployment in NI currently below 3%, there is a huge labour pool available to your organisation, under the right conditions and with the right support. We’ll tell you how to tap into this pool and recruit and retain great staff for your organisation.
Why is this event important for YOU?
Failure to make reasonable adjustments is one of the most common forms of disability discrimination. The importance of putting the right adjustments in place at the right time will improve staff retention and productivity and help avoid costly legal action. A better understanding of the duty to make reasonable adjustments and the opportunities that it can provide is essential for an employer to open a potentially untapped pool of talent.
After attending you will:
• Get an overview of your legal obligations to make the appropriate adjustments
• Learned key examples from case law
• Been provided with examples of appropriate adjustments
• Considered disability-friendly approaches to recruitment and selection
• Have at hand practical answers and case study examples
• Understand the proposed disability strategy for NI
Who will benefit from this event?
Managers, Supervisors, Team Leaders, HR Professionals, Business Owners, Trade Union Representatives and Employee Representatives.
Standard Rate: £245 + VAT
Reasonable Adjustments –accessing the untapped potential of disabled candidates and employees
Welcome & Introduction
Christine Quinn, Legal Island
Disabled People in the Workforce: The Untapped Potential
NI lags behind the rest of the UK with only 1 in 3 disabled people here being in employment. The legacy of the Troubles together with a lack of stability in our devolved government means additional challenges must be overcome to improve the employment rate amongdisabled people here in NI, and consequently widen the talent pool for savvy NI businesses in the know.
Stephen McGlew, Head of Disability and Work at the Department for Communities explains:
Q&A with Stephen McGlew
Reasonable Adjustments for Disabilities - a Guide for Employers
Failure to make reasonable adjustments is one of the most common forms of disability discrimination. The importance of putting the right adjustments in place at the right time will improve staff retention and productivity and help avoid costly legal action.
In this competitive recruitment market, a better understanding of the duty to make reasonable adjustments and the opportunities that it can provide is essential for an employer to open a potentially untapped pool of talent.
Adam Brett, Partner at Lewis Silkin (NI) LLP explains:
Q&A with Adam Brett
Practical Case Studies
It’s all very well knowing your obligations under the law, and having the will and intention to increase the representation of disabled people in your workforce, but how do you go about it day to day?
Karen Smith, Head of Contract Services of Disability Action provides the answers to some of the more common questions organisations have on reasonable adjustments, including:
N.B. these questions are subject to change. Please email any specific queries you have to us, and we will put them to our expert. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q&A with Karen Smith
Disabled People in the Workforce: A Practical Example of ‘Tapping the Potential’
Ulster University have a reputation for inclusive access and have recently launched an innovation programme to explore how Higher Education and NI employers can work together to increase inclusive recruitment practice.
Graduate Boost was launched in December 2022 in conjunction with NI employers and Department for the Economy (DfE). The Graduate Boost programme gives employers the opportunity to have a subject relevant graduate to contribute directly into their business.
Understanding how to increase an inclusive approach to recruitment is essential for employers to address their future skills gaps.It makes sense to work in partnership to understand how we can support individual differences in the workforce.
Angela Scanlon, Director of Student and Graduate Success at UU outlines their approach, what they’ve learned from the experience and why your organisation should target this great pool of talent yourselves.
Q&A with Angela Scanlon
Adam Brett Partner
Lewis Silkin NI LLP
Adam Brett is a Partner in Lewis Silkin NI LLP. For many years Adam jointly headed the litigation department of a major Belfast Commercial Practice, and for the last 20 years he has concentrated increasingly on employment and discrimination matters. Adam has throughout his career advised a wide range of educational and charitable bodies, including Schools, Universities, Colleges, and other educational institutions in relation to employment, student and other concerns.
Angela Scanlon Director of Student and Graduate Success
Angela Scanlon is Director of Student and Graduate Success at Ulster University, with over 30 years’ experience as lecturer and educational leader. She has established expertise in leadership practice, widening access and employability. Driven by a passion for student and graduate success she takes pride in growing informed and confident leaders in both staff and students while respecting individual differences. She believes that education provides an incredible opportunity to overcome barriers and challenges throughout a person’s life. Recognised as a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy she remains committed to building relationships and communities of practice who work together to make a difference. Angela has represented Northern Ireland (NI) on the University Association of Lifelong Learning UK and is a member of NI Careers Advisory Forum. In 2018 she was appointed to the Quality Expert Panel for SOLAS for Degree Apprenticeships in Ireland and contributed to the quality review.
Karen Smith MIEP Head of Contracted Services
Disability Action Northern Ireland
Karen is Head of Contracted Services at Disability Action. Reporting to the CEO, Karen works within a small senior management team to shape the strategy, inform best practice on current issues and promote the organisation at all levels. She is responsible forproviding innovative solutions to the current funding environment and advice for the CEO and the Board of Directors.
From 2015Karen led and managed the European Social Fund project Job Match delivering bespoke recruitment and job-related support and guidance to individuals and employers NI-Wide –and Karen continues to undertake this role.
Karen has over 30 years’ experience of working in the public, private and voluntary sectors across the UK in disability and employment policy, practice, management and organisational transformation. She is a member of the Institute of Employability Professionals, a member of NICVA’s Joint Forum for Disability Action, also NICVA's ESF User Group and NIUSE’s Policy Group and have just joined the NI Education Authority External Stakeholder Advisory Group.
Stephen McGlew Head of Disability and Work
Department for Communities
Stephen leads on a range of social policy, projects and service provision that seek to support those with barriers to work to move closer to, find, retain and progress in employment.