The Disability Equality Duty and Disclosure of Disability

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2006 National Disabled Members' Conference
6 July 2006

This conference welcomes the changes to the Disability Discrimination Act that introduce new Disability Equality Duties (DED) upon public authorities from December 2006.

We recognise the valuable requirement for employers and service providers to involve disabled employees and service users in order that institutional disability discrimination can be eliminated rather that the current individualised reasonable adjustment system of removing barriers.

We also recognise the significant number of disabled people who may not be aware that they are eligible for protection from discrimination or the new gains won by the DED, this includes those who have been diagnosed with Cancer, HIV and Multiple Sclerosis and for some other people who have experience of mental health impairment.

Declaring disability status can be a major challenge to many disabled people, one that can potentially jeopardise employment and career prospects and it can alter the mind – state of those who are already vulnerable.

This Conference calls upon the National Disabled Members Committee to liaise with service groups to develop guidance to branches to negotiate agreements that:

1)Support members through the declaration process

2)Provide protections through adequate representational support from UNISON activists

3)Negotiate workplace incentives such as additional holidays, guaranteed interviews or financial remuneration to disabled people for disclosure and their involvement with employers to deliver on the DED.