ACAS update: neurodiversity in the workplace

ACAS has produced a report which advises employers and managers how to deal with those in the workplace whose brain functions mean that they learn and process information differently from the majority. It is estimated that around 1 in 7 people (more than 15% of people in the UK) are neurodivergent and this includes people with Attention Deficit Disorders, Autism, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia.

Creating a more inclusive workplace can:

  • highlight the employer’s commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • reduce the stigma around neurodivergence
  • make staff feel safe and empowered to disclose a neurodivergence
  • make it more likely that neurodivergent staff will be treated fairly by their managers and colleagues
  • open the organisation up to a pool of talent that may otherwise have been overlooked
  • help retain skilled staff and reduce recruitment costs.

Being neurodivergent will usually amount to a disability under the Equality Act 2010. This means the organisation has a legal obligation to make reasonable adjustments to the workplace and the individual’s role that will remove or minimise any disadvantage to them.

Having a workplace that is set up to proactively think about what can be done to support the needs of each employee can make it much easier to identify and implement adjustments for neurodivergent staff.

Remember a person is disabled if they have ‘a physical or mental impairment’ which has ‘a substantial and long-term adverse effect’ on their ‘ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities’. Therefore, someone may not have been diagnosed with a neurodivergence but still be considered to have a disability under the Equality Act 2010.

For more information, view the original article here.

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