Supporting staff to disclose disability

An employee is only obligated to tell you about a disability if it affects his or her ability to do a particular job, or if it affects his or her ability to work safely and ensure the safety of others.

Many people with disability will disclose their disability as a courtesy to their employers. By doing so, they are entering into an open and trusting relationship with you. It is up to your organisation to provide a supportive and understanding work environment for people with disability.

What are my obligations if an employee does disclose disability?

Once an employee has told you about their disability, you must consider appropriate responses, including specific training or work-related adjustments.

Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, you cannot treat a person with disability less favourably than a person without disability would be treated in the same or similar situation. You must also avoid and prevent harassment of employees with disability.

If an employee discloses a disability, you are required to keep all information about the disability confidential. In order to share information about an employee’s disability with others in your organisation, you must get written consent from the employee.

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