STUC Disabled Workers Support for National Epilepsy Week 19-25 May

May 22nd 2013

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As part of National Epilepsy Week the Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) are launching guidance for trade union representatives to help them understand epilepsy and how to support members in the workplace who have the condition.

Ian Tasker, STUC Assistant Secretary said

“Epilepsy is a complex condition and one where unfortunately a massive amount of stigma attaches to those who have the condition, both in society and the workplace.

“It is also sadly the case that many employers would not employ someone disclosing they had epilepsy when applying for work irrespective of the fact they may have been the best candidate for the job.

“Trade union representatives are ideally placed to help to break down these barriers and dispel some of the many myths associated with epilepsy in the workplace.

“Our guidance prepared in conjunction with Epilepsy Scotland not only aims to provide trade union reps with a limited knowledge of the condition but also, and perhaps more importantly where they can access support and advice to help them effectively represent and support members with epilepsy.”

Epilepsy Scotland’s Chief Executive Lesslie Young remarked:

“We are grateful to the STUC for highlighting issues around epilepsy and employment in this guidance, especially during National Epilepsy Week. Research shows that as many as three in five employers may not hire someone with this common condition, even though epilepsy is well controlled for most employees.

“Our free and simple occupational health guide to epilepsy will hopefully challenge this mind set. It shows how straightforward adjustments in the workplace can make an employee feel valued, increases their self esteem and helps them contribute to the overall success of the organisation. Following best practice in epilepsy and employment law is a win-win situation for the employer and employee.

Ends

Download guidance paper in pdf here

For further Information contact

Ian Tasker STUC 0141 337 8100 / 07974 966227

Allana M Parker, Public Affairs Officer, Epilepsy Scotland 0141 419 1701 / 07884 012 147

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