EDI provide information to employers about disability and employment issues. However, the tips and organisations listed below will help jobseekers. There are plenty of supports out there for people with disabilities looking for work.
Should I disclose?
A good guide to think about how best to deal with this issue is the Association for Higher Education Access & Disability (AHEAD) Guide to Disclosure
This guide gives a self-assessment checklist to consider what is relevant and useful to disclose about your disability and when is the right time. It can be worthwhile having a think about what you are really communicating here – the aim is to be practical, positive and solution focused. You might also consider whether it would be to your advantage to disclose before attending an interview and ask for supports beforehand, such as the interview questions in advance or extra time to respond to questions. Our disclosure tips for employers are here.
AHEAD also work with students and graduates with disabilities to build up their job seeking skills and host workshops for students and graduates. Check out their tips here.
Further training is always of benefit and I’d recommend looking at the courses run by the National Learning Network as they have a work experience element which could be useful for building up your practical work experience. In particular, the course, ‘Employer Based Training’.
It is also a good idea to consider what will be useful to you in the workplace and what supports you might need to work at your best. Again it is about being prepared, ready to discuss what your needs are and how an employer can best support those needs. Most accommodations cost nothing and require flexibility, such as time off to attend medical appointments or extra time for certain tasks. Our new reasonable accommodation guide outlines the steps to take.
The Department of Employment Affairs & Social Protection have grants to support people with disabilities in employment. A full list is available here. The Wage Subsidy Scheme and the Workplace Equipment/Adaptation Grant are often the most useful for people with many types of disabilities but it will depend on your own individual needs.
The EmployAbility supported employment service provides help and support to people with disabilities looking for work. You can get a referral from the local Department of Employment Affairs & Social Protection office and you’ll be requesting support grants from there too so it is good to link in with them
And lastly, it can be a great confidence booster to see others who have gone on a similar journey and these short videos have some fantastic stories:
For more information, see the following guides: