1. Overview

Health and safety legislation should not prevent disabled people from finding or staying in employment so it should not be used as an excuse to justify discrimination against them.

Disabled people and those with health conditions, including mental health conditions, should be given the opportunity to both get into and stay in work.

There is related guidance for disabled workers themselves.

Your responsibilities as an employer

As an employer you are responsible for the health, safety and welfare of all of your employees, whether they have a disability or not.

Disability is not always obvious so you might not realise a worker is disabled or they might choose not to tell you, particularly if their disability has no impact on their ability to do their job.

Workers do not have to tell you unless they have a disability that could foreseeably affect the safety of themselves or anyone else connected to their work. If they do not tell you and there are no obvious indicators of any disability, you are not under any obligation to make workplace adjustments.

You have a duty to consult with your employees (whether directly or through their representatives) on issues relating to health and safety. These discussions reflect good safety practice because employees have day-to-day understanding of the job, so they are likely to have good ideas on keeping themselves and others safe.

Fire safety risk assessment for disabled people

There is guidance on GOV.UK on your duty to provide a means of escape for disabled people under fire safety legislation.

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Updated 2024-03-19