What can I do if my employer won't help me?

Speak to your union rep if you belong to a union. Unions have many disabled members. They are expert at supporting individual disabled workers and at campaigning for better disability rights at work. 

If you don’t belong to a union, browse our Union Finder tool to find out how to join, and about the union most suited to your needs. 

Speak to your GP as well. If you are unfit for work as a result of a disability, your GP should be highlighting the reasonable adjustments that your employer should be making to help you, most obviously on the 'Fit for Work' note you need to give your employer to be eligible for sick pay. Your GP can help by spelling out the position clearly on the Fit Note. 

If you are not a union member, there are other sources of support such as the Acas Helpline, which gives advice to both employers and employees. There is also a helpline provided by the government-funded Equality Advisory and Support Service

The government also funds an advice line and web portal for work-related health issues, called the Fit for Work service

There are many national specialist charities supporting individuals with particular disabilities, as well as broader campaigning charities supporting all disabled workers, such as Disability Rights UK

There is also the government’s Access to Work scheme, which provides funding for your employer to make necessary adjustments, as well as some funded mental health support. 

If all else fails, you may need to bring an employment tribunal claim to enforce your rights to be protected from disability discrimination under the Equality Act 2010. 

You should approach your employer formally via their grievance procedure first, unless this would mean that you risk missing the tribunal deadline for your claim. Tribunal deadlines are very short – just three months – so take legal advice as soon as possible. 

The first step in any tribunal claim is now to contact Acas for early conciliation. You do this by submitting an Acas Early Conciliation Notification Form. You can find more information about Acas Early Conciliation. Acas early conciliation is free of charge. 

You must submit the Acas Early Conciliation Form within the three-month time limit for bringing your claim. Otherwise your claim will be out of time and the tribunal will not be able to consider it. 

Tribunal deadlines are rarely extended, so it is extremely important not to miss them, or else you risk being barred from being allowed to bring your claim at all. 

For more information about bringing a tribunal claim, including information about Acas early conciliation, see our section on Enforcing Your Rights

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

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