Boss employing disabled person.

(64 Posts)
Flowersonethewall Tue 21-Jan-14 12:55:45

I can't even believe i am writing this but her goes.

It has come to my bosses attention that he may get grants for employing a disabled worker. Fair enough.
The person she has picked though is completely wrong for the job.
We do a lot of heavy lifting and manual work. We also cut glass, wood etc..
The gentleman she has employed cannot do this jobs due to his disability. Their is literally nothing the poor man can do.
He can't be left alone either because its a dangerous place and he likes to touch things!
How the hell do i approach my boss without sounding like i'm discriminating which i'm not. I'm just concerned for his safety and my own.

Nataleejah Wed 22-Jan-14 11:41:07

I think in this case an employer knows better.
In my workplace there is a guy with learning difficulties. He can do the job well enough, but as a part of a team he's quite a nuisance -- rude, agressive and really sick sense of humour. He has had several warning already, so only time will show...

JustGettingOnWithIt Wed 22-Jan-14 11:30:58

If this is the Mandatory Work Activity programme for disabled people, and he gets kicked out for inappropriately touching things, rather than they’ve messed up in taking him on without sorting proper supervision, then he’s on JSA, or ESA, not paid by your work.
According to the workshop I'm currently doing, he will at risk of being deemed to have lost his place through ‘misconduct’, in which case he will be sanctioned for 13 weeks loss of benefits, while having to continue to sign on and look for work. (If the same thing happens elsewhere within the next 12 months it's 26 weeks sanction)

So it would be a kindness to focus on his inability to follow instruction, rather than he doesn’t do as told, iyswim.

safeguarding adults would only investigate if there was abuse or neglect of a vulnerable person DelightedIAm I think this would just be considered poor employment/ health and safety practice and not deliberate abuse of a disabled person.

pobblebop Tue 21-Jan-14 22:46:03

Report your boss to the HSE . It sounds like their actions have put you and your colleagues at risk.

Thatisall Tue 21-Jan-14 22:27:53

So good I posted twice eh? Sorry

Thatisall Tue 21-Jan-14 22:27:25

This isn't fair on the new employee or you. I'm all for inclusion but it sounds as though this mans challenges are being used by your employer and his needs and general abilities dismissed. That isn't inclusion, it's negligence. Have a word with his support. Hopefully they will be level headed enough to realise that you can question this decision without being discriminatory. As his supervisor you should have training on how to supervise this man ie. what his additional needs/abilities are, you know in order to do your job probably. This his a tricky situation OP

Darkesteyes Tue 21-Jan-14 22:21:10

And what of Employers Liability Insurance if this is workfare.

Darkesteyes Tue 21-Jan-14 22:17:10

Seems that Parsing has come up with the most likely scenario. Sounds like workfare to me too.

Thatisall Tue 21-Jan-14 22:14:16

This isn't fair on the new employee or you. I'm all for inclusion but it sounds as though this mans challenges are being used by your employer and his needs and general abilities dismissed. That isn't inclusion, it's negligence. Have a word with his support. Hopefully they will be level headed enough to realise that you can question this decision without being discriminatory. As his supervisor you should have training on how to supervise this man ie. what his additional needs/abilities are, you know in order to do your job probably. This his a tricky situation OP

missymayhemsmum Tue 21-Jan-14 21:59:01

Yanbu, you're being safety conscious and trying to get the work done. You've been put in a rubbish situation. If you're being asked to supervise this new chap then it would be responsible of you to meet his support worker and understand on what basis he is employed/ what has been promised/ what his limitations are. Have you had a talk with your new colleague about his abilities as well as his disabilities? I work in an organisation where quite a few colleagues come in to do volunteering/ work experience, and it's a matter of finding the niche that suits what they can do which needs doing and doesn't stop anyone else getting on with their job. Then, once you've found one task they can do and feel confident on you can train them on the next. So maybe this chap starts with sweeping the floor, while keeping out of the way of anything dangerous, then perhaps learns to stack wood, work the photocopier in the office, stuff envelopes or whatever, make tea and progresses to learning the till in a few weeks?
Could you ask for your boss's support as you are worried about health and safety and want to be a good supervisor, and as you're new to a supervisory role?

KingRollo Tue 21-Jan-14 18:27:05

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ParsingFancy Tue 21-Jan-14 18:20:46

Does this bloke even have a job?

Did the business have a vacancy, with specific duties, which he has filled?

Or is he just supernumerary and wandering around occasionally being told to do things - that he can't really do?

If it is a Work Programme type thing, he will actually be on benefits not a wage from OP's boss. It's very murky.

sashh Tue 21-Jan-14 18:12:45

Poopoo i only supervise his, nobody else. I have no clue what i'm doing.

Would have been a much better title.

This gentleman needs to have an access to work carried out by the jobcentre who will then say what needs to be in place for him to do his job.

Go to your boss, say you have not seen this so you are going to arrange it, then phone the job centre and ask for their disability officer.

DelightedIAm Tue 21-Jan-14 14:43:49

OP I also learned from anther thread there is a safeguarding adults team, you could contact them with your concerns about this Man, to make sure he is safeguarded.

Inertia Tue 21-Jan-14 14:29:04

I think you absolutely need to report (to your boss, in writing) your concerns about the health and safety of this gentleman , and any possible health and safety concerns for co-workers or customers. I would emphasise that he has not had adequate training to guarantee that he can do XYZ parts of the job safely, and that you have not had the training to supervise him- and as he requires constant supervision for his safety, for half your working day you are not able to complete your own work.

I would ask that if you are expected to supervise him then you would like to see the details of the risk assessment that your boss has had carried out , and any details of adaptations made or Occupational Health advice which you need to know about to do your job. You also need to be trained to act as a supervisor.

Are you in a union? If so I would contact them for advice.

I'd also consider making an enquiry with the HSE or whichever body is relevant to your workplace- they have this list on their website.

You seem to have acquired a responsibility to keep this man safe in a dangerous workplace- getting that right needs to be the first priority, and you need to have that in writing. I'd also have a quiet word with his dad. It would concern me that someone whose additional needs are so great that he needs to be escorted to his dad's car is working in a dangerous environment .

UriGeller Tue 21-Jan-14 13:56:13

If he needs help then I'd have assumed his support staff would accompany him to work to assist and keep him safe.

(although this isn't likely to actually happen given that the care company would have to fund the extra hours of course)

DelightedIAm Tue 21-Jan-14 13:56:10

OP, can you talk to his Father and explain what is going on?

Dromedary Tue 21-Jan-14 13:49:48

If you're in charge of supervising him and there is a genuine health and safety risk because of his disability, then I would report it to your boss in writing. Worst case scenario someone could get seriously injured (and you would probably then be blamed). You should just make a brief factual report. It is then up to your boss to see whether adjustments can be made to enable your colleague to work safely.

ParsingFancy Tue 21-Jan-14 13:43:28

I don't know current details, so might be wrong.

But this is absolutely the scenario that's been on the cards for disabled people under the Work Programme (or whatever it's called this week) since the start.

motherinferior Tue 21-Jan-14 13:36:52

Also suggests his support worker may not be all that hot too.

Hmmm.

motherinferior Tue 21-Jan-14 13:36:24

Ah, that makes sense, PF. But stresses, again, the need for the poor bloke to get support and for the poor OP not to be plunged into something like this!

ouryve Tue 21-Jan-14 13:34:58

That's really is rather frightening, isn't it, Parsing? Let's take a bunch of the most vulnerable people in society and put them in a position where they will be even more vulnerable. Grand sad

ParsingFancy Tue 21-Jan-14 13:31:29

Ohhh, is this the Work Programme? Mandatory Work Activity for disabled people who've already been found not fit to work?

I think the boss might indeed get paid just for taking part, not for making adaptations.

Things might have changed, but certainly when first planned these had huge grey areas round Health & Safety. The person assigning them to the firm has no medical knowledge or ability to properly assess risk; the worker isn't an employee so no one knows what legislation covers them or who is actually responsible for them.

PeterParkerSays Tue 21-Jan-14 13:30:11

I've only recruited disabled people who have applied for a post as part of an open recruitment field, been interviewed as they met the essential criteria and interviewed better than anyone else. I get the impression that this wasn't the case for your new staff member. What job has he been appointed to do? Do he have a job description? If he doesn't, ask your boss for one. You can't supervise anyone's work or assess anyone's performance, disabled or otherwise, unless you have a job description to compare their work to.

Your boss does know that Access to Work grants are to pay for assistive equipment for the person, doesn't she? Large monitor screen, wheelchair ramps etc to help make the workplace or job more accessible.

I'm not aware of any grants that an employer gets just for being nice and employing a disabled person.

Lilicat1013 Tue 21-Jan-14 13:28:30

Could you ask your boss if you could have a meeting with the new employee and the new employee's support person to help you make the appropriate adjustments?

You could then outline what your day to day work is like and ask if there is any adjustments they think would be helpful. Then you could politely mention things you have noticed and ask what you think would be help in those situations in the future.

At this point the new employee's support person might realise their current placement is inappropriate and take action. If they don't hopefully they should help you with a plan to ensure safety in the workplace.

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