back to listings SME Profile: Reasonable Adjustment
Reasonable Adjustment, Equality Diversity Inclusively (EDI), and Human Resource Consultants for the Modern World
Workplace Adjustments - Education Adjustments - Life Adjustments - Occupational Health
What Are Reasonable Adjustments and Why Do They Matter?
Organisations and service-providers like employers, government departments, local authorities, the NHS, universities, schools and colleges have a legal responsibility to take positive steps to remove the barriers people may face because of disability or long term health condition. The Equality Act 2010 calls this the duty to make Reasonable Adjustments, and this is often known as a Workplace Adjustment.
These adjustments, whether they occur in written policy, the workplace, school, or college, are important because they ensure people receive the same opportunities and services as everyone else. This enables people to perform at their best, achieve their qualifications, and gain accesses to services as well as use them. The ability to thrive is key, quality of life improves, staff and the employer benefits, as well through increased performance and and job satisfaction.
Our service enable your people to do what they do, and do it well, regardless of disability. Reasonable or Workplace adjustments are an essential part of any organisation or government policy or white paper process, and we can help your staff obtain the adjustments you deserve and your organisation put in place easy to use policy. But that’s not all that’s we do…
We make the Equality Act simple, we resolve internal disputes, we write meticulous adjustment reports, we advise on the disability policy process and on organisational and workplace change.
Who We Are
A disabled barrister, senior lecturer, former civil servant, business leader with advanced qualifications in Human Resources, law, governance, risk, occupational health, dispute resolution, and disability. Advanced qualifications from Cambridge, KCL, LSE, and UCL’s Centre for Educational Leadership.
What We Do
Drawing on our years of experience with the Equality Act, at the Bar, in Education, in Business, in the Civil Service, and in Governance roles, we:
- Write meticulous, practical Reasonable Adjustment reports.
- Serve as a Liaison and Advocate to assist with the fair and successful implementation of Reasonable Adjustments and Workplace Adjustments.
- Act as an Expert Witness, providing an independent report and Evidence in disputes related to Adjustments, employment and discrimination, and your disability.
- Consult with boards, the civil service, businesses, Universities, Schools, and educators, to get the best out of your staff and students, on EDI (equality, diversity, inclusivity), to make changes, and to achieve Disability Confident Employer and Leader Status.
- Registered CMC Mediator, trainer and facilitator.
- A non-executive director and trustee.
- Provide legal opinions and advice.
Provide Bespoke Reasonable Adjustment Reports
We have provided reports which have secured Reasonable Adjustments for disabled people in a number of large companies, schools, with service providers such as Home-Link, the NHS, and various universities including at Oxbridge. Our reports have also varied adjustments put in place by in-house Disability Assessors and Occupational Therapists. When it comes to children and young adults, our reports help ensure that your child obtains the SEN support that they are entitled to, have a proper EHC plan and dont miss out on local authority funding. Having a proper report can be the difference between having a one on one teaching assistant vs no GCSEs.
While there are other routes to obtaining Reasonable or Workplace Adjustments - particularly through letters from GPs, Disability Assessors, and by seeing an Occupational Therapists - these kinds of reports are often not specific enough and can be disputed or ignored by institutions because they do not explain why your adjustments are legally required under the Equality Act nor how they will make a difference to your Occupational Health and life.
It is important to remember that adjustments are required in many different situations, school and employment are often the most apparent, but it is the less obvious situations where adjustments are most needed yet harder to obtain. If you are disabled or have a long-term health condition you are entitled to adjustments when it comes to counsil housing, applying for a mortgage, obtaining an apprenticeship, within the NHS and your treatment. Small changes can make a big difference to your quality of life, and we can help.
Our in depth, specialist knowledge of the Equality Act enables us to write Reasonable Adjustment reports which meet individual occupational and medical needs, and hold up from a legal perspective. Sometimes our reports need to be highly technical and involve identifying a 'provision criteria or practice' which discriminates against you due to your health or disability, then identify adjustment(s) which would make your life easier by allowing you carry out your role, finally identifying why this is legally reasonable in light of all of the evidence. Regarding certain regulated employment, and examinations, further work has to be done to ensure that your adjustment does not undermine competency or the reputation of the qualification. It is important to get a full understanding of your work and your medical and health conditions, and our process can be lengthy.
We are usualy hired by individuals or parents seeking Reasonable Adjustment reports, but are increasingly being hired by organisations who wish to receive guidance on how to best support a disabled employee or student. You will find our approach confidential, sympathetic and precise. Our reports will be fair and clear and will detail practical ways to implement Reasonable Adjustments along with why they are required.
Act as a Liaison and Advocate
Once an individual has received their Reasonable Adjustment report, those adjustments need to be implemented by their employer, service provider, school or university. We can be employed as a Liaison or Advocate to assist with the implementation of Reasonable Adjustments.
As a Liaison, we our employed either by an individual, or on behalf of an organisation. In this role, we act as an independent and impartial third party. Drawing on our skills as a qualified Civil and Commercial Mediator to help individuals and institutions find the fairest, most mutually beneficial way to work together and successfully implement Reasonable Adjustments and maintain trust and relationships.
As an Advocate, we can speak on behalf of an individual when there are disputes relating to the implementation of their Reasonable Adjustments. Advocacy is appropriate in these more contentious situations because an Advocate can act as a buffer between yourself and the people you are in dispute with - be they your employer, professional regulator, school or university. An Advocate aims to resolve the matter on your behalf, and help you maintain positive relationships within the organisation.
Act as an Expert Witness
If there is a dispute related to your disability or health condition, your Reasonable Adjustment requests or a dispute which turns on an understanding of your disability and how it might impact you, we can be instructed as an Expert Witness and provide an independent report and testimony. Often Expert Evidence is useful in discrimination claims brought in the Employment Tribunal or County Court.
We can provide evidence for use before a School Exclusion Panel (Independent Review Panel), the Office of Independent Adjudicator, Employment Tribunal, a First Tier Tribunal, mitigation in Sentencing, and before County or High Court.
Our reports can be used as evidence in Personal Independence Payment and other social welfare disputes with DWP.
An Expert Witness is someone who is bound by the Civil Procedure Rules to be impartial and to advise the Court or Tribunal on the basis of their expertise.
Act as an Equality Act Consultant (Disability, Equality, Inclusivity, and Diversity)
We have helped businesses gain the government gold star of Disability Confident Employer as well as the platinum Disability Confident Leader status. We are Disability Confident Leaders and take this work seriously.
Quite apart from these awards we work with Boards and senior management teams, helping them create diversity and inclusion policies which go to the heart of a modern workplace. We have assisted in reviewing everything from promotion policies, fringe benefits guidelines, disciplinary procedures, as well as assisted with external appointments, and providing training.
Companies that we have worked with have seen staff engagement and productivity increase (and not only from disabled staff members). We ensure not only legal compliance, but that your staff will want to be a part of your company, will develop loyalty and a wellspring of goodwill. Your brand will benefit from the purple-pound (spending from disabled consumers).
A tick-box approach to diversity and inclusion is no longer seen as good enough, nor is having only an externally focused ESG policy, just look at a certain Scottish Brewer. Have a think, if no one in your office has openly mentioned that they are disabled or have long term health condition, they probably don’t feel comfortable doing so, and their disability is probably impacting their job – your staff should be in an environment where they feel comfortable talking about their disability (if they want to) knowing that they will be supported. We can help with this.