We are sharing this update from ACCA, our professional body, for the interest of clients and contacts. The content is (c) ACCA

Employers will welcome new guidance to help them and their employees

Employers must make ‘reasonable adjustments’ for disabled employees, workers, contractors or self-employed people hired personally to do work, and job candidates, to alleviate the effect of their disadvantages. This includes disability arising from mental health issues.

Whether an adjustment is ‘reasonable’ depends on the circumstances. The new guidance, Reasonable adjustments for mental health:

  • helps employers respond to mental health conditions in the workplace
  • discusses and gives examples of possible reasonable adjustments
  • rRecommends processes to follow when considering reasonable adjustments. These could include a meeting with the relevant worker, agreeing a plan, obtaining occupational health advice and reviewing the adjustments regularly.

The new guidance reminds employers that mental health conditions must be approached with the same care as physical disabilities, and highlights the business benefits. It suggests employers consider changes to working arrangements and policies, how things are done, physical changes to the workplace and providing equipment or help, as reasonable adjustments. It also recommends employers introduce a reasonable adjustment policy to help them deal with mental health issues.

The guidance recommends that employers also consider reasonable adjustments for workers who are not disabled, but are nevertheless disadvantaged at work.

Employers should check out the new guidance on the Acas website.