Disabled? Looking for Work?

It’s hard for anyone to get a job. And if you are disabled, it’s doubly hard (disabled people are twice as likely to be unemployed as non-disabled people). Depressing, isn’t it?

But the good news is that there are a number of employers out there who are enlightened enough to understand that there are actually business advantages to be gained by employing disabled people. On average, we are just as productive as non-disabled people, AND have less time off sick AND have fewer workplace accidents AND stay in our jobs longer AND bring additional skills we have developed to live in a world not designed for us, like tenacity, innovation, determination and creativity AND we have inside intelligence on the “disability market” (13 million of us spend up to £249 billion in the UK alone). Premium candidates, I’d say!

As an employer, I have experienced these advantages first hand having employed a number of disabled people over the years. And being disabled myself, I know how important staying in work is – not just for the income, but also to have a sense of purpose, and value, and dignity and independence.

However, the employers who do understand why they should employ us told me they find it difficult to attract disabled applicants. And disabled job seekers tell me they struggle to find employers who are prepared to look beyond their impairments at the skills they have to offer. So I founded Evenbreak (www.evenbreak.co.uk) in 2011, which is a specialist job board to help these two groups of people find each other.

Evenbreak is a not-for-profit social enterprise run by disabled people for disabled people. It’s completely free to register and search for jobs. You can be confident that employers who pay to advertise their vacancies on a site that is only going to attract disabled applicants are likely to be far more receptive to us. Employers as diverse as Channel 4, Lloyds Banking Group, John Lewis and many, many more.

We can’t guarantee you’ll find your dream job on Evenbreak, but it’s worth a try! Have a look and see what you think.

This article was written by Jane Hatton, Director, Evenbreak. Jane has a degenerative spinal condition which means her ability to sit, walk and stand are very limited. She runs Evenbreak lying down with a lap top suspended above her.

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