How Sarah Henderson, Employment Law Solicitor, based in our Brighton and Hove office, negotiated a settlement for a client with dyspraxia whose new employer failed to make reasonable adjustments to their induction and training programmes to accommodate her disability.
Jade disclosed her dyspraxia before being appointed as a Care Worker in a care home. She had not worked in the care sector before. She was assured by her manager that her dyspraxia would not be a problem.
Jane started the job and was placed on an induction and training programme. This was delivered through oral presentations and she was tested on these at the end of the session. Jade told her manager on more than one occasion that she found the way the training was being delivered difficult as it was hard for her to retain verbal instructions. Adjustments were not made to the way the training was delivered or assessed.
She was eventually told that things were not working out and was dismissed for failing her probationary period.
Jade came to us after she had been dismissed as she was concerned that her dismissal was unfair. Although Jade did not have the necessary 2 years’ service requirement to bring an Unfair Dismissal claim, we advised her that her dyspraxia was likely to qualify as a disability for the purposes of the Equality Act. Her former employer therefore had an obligation to make reasonable adjustments if their induction and training methods put her at a disadvantage. We also advised that her dismissal could amount to unfavourable treatment because of something arising in consequence of her disability.
It was not possible to resolve the matter with the employer during ACAS Early Conciliation so we issued Employment Tribunal proceedings on her behalf. These were initially defended by her former employer on the basis that Jade’s dyspraxia did not qualify as a disability.
We were able to negotiate a settlement of £6,000 for Jade which covered a small loss of earnings and injury to feelings.
Jade said: “Thank you so much for your work on my behalf. I do feel vindicated after a lousy experience last year. The money is great but the sense of justice is palpable.”