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National Delegate Conference Bournemouth 19-22 June 2012

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Campaign for disability leave

Bill Dunn
Bill Dunn

UNISON will examine the failure of some employers to implement disability leave policies and will develop guidance for branches to negotiate such policies and to challenge bad practice with the Equality Act 2010.

In this time of recession, it has never been more important to for disability leave policies to be negotiated and implemented by employers to ensure disabled members are not discriminated against as a result of disability related sickness absence.

Bill Dunn, Disabled Members' Officer, Highland Healthcare, long time delegate and first time speaker, said that union colleagues at the Disabled Members Conference six years ago were surprised to hear that an NHS employer showed little consideration towards staff members with disabilities.

Following that meeting, he took the UNISON model policy to his employer who stated it was not law and he wasn't aware of any NHS employer in Scotland that had a disability leave policy in operation.

Bill has persisted and fought for reasonable adjustments as time off for disability related medical appointments.

Not all managers have accepted this, and time is expected to be taken as time back, time in lieu or sick leave.

"Obviously recorded sick leave then leads to disabled members being put on Promoting Atendance procedures and then the dreaded capability policy - neither of which aid the health and wellbeing of the member with a disability."







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