Regular readers will know that I am a huge fan of Access to Work. I’m also a fan of B & Q who really take inclusion seriously. So this blog is a joy to write, as I’m looking at where Access to Work has enabled disabled employees of B & Q to reach their potential. B & Q work with a number of providers – more of which in another blog – and here are just a few examples of how Access to Work has helped to make a real difference.
- B & Q started a new member of staff with Multiple Sclerosis under the Access to Work scheme, requiring some extra training. She was originally employed in one role but after an initial period of 3 or 4 months said she was finding the work stressful and was worried about it affecting her health going forward. Following a meeting with her Access to Work adviser she opted to stay with B & Q and they were able to find her a role in the checkouts department, which she is finding much more suitable.
- B & Q purchased zoom text equipment for one of their employees who is blind in one eye and partially sighted in the other. This has been very helpful for him and his team, and enabled him to assist customers more efficiently and feel more comfortable at work.
- Access to Work provided a specialist chair for an admin-based B & Q employee with a chronic spinal condition.
- One employee has bad arthritis in hips and knees, and finds climbing the stairs impossible. They had a stairlift installed and it has revolutionised the employee’s life as they can now use the offices and staff facilities on the first floor, making them feel part of the team as they can do what everyone else takes for granted.
- B & Q are currently working with Access to Work to help an employee with chronic leg pain to remain on current contracted hours in their current role.
This is a random set of examples, but serves to illustrate the diversity of ways that Access to Work can work in partnership with the employer and employee to find innovative solutions to a variety of challenges. More good practice from B & Q to come – watch this space!
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