Returning To Work With Dyslexia

By / January 12, 2017 / Injuries & Illness / No Comments

Learn why people with dyslexia should consider getting a vision disorder diagnosis from a doctor, which can help with job placement and with finding tools that can help meet work requirements.

Dear Disability Advisor,

I am asking a question on behalf of my Son who has learning difficulties he has word blindness this has never stopped him holding down a job from age 16 till 29 unfortunately he has lost his job and finding it extremely difficult getting back into work He needs support as he can’t read or write or use a computer to job search I have been helping him with the job search He has signed up with an agency and had a induction for a factory job with an imitate start he had to tick boxes to do with health and safety unfortunately he could not read the questions and when told the safety officer he was told he could not have the job due to his reading difficulties my son was devastated during his appointment at the dole he asked his advisor if they had a dissability advisor as he needed support he was told they did not have a one. I have found a support group called remploy but he needs to be recommended  onto the programme through the dole. How do I get him a dissability advisor ? I can see my son slipping into depression if he does not get the support he needs and deserves to get him into work.

Lee in the UK

Dear Lee,

Thank you for sharing the issues your son is having with us. While there are many differences between the resources and benefit accommodations available to people with disabilities in the US versus the UK, I hope I can offer you some suggestions that will help you.

First of all, it is excellent that your son has been able to work so that he has a record of employment. You might want to contact the local office of the UK Department of Work and Pensions as a starting point to see what reemployment or other assistance they might offer. Has your son been diagnosed by a physician for his vision disorder? This, too, is a necessary step in the process of determining what accommodations might be helpful to identify jobs and potential employment opportunities. It is usually easier to explain to different offices and programs the circumstances your son faces as well as identify any treatments or tools that might help improve his ability to read or understand necessary work requirements when you have a detailed diagnosis from a physician.

Currently (from now until February 17, 2017) there is a large scale information gathering process ongoing in the UK to identify how best to get more people back to work, including those with disabilities such as the one your son has.  It is conducted by the Work and Health Team and you can access the questionnaire to provide your story at: https://consultations.dh.gov.uk/workandhealth/consult

You can also email this team to ask about additional information related to your case at: workandhealth@dwp.gsi.gov.uk

Finally, there is a website for an organization in the US that provides tools, assessments, and information for adults suffering from dyslexia and alexia with a focus for returning to work that might be helpful to you: http://headstrongnation.org/adults

Again, the good news is that your son has the ability to work based on his employment history. Keep encouraging him while seeking advice from the organizations provided here and any others you encounter in your research. The process of returning to work and obtaining benefits or accommodations may sound daunting but there are resources available that should help make this a smooth transition.

Good luck!

Jackie Booth, Ph.D.

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