Dyslexia in the workplace might affect literacy and numeracy but also other areas like organisational skills, time-keeping, memory and confidence. Often, adults with dyslexia have to work harder, are more stressed and are struggling to fulfill their potential. This blog entry is a brief introduction to how you can access funding that will support you at work, either as an employee or as a self-employed person.
Assess to Work (AtW) is a government-funded programme which provides grants for adults with disabilities to stay in work or supports them in self-employment. In the UK, dyslexia comes under the Disability Rights Act 2010. Grants can be used for various practical support items such as equipment or training, facilitation and coaching.Medium-sized and large enterprises may have to pay a share. AtW will normally meet 100% of the costs of any equipment or training for a small business (less than 50 employees) and for self-employed people.
Medium and large enterprises may have to meet a proportion of the cost for new or adoptions to special aids and equipment. AtW normally covers 100 percent of travel and support workers. When you contact AtW you will be asked
- What help and support you need
- Your national insurance number
- Your work place address including post code
- Name, e-mail and number of workplace contact, for example of a manager
- Unique tax reference number if you are self -employed
- Whether you are disabled (you may be asked what the challenges are you have with dyslexia)
After that you will receive a form to complete. It is possible to have someone read you the questions over the if you prefer. The next step is for AtW to send an assessor to the workplace to meet you, discuss your needs and prepare a report. The report will suggest three people or companies who might support you and you can choose your preferred option.
During the assessment the applicant can request a specific support provider like a Davis Facilitator they want to work with. The goal of AtW assessors is to see you achieve your goals successfully.
Getting in touch with Assess to Work:
- Assess to Work https://www.gov.uk/access-to-work
- Applications can be made online or by calling Job Centre Plus on 0345 268 8489
My personal experience with AtW as a dyslexic learner has been very positive. At first, I was uncomfortable speaking about myself as disabled – it was a threshold to overcome. The assessor who came from Glasgow was incredibly friendly and supportive and I felt very much respected and supported throughout. Her recommendations fitted well with my needs and have greatly supported me.
From my experience as a workplace coach I have seen many dyslexic adults becoming more skilled and confident through the support they have received. They develop their own strategies, decrease their stress levels and become much more confident and self-reliant. In all cases, this has been positively received by managers and teams throughout the working environment.
If you would like to discuss support in the workplace further or have questions you would like answered, please get in touch.