Employment tribunals linked to Neurological Conditions such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, and dyspraxia up by a third
The number of employment tribunals relating to neurological conditions such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, and dyspraxia are up by a third in the last year.
The increase in awareness around neurodiversity has led to an increase in diagnosis for these conditions. The neurodivergent communities have grown somewhat thanks to the accessibility of different social media platforms such as TikTok, Instagram, YouTube etc. These platforms have given workers the knowledge and resources to challenge employers on dismissals and conditions.
Employment law firm Fox said autism diagnoses are up 787% and prescriptions for ADHD medication up 800%, in the past two decades, with one in seven Brits thought to have one of these conditions.
The study shows a 40% rise in tribunals relating to autism, 31% linked to Asperger’s, a 14% rise tied to dyslexia and a 33% increase for dyspraxia over the last year alone.
The company claims the number of cases citing discrimination on grounds of neurodiversity has jumped to 93 this year, from 73 in 2020, which is a third.
The jump in tribunal claims shows that employers can’t afford to ignore neurodiversity issues”, said Ivor Adair, Partner at Fox.
Employees are increasingly willing to disclose they are neurodivergent and aren’t afraid to request reasonable adjustments if their workplace setup places them at a disadvantage, or challenge discriminatory treatment.”
Fox says that "not only should employers be mindful of making adjustments but they should look to harness the advantages of a diverse workforce that includes
neurodiverse employees. Many will excel in creative roles, strategic thinking and problem-solving."
“Employers would be advised to stop making assumptions, work to identify the talents of neurotypicals and understand how they can give their organisation a
competitive edge as part of a diverse team"
The increase of awareness has had a positive impact on workers' rights and it has also empowered individuals who have been discriminated against and wielded them with the tools and knowledge needed to challenge their employers.
It is also worth noting you may not see much in the news about these types of trials as often disabled workers are slapped with NDA's (Non-disclosure agreements). NDAs prevent workers from ever being able to talk about the
discrimination they received. These can also result in the cases not going to trial, and are often closed before they can reach that stage, therefore not being included in statistics.
NDAs often come with a large payout which is why many people opt for them as going to trial can take years to be resolved and the effect on their mental health can be astronomical.
The payout will often be larger than if the issue went to trial, organisations will do this to avoid exposure and risking their reputation.