New Forth Valley project to help more deaf people get jobs

A new project designed to improve employment prospects for people with sensory conditions in has been launched by Forth Valley Sensory Centre.

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 2:12 pm

It comes after research by the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) revealed only one in four registered blind and partially sighted people are in work.

And that number hasn’t improved in the past generation.

In response, FVSC has set up a project to help improve people’s prospects of getting a job.

Kim Grant, Forth Valley Sensory Centre.
Kim Grant, Forth Valley Sensory Centre.

Blind, partially sighted, deaf and hard of hearing people across Forth Valley will be supported to learn about their employment rights, especially equipment which could help them in a potential or existing job.

The project is led by Kim Grant, and backed by a number of organisations, including the Agnes Hunter Trust, Chance to Succeed, Falkirk See Hear Partnership and the Alliance Self-Management Fund.

Kim, who brings a wealth of business experience, will be working with employers to show them the support available for employing a disabled person and to ensure they are in line with the Equality Act 2010.

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She said: “The centre is all about making reasonable adjustments to provide a safe working environment for disabled people. Failure to do so is against HR law and can lead to significant fines and problems for any organisation.

“Sadly, at FVSC we know personally of people with sensory conditions who struggle to find employment, and we receive calls from people in work who are losing their sight or hearing and are worried about talking to their employer, fearing they might be sacked.”

The centre aims to provide advice on the support available, and it will also work with community groups.Added Kim: “We will also be working hard with community groups and schools to increase understanding of sensory conditions and how if we all make small changes - such as removing a face mask when speaking to someone who is hard of hearing - we can make the workplace a more welcoming place.

“People with disabilities do not want to rely on benefits, they want the chance to show what they can do and contribute to their families like anyone else. “

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