Logo - stepping stonesLiam Healy & Associates

Registered Occupational Psychologists

Mental Health - Legal Obligations

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The Equality Act 2010 protects disabled people from unfair treatment and discrimination at work if they have certain 'protected characteristics'. This includes mental illness. The protection afforded by the Act also extends to the carers of people with a mental illness.

A disability is any 'physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on your ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.' You can still be viewed as having a disability even if your condition varies - i.e. it improves but is likely to relapse.   

As long as an Employer is (or can reasonably be expected to be), aware of a disability they are required by law to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ to address unfairness/discrimination. In the case of mental health this might include providing professional counselling and support, adopting flexible working practices, or role/job redesign.  

The situation is often complex, and many terms in the Act do not have a strict legal definition - we specialise in helping clients navigate a legal and ethical way through the maze.     


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