A framework to support employers to voluntarily report on disability, mental health and wellbeing in the workplace has been developed by the government. This was done in partnership with large employers and expert partners (including leading charities) to support organisations to record and voluntarily report information on disability, mental health and wellbeing in the workplace.
The framework is aimed at large employers with over 250 employees but can also be used to support smaller employers who are keen to drive greater transparency in their organisation or industry.
benefits of reporting on disability, mental health and wellbeing in the workplace
The government believes that recording and voluntarily reporting information on disability, mental health and wellbeing may support an employer to:
- improve employee engagement and retention, with consequent gains for performance and productivity – engaged employees are less likely to report workplace stress and take fewer days sickness absence
- better understand the experiences of disabled people and people with mental health conditions in their workforce
- better monitor internal progress in building a more inclusive environment for employees
- access a wider pool of talent and skills through promoting inclusive and disability-friendly recruitment, retention and progression policies
- set an industry example in driving a cultural shift towards increased transparency
- better serve and connect with disabled customers and communities, capitalising on spending power
- engage in open and supportive conversations about disabilities and health conditions to help enable employees to remain in work and achieve their potential
You can access the framework here.
However, the TUC has called on the government to make it compulsory for employers to publish their disability pay gaps. The call comes as new TUC analysis shows that the average pay gap for disabled workers has hit 15.2% – the equivalent of £2,821 a year. However, for people with mental illnesses (29.8%) and depression (26.3%) the pay gulf is even worse.
The TUC says that without a legally binding requirement on companies to publish their pay gaps (and set out what action they are taking to address them), progress will be too slow.
The TUC says far more needs to be done to remove the barriers facing disabled people in the workplace. Just half (50.5%) of working-age disabled people in the UK currently have a job, compared to four-fifths (81.1%) of non-disabled people. For some disabled people the problem is even worse. Only 3 in 10 (30.4%) people with a mental health disability are in work.
The TUC is calling on the government to introduce a statutory requirement for employers to report on their disability pay gaps and employment rates, and to publish action plans setting out how they will address them.
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:
“Disabled people face the double whammy of poorer job prospects and lower pay. Paying lip service is not going to fix the problem. Employers must be legally required to publish their disability employment and pay gaps. A light-touch, voluntary approach simply won’t cut it. Large companies have to report their gender pay gaps. Disabled people deserve the same level of transparency.”