Disabled miss out on jobs: Many employers break law on staff quotas, writes Rosie Waterhouse

MORE THAN 90,000 disabled people are missing out on public sector jobs because employers are not fulfilling their legal obligation.

The law states that 3 per cent of every workforce of more than 20 employees must be registered disabled people, but a survey by the Trades Union Congress shows that 43 local authorities and health authorities have no disabled staff. The Department of Employment is the only government department to meet the quota, laid down in the 1944 and 1958 Disabled Persons (Employment) Acts.

The TUC is seeking a levy on employers who fail to meet the quota, and is calling on the Government to strengthen the existing legislation.

It also wants the Government to abandon plans to charge employers for state assistance with disabled staff; improve the Disability Working Allowance to increase the pay of some low-paid disabled employees; agree a European directive on transport to work; and make disability leave a legal right for newly disabled people and those whose condition worsens.

The TUC is also to lobby for disabled people to be entitled to become magistrates and judges, and is seeking a meeting with Nicholas Scott, the minister for disabled people, to discuss the proposals.

Since 1944, only 10 employers have been taken to court for failing to meet the quota. The maximum fine is pounds 100, which the TUC maintains is an inadequate sanction.

Since 1990, the removal of Crown immunity from the NHS has meant that NHS employers, including trusts, are now covered by the quota. And government departments, although still protected by immunity, have all undertaken to accept the same responsibilities as other employers.

The TUC's survey shows that in the entire public sector the number of disabled empoloyees is on average 0.8 per cent of the workforce; in local government, 0.9 per cent; among health authorities and trusts, 0.3 per cent; among nationalised industries 0.6 per cent; and across government departments, 1.5 per cent.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Property Negotiator - OTE £20,000+

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This family owned, independent ...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Spanish Speaking

£17000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - German Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Administrator - Japanese Speaking

£17000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: If you are fluent in Japanese a...

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'