Working for the Future with a Little Help from My Boss

by A Guest Author

After many years of fighting an illness I fell particularly ill over during last autumn and my condition deteriorated.   Before my long spell in the hospital I had some mobility problems but I was still able to function with the aid of a walking stick, albeit a little slow. Unfortunately my legs have weakened further and I’m now using a wheelchair to get around, and it’s taken some getting used to I can tell you.  I will never forget the time and effort it took me to master the banana board so I was able to get myself into my wheelchair in the mornings.

I’m More Confident with My Chair thanks to Hours of Practice

I am more confident with my chair now and although it appears to be needed I am working on exercises which will hopefully strengthen my legs.  For now though I am using the chair and living with the changes I have had to make in my home.  I have also had to discuss my work with my employer which was rather embarrassing really, but they have been brilliant and very supportive.  I work in an office based job and fortunately the doors were wide enough for me to get in but I did have some other problems which needed sorting out before I could return.

Improvements Inside and Out Were Necessary

My employers needed to improve the front access as the offices are located in an old house in the town.  There used to be a small bath and a couple of steps and I was unable to get inside without any assistance.  As you can imagine that was quite a problem and it would mean I would need to wait for someone to come and wheel me up the steps, which was annoying for me and the person who was being interrupted.  My employers addressed this issue first of all, which they were happy to do as they needed to improve the access to the property anyway.

Small Changes Allow Me to Work As Usual

Instead of steps there is now a ramp and a rail and the path has been widened too making it a lot easier to get down the bath without aggravating the bees in the flower beds.  There is no gate at the end now either and the whole space has been opened up really nicely. It actually looks so much better and more like a professional place of work rather than an old home.  Inside the offices a few changes have also been made in the toilet and in my office and the kitchen.  The WC has had a few rails added as well as a special toilet seat that is very useful for me.  The sink has also been lowered so I am able to reach easily. There wasn’t enough room to add an additional bathroom but the changes have been adequate. My office has a brand new desk that can be raised and lowered with ease.  All of my files have also been stored on new shelving so I can easily reach anything I need and the light switch has been lowered too.

Amazing Support and a Sense of Independence

I was really concerned that my employer wouldn’t want me back after learning about my problems but I am pleased to be wrong.  Many people have to take their bosses to discrimination tribunals because they are not willing to make the necessary changes and alterations, now required by law anyway. I appreciate all the support I have been given and really feel lucky to have kept my job.

Disabled access is a requirement by law.  If your building is not adequate access audits will help discover the necessary improvements and create a plan of action to follow.

This post was written by A Guest Author

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