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Disability discrimination and dyslexia

It has been reported that a former refuse collector of Biffa Waste Management has been successful in a claim of unfair dismissal and disability discrimination and awarded almost £17,000 after his former employer failed to take account of his dyslexia.

The company claimed that the refuse collector had failed to follow health and safety procedures which led to him severely injuring himself at work. The refuse collector contended that he had been encouraged to sign documents stating that he had read and understood the health and safety guidelines even although he had told management that he couldn’t read or understand the documents.

Although in this particular case, the company chose not to defend the claim against them, it is an interesting reminder that dyslexia can amount to a disability for the purposes of disability discrimination legislation and that reasonable adjustments may have to be made.

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