Two Ticks - positive about disabled people
What is the 'Two Ticks' disability symbol?
The symbol is awarded by the Jobcentre Plus to recognise employers who have agreed to meet five commitments regarding the recruitment, employment, retention and career development of disabled people.
The Five Commitments
The University of Essex is committed to:
- Interviewing all applicants with a disability who meet the essential criteria on a person specification and considering them on their abilities.
- Ensuring there is a mechanism in place to discuss, at any time, but at least once a year with disabled employees what can be done to ensure that they develop and use their abilities.
- Making every effort when an employee becomes disabled to ensure that they stay in employment.
- Taking action to ensure that all employees develop an appropriate level of disability awareness to make these commitments work.
- Reviewing the commitments each year to assess what has been achieved, plan ways to make improvements, and to let staff and the Employment Service know about progress and future plans.
Why is the University of Essex using the disability symbol?
We recognise the value of diversity and are committed to equality of opportunity within the University. We therefore aim to create the conditions whereby students and staff are treated with dignity and respect and solely on the basis of their merits, abilities and potential, regardless of, race, ethnic or national origin, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, age, socio-economic background, family circumstances, religious or political beliefs and affiliations or other irrelevant distinction.
The University is proud to receive the Two Ticks Symbol and we have adopted a proactive approach to employing disabled people and to creating a diverse workforce.
The symbol helps to make it clear that we welcome applications from disabled people and are positive about their abilities. It also shows existing employees that we value their contribution and will treat them fairly should they become disabled.
What is meant by disability?
We understand that disability may mean different things to different people. At the University of Essex we respect a range of views and definitions. However, a disabled person is defined in the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) as someone with:
- A mental or physical impairment
- that has an adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day to day activities;
- the adverse effect is substantial;
- the adverse effect is long term (meaning it has lasted for 12 months or is likely to last for more than 12 months or for the rest of the person's life.
What does this mean
It means that candidates who are disabled and meet the essential criteria stated on the person specification must be invited for interview, regardless of the nature of their disability. This is a guarantee of an interview, but not necessarily of a job offer.
Candidates are given the legal definition of what a disability is in the application form and asked to indicate whether they comply with the definition. We make it clear that any false declaration may result in the withdrawal of an offer of employment.
Our commitment applies to all applicants, irrespective of nationality. However, UK immigration and other legislation still apply ie. A disabled candidate who requires a Work Permit, but who applies for a post for which one would not be granted, would not be shortlisted.
When making interview invitations, we will consult with any candidate who indicates they have a disability to ensure any special arrangements or adjustments to the recruitment process are made.
Consideration will be given to interview arrangements to ensure that a person with a disability is not at a substantial disadvantage compared to other applicants. This may include ensuring that the interview room is accessible for any applicants with mobility difficulties or providing a sign-language interpreter.
All candidates should be assessed on their abilities, experience, and suitability for the post according to objective criteria relating to the qualities needed to undertake the duties of the post as outlined in the Job Description. During the interview process recruiters should assess how closely applicants with a disability can meet the requirements of the post and should act positively and flexibly to a need for reasonable adjustments. However, it should be recognised that there may be situations where no reasonable adjustment can be made to allow the employment of an otherwise suitable applicant. In such cases, an offer of employment may be withdrawn.
In cases where advice is needed on a medical condition or on the safety implications of recruiting a disabled employee, Human Resources will liaise with the Occupational Health and Safety Service or other specialist agencies for guidance.