If you are a disabled person

To make sure that they are not excluding disabled people from training, development, promotion or transfer opportunities, your employer needs to look at how they describe the role and the person they are looking for.

Your employer must consider not only whether they are discriminating directly or indirectly because of your disability, but also:

  • Whether they are treating you in a particular way which, because of something connected with your disability, puts you at a disadvantage if they cannot justify this way of doing what they are doing (‘discrimination arising from disability’).
  • Whether reasonable adjustments are required to enable you to take up a training, development, promotion or transfer opportunity.


Your employer must make sure you are not discriminating against or causing substantial disadvantage to you if you are a disabled person. Anything which is more than minor or trivial is considered to be substantial disadvantage.

This may require them to make reasonable adjustments to selection procedures for training or the training arrangements themselves. This could involve changing the way they do things, or changes to the premises that they use or providing extra aids, services or equipment.

You can read more about reasonable adjustments to remove barriers for disabled people.

This includes your employer looking at how they give you access to secondment opportunities, work shadowing, having access to a mentor or attending an event that may help you to develop your career.

Specialist training

Your employer may need to provide you with specialist training so that you can make effective use of reasonable adjustments. This could include training on equipment which you have as an adjustment, for example, specialist computer software.

Or the training may in itself be an adjustment, for example, orientation training in a new workplace if someone has a learning disability or visual impairment. 

Training for other staff 

It may also be helpful for your employer to consider the training needs of other staff who are working with you as a reasonable adjustment (provided you have given permission for other staff to know about your situation). This could range from specialist training for managers who are making decisions about reasonable adjustments through to things like Deaf awareness training for people with a Deaf colleague.

Promotion or transfer

If you might be eligible for a promotion or transfer or other development opportunity and you are a disabled person:

  • Your employer must not make assumptions about your abilities or willingness to take on a new role
  • It is also important for your employer to consider whether particular qualifications are actually required or whether what they really need is a particular skill level.
  • Any information about the role should not say or imply that it is unsuitable for a disabled person unless there is a clear role-related reason for this.
  • Your employer should tell everyone, including workers who have a disability, about any promotion or transfer or other development opportunity. This includes giving you the information in the format you usually use at work, for example, large print or electronically. This is likely to be a reasonable adjustment.
  • If your employer decides to interview you for a promotion or other opportunity and knows that you are a disabled person they must make any reasonable adjustments you need to attend and participate in the interview.
  • When assessing your suitability for the new role your employer needs to take account of how reasonable adjustments could enable you to meet the new requirements.
  • If after working out how reasonable adjustments could enable you to meet the new requirements of a role to which they are considering promoting you, your employer decides you are not the best person for the promotion, they do not have to offer it to you. Obviously if you are the best person they will want to offer it to you and make the reasonable adjustments.

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