DAWN breaks new ground in Central London conference

Published: 8th January 2020

Staff at Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust (CLCH) are launching the trust’s first conference for staff with disabilities.

CLCH has a number of networks actively involved in promoting more understanding of equality and wellness issues affecting their employees.

The disability and wellness network (known as DAWN) is starting the new year with a half-day conference on 15 January to which all CLCH staff are welcome to attend. The event is being held at the Abbey Centre, Westminster, starting at 2pm.

People with disabilities have a huge amount to offer at work but sometimes employers don’t realise how they can help staff fulfil their career potential. National estimates indicate that only half of all disabled people are currently in work.

As the NHS continues to face some of its biggest ever workforce supply challenges, this represents a vast pool of talent out there that employers could tap into. The problem is compounded by the fact that over 90% of disabilities are invisible, the workplace is likely to be far more diverse than you think.

CLCH encourages all their staff to confidentially declare any disabilities in their personal files so that reasonable adjustments can be considered, making sure individuals are supported at work where possible. Unless employers know that someone has a disability, it is difficult to make plans to help them.

A varied programme at the Abbey Centre conference includes:

  • keynote speech (and Qs&As session) – Dr Hannah Barham-Brown describes the personal challenges and opportunities she has experienced while working for the NHS. Dr Barham-Brown is a well-known campaigner/advocate for disability and gender equity.

  • three members of CLCH staff will talk about their experiences and why DAWN needs more members – those with and without disabilities

  • taking care of your self workshop – at least one in six workers in the UK experience common mental health problems, including anxiety and depression. This session will explain some of the simple techniques that can be used to make people feel better about themselves, it is followed by a talk on mindfulness.

Something for everyone and all CLCH staff are welcome to attend.


More information

Dr Hannah Barham-Brown TED talk video: Disability and work - let's stop wasting talent (YouTube)

MIND online advice on mental health at work

Accessibility tools