Survey suggests people with diabetes feel discriminated against at work

Survey suggests people with diabetes feel discriminated against at work

New research carried out by Diabetes UK has revealed that one in six Britons living with diabetes feel that they are discriminated against in the workplace because of their condition.

According to a damning report published in recent days, many sufferers feel as if they have been forced to quit their jobs due to a lack of support from employers, while others feel that diabetes makes their job ‘unbearably stressful.

The survey, which quizzed some 10,000 Britons living with the condition, found that more than a third (37 per cent) believed that their condition had caused them difficulties in the workplace, while a further quarter (25 per cent) felt that their employers were inflexible when it came to taking time off work for diabetes-related appointments.

Some told Diabetes UK that they had felt forced to use their annual leave to pursue such appointments, while seven per cent said that they did not feel comfortable telling their employer that they were living with the condition.

Helen Dickins, of Diabetes UK, said: “Thousands of people across the UK have spoken out about how a lack of understanding from their employers can make working with diabetes not just exhausting and stressful, but also potentially life-threatening.

“Diabetes is one of the largest health crises of our time affecting more than 2.2 million people of working age in the UK.

“Missing essential health checks or not taking medication on time can lead to devastating complications, such as amputations, stroke, heart disease, kidney failure and even early death.”

She added: “Discrimination and difficulties come about because employers lack knowledge about diabetes and do not understand its impact. We need to talk more about the condition and the many ways it affects people’s lives in order to persuade workplaces to offer greater understanding and flexibility.

“Everyone deserves to work in an environment where they can ask for the support they need.”