The TUC and Epilepsy Action team up to break stereotypes about epilepsy and its management at work

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The TUC is today publishing new guidance to provide advice for employers on how to incorporate epilepsy as part of an overall wellbeing strategy.

The guide, produced in association with Epilepsy Action, is designed to tackle stereotypes about the neurological condition and to promote the fact that epilepsy is not a barrier to work.   

According to official figures, 600,000 people (or one in 113) have some form of epilepsy, and 87 people are diagnosed with it every day. But only five in 100 will ever have a recognisable seizure, and most people under the age of 20 grow out of it.

According to the charity, the condition is still one attracts significant discrimination at work, with research by the University of Liverpool recently finding 21% of employers thought employing someone with a PWE (person with epilepsy), would be a ‘major issue’.

Epilepsy Action CEO, Philip Lee, said: “Epilepsy is often misunderstood and people with epilepsy report experiencing a range of problems in employment – both in finding employment and keeping a job. I hope this new guide will help to tackle some of the myths about epilepsy and enable more employers to become epilepsy-friendly workplaces.”

TUC secretary general, Francis O’Grady said: “Despite legal protection, workers with epilepsy still encounter ignorance, prejudice and discrimination. Employers must challenge all such attitudes and behaviour and this guide will help them to do so from a position of understanding and strength.”