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Nearly two-thirds (62%) of adults with learning disabilities find it hard to hold on to a job – with almost half of those (45%) blaming this on a lack of extra support from their employers, a study has found.

A study of 500 adults, with learning difficulties, found that 41% of those who have managed to find employment, cetirizine allergy dosage feel they didn't get sufficient help from their team.

And 32% believe that employers – or prospective employers – don't realise what they are capable of with the right support in place.

However, over a third of UK companies (36%) admit they do not offer ongoing support to employees with learning difficulties.

And as a result, a separate poll of 500 UK employers, found that six in ten feel companies are not taking sufficient steps to be inclusive when it comes to who they hire.

Both surveys were commissioned by hotel chain Hilton, to mark Learning Disability Week from June 19-25.

And it emerged, in the poll of adults with learning difficulties, that 79% have been put off going for a job altogether – for fear of being judged by an interviewer.

More than half (51%) say they lack confidence, with 32% feeling that employers would not hire them – while a further 29% find the application process difficult.

And 27% worry they wouldn't have the support needed to carry out the role – while a quarter do not feel supported by employers when going for a job.

As part of the research for Learning Disability Week, Hilton is launching a free educational workshop in partnership with the Down’s Syndrome Association and Aurora Foxes, which will take place in early September.

Stephen Cassidy, senior vice president and managing director for UK & Ireland at Hilton, said: “Building an inclusive workplace, which allows every individual to thrive, is fundamental to the success of any business.

“We’ve seen first-hand the benefits of supporting those with learning disabilities, welcoming some exceptional talent into our business in partnership with the Down’s Syndrome Association and Aurora Foxes.

“But this research shows there is a real opportunity to empower more businesses to embrace this wealth of talent.

“We hope that by sharing our experience, we can inspire other employers to provide much-needed job opportunities for those with learning disabilities, and help them reap the benefits that a diverse workforce brings – from employee engagement to business performance.”

According to the British Association for Supported Employment, employment rates of those with a learning disability have fallen to 4.8%.

Some of the main barriers to recruiting these adults include not having suitable roles (30%), or the right infrastructure in place to offer support (26%) – while 21% cited the cost to the business when it comes to additional training.

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The best solutions to aid those with disabilities in workplace included training for all employees (39%), and training for managers (38%).

However, nearly half of employers (46%) admitted they had no training on how to hire or manage those with learning disabilities.

Among employers who had hired people with a learning disability, a massive 89% said that person or people had exceeded or met expectations.

And yet just 42% of those polled, via OnePoll, would be likely to hire someone with a learning disability in the future.

Helping employees become more empathetic (62%), creating a stronger team bond (48%), and demonstrating the benefits of having a diverse team (45%), were noted as the tangible benefits of a diverse hiring process.

Shomari Burford, aged 24, from London, has Down’s Syndrome, and began his career at Hilton in 2018.

He now works in concierge, helping guests and supporting the hotel’s operations team.

He said: “I love working here. It’s great to see a lot of guests coming in and out the hotel, and I really enjoy helping them. That’s my favourite part of the job, as well as working with my team, who have all been very supportive.”

Alison Thwaite, employment development manager at the Down’s Syndrome Association, added: “The findings highlight the critical need for companies to prioritise training and support for decision-makers when it comes to welcoming people with learning disabilities into the workplace.

“As well as providing benefits for businesses, the power of employment for those with a learning disability cannot be underestimated.

“Finding work can help individuals increase their circle of friends, build self-esteem and confidence, increase independence, and support both personal and professional development.”

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