In a recent government finding, employer’s attitudes were found to be the greatest impediment to disabled people finding employment. Jane Hatton wants to change this attitude.  “A number of very enlightened employers can see the benefits” of employing disabled people she notes; ignoring a large pool of talent is poor business practice.

Jane Hatton currently runs a not for profit organisation called Evenbreak, whose stated goals are:

  • To help inclusive employers attract more talented disabled people;
  • To help disabled jobseekers find work with employers who will value their skills;
  • To promote the business benefits of employing disabled people

Everyone wins!


In her former occupation Jane was a diversity trainer, informing organisations why a diverse work force is good business practice, before starting a training business called Public Sector Provider. When Jane subsequently became disabled she explains that “all I focussed on was what I couldn’t do”, before time, that great healer, and patience resulted in an inspirational change of perspective; “let’s think about what I can do”.  She notes that she can now see disabled employment “from every angle”, having been an employer, and now disabled.


She explains to me that it was the “opportunity to contribute something” that inspired her to found the organisation. Jane clearly believes that employers are missing a trick in their attitudes towards hiring disabled workers. Asked what gives her the greatest satisfaction, she says both a candidate getting a job, and also that she gets “such a buzz when employers’ eyes open”. Later on in our chat she reiterates that “employers don’t seem to grasp the talent in the disabled community”. “All our candidates are desperate to work” and she doesn’t want companies to give merely entry level jobs to tick boxes, but to spread the talent around. “Some people don’t want to pack boxes, some want to be a marketing director”. Jane herself is proof (it if is really needed) that disabled people can contribute vastly beyond entry level jobs. As the Evenbreak website explains, due to a “degenerative spinal condition that restricts her ability to sit or walk… she runs Evenbreak lying down with a laptop suspended above her”. Her physical disability becomes irrelevant to her ability to deliver a service; Evenbreak.


While Jane acknowledges that tracking the success or otherwise of her organisation is difficult, she explains she has much anecdotal evidence, some of which is displayed on the Evenbreak website. She does, however, have one method of measuring success, “they come back for more” she notes of the companies that advertise on her site. Evenbreak has a 100% success rate at retaining clients that wish to advertise job opportunities. In general these tend to be large companies, some of which include the BBC, John Lewis and Network Rail.


In line with the stated principles and goals of Evenbreak, with any surplus income made different resources are created to promote the idea of disabled employment and to help disabled people gain job seeking skills. On the website there are free webinars for both potential employees and employers alike. Examples include how to write a good CV and tips on how to build the confidence to go out and find work.


After a time, our conversation goes off on a brief tangent. Jane informs me that disabled people take less sick days. They are less likely to be phased by minor inconveniences and those with the most experience overcoming challenges should be given challenges by employers…. And be paid for it!


What's your experience of looking for work, dealing with employers or being employed? Please let us know about it.


To Find out more about Evenbreak, click here.

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