Case Studies

Jonathan L., Senior Policy Adviser, EU Analysis

I joined the Treasury in 1995 and have held a variety of posts ranging from my first as the Treasury desk officer for Southern Europe - a job which allowed me to fly round Europe meeting international economists and attending ambassadorial receptions - to my most recent post working on the Treasury's analysis of exit from the EU and regularly briefing Ministers on the latest developments in the debate.

In between, I've worked on policy ranging from property tax to welfare reform to researching the determinants of happiness. I've also been on secondment to Parliament as an economic adviser to the Treasury Select Committee and I'm about to begin a secondment to Barnardo's.

Throughout my career I have lived with type 1 diabetes and the genetically inherited degenerative disease Cystic Fibrosis and was fortunate enough to receive a double lung transplant nine years ago. The Treasury, as my employer, has been incredibly supportive and accommodating of my disabilities during all of this time: before I joined the transplant waiting list, the 27 months I was on the list and seriously unwell with a very limited life expectancy, and in my recuperation and return to work thereafter.

This meant that despite the seriousness of my disabilities I have been continuously employed by the Treasury and managed to pursue a fulfilling, enjoyable and rewarding career as a result. I would say to any disabled person thinking of applying here that if you have the ability to work in the Treasury then it doesn't matter what your disability is, the organisation will go out of its way to support you and enable you to achieve your full potential.

Jonathan R., Senior Policy Adviser, National Infrastructure Commission Sponsorship Team

I joined the Treasury in 2002 and have held a variety of roles across Defence, Education, Financial Services and Growth policy. I was Head of Defence Budgets when the Iraq war started, which was an interesting experience. I have been on secondment to the Department for Education Strategy Unit where I also set up a new division on Youth Inclusion from scratch.

To manage my chronic pain I work an 18 hour week. I work fixed hours, 6 hours a day, 3 days a week, with one of those days a week working from home. This allows me to keep pain levels much more under control, by making sure I have time for yoga, swimming and meditation – evidence-based therapies for chronic pain. This has allowed me to stay pretty strong and healthy, while enjoying life and work! Like any variable condition, it has its flare-ups, so I have had to have a few months out twice in the last 14 years. Treasury have been very supportive with gradual return to work schemes, where I have built my hours and confidence back up slowly over a period of months doing project work. The support they have given me makes me doubly motivated to maximise my impact in my 18 hours a week.

Usefully, the Treasury uses a cross-Government scheme called the Disability Passport. This specifies my current reasonable adjustments, such as a special chair and desk and fixed working hours, so they do not need to be re-negotiated when I change jobs. Where the Treasury still needs to improve is on part-time jobs being genuinely available as advertised - this is work in progress. In the meantime I can still access job opportunities via “managed moves” as a reasonable adjustment. Another option is a job-share with another colleague – which the Treasury genuinely welcomes.

The Treasury has improved significantly as a place for staff with disabilities to work and progress, and must already be a leader in the public sector. It has a little way to go and knows that, so why not come and help it get there?