John Lewis Partnership is helping to push back against arthritis

11 June 2019
Dan sat down with crunches looking at the camera.

John Lewis Partnership have today launched a campaign to promote the need for better occupational health provision.

With a focus on mental health and musculoskeletal conditions, they are calling on the Government to make occupational health services tax exempt.

This is great news for people with arthritis and related conditions.

Importance of work when you have a long-term condition

Currently only 63% of working age adults with a musculoskeletal condition are in work, compared to 81% of those without a health problem.

Arthritis can make work more difficult, with tasks many of us take for granted - such as commuting, carrying equipment or even typing - becoming challenging.

People with arthritis should be supported to do the jobs they want to do for as long as they are willing and able to do them, and early interventions in the workplace can support them to do just that.

However, almost 1 in 4 of the people we surveyed said they had not received this support.

The Government has previously pledged to see one million more disabled people and those with long-term health conditions, in work by 2027.

If the Government is to succeed in its ambition it is important that people with arthritis, the leading cause of workplace disability, are supported and empowered to stay in the jobs they love.

Initiatives like the one announced by John Lewis Partnership today would have a huge impact on millions of people living with arthritis. That’s why we wholly support their campaign, and the call to make occupational health services tax exempt.

What support is available to me now?

Access to Work is a government-funded scheme designed to support people with a disability or a physical or mental health condition, who have related workplace needs.

If more support is needed above and beyond reasonable adjustments, the Access to Work scheme can help fund further assistance, such as specialist equipment, transport and support staff. Read more in our Working it Out report.

“I love my job. And, actually, that’s one of the real helps even if I’m struggling, I get a lot of pleasure out of it. You don’t want to give that up. You don’t want the illness to take another thing from you.”

Julie who has rheumatoid arthritis

What can I do?

Our Working It Out campaign asks the government to provide better employment support for people with arthritis. If you’d like to get involved and join our campaigns network.