Mental health charity hails ban on employment health checks

Mental health charity Rethink has hailed the government’s decision to ban employers from asking job candidates about their medical history before a job offer is made.

Ministers have tabled an amendment to the Equality Bill, which will be debated in the House of Lords tomorrow, to ban the practice, following a campaign by Rethink and other charities for it to be outlawed.

Paul Corry, Rethink’s director of public affairs, said: “The government’s decision to introduce the amendment should put a stop to this discriminatory employment practice which deters so many people with mental health problems from applying for jobs. It could mark a turning point in equal opportunities.

“To date, job applicants with a history of mental illness have had little choice but to continue to cover up their health on application forms just to get an interview.”

The government initially pledged to ban pre-employment checks last July, and a delay in bringing forward an amendment had previously sparked warnings of a U-turn by Rethink.

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