Welcome to Work Helpline UK


Work Helpline UK is a joint initiative between two very well respected national support providers; the Association of Disabled Professionals (ADP) and START Ability Services.


The aim of the initiative is to provide comprehensive information, advice, training and consultancy services so that disabled people and people with long term health conditions, employers and advisors can make informed decisions about impairment related work issues. Our services fulfill the real need that individuals and businesses have to gain appropriate support and accessible plain English information that allows them to address the barriers they may face to full workplace inclusion.


We use solution focussed support to find out what the barriers to inclusion actually are and then collaborate with others to find appropriate solutions to the issues raised. In this way, we can use our professional and personal experience of business and impairment to make common sense proposals that account for each aspect of the work situation presented. We can also provide ongoing training and support to ensure that diversity and inclusion issues are addressed on a continuing basis and throughout an organisation.

Promoting workplace diversity since


More than


happy clients!

Here’s what a client said:

  • “A very thought provoking day, which emphasised the need for objectivity. I believe this course would be useful to all our staff. It’s a pity that so few people have this training, as these are pertinent issues for all!” NHS Training and Development Manager
  • “Very good, informative event that created thought and will lead to practical changes. I’ve got so many actions to take back to the office!” Chief Executive Officer
  • “I just wanted to update you… my bosses are happy to trial the new arrangement I have suggested and we are going to look at it again in a month or two to ensure it is working for the service. Thank you very much for your help!!! This is such a weight off my mind - I can go back to enjoying work and having a good life/work balance again that is sustainable.”  Professional with CFS/ME
  • “A very informative and useful course, with an easy to understand format. It will certainly help improve our services to any disabled clients!” Customer Services Manager
  • “I have spoken to so many people, over the years, about working from home, but never got past the first hurdles. As a result, I had begun to lose hope. But, your knowledge, encouragement and positivity is a breathe of fresh air… With your information and constructive help, I now finally have a plan of action to get my private practice off the ground! I really wish I had spoken to you when I first got my diagnosis.” Healthcare Professional
  • “We will never be able to thank your team enough for their continued support and for giving both of us our lives back. Their knowledge is astounding, their support incredible and their hope enlightening… Without your support, I can honestly say that my husband would not have returned to his previous employment.” Wife of a 25 year old client with an acquired traumatic brain injury

Our Core Services

Support for Individuals

We provide support, advice and information to disabled people and people with long term health conditions who need support in their job.

Support for Organisations

We provide support to organisations with all aspects of ensuring that people with impairments are not excluded from education, training or work.

Advisor giving information pack to client

If you’ve got questions, we may have the answer:

What help is available if I need equipment and support at work?

If you have impairment related needs at work, there may be support available to you from the Access to Work Scheme.  We have supported many people, both in employment and in self employment, to gain Access to Work support for things like:

  1. 1. Travel to Work support, for people who are unable to use public transport;
  2. 2. Equipment and assistive software if you have an impairment related need;
  3. 3. Gaining funding for a support worker; and
  4. 4. To gain access to the mental health support service.

Additionally, if you need any help or support to manage Access to Work claims, please contact us.

I’ve been out of work for a long time but would like to return. Any advice?

The key thing to remember is to believe in yourself and the skills and abilities that you have. It is often very difficult to believe that you can return to a working life if you have been unable to work for a long period. However, it is possible and we can provide you with information and guidance on things that will assist.  Find out more information on our Support for Individuals page.

I’m concerned about my employee’s sickness levels? What can I do?

Sickness absence can be very frustrating for an employer. However, it is very important that you do not discriminate against someone because they are disabled or have a long term health condition. You therefore need to ensure that you are managing all sickness absence effectively. There is a lot of useful information available on the ACAS site, but if you need specific information or advice on how to manage the sickness absence of disabled employees, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Latest News

Do you have what it takes to be a panel member on Channel 5 News?

Channel 5 News are looking to increase the representation of disabled people who have professional expertise on their television panels.

Naidex 45 Highlights

We’ve been phenomenally busy due to our attendance at @NaidexShow which took place at the NEC Birmingham on 26th and 27th March 2019. The Start Ability Services team were delighted to be working alongside Debbie from Social Barriers Solutions, who as a previous client had benefitted from our support Work Helpline UK to set up her business. It was wonderful to personally meet Debbie for the first time, as we have had so many hours of telephone conversations and email conversations putting the world to rights!

Office Closure Dates

Our offices will be closed from 6:30 pm on Wednesday 19th December 2018 until 9:00 am on Thursday 3rd January 2019. During this time, we will still offer a skeleton email service, but will not be taking any telephone calls. Any messages left on our answerphone will be responded to as soon as possible on our return to full service. We would also like to take this opportunity to wish you peace and prosperity for the festive season from everyone at Work Helpline UK.

The Apprentice – Could you be the next big thing?

Never thought The Apprentice was for you? Think again, anyone can have a seed of an idea and become an entrepreneur, you just need the backing. If you apply to The Apprentice 15, that seed could become a fully-fledged and funded business! The winning candidate will receive an investment of up to £250,000 and will go into a 50:50 partnership with Lord Sugar…

Come and join us at Naidex 45!

We’re thrilled to announce that we’ll be partnering with Naidex, Europe’s largest event for the disability and independent living sector, again in 2019. Celebrating its 45th anniversary, the show will take place on the 26th & 27th March at Birmingham’s NEC, and we’d love for you to join us at the show by grabbing your FREE ticket here! Get ready to see the latest in …

We want your success stories!

We would love to hear from you if you have benefited from the service we provide. We’re hoping that we can then highlight that disabled people and people with long term health conditions are not only able to successfully work in their chosen career, but that it is possible to thrive in the world of work, if they are given the information that they need, and appropriate adjustments …

More News

START Ability acknowledged in prestigious awards

The START Ability Services team are delighted to announce that they have been given the title of Best Independent Living Support Enterprise in this year’s Social Care Awards. The 2018 Social Care Awards have been designed to give recognition to the individuals, teams and companies who show the highest levels of innovation, compassion and courage in one of the …

ADP wins award for second year running!

The Association of Disabled Professionals has been successful in gaining a Social Care Award; this year being awarded the Best Disability Business Support Provider 2018. Jane Hunt, Chair of the ADP, said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive yet another award for our work from the prestigious Global Health and Pharma Social Care Awards. ADP was really pleased …

Have you heard about our work with Health and Social Care Professionals?

Many of you may have heard our very own Kath Sutherland, speaking at various events around the country or indeed on the radio. But did you know that Kath is also involved in a number of events for both the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) and in her work as a member of the Co-production, Equality and Human Rights Steering Committee …

The ADP asked to contribute to APPG inquiry into Access to Work

Due to our expertise in the support of disabled entrepreneurs, we were invited to contribute to the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Business Networks Roundtable. This was devised in an attempt to specifically examine the needs of disabled people in terms of business networks. Although we knew that we were unable to be physically present at the event, Kath Sutherland was able to remotely deliver a 10 minute speech, as our contribution to the discussions. In this short speech, the many complexities of barriers that …