The jobs blind and partially sighted people do

Title: The jobs that blind and partially sighted people do

Author: Alex Saunders, RNIB; Publisher: RNIB; Date of publication: 2015

Key findings

  • People with sight loss work in every major category of employment.
  • Blind and partially sighted people supported by RNIB typically work in professional, associate professional, and administrative roles.
  • Administration is a common employment destination for people with sight loss supported by RNIB.
  • Blind and partially sighted people supported by RNIB are most commonly employed by large organisations.
  • More than half of blind and partially sighted people who received a work-based assessment from RNIB between 2001 and 2008 were professionals or associate professionals.
  • Blind and partially sighted people who received a work-based assessment from RNIB between 2001 and 2008 typically worked in the public sector.
  • One in four employment outcomes for blind and partially sighted people supported by RNIB are in administrative and secretarial occupations.
  • A typical destination for blind and partially sighted people supported by RNIB into new jobs between 2011-2013 was the non-profit sector.

Background

RNIB are frequently asked; “What jobs do blind and partially sighted people do?” The purpose of this report is an attempt to answer that question by presenting an extensive range of jobs performed by people with sight loss. By adding to the existing evidence base, and consolidating what we already know, this report illustrates how blind and partially sighted people succeed in a wide variety of jobs in almost all employment sectors. 

The report presents new findings from an analysis of data taken from the records of RNIB's Employment Services, for more than 500 blind and partially sighted people in work, plus a review of existing knowledge and published data. It also highlights areas where further research could take place.

We hope the report will provide encouragement to blind and partially sighted people trying to find or stay in work; those planning or wishing to develop their career; and for employers and employment professionals supporting individuals on this journey (for example, employment advisors, vocational rehabilitation workers, occupational health providers). It may also help counterbalance preconceived ideas about what careers are suitable for people living with sight loss.