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Maintaining your job after sight loss

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Experiencing sight loss can be difficult and isolating, especially if you think your job may be in jeopardy, or you're unsure if you can continue working.

Here are some tips that could help you make a decision on how to move forward in your career:  

1. Deciding whether to change careers

Do you feel you are still capable of completing the essential functions of your job? If the answer is “no,” ask yourself:

  • Are there tools, techniques and technologies that could help me keep my job? New assistive technologies for people with sight loss are coming to the market constantly. There are many products available to help people with daily tasks and ways to do things differently. CNIB rehabilitation services can help you adapt to sight loss and specialists can provide training and information, so you can use technology and other tools in your work.
  • Could I move into another position or transition into a related role in my company? If you explore all the available options for overcoming barriers it's not possible for you to do your job because of sight loss, think about other roles within your company. Speak to your employer or supervisor about transitioning to another position. Someone who works as a nurse at a hospital may consider moving into a role with Tele-Care. It may take extra training or education, but it’s worth it if you have a passion for your work.
  •  Am I ready to pursue a different line of work? If these options won’t work for you, don't give up. Losing your sight doesn't have to mean losing out on the opportunity to achieve meaningful employment or pursue career dreams. Your future career might be different from the one you had mapped out for yourself, but it can be just as rewarding. CNIB works closely with employment agencies and together we can help you explore job options, gain new skills, access government employment programs, and embark on a new career.

2. Educating your employer

Sometimes all it takes to keep your current job after sight loss are a few small accommodations and some flexibility from your employer. Whether your employer provides you with the necessary assistive technologies, or they ensure your workspace is accessible, communication goes a long way in ensuring you have what you need to do your job successfully. CNIB has expertise in providing workplace assessments, recommending workplace accommodations and helping employers gain a better understanding of sight loss. Our specialist will work closely with you and your employer to remove barriers and increase opportunity for you within your place of work.

3. Standing up for your rights

If you feel you've been unfairly disciplined or dismissed because of your sight loss, you may be able to get assistance in finding a resolution. Here are a few resources that may help: