Thanks to Jonathan Gibbons of Black White and Grey Limited for preparing this case summary
Was an employment tribunal entitled to conclude that an employee who suffered from depression and anxiety was not disabled?
Yes, held the EAT in Saad v University Hospital Southampton NHS Trust and another.
It was accepted that Mr Saad suffered from a depressive and general anxiety disorder; an impairment for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010. However, the employment tribunal concluded that the impairment did not have a substantial adverse, nor a long-term effect on his ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities.
Dismissing a subsequent appeal, the EAT held that the employment tribunal was entitled to conclude, on the evidence before it, that the impairment did not have a substantial adverse affect on Mr Saad's normal day-to-day activities.
Contrary to the argument raised by Mr Saad, on a fair reading of the decision, as a whole, the employment tribunal did assess the effects of the impairment on the work environment including his ability to concentrate, communicate with colleagues and access the work place.
Further, the employment tribunal had not misdirected itself as to the meaning of "long-term". It did not fail to have regard to the fact that adverse effects could be long-term even if they fluctuated over time.