Landing a job for mentally challenged a tough task

Updated: 2013-05-02 01:21

By Wang Qingyun (China Daily)

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The experience of, "Lucy", 44, who is recovering from bipolar disorders echoed Guo's words.

She was diagnosed in 2005 and hospitalized in 2007, which cost her job in an international company.

According to Zhu Yihua, a psychiatrist in a community healthcare center in Haidian district where the woman is recovering by teaching English to other patients, Lucy found a job later. But the stress proved too much and she came back to the center.

"A job may be harmful because of all the pressure," Lucy said.

The center introduces people gradually into the neighborhood to build up their social confidence. But they are not always welcomed.

Haidian district rented a house for five people to wash cars in 2011. They were doing fine at first, but later their customers discovered they have had mental health problems and refused to come back, Zhu said.

"If you disclose your health condition to your potential employer, they will act like you are an alien creature and turn you away," Lucy said.

The mental health law that took effect on Wednesday stipulates that employers should offer people recovering from mental problems jobs that fit their ability, but it is difficult to strike a balance between what's "fitting" and what patients like Lucy and Cao want.


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