We’re letting you go."
These are words nobody wants to hear. But imagine being fired from a job you’d had for decades because your steadfast performance recently started to slip — emails went unanswered, words got jumbled and meetings were forgotten — and you didn’t know why.
You get home to break the news to your partner. Stunned and confused, you grapple together with uncertainty about what the future holds, and you begin your search for answers.
Eventually, you’re diagnosed with young-onset dementia, and it all starts to make sense.
You might think:
- What if this abrupt ending to my hard-earned career could have been prevented?
- What if I had a place to go to seek information and guidance?
- What if my employer would have known the signs of dementia and how to accommodate my needs?
Unfortunately, this story is real. And with the rising number of dementia diagnoses, including the fact that nearly one in 10 persons diagnosed with dementia are between the ages of 40 and 65, more people in the workplace may find themselves in similar situations.
The Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories recognizes this and aims to address the issue head on.
To do so, leaders from the organization embarked on a mission to create a comprehensive resource that would encourage a more dementia-inclusive workplace, where employees diagnosed with dementia who wanted to keep working could be appreciated and supported.
With funding from the Government of Alberta, and after extensive discussions with interested employers, people living with dementia and care partners, a carefully designed website was launched in March 2022.