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Feb 2018 Grimsby Telegraph

The Grimsby Telegraph has helped find work for deaf man Stephen Hastie after he spent six months searching and filled in 30 failed job applications. But within a week of us telling the 49-year-old Immingham driver's story, Stephen was offered a job with a Brigg firm. His deafness was an issue for prospective employers but he has secured work with a health and safety company.

His new boss Kate Graves said: “It is ironic that so many employers turned him down because of their safety concerns, but it is a health and safety firm that has taken him on.” She added: “He is an incredible asset to us.” Proudly wearing his new hi-viz vest, Stephen, 49, of Pilgrim Avenue said: “I am really excited about the new job and it is a great opportunity. “I am extremely grateful to everyone for giving me an opportunity. “My ambition is to progress and do further training. I am going to make the most of it.”

He thanked the Grimsby Telegraph for highlighting his search for work. Since losing his job in Immingham six months ago, Stephen spent six fruitless months trying to get back into work.

He had been a driver on Immingham docks for 15 years and began working locally when he was 17 years old. His wife Karen made an emotional appeal on social media pleading with any prospective employers to give her husband a chance. In order to help with his hearing he has a cochlear implant that allows him to hear some sounds, especially loud ones.

Stephen HastieKate Graves, of K. Graves Health and Safety Services said: “We saw it in the Telegraph and read he was a commercial driver. Jobs are scarce because of the economy. But it is wrong that people like Stephen are bypassed. Stephen hasn’t yet appreciated how much of an asset he is to us. He is going through his training and will be going out testing appliances. He is a clever chap and he can help us out. There should never be any barriers to people with a disability.”

The firm tests electrical appliances for a range of companies, as well as a variety of other health and safety measures and risk assessments. Customers include High Street retailers and South Bank chemical firms.

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