This is Me: never judge a book by its cover.

Emma Horsfall
By Emma Horsfall | September 25, 2018

My name is Emma Horsfall and I’m a Community Banker and Digital Eagle in the Leeds market, a role I have undertaken for eleven years. For the last year I have led the Physical and Medical Focus Group.

My day to day working life is counter-based, helping customers with their daily banking needs. As an Eagle I run events and mentor people from different areas of the business. This keeps me busy and is mostly done in my spare time.

Outside of Barclays my life is still Barclays, doing events including tea and teach. I have two lovely girls that are my life and the prettiest and fluffiest border collie called Oscar.

I work very closely with the disabled community within my area. I went to night school for two years to learn to how to sign so that I can help the deaf community. I also started a project enabling people with disabilities to attend local businesses to do work experience to help give them vital skills. The project provided experience that they would not normally be able to find on their own. I’m proud to say that it’s been a great success, even leading to employment for some of the participants.

I have a physical disability myself. I have had four surgeries on my right knee after an accident. It has left me in chronic pain but also left me with no feeling in my right leg from just above the knee, so learning how to walk about was a pain but I got there and I have found great solace in exercise and with a new love of CrossFit I have set a huge goal to try and compete by the time I am 40. At times I find that experiences can be very different, because it’s not something that you can see so people tend to forget that I am restricted with things like standing for hours, lifting objects or even walking up and down the stairs.

I am a huge supporter of the Barclays Workplace Adjustments Passport, not just for myself but as a chair encouraging others to use it. I have seen the benefits first hand and just how much they helped me I want nothing more than to see my fellow colleagues to see the benefits and the help available. From my own experience I was able to get a chair to help my pain. I was able to fully explain my issues to my managers and I was given a quiet space to go when I was in enormous pain so I could take five minutes to myself.

I’m very lucky that I have a brilliant team leader and a really good market leader and business manager that really care. Having the Workplace Adjustments Passport helped me to talk about what I go through so they could understand and support me in the right way. When you have an invisible disability people forget that sometimes you need a little extra help.

I’m telling my story because to look at me I am seen as ‘normal’ but if you ask me I can tell you that I am disabled. I like to shout about the fact that you should never judge a book by its cover at all. Who are we to say what is normal and what is not. I just see myself as a person with some great stories about not being able to use my right leg.

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