Here are four things to know about how employers consider hiring and disability, according to David Lewis, President of OperationsInc. (www.operationsinc.com). In his interview with Marketplace.org, Lewis stated that larger companies are often more accessible.
It’s no longer just anecdotal: a study has found the cost to accommodate persons with disability is quite minimal for employers. A U.S. study of more than 2,300 employers conducted between 2004 and 2017 found that most employers report little to no cost for accommodating employees with disabilities. Of the accommodations that did bear out a cost, employers reported the typical one-time expenditure was $500.
“There is still a prevailing stereotype that equates disability with difficulty and cost. In fact, our research for the last ten years shows that, in 60 percent of cases, there is no additional cost to employing someone with a disability,” says the Executive Director of the Association of Higher Education and Disability, or AHEAD.
Millennials will be the ones to create truly diverse, inclusive places of work, says this opinion piece on Forbes.com (http://www.forbes.com). By 2025 Millennials will make up nearly 75 percent of the workforce. Driven by intellectual curiosity, they will likely lead “a human revolution” and create a “just world of work.”
This opinion piece on The Daily Scanner (www.dailyscanner.com) says “there needs to be a shift in attitudes about the importance of equal opportunity, particularly for people with disabilities. Companies and institutions must make a conscious effort to rid their biases and accept those with disabilities. In many cases, the stigma around disabilities can cause a higher barrier for employment than the disability itself. Many people with a disability are capable of being a part of the workforce and making valuable contributions if given the opportunity.”
“Empowerment is at the core of the tech industry,” writes Michelle Simmons, Microsoft Asia-Pacific’s General Manager of Southeast Asia New Markets. “When we talk about empowering people, we simply mean that with the right tools, anyone can become anything. Empowerment, therefore, is key to building a diverse and inclusive workforce.” Here are her suggestions for driving diversity and inclusion.
“In order to attract the best work force it is essential that your office is set up to cater for employees of all physical abilities. Although this may sound obvious, it is surprising just how few workplaces would be able to facilitate an employee with a disability if they were to start work with immediate effect.”
“Many workplaces don’t put much thought into developing a climate where their employees feel safe and have a sense of belonging,” says career coach Marie Gervais, PhD. On her blog ShiftWorkPlace.com, Ms. Gervais gives some real world examples of successful inclusion, and explains how they got there.
The state government of Western Australia, like the Province of Ontario, is making a point of encouraging employers to hire people with disabilities. Its Count Me In strategy was launched in 2009, with an aim for “all people to live in welcoming communities that facilitate citizenship, friendship, mutual support and a fair go for everyone.”
A lengthy list of familiar names makes up Canada's Best Diversity Employers, published in the Globe and Mail in the spring of 2018. The employers were named for having inclusive and respectful work environments and successful diversity initiatives in areas including women, members of visible minorities, persons with disabilities, Indigenous people and LGBTQ people.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) has launched an ambitious strategy that they hope will “hardwire diversity and inclusion into everything the Corporation does.” The new strategy aims to make dramatic improvements in the corporation’s inclusivity and representation of the diverse population of the United Kingdom. The strategy sets out how the BBC will “do even more to reflect the public it serves.”