COMPANY CULTURE / AUG. 22, 2013
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Embracing Staff with Disabilities

There are a number of organizations that specialize in helping individuals with disabilities to find employment and these organizations aim to match individuals with disabilities with the right type of work that will suit their interests and skills. 

In the USA, people with disabilities make up 19% of the population, and according to the US Census Bureau, Barack Obama signed an executive order in 2010 appealing for an additional 100,000 individuals with disabilities to be employed by the federal government.

However, at present only 21% of working-age people with disabilities are employed in the US workforce, and this figure has not changed at all since the passing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, 1990. The employment gap needs to be reduced whilst companies need to take inspiration from companies that actively recruit people with disabilities and have employee-resources groups for those with disabilities.

The top 10 US companies have employee resource groups for people with disabilities, and all have formal recruitment programs for those with disabilities. In addition, 62% of those companies do business with certified suppliers owned by people with disabilities.

Hiring a diverse workforce

As an employer it is your responsibility to recruit retain and promote a diverse workforce that is more equally representative of the US population. Once hired, you will need to ensure that you implement a range of measures to rightfully and professionally accommodate those individuals into the working environment. This includes making amendments to the workforce to ensure that disabled people can easily and efficiently access all the amenities required.

Benefits of hiring people with disabilities

It is essential to bear in mind that individuals with disabilities can bring a great deal to the workplace. Numerous studies suggest that diverse, heterogeneous teams promote creativity, innovation and better decision making. People with disabilities can add to the diversity of thought that brings a fresh perspective and innovation to the workforce. This ultimately brings greater competition and a workforce that is highly sought after.

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