inclusive workplace

Promoting Inclusion of Disabilities in the Workplace

Around 20% of working-age adults in the UK have a disability, the likelihood of employing a disabled individual is therefore fairly high so the Inclusion of disabled people is very important. It’s within employers’ best interest to make their workplaces as inclusive of disabled employees as possible. Failing to do this could lead to the disabled employees feeling isolated and disconnected from their able-bodied coworkers leading to a lack of workplace cohesion. 

Adaptations for a Disabled Friendly Workplace 

Different disabilities will require differing needs of the employee, part of the process of making the workplace more inclusive is to focus on adapting to the needs of the individual. Even if you gain some understanding by doing research on their disability, how it affects them as an individual can be very different from others. Focusing on them and adapting based on their needs can make them feel cared for and heard by the company, helping towards the goal of the inclusion of all within the workplace. The general activities or procedures the employees are expected to go through as part of their job must be as accessible to disabled employees as reasonably as possible. Inclusion coaching can be a great way of ensuring your company’s commitment to these goals, it can help to identify areas that need more attention and help to acknowledge or overcome barriers to achieving the goals needed for an inclusive workplace. 

Inclusion of disabled

Creating an Open and Inclusive Work Environment 

Part of the process of providing an inclusive workplace for disabled employees is starting a conversation with them about the process. You cannot make the workplace accessible for them without taking some feedback directly. This starts even before hiring a disabled person to your team, with the application process. Many companies may put great effort into making the interviewing process as accessible as possible but there is a whole application phase before this. This phase can be very rigid as you are looking for a specific set of skills, however, it may be best to alter this slightly by focusing on potential a bit more. Many disabled candidates are likely to have gaps in their CV. You will still need to select someone suitable to the role, taking into account potential and how someone could perform with slight changes to their role may help offset your desire to dismiss them based on past challenges they’ve faced due to disability. Once part of your workplace, a disabled employee needs to feel comfortable coming forward about any challenges without a member of management being overbearing towards them. Achieving an open and inclusive workplace will be the key to having disabled employees feel welcome to share their experiences and challenges.   

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