Inclusive Employment: Employing People With A Disability | Leap in!

Inclusive employment.

A comprehensive guide for creating a culture of inclusion for people with a disability in your organisation.

Leap in has prepared this ebook to bust some of the myths around employing people with a disability, support businesses to overcome their concerns and provide detailed information to help organisations create a culture of inclusion.

Diversity and inclusion are fundamental pillars of a caring, strong and understanding society. In our communities, they foster connectivity, compassion and empathy. In our workplaces, they drive creativity, innovation and insight.

Australian workplaces are increasingly reflecting the diversity in our community, with progress made in some areas including gender and cultural representation. However, equality of opportunity in employment for people with diverse abilities is lagging. Fulfilling employment can be difficult to find.

Studies show that people with diverse abilities bring unique talents, skills and insights to the workplace that can lead to improved morale, better staff retention rates and competitive advantages.

However while many organisations set an intention to become more diverse, it can often be difficult to convert that intention to action due to uncertainty about legal requirements and preparing an accessible workplace. There are also misconceptions around costs and employee performance.

Our ultimate aim is for a society where workplace diversity is the norm, where people with a disability have equal opportunity to forge career paths that ignite their passions and businesses reap the many benefits of workplaces that are more reflective of the community in which they serve.

Download the full guide by clicking the button or use the links in the sections below to read more about each topic.

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Advantages of workplace inclusion.

Adopting more inclusive employment practices delivers benefits for businesses, employees and the community. Studies show that many people with a disability want to work and, given the opportunity, they can become a valuable asset to the business.

People with diverse abilities bring a wealth of new ideas, talents and experiences, help to build organisational resilience and improve the businesses’ ability to connect with customers in a meaningful way.

 

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What does the law say?

Equality of opportunity in employment is enshrined in federal and state legislation.  Businesses that discriminate against a person in employment because of a disability may be breaking the law. This covers recruitment through to career progression.

Some basic familiarisation can demystify the legal requirements and inform the development of more inclusive policies and procedures. Find out more about the provisions of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992, Fair Work Act 2009 and other relevant legislation.

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Smashing misconceptions and myths.

While there are myriad benefits for businesses that employ people with diverse abilities, uncertainty around providing support, a lack of awareness of the legal obligations and difficulties in ensuring appropriate access are often cited as potential barriers for employers.

On average, people with disabilities take fewer days off, less sick leave and stay in jobs longer than other workers. Once in a job, people with disability perform equally as well as other employees. Read on to find out the facts.

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Taking the first steps towards inclusive employment.

Committing to change is important but change only takes place through action.  Ultimately, inclusive employment should be part of an organisation-wide culture of inclusion and accessibility that incorporates your products or services, employment policies and community engagement.

In this section, we’ll review some of the initial steps employers can take such as involving people across your organisation, initial benchmarking and how to convert intention to action with an Accessibility Action Plan.

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Recruiting people with diverse abilities.

Inclusive workplaces start with job design where roles and job descriptions are created with accessibility and inclusion in mind.

In this section, we provide some tips for creating recruitment processes to make roles more attractive to suitably qualified prospective employees with diverse abilities and what to consider when it comes to position descriptions, advertisements and interviews. We also explore what it means to become a disability confident recruiter.

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Preparing your workplace.

How do you prepare for welcoming more diverse employees into your workforce and workplace? In this section, we consider a whole business approach, the importance of internal engagement and the role of assistive technology. We also explore some of the funding and grant options that can support you as an employer.

As you work through the information in this section, consider how you can create a safe, accessible and dignified experience for all employees, beyond simply meeting your legal Occupational Health & Safety obligations.

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Creating a culture of inclusion.

An inclusive workplace is one where people treat each other with respect and consideration, where every individual feels comfortable in their own skin and has equal opportunities to contribute, thrive and progress their career goals.

We explore ways to create a more welcoming culture including workplace etiquette, using inclusive person-first language, employee awareness and building career progression strategies.

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Assistance and support.

A range of programs and supports are available for businesses exploring opportunities to employ people with diverse abilities. This includes free information and support services, funding to purchase assistive technology and a supported wage system.

Wage subsidies may also be available for employers that meet certain criteria. For more details. Check out the Assistance and support section.

 

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