Equal Opportunity Workplaces

Bendigo Regional HR Network

The Benefits of Employing Someone with a Disability

  • Are you committed to equal opportunities? – 77% of the public think more highly of companies who make an effort to employ people with a disability (Charity Awareness Monitor UK 2004)
  • Do you lack first- hand knowledge to reach you disabled customer base (approx.. 20% of the population?
  • Would your managers benefit from the challenge of supporting a diverse team? Employing someone with a disability will give your managers and other key staff an opportunity to step up
  • Does your team lack morale? Is there a high rate of sickness? – many people with a learning disability have been excluded from the workplace for a long time, and are very keen to work hard. Their enthusiasm is infectious. Team dynamics and overall performance have been shown to improve as a result of employing someone with a learning disability
  • Do you have trouble recruiting for certain positions or tasks? – these positions or jobs may be ideal for someone with a learning disability
  • Do you need to recruit and retain loyal, hard-working staff? There is evidence to support the fact that people with a learning disability stay with one employer for a longer time, and take less sickies. They also have less work injuries and as a consequence lost time. Costs to business are as low as 34% of the non disabled work force

Types of Jobs

  • In an office or admin setting – compiling files or information packs, sending out the post, photocopying, labelling envelopes, answering phones and taking messages, running errands, including a lunch run or coffee run, stock (paper/pens, etc) distribution
  • In a retail setting – stock replenishment, helping shoppers find goods, facing up stock, pricing goods, warehouse, stock control

What sort of assistance is available to employers?

(via the Employment Assistance Fund 1800 464 800 – www.jobaccess.gov.au)

  • The costs of modifications to the physical work environment
  • The costs of modifying work vehicles
  • Adaptive equipment for the workplace
  • Information and communication devices
  • Auslan interpreting
  • Disability awareness training for all staff
  • Deafness awareness training for all staff
  • Mental health first aid training for all staff
  • Specialist services for employees with specific learning disorders and mental health conditions.
  • On the job or off site support to ensure new employees with a disability settle into their job
  • Professional recruitment advice and job matching
  • Help with job design
  • Ongoing support for as long as it is required, for employees and employers who require support to maintain their employment

You may also find this site helpful – www.jobsearch.gov.au