Facts to Pass Along .
So many great things are happening in American society, and globally, to even the playing field and open opportunities for all. Laws have been and continue to be passed to make our workplaces and public places more accessible. Technology is applied to allow better mobility and communication for all. Programs are developed to help match people to work and residential options. These developments continuously move us forward toward a world where the whole concept of “disabled” or “special needs” will be rid of the stigma that it holds today.
Here’s the thing, though… social or legislative change may seem dramatic at times, but its translation into the everyday attitudes and lives of communities and individuals is very slow. I work with clients who struggle every day to find their place in the community, even with the systems of civil rights and care in place. While there are programs that address the needs of many, I find that there are still a lot of vibrant, motivated, and capable adults who, because they have subtle social, cognitive, communication, or physical differences, are automatically shut out of opportunities for work.
Many people simply do not realize the extent and pervasiveness of this problem. That’s why I keep bringing it up, and I will continue to do so. Employers worry that hiring a person with a disability is risky. So here are a few evidence-based facts. Workers who have disabilities:
1) are among the most reliable, loyal employees you can have.
2) have no more (and often fewer) absences from work than others.
3) given low-cost appropriate accommodations, are as productive as
4) are tough, innovative, and team-based workers because these are
traits that must be developed when you have extra challenges to
cope with every day.
5) have experienced a lot of rejections, so they value their jobs
and the privilege of being employed.
6) are just like other employees, in terms of performance standards.
There is no law that says that you must hire or maintain a worker
whose cannot fulfill the essential requirement of any position.
Please help me to pass these facts along to as many people as possible, especially those in the business community. I have had success with helping clients one-by-one with their educational and employment goals. It would be so much easier if everyone understood the facts about employees with disabilities!