Investing in disability and inclusion can lead to strong performances

Photo by Sigmund on Unsplash

One billion people worldwide live with a disability. Despite being the world’s largest minority group, people with disabilities face serious barriers to going to school, getting a job, and building a career.  

On April 26, 2022, the Global Business Coalition for Education hosted Investing in Inclusion: Education and Persons with Disabilities focusing on how businesses can make a transformative contribution to the lives of people with disabilities by improving education, training, and employment opportunities.  

Speakers included Joyce Cook, Chief Social Responsibility and Education Officer, Social Responsibility and Education at FIFA, Joyce Malombe, Interim Program Director at Wellspring Philanthropic Fund and Yashoda Shetty, Global Inclusion and Diversity Manager at Accenture.  

The session highlighted GBC-Education’s new disability inclusion handbook which offers an evidence-led, how-to guide for businesses seeking to improve their performance on disability inclusion. The handbook provides detailed guidance in four areas:  

  1. How to include and engage persons with disabilities as students, employees, consumers, and partners  
  2. What to consider when creating inclusive hiring and employment policies and corporate culture  
  3. What makes for effective disability-inclusive education and training   
  4. How the private sector can build successful partnerships with organizations for persons with disabilities 

Our panelists discussed various questions around these four areas and provided insightful feedback and advice for our business and education partners. Some key takeaways included:  

  • The commitment to hire people with disabilities should always start from the top. Leaders within organizations should be vocal advocates both internally, as well as externally, for disability inclusion. 
  • Engage with disabled people themselves to understand their experiences and incorporate their feedback into corporate policies. 
  • Open doors and build bridges for students in the transition from education to employment. 
  • Building diverse partnerships and collaborations with disabled people, or those doing the work in the disability and inclusion space, is key to unleashing the potential of people with disabilities in the workplace and beyond. 

If you have any questions, please contact Brittany Gray at [email protected]. 

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To attend future webinars with the Global Business Coalition for Education, please join the Collective, a free community where business leaders can grow together, build relationships, learn from experts and each other – as a foundation and bridge into forming organic alliances and partnerships. 

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