The initiative was launched by Disability Discrimination Commissioner Dr Ben Gauntlett and focuses on improving employment pathways, promoting access and inclusion, and changing how people with disability are perceived in the workplace. It will include a resource hub for employers at IncludeAbility.gov.au as well as an Employer Network and an Ambassador Advisory Group.
“In Australia, there are 4.4 million people with disability, yet the employment participation rate of people with disability is 30% lower than people without disability. This difference in the level of participation has not changed for 20 years,” Dr Gauntlett said.
“While many organisations have come a long way when it comes to focusing on diversity issues such as gender, cultural background and sexual orientation, it is vital that disability is also a key part of any diversity discussion.”
The resource hub provides free information to help employers on topics including:
• Creating an accessible and inclusive workplace
• Customising a job for a person with disability
• Hosting accessible and inclusive online meetings and events
• Identifying as a person with disability in the workplace
• Self-employment for people with disability
• Identifying accessible and inclusive employers
Sixteen private and public sector employers have signed up, including Australia Post, Woolworths, Kmart, Microsoft, Westpac, the Australian Public Service and the New South Wales Public Service. IncludeAbility’s Ambassador Advisory Group includes people with lived experience of disability from diverse employment backgrounds.
“I want people with disability of all ages and abilities to be confident in the knowledge that they can put their talents to work in Australia and obtain not just a job, but a good job,” Dr Gauntlett said.