What is the “A” in DEIA And Why Does It Matter?

Accessibility is the “A” being added to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEIA)

Accessibility is the “A” being added to diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). Accessibility means providing resources, support and potentially accommodations to help those with disabilities thrive in the workplace, just as we would the dominant group.

Accessibility is Important

There are several reasons accessibility is important to consider:

  • Disability prevalence: Disability is more common than many people realize. Approximately 16% of the global population has a disability. In the United States, 27% of adults have some type of disability.
  • Disabilities being non-apparent: 80% of disabilities are non-apparent, meaning they are not immediately visible or able to be identified by others. These disabilities can include chronic illnesses, mental health conditions and conditions like chronic pain or epilepsy. It’s important to be aware that not all disabilities are readily visible, and empathy and support are vital for individuals with invisible disabilities. There is no way to know for certain who’s disabled and who’s non-disabled. Chances are you work with someone with a disability and may not even know it.
  • Disability unemployment: Sadly, folks with disabilities have double the unemployment rate of those who are non-disabled. Given a tight labor market, hiring someone with a disability is a smart and necessary way to tap into an underserved population.

Barriers to Accessibility

In an interview with Catarina Rivera, content creator, public speaker, DEIA consultant and founder of Blindish Latina, she cited the most common barriers to workplace accessibility being ableism, discomfort with the topic of disability and the myth that disabled people are not in the workplace. Only 21% of disabled people disclose ….


Read the rest of this article by Julie Kratz on Forbes.com


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