AT in the Workplace

18 December 2020

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BATA is interested in the workplace. It fits in with our core aims of raising awareness of AT in this sector. BATA set up a dedicated member SIG for the Workplace  and over the course of this year it has been meeting on topics of interest to this sector from mental health to Access to Work. The need now is for a landing page that lead to areas of specific interest.. Listed below is a growing list of what we hope you will find useful and informative. All of these areas will have information on Assistive Technology useful for these catagories.

 

Document of the Week

Every week we will feature an article from our database to give you a taster of what this web page offers. This week its Key Principles of Disability Confidence - A Guide to Policy making by Janine King . 

   Key principles

 

Introduction 

Attitudes to people with disabilities have changed over time. Paul Deemer's article provokes us to think differently about the terms and ways we think about disabilities. Here is a short extract from his article :-

"The shift of focus onto disability specifically has been an interesting one for me personally as it has shown me once again how important it is that we remind ourselves of the fights and struggles that many people with disabilities have encountered over the last 30 years at least and even beyond. In the same way that the Stonewall campaign took inspiration from the memory of the Stonewall riots in America in 1969, the most vocal in the current disability movement take inspiration from those who campaigned in the 1980s and 1990s on the slogan of ‘Nothing about us without us’. But it has also shown me that I think we need to step beyond that sloganeering and begin to really challenge those cultural and attitudinal barriers that stop so many people with disabilities in the workplace fulfilling their true potential each day."

So what are your barriers to inclusion?  What steps can you take to be more disability confident?  Paul makes an excellent introduction to our page here.  Read the complete text of Paul Deemer's article below:-

"Some people are disabled get over it!"

To access useful information click on the headings below:-

 

Disability Confident Organisations    

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Being disability confident is more than just giving verbal consent to the concept. It needs to be embedded in the culture. The documents and case studies below provide you with a toolkit to make this work for your organisation. With an exemplar case study and the overview of the Disability Confident Scheme this will help your company/organisation become what you are aspiring to be - Disability Confident.

 

Workplace Adjustments

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In order for disabled people to be included into the workplace it is important to make adjustments - "reasonable adjustments" is the term used. Assistive Technology along with seating and workplace equipment can make the difference in making your employee more effective and included into your company/organisation. The following examples draw on experiences of those who have been influential in making a difference to their ways of working to include disabled people. Advice of specific disabilities like Assistive technology for the visually impaired to the more subtle and important aspects of providing the right culture and acceptance of limitations to the positive benefits to both workplace and clients/customers. Not having disable people on your workforce is ignoring a sizeable amount of potential clients/ customers to your company

 

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So how do you avoid embarrassing interviews?

Awareness of the disability beforehand can avoid causing upset during an interview. Preparation before an interview is important and it will help to alleviate additional anxieties the disabled person may have. But also there is the aspects of keeping people in employment and supporting your employees as well. The link below will help you develop that inclusive approach in your company/organisation. 

 

Working from Home     

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If the pandemic taught us anything is that we can work remotely.

This is good news for the disabled person who can function more than adequately in their own home when travel and workplace may present challenges. Although we don't know if things will return to the normal. We do know the "new normal" will include a mixture of home and workplace working. Again disabled people can be more in control of their workflow and can organise their medical and psychological needs more effectively. Given the tips set out below for setting up a home office and the case study to exemplify an approach this would help employers to consider how to do home working successfully. 

 

Assistive Technology in Action   

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What assistive technology is out there to support disabled people?

There are a wealth of tools out there that can make a difference to disabled people to work effectively and efficiently. We call them Productivity Tools. To be honest they could help all your workforce as well. So consider the wider implications of these examples. 

 

Disability Legislation                              

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Some would say this should be top of the list 

And that would be right but making your website more accessible would certainly be a consideration. Read Alistair McNaught's thought provoking article to discover what you should be doing to be a more inclusion company/organisation.