Businesses urged to employ disabled

A FORUM is being held in Coffs Harbour next week to build and improve networks between schools, community, tertiary and employment sectors in order to improve education and employment outcomes for people with a disability.

The University of New England's national disability co-ordination officer is inviting stakeholders to participate in workshops and collaborate on joint projects to achieve mutual objectives. By participating, your business will:

  • Be empowered by the success stories from businesses who employ people with a disability.
  • Share your concerns, fears of employing a person with a disability.
  • Strengthen your linkages with providers that will support you in employing staff with a disability.
  • Gain an understanding of the assistance and support available.
  • Identify the potential job opportunities within your business.

When employing people with disability, organisations can benefit by:

  • attracting and retaining the best of the talent pool.
  • improving customer service.
  • strengthening workplace morale and productivity.
  • being a good corporate citizen.
  • complying with legislative requirements and meeting international standards.

Research has found that there is a strong business case, as well as an ethical case, to support the employment of people with disability.

  • More than 90% of employers who had recently employed a person with disability said they would be happy to continue to employ people with disability.
  • 78% of employers described the match between their employee with disability and the job as good.
  • In relation to the cost benefit of workplace accommodations for employees with disability, 65% of employers rated the financial effect to be cost neutral and 20% identified an overall financial benefit.
  • The average recruitment cost of an employee with disability was 13% of the average recruitment cost of an employee without disability;
  • Employees with disability averaged one-sixth the recorded occupational health and safety incidents of employees without disability;
  • 90% of employees with disability record productivity rates equal or greater than other workers;
  • 98% have average or superior safety records;
  • 86% have average or superior attendance records.
  • People with disability worked on average 4.1 years in a call centre, compared 3.2 years for people without disability;
  • Over a 15-month period, people with disability had 11.8 days absent, compared to people without disability who had 19.24 days absent;

There were no significant differences when comparing people with disability to people without disability in the areas of performance, productivity and sales.

The forum is being held at C.ex next Monday between 9am and 4.30pm. For more information and to register email leonie.kennedy@

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