The dismal employment figures of the disabled in India highlights the fact that it is imperative to create awareness and sensitize employers for giving them suitable jobs. The corporate meet called “DISCOVER THE UNTAPPED TALENT POOL OF YOUNG PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES” was organised by Youth4Jobs (Y4J) and hosted by Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) in Mumbai with the support of the Department for International Development (DFID), Government of United Kingdom and Sector Skill Council for Persons with Disabilities (SCPwD), Ministry of Skill Development & Entrepreneurship, Government of India. 50 employers from over 38 companies like Future Group, Star Bazaar and Axis Bank (to name a few) came together for a discussion on disability inclusion at a Corporate Meet held in Mumbai this week.
The aim of the Corporate Meet was to sensitize employers about the potential of persons with disability. To that effect learnings were shared by employers and companies who have already adopted inclusive practices at the workplace. The emphasis was on understanding “Ability in Disability” and tapping into fresh talent pool of youth with disabilities who are ready to work with required skill sets, mind set and competencies.
According to the ILO, there are over 2.6 crore persons with disability in India and less than 1% find employment. A few of the points of discussion discussed were:
- Barriers faced by persons with disability when seeking jobs
- How to create an inclusive atmosphere at the workplace and ensure greater sensitization among staff members
- Importance of sensitive appropriate terminologies when it comes to talking about persons with disability
Chief speakers at the meet were:
- Anil Kohli, who founded Chai Pe Charcha
- Vineet Saraiwala, from Future Group
- Himanshu Misra from Axis Bank
- Anu Gupta from DFID
- Niharika Nigam, from the SCPwD
- Meera Shenoy,Founder-CEO, Youth4Jobs Foundation
The corporate meet also included many fun-filled activities conducted by Youth4Jobs, such as Disability simulation activities that left the participants with a unique glimpse into the challenges faced by persons with disabilities and not just feel empathetic but also feel deeply respectful towards persons with Disability. Participants reflected and decided to begin their journey of inclusion in a respective company. The Meet also put up an Indian Sign Language kiosk, where attendees could take a crash course in learning basic sign language in 1 minute!