Blogs

To keep up to date with the latest news from Inclusive Volunteer check out these blogs.

3 Tips to Disclose your Disability to an Employer

How to disclose a disability-three things to tell your employer:

1.What information do I disclose?

If you choose to disclose your disability to your employer, determine exactly what information you will provide to your employer.  When considering what information to disclose, remember that the only information you need to disclose about your disability relates to:

  • any adjustments required to ensure a fair and equitable selection process
  • how your disability may impact on some aspects of the inherent requirements of a job and
  • any adjustments that may be required to complete the inherent requirements of the job.

You do not need to disclose specific medical or personal information about a disability.

2. When do I disclose my disability to my employer?

There are many opportunities for you to disclose your disability to an employer.  If you have decided to disclose your disability, you will need to decide when to disclose.  To assist you with this decision, we have outlined the benefits of disclosing disability at different stages of employment.

Prior to an interview

Disclosure prior to an interview may:

  • enable you to have a frank conversation with the employer about disability issues in relation to the inherent requirements of the job as this discussion can help determine whether work related adjustments are required and/or whether support services are needed
  • allow the employer to make the necessary arrangements for access to the building, if mobility is an issue
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s employment equity strategies
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s support structures for employees with disability
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s workplace adjustment schemes
  • eliminate any surprises or awkwardness when speaking with the employer.

At interview or after offer of employment

Disclosure at an interview or after an offer of employment has been received may:

  • enable you to get workplace accommodations that are necessary to do the job
  • provide the employer with evidence of your skills, abilities and ways for overcoming any implications of a disability
  • increase access to appropriate employment supports
  • provide access to appropriate supports increasing the likelihood of job retention
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s employment equity strategies
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s support structures for employees with disability
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s workplace adjustment schemes.

Disclosure at the time of starting a job may:

  • enable you to get workplace accommodations that are necessary for you to do the job
  • increase the responsiveness of employers and co-workers to your needs
  • enable you  to obtain information about an organisation’s support structures for employees with disability
  • enable you to obtain information about an organisation’s workplace adjustment schemes.

3. Talking with your employer

When disclosing disability to your employer:

  • be clear and matter of fact about why you are disclosing and your desired outcomes from doing so
  • be knowledgeable about your disability
  • discuss the impact of possible symptoms and side effects of any medication on the workplace
  • provide some options and strategies for workplace adjustment to make it easy for your employer.

If your disability is visible you may wish to anticipate concerns and answer those specifically:

For example: ‘We have not discussed my disability or how it might impact on the job. I notice as a sales job, that this job involves some driving. I have my own car and have been driving for ten years so this will be no problem’.

For more information contact us at Inclusive Volunteering.

Employment Assistant Fund

Employment Assistance Fund- 

The Fund provides assistance to employers of people with disability and mental health condition by providing financial assistance to purchase a range of work-related modifications and services. Assistance is available for people who are aboutto start a job or who are currently working, as well as those who require assistance to find and prepare for work.

The Employment Assistance Fund helps people with disability and mental health condition by providing financial assistance to purchase a range of work-related modifications and services for people who are about to start a job or who are currently working, as well as those who require assistance to find and prepare for work.

The Fund may reimburse the cost of work-related modifications and services including, but not limited to:

  • the cost of modifications to the physical work environment
  • modifications to work vehicles adaptive equipment for the workplace
  • information and communication devices
  • Auslan interpreting
  • specialist services for employees with specific learning disorders and mental health conditions
  • disability awareness training
  • Deafness awareness training
  • mental health first aid training

Intellectual Disabilities

Insight Into Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

Every person is unique and should be treated as an equal’s.

It is a myth that people with intellectual disabilities can only do “simple” tasks. The abilities of people with intellectual disabilities are dependent on the type and severity of their disability. It is important to treat adults with intellectual disability as adults, not children.

Employment opportunities can boost confidence, self-esteem and a sense of purpose. Research has indicated that in most instances, people with intellectual disabilities are keen workers and have proven to be just as reliable as their colleagues.

Some employers are not that confident in hiring employees with disabilities. There are a lot of myths and misconceptions surrounding the hiring of people with disabilities and quite often put this issue into the “too hard basket”

Educating Businesses on the benefits of hiring people with intellectual disabilities. Also, let them know about the financial incentives of employing people with disabilities.

See a person’s abilities, not their disabilities. Your business could benefit greatly from employing a person with an intellectual disability.

For more information, visit our website at: Melissa Ryan  at: melissajmelissa@outlook.com

Do workers compensations cost increase due to hiring people with disabilities?

A common misconception is that workers compensation costs will increase due to hiring people with disabilities and that people with disabilities will have more accidents at work.

This is definitely not the case. Whether an employer employs people with disability is irrelevant to the calculation of such premiums.

Research suggests that people with disability can have fewer accidents at work. The workers compensation costs for people with disability can be as low as four percent of the workers compensation costs of other employees (Graffam et al 1999).

It can’t be automatically assumed that employers have knowledge on how having employers with disabilities will have an impact on the workplace. While research may have proven that people with disabilities have fewer accidents at work, this information is not widely publicised. While it is a fact that a minority of businesses just won’t employ people with disabilities, a majority of businesses want to employ people with disabilities, but are not confident in doing so, misconceptions such as higher insurance premiums for or hiring people with disabilities heighten risks for employers, does not help matters. The absence of information regarding insurance and employees with disabilities, also does not help, when it comes to dispelling such notions.

There are many solutions to this problem. If the employee with a disability has requested some workplace accommodation/s and/or modifications, by providing these accommodations and/or modifications, the chances of accidents occurring may be reduced, an open discussion between the employer and employee with a disability may also alleviate the employer’s concerns or discussing such concerns with the business’s insurer. There also needs to be more information widely disseminated regarding employees with disabilities and insurance.

The risks of an employee with a disability having an accident at work are the same, or in some cases lower than other employees have accidents. Many employers are unsure of the risks when it comes to hiring employees with disabilities and there is not enough information widely available to alleviate their fears.

To find out more contact Mel via email at melissajmelissa@outlook.com. If you would like to keep up to date with the latest news from Inclusive Volunteering look our facebook page.

 

Inclusive Volunteering

People with disabilities are often seen as passive recipients of services or charitable efforts, who are unable to be contributing members of society. Inclusive Volunteering has been developed to challenge this notion!

Despite having a physical disability myself, I have had a strong connection with volunteering for quite a number of years. During this time, I have had a number of volunteering roles including working as a “companion” in a large residential facility, a “School Librarian” at a special school, doing some research for Boggo Road Gaol Historical Society, volunteering with the Golden Valley Liones Club and The Queensland Victims Homicide Group.

As well as formal volunteering efforts, I have been on numerous committees throughout the years. These committees having ranged from supporting families who have a family member with a disbaility, campaigning for more personalised care for people with disabilities, to planning and writing policies and dealing with issues related to service provision for people with disabilities.

In 2014, I began volunteer work at Mitchelton Special School, initially assisting with administrative tasks. Early in 2015, my role at the school changed to researching and developing volunteer roles for students who either were in there final years of school or who had recently left school. This project was reasonably successful and provided me with a lightbulb moment “Why couldn’t I establish my own business, linking people with disabilities to volunteer opportunities within the community?”, from this moment Inclusive Volunteering was born.

Extensive research revealed that there was a great need for somebody to find volunteer roles in our community for people with disabilities and/or their families, by finding volunteer opportunities within the community that suit the unique needs of each individual volunteer with a disability.

Inclusive Volunteering has two main programs, our School Leavers’ Pathway Program is a supported internship type program specifically designed for young people with disabilities who are just about to leave or who have recently left school. This program involves the participant working with a mentor (provided by Inclusive Volunteering) to develop the skills they will need in the workplace.

Our Adult Mentoring Program is for the people with disabilities aged between 25 to 40 who wish to make a valuable contribution to their community. This program runs along similar guidelines as the School Leavers’ Pathway Program. 

For the further information please click.