Ways of supporting disabled employees in the workplace.

Supporting disabled people in the workplace is necessary for creating an inclusive, fair, and productive environment. It helps everyone feel respected and ensures that people with disabilities have the same opportunities as others – which is the real definition of equity. This is what we are constantly working for at TRRAIN – creating a just society by providing sustainable livelihood opportunities to the disabled and downtrodden. Today we come to you with this post on how to help disabled persons in the workplace, so that they are a part of the greater good of society and the economy. 

Why is workplace disability inclusion important?

Disability inclusion is important for many reasons:

  1. Everyone deserves an equal chance to succeed, regardless of their abilities. It’s about equity, not just equality.
  2. People with disabilities bring unique perspectives and skills to the table, which can benefit the workplace socially as well as economically.
  3. An inclusive workplace creates a positive work environment, boosting self-esteem and efficiency.

From physical issues to emotional and psychological ones, there are so many problems for employees with disabilities in the workplace. But you will be surprised to know that according to a survey, creating a disability-friendly workplace costs almost no additional cost. In contrast, it has many direct and indirect advantages for organisations. 

So you, our smart readers, decide – is creating a workplace that is sensitive towards inclusivity, not a profitable affair?

7 ways to support disabled people in the workplace

We all want to feel included and valued at work, But for people with disabilities, this can be a real struggle. That’s why it’s important to create workplaces where everyone feels welcome and supported. This is not just the right thing to do, it’s good for business too! Here are 7 ways of supporting disabled employees in the workplace – 

  1. Creating an inclusive environment is the first step.
  • Be considerate with the language; it is wise to avoid terms that might be offensive or dismissive.
  • It is important to make sure that all employees, including those with disabilities, are included in team activities and meetings.
  • It is necessary to foster a culture of respect and understanding, so encourage employees to be considerate of one another.
  1. It is necessary to train people to understand the concept of inclusivity. 
  • Regular training sessions on disability awareness and inclusion should be conducted.
  • Employees need to learn about various types of disabilities and the specific needs each Person with Disability might require. 
  • Special training for managers on handling accommodations and support for employees with disabilities must be given.
  1. Making physical accommodations to provide support for Persons with Disabilities at workspaces.
  • Make ramps, elevators, and automatic doors available at the workplace. 
  • Another easy way is to ensure the workstations are adaptable, such as having adjustable desks and chairs.
  • Be mindful about constructing canteens and bathrooms for disabled employees.
  1. With the digital revolution, offering flexible work arrangements shouldn’t be a problem at all.
  • Work from home hasn’t ended with the end of the COVID pandemic but has paved the way for numerous remote working options.
  • Provide flexible working hours, so that employees can adjust their schedules.
  • Job-sharing is another great way of reducing the workload and supporting disabled employees in the workplace – two employees share the responsibilities of one job.
  1. There are so many assistive technology ideas for differently abled people.
  • Provide options such as screen readers, speech-to-text software, and other tools for visually impaired employees.
  • Offering special keyboards and mice for those with physical disabilities is a great way.
  • Even the workplace software can be made to be compatible with assistive technologies.
  1. Open communication is the key to healthy workplaces.
  • An open-door policy where employees feel comfortable discussing their needs is highly appreciated in many organisations across the globe.
  • Keep in touch with your employees, especially those with disabilities, to see how they are doing and if they need anything more.
  • Seeking and working on feedback is a great practice.
  1. It all comes down to what’s there in the company policy.
  • Disability inclusion should be one of the policies of an organization – not just because it feels good, but also because it helps score double the revenues.
  • Policies should be communicated to all employees.
  • Policies should also be reviewed and adjusted regularly for best results.


How to help disabled persons in the workplace

Helping a disabled person in the workplace goes beyond just providing physical accommodations. It’s about creating a supportive and understanding environment where everyone can grow.

  • Listen to them: Sometimes, just listening to them can make them feel valued, involved, and respected. 
  • Be patient: As an able-bodied person, we also need to understand that some tasks might take longer for disabled employees than for us. Patience is needed.
  • Offer help: If you see a colleague struggling, offer help. Sometimes, a small gesture can make a big difference in someone’s life.
  • Avoid assumptions: Everyone is different, and so are their capabilities. We cannot judge someone’s capabilities by their physical appearance or abilities. 


Support for people with disabilities – a shared responsibility!

Supporting people with disabilities in the workplace requires effort from everyone, from management to fellow employees, and to the society we live in.

  • Make disabled employees an active partner in all activities and make sure they feel part of the team.
  • Being disabled doesn’t mean they need fewer resources to work. Provide them with the resources they need to perform their jobs effectively.
  • Take the time to learn and understand about different disabilities and how you can support your co-workers better.

TRRAIN – paving the way for people with disabilities to thrive

Supporting disabled people in the workplace is essential for creating a fair, inclusive, and productive environment, and that’s the most basic thing one needs to understand. Promoting disability inclusion should be done not only for moral reasons but for the growth of all. Let’s all take a moment to reflect on the term – Ubuntu – which emphasizes that living as a community, as one people, is necessary for inclusive growth and progress. 

What a powerful term to end a post. We believe that you will support us in our endeavours through generous sustainable livelihood donations, so that you, we, and all grow and bloom together! 



    Founded in 2011 by B.S. Nagesh, Trust for Retailers and Retail Associates of India (TRRAIN) is a 12A, 80G, public charitable trust that aims to catalyse a change in the retail industry by empowering people through retail and allied sectors in creating sustainable livelihoods for Persons with Disabilities and Young Women from marginalised backgrounds.

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