Do you ever wonder if there is a hiring bias against people with disabilities in Canada? A hiring bias against those with disabilities simply implies that individuals who have disabilities may be discriminated against by an employer. This discrimination would render them less likely to secure a job than someone without a disability.
While it is illegal for Canadian employers to discriminate against people with disabilities, unfortunately it still happens.
This was made evident in the Donna Jodhan vs. Attorney General of Canada case, which was brought to Court in 2010. Ms. Jodhan pursued Court intervention when she was unable to access online information while attempting to apply for employment.
The Attorney General of Canada argued that individuals with disabilities could “apply for employment via phone or in person.” The Court saw this action as a violation against individuals with disabilities’ Charter Rights and ruled in favour of Ms. Jodhan.
Read our post about this Court case at http://www.disabilityliving.ca/disability-canada-canadian-woman-vision-wins-court-case/.
The discrimination encountered by Donna Jodhan is a type that is probably common to a number of job seekers who have a disability.
In Donna Jodhan’s case, lack of accessibility was the form of discrimination working against her. Unfortunately, this is likely happening in other Canadian workplaces. While this is illegal in most cases, you can see in the Court case example that it still takes place.
“Persons with disabilities face different barriers to participation in the labour force.”
These barriers could be physical, mental, emotional, or another type, based on what particular disability someone has. However, barriers can be brought down with the help of accessibility.
In other words, someone may have a vision-related disability, but a screen reader or other type of technology can make it possible for that person to work. This is just one example of how accessibility can enable individuals with disabilities to be employed.
If a workplace isn’t disability-accessible, how could someone with a disability work there? More than likely, they couldn’t. Looking at it in this light, would you agree that lack of accessibility equals unadulterated discrimination?
As someone with a disability, have you ever been discriminated against in the workplace?
If so, how? We would appreciate hearing about the ways you’ve encountered hiring biases. You may find that many other Disability Living readers have had the same experiences as you.
*Please note: All research for this article is compiled from direct and third party sources. Mention of programs, organizations and companies does not imply support of The National Benefit Authority. Pictures are for creative purposes only; they are not intended to sell or promote products for the NBA and belong to the accredited individual, organization or company.
Let’s Talk About It
Do you see lack of accessibility as discrimination against persons with disabilities?
Do you feel there is a hiring bias against Canadians with disabilities? Why or why not?