Exploring Disability Disadvantage: How Can the Workplace Be Made More Inclusive for People with Disability?

Presented at the third session of the New South Wales Industrial Relations Commission’s President's Forum, August 2015

Posted: 20 Aug 2015

See all articles by Paul Harpur

Paul Harpur

University of Queensland - T.C. Beirne School of Law

Date Written: August 20, 2015

Abstract

This presentation will critically analyse the key drivers of disability disadvantage in the labour market and explore how laws and policies can create more inclusive workplaces. This presentation argues that employers can help promote disability inclusive workplaces, but ignoring the wider causes of inequality is arguably unfair on employers and will not achieve meaningful results.

Disability scholars, particularly those from the social model and human rights schools, contend that ability difference is simply an aspect of human diversity. This ability difference is turned into disability when barriers in society disable people with impairments. These barriers include, inter alia, physical (the decision to put in stairs rather than ramps), attitudinal (inflexibly adopting practices that have discriminatory impacts) or educational (erroneously believing people with disabilities do not make valuable workers).

This presentation will use these three barriers to workplace inclusion to illustrate how the struggle for equality requires increased attention on parties beyond the employment relationship.

Suggested Citation

Harpur, Paul David, Exploring Disability Disadvantage: How Can the Workplace Be Made More Inclusive for People with Disability? (August 20, 2015). Presented at the third session of the New South Wales Industrial Relations Commission’s President's Forum, August 2015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2647076

Paul David Harpur (Contact Author)

University of Queensland - T.C. Beirne School of Law ( email )

Brisbane, Queensland 4072
Australia

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