Qaderoon enables persons with disabilities to play an active role in society
Talents of persons with disabilities yet untapped
JEDDAH — At a time when both international and national legislation emphasize the rights of persons with disabilities to work, their employment makes business sense in raising the competitive advantages for business owners, due to the discipline, attendance and productivity known from persons with disabilities. This is according to a study by the international Labor Organization and the World Bank.
The Executive Manager of Qaderoon Business Disability Network, Khalid Sindi, pointed out that the study also indicated that staff members with disabilities contribute to higher retention rates than others when they are provided with a work environment that supports them. He also said the importance of investing in the skillsets of persons with disabilities whose talents – whether technical, administrative, or strategic – remains untapped.
The manager of Qaderoon added: Persons with disabilities represent about 15% of the total population. This is a consumer market segment that should interest business owners, especially when including their friends and relatives. Equally, it is logical to employ persons with disabilities in jobs that serve consumers with disabilities.
Sindi noted that the Ministry of Labor and Social Development (MLSD) emphasized the importance of ensuring the rights of persons with disability, preventing discrimination against them, and treating them equally among all employees with regard to their rights and duties. MLSD released several new policies contained in the Executive Regulations of Article 28 of the Labor law which includes labor and employment of persons with disabilities. A directive addendum was attached to these regulations stating the range of assistive services and facilities, namely proposed solutions and tools that will contribute to the creation and development of a supportive work environment for persons with disabilities. These arrangements are classified by types of disability, recommending that companies make the arrangements appropriate to the employee’s disability and its degree.
Sindi expressed his gratitude to MLSD for adding to the definition of disability categories other than those well recognized (motor, auditory, visual, mental), to include in this definition multiple types of disabilities such as: learning, speech, behavioral and psychological impairments, autism and any other forms of disabilities which require physical accommodation and services. Temporary disability was also recognized, including chronic and temporary illness.
“We appreciate MLSD for its championing the rights of persons with disabilities to work. We look forward to additional policies, legislation, and programs that will contribute to achieving greater inclusion of persons with disabilities in the society,” he said.
Moreover, Sindi stressed that “we are moving forward according to the 2030 National Vision which will enable persons with disabilities to obtain appropriate educational opportunities, work independently, and play an active role in society. Qaderoon Network seeks to implement this vision through its focus on providing outreach, counseling, and training. With the best practices provided by Qaderoon Network, business owners can recruit and maintain a workforce with disabilities, harmonize policies and provide supportive work environments.