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Growing People and Culture with Inclusion

Three coworkers. One in a wheelchair and one with an intellectual disability working together

In the world of Human Resources or People, Culture, and Growth, inclusion is the gold standard. Policies are an important piece. But what is “active offer,” and how does it connect to “reasonable accommodation”? Where does accessibility fit in? And where do we go from there?

Active offering entails a proactive approach that anticipates the needs of employees with disabilities. In the context of human resources policies, it means clearly stating that reasonable accommodations are available and the process to request them is straightforward. Importantly, employees aren’t required to disclose their disabilities unless they choose to request accommodations. This principle is enshrined in the Accessibility Act, both provincially and federally, and forms an integral part of human rights legislation. The ultimate goal? An accommodating workplace.

Genuine inclusivity goes beyond compliance. Representation and a workplace designed for accessibility are key. By having individuals with disabilities in various roles within the organization, we promote understanding and inclusion. Ensuring representation at all levels demonstrates commitment and opens doors for others. These policies aren’t just words on paper; they translate to real-life experiences within the workplace. They show that people with disabilities can work, thrive, and build their future within the organization. Accessibility isn’t limited to a physical workspace; it is remote work options, accessible transit, and facilities equipped with features like lifts.

So, active offering, reasonable accommodation, accessibility, and representation all come together to shape a work culture where every employee feels valued and supported. It’s not just about policies; it’s about creating a genuinely inclusive workplace. Organizations embracing these principles achieve true inclusivity, and the impact is immeasurable.

Thank you to my friends from SCE Lifeworks for some stats illustrating these points. 


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