Disabled workforce urged to speak up
Companies that discriminate against people with disabilities need to be reported to the authorities, a government official has said.
Dr Shaikha Alia Al Qasimi, Acting CEO of the Social Care and Development Sector at the Community Development Authority (CDA), has received complaints about a lack of promotions for those with a disability, though she did not state how many.
Al Qasimi was speaking on the sidelines of the launch of a new careers network by Emirates NBD to help disabled people find jobs.
Al Qasimi said: “Some of the complaints are lack of promotion, sometimes they get [told] that they lack the skills.”
She said it is the “responsibility of each organisation” to put a training plan in place to ensure disabled employees are not left behind.
She said: “People with disability should not be excluded.”
In 2014, Law No 2 was issued to ensure a company cannot turn an applicant down or By Sarwat Nasir discriminate against them because of a disability, though no penalties were listed at the time. The CDA negotiates between the company and worker in question.
The Emirates NBD database has 100 people who are ready for the workplace.
But Sara Baker, from Dubai Autism Centre, believes that there is a “missing link” between such centres and companies.
Baker said: “Autism is very challenging but it’s not impossible. Companies need to work with special needs centres. Our kids look okay, but if they start getting their ticks and start moving, then society becomes afraid of them.”
Although Baker feels there has been progress in terms of hiring, the steps forward have been “very slow”.
Of the 51 adults at the centre, three are training for a job they will be starting soon.