Part of the David C. Onley Initiative
Ottawa is #AbleTo
Ontario is home to nearly 50,000 post-secondary students with a visible or non-visible disability—nearly 10,000 in Ottawa alone. When these students graduate, they are often at a disadvantage. They are overlooked or ignored by employers and hiring managers, despite being highly educated and skilled.
Now, it’s time to change that.
The business case
If you’re an employer, you should know that accessibility and accommodations are achievable, necessary and affordable, often costing less than $500.
You should also know that ignoring students and graduates with disabilities is bad for your business when customers are more socially minded than ever before, and when skilled labour is in short supply.
The business case for hiring students with disabilities is clear.
Sixty-three percent of Ottawa employers are struggling to find and retain the workers they need. Eighty percent of Canadians say they are more likely to do business with a company that has a policy of hiring people with disabilities. And 40 percent of the consumer base will be people with disabilities by 2035.
Want to strengthen your business and find the talent you need? See the resources below for information on the employment gap for students and graduates with disabilities, as well as simple steps you can make to be more inclusive.
Thrive in a talent crisis. You are #AbleTo.
#AbleTo infographics are your chance to learn more and help spread our message. Download these print-ready infographics and post them in your office, workplace or community. In doing so, you can bust myths, share the business case for hiring students and graduates with disabilities, and help build inclusion into workplaces around Ottawa. You are #AbleTo.
Want to know where our data come from? Check out our statistics document.
Reach out to us
Want to connect with us for information and to take real action?
#AbleTo is brought to you by the David C. Onley Initiative for Employment and Enterprise Development (DCOI). We’re a partnership between the University of Ottawa, Algonquin College, La Cité and Carleton University. Together, we are working to bridge the gap between students with disabilities and employers by building pathways to meaningful employment.
So join us. Whether you are an employer, and individual with a disability, or an organization that wants to work with us, we would like to hear from you.
Leaders in your community are showing what they are #AbleTo do to help close the employment gap. Find out how they are supporting the movement.
While I was a student in La Cité’s personal support worker program, I was diagnosed with a learning disability and with a chronic medical condition that often causes severe pain.
make accessibility the norm.
David C. Onley Initiative
Accessibility cracks open workplaces, increasing diversity, fostering inclusion and fueling new thinking and knowledge.
ask and listen.
Recent graduate, Algonquin College
Ask a question and listen to the answer. That’s my approach to make workplaces more inclusive for students and graduates with disabilities.