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New accreditation recognises employers who provide opportunities to people with disabilities

New accreditation recognises employers who provide opportunities to people with disabilities

President Halimah Yacob attends the virtual launch of the Enabling Mark on Oct 8, 2020. (Photo: MCI)

SINGAPORE: A national-level accreditation was launched on Thursday (Oct 8) to recognise firms whose hiring practices are inclusive to people with disabilities. 

The Enabling Mark is the "first of its kind" accreditation in Singapore, said SG Enable in a media release.

"(It) seeks to incentivise organisations to build a positive corporate image with disability-inclusive hiring, inspire them to adopt the best practices with leading organisations serving as role models, and inform and support them as they improve their inclusive employment practices," said the agency. 

Speaking at the virtual launch of the Enabling Mark, President Halimah Yacob said employers play a key role in the effort to empower employees with disabilities.

She cited the example of Seoul Garden Group which has a "strong record of inclusive hiring" - 10 per cent of their employees are people with disabilities and almost half have been with the F&B company for more than five years.

Mdm Halimah said an employee named Jonathan, who has hearing and speech impairments, started out with the company as a kitchen assistant in 2015 and rose through the ranks to become a senior service assistant.

"From Jonathan’s journey, we can see that the support of employers is critical in empowering persons with disabilities to realise their potential," Mdm Halimah said. 

"With the right job match, reasonable job accommodations and a focus on abilities, employees with disabilities can excel in their work, take on greater responsibilities and grow in their career."

READ: President’s Star Charity 2020 marks 20th anniversary of the President’s Challenge

In his speech, Minister for Social and Family Development Masagos Zulkifli said that amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government has also been paying special attention to vulnerable groups, including people with disabilities, to support them in accessing jobs and training opportunities.

He noted that SG Enable held a virtual training and career fair last month, which helped people with disabilities look for work. More than 150 job vacancies were offered to them by the private, public and people sectors, Mr Masagos added.

"The number of jobs offered at the fair is an encouraging signal that many employers are still keen to hire inclusively despite the economic uncertainties,"  he said.

"Being an inclusive employer that hires PWDs (persons with disabilities) is not an act of charity, but a good business decision!" 

"Besides enabling you to tap on a wider pool of talent, it also signals your organisation’s progressiveness and commitment towards building a more inclusive society in Singapore."

The Enabling Mark accreditation has three tiers - Silver, Gold and Platinum - and the tier an organisation receives is determined by factors such as recruitment practices and workplace accessibility.

Silver, Gold and Platinum recipients hold the accreditation for one, two and three years respectively.

Companies can apply for the Enabling Mark through this website.

Source: CNA/kg(gs)

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