“It’s refreshing to know that there are employers out there who recognize the diverse talents that people with disabilities bring to the workplace.”
Our bilingual talent specialist, Mahta Molatalab, said she was delighted to help a national organization demonstrate its leadership in diversity and inclusion initiatives.
Last fall, she worked with CBC/Radio Canada on their Persons with Disabilities pilot project. Through dual outreach and relationships within Career Edge networks, the program launched the careers of six people with a self-declared disability at CBC, placing them in production and administration roles relating to social media, news, research, sports, and more. As of today, the six interns have completed their Career Edge paid internships.
“They said it was an incredible experience for them,” said Mahta.
An intern who requested to remain anonymous said, “First and foremost, this experience serves as a reminder that I am able. Unfortunately, stigma surrounding disability can often mean that securing a job and proving your worth is quite the uphill climb. So much so that — after a while — it starts to chip away at your self worth. For me to re-enter a workplace at a full-time basis and to be so successful at my job reminds me that I am no different than anyone else. In fact, the old cliche holds true: what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. For me, the adversity that I’ve experienced means I enter the workplace with a heightened sense of awareness and a diverse perspective. As you can imagine, this is incredibly handy in a workplace based in storytelling.”
The new full-time employee at CBC also spoke about his advocacy.
“It’s also been really fulfilling to advocate for my community. In being vocal about my disability and making an effort to disclose where possible, I can see change happening in my workplace. I can generate conversation and — just by being present — change the way people think about disability. This has made me realize the power of representation and how hiring people with disabilities can be such an investment. Employers should champion diversity because, when you hire more people with disabilities, it allows the vast amount of people already working in an organization who live with invisible disabilities to get closer to a point where they can disclose, too. It’s a domino effect. And when these people finally identify, they can be vocal about their needs. When people get the accommodations they need, they can work more efficiently. It creates a more healthy and robust workplace.”