Disability and employment are two critical issues that we have to deal with as a society. As people live longer, it is more likely that they will develop some form of disability at some point in life.

According to data by the United Nations, disabilities negatively affect employment opportunities for disabled persons. Namely, between 80%-90% of persons with disabilities are unemployed in the developing world while this figure stands at 50% – 70% for the industrialized countries.

Furthermore, people with disabilities, provided that they have accommodations according to their particular needs, can still perform adequately in the workplace. Based on the demand for a skilled workforce and the benefits for disabled persons, we should reconsider our views on disability.

Examples of Disability in the Workplace

With just a quick search on the internet about disability and employment, except for the disheartening statistics and the exclusion that disabled people face in our society, one can find many examples that disabilities are obstacles that disabled persons can overcome.   

But unfortunately, people are full of prejudices concerning disability, and there is no system in place regarding their career planning. However, there are many examples of people whose thirst for a productive life led them to create their own opportunities and take charge of their lives. For example, a 28 years old girl with Downs syndrome from the UK had a particular passion for fashion and created her own fashion business.

Furthermore, Girasoli restaurant in Rome 13 out of 18 employees that it employs have some form of disability. However, despite that, the restaurant is practically run by employees with some form of handicap, the restaurant is doing more than fine as an average person would wrongly think.

The good thing about such initiatives is that such businesses offer professional training rather than financial assistance to those people. Although as crucial as the financial assistance might be to comfort those individuals, it does little for their wellbeing.

Skills+ Competition to Showcase Talents

Skills+  project that the Institute of Entrepreneurship Development (iED) participates in as a project partner seeks to integrate people with a labour disability in the workplace. The Skills+ consortium, through work-based learning, wants to train those individuals to acquire soft skills that will be necessary for a successful professional life.

An important part of the Skills+ Project is the skills competition for people with (labour) disabilities. The idea behind this competition is to bring to light the real working capabilities that people with disabilities have. Furthermore, Skills+ competition wants to judge those people based on their talents and not on what they lack due to their disability.

If you are interested in receiving professional guidance from experts, meeting people from all over Europe and European recognized certification for your talents, Skills+ competition is the ideal place for you.

Get in touch with the corresponding organization based on your location and declare your interest in your participation.