People with disabilities face many obstacles in their struggle for parity in the workforce. Although men and women with disabilities are subject to bias because of their disabilities, women with disabilities are at a further disadvantage. Men with disabilities are almost twice as likely to have jobs than women with disabilities. Women with disabilities are one of the most vulnerable and marginalized groups in today’s society.
In an initiative that will benefit 600 young girls and women with disabilities across Delhi NCR, Hero MotoCorp Limited, the world’s largest manufacturer of two-wheelers, supports AIF’s ABLE program in skilling beneficiaries with speech and hearing impairment, visual impairment, and orthopedic disabilities. Commencing in February 2018, the project covers Delhi, Gurgaon, Faridabad, and Ghaziabad. In partnership with six local implementation partners, the beneficiaries received training in IT Skills, Workplace Readiness, Tailoring and Self-Employment, and were all set to enter the job market as customer care executives and data entry operators. Thematic sessions on career guidance, motivation and disability awareness are also conducted at the training centers.
Placement has been in hospitality, retail, IT & ITES, garment construction, and some are self-employed. Some of the employers include leading hotel chains such as Lemon Tree, Pullman, and Ibis. Additionally, big players like Genpact, Reliance Retail, World Data Services, Compass Group India, and JLL have also recruited candidates from the project.
On 18 February 2020, AIF organized a graduation ceremony for four batches that were conducted in the communities of Jagatpuri and Sultanpuri, Delhi NCR. Candidates who had successfully completed the training modules received their certificates, of which 70% were successful in job placement. Attended by candidates, parents, and employers, there was a tremendous sense of accomplishment as employers narrated how some of their best-performing employees were persons with disabilities. The keynote was delivered by Mr. Vijay Sethi, CIO, Head HR and CSR, Hero MotoCorp Ltd., who champions the inclusion of women with disabilities in the workforce. Hero MotoCorp Ltd has been proactively engaging in social and environmental activities since the inception of the company. HMCL’s efforts are unified by its CSR vision to contribute towards building a greener, safer and equitable world.
New opportunities await women with disabilities in the workplace. Support from leading corporates like Hero MotoCorp Ltd., employers such as those who have consciously chosen to tread the lesser known path and recruit beneficiaries from AIF’s ABLE program, and implementing partners that overcame challenges characteristic of the disability sector – several hands have come together to ensure that women with disabilities do not fall further behind in the world of work.