India is home to 2.7 crore people with a disability, be it physical or mental, according to the 2011 Census. As per the country's latest statistics, an estimated 2.1 per cent of the Indian population has a disability; a humbling figure of over 26 million people.
While differently-abled battle multiple challenges with regard to people’s attitudes, acceptance. Inclusion, lack of access to good quality education and employment keep many from being financially independent. Indian corporates are now doing their bit to include people with disabilities at the workplace by constructing disabled-friendly infrastructure. Below are some efforts by popular corporates in India:
In 2014, Accenture set up its India Accessibility Council comprising senior business leaders to ensure the company was an ideal workplace for persons with disabilities. As a step in achieving this, the office is wheelchair friendly, all videos are subtitled, and sign language interpreters are available. At a physical infrastructure level, in addition to accessible restrooms, workplaces, and parking, to support people with visual impairment, the organisation has started to use braille stickers in lifts and changing visual signs to have more high contrast colours. The company is also re-designing busy areas such as our cafeterias for barrier-free movement.
Candor TechSpace, managed by Brookfield Properties
Candor TechSpace, the leading provider of IT/ITES office spaces managed by Brookfield Properties have been designed with a strong emphasis on inclusivity and accessibility, as the office spaces are equipped with wheelchair parking areas, access ramps at entrances and specially built washrooms. At Candor TechSpace continues making improvements in the infrastructure at their five campuses in cities-Gurgaon, Noida, and Kolkata to enable universal access for persons with disabilities. The campuses have segregated pedestrian walkways with tactile pavers to aid navigation and curb ramps at crossings to help negotiate level differences. There are floor directories and signage in high contrast in the elevator lobby. The F&B menus and vending machines feature Braille writing. The organization is committed to creating workplace solutions keeping people at the Centre. All the five campuses are working towards IGBC Platinum LEED certifications for operational buildings, universal accessibility, indoor air quality management systems, shared mobility solutions, thematic landscaping with art installations.
The online travel website not only employs the differently-abled but invests in their development as well. It offers transportation to work, reconfigured workstations, and made restrooms, entrances, and cafeterias disability-friendly. MakeMyTrip has also partnered with non-government organizations that train people with disabilities and employs over 40 people with disabilities in various roles, including programming, legal, and customer care.
L’Oreal India has been employing people with disabilities. In 2017, the organization hired two employees and took in six individuals for an internship program. The company offices are accessible and have conducted external accessibility audits. L’Oreal India is working on recommendations like automatic doors, contrasted signages, slope elevations, parking, etc. The company aims that by 2020, people with disabilities make up 2 per cent of its workforce.
Capgemini policy and practice to encourage diversity at the workplace by providing and promoting equal opportunities and treatment to all employees and candidates being considered for hire by Capgemini. Capgemini India’s Disability Inclusion Program aims at providing a non-discriminatory environment to persons with disabilities at the workplace such that they are able to gain access to employment, self-development and career growth. The company takes an approach of accessibility by providing accessible Infrastructure, IT systems, and reasonable adjustment to persons with disabilities.