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Myths about employing someone with a disability

The following are common myths about employing someone with a disability, contrasted with the reality.

This resource was compiled by the National Disability Services and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2012, in a publication called “Employ Outside the Box – The Business Case for Employing People with a Disability”.

We thought it might be useful to you, to help outline the benefits of employing a person with a disability and to dispel the myths and misconceptions.

The facts: Think about the job and duties you have and you may be surprised at what can be performed by a person with a disability.
The facts: It’s a matter of courtesy and much easier than most people think. Employers can educate themselves on do’s and don’ts.
The facts: It won’t cost more. A Disability Employment Service (DES) is paid for by the government to assist and support employers. Recent research indicates it costs no more than regular employees.
The facts: Insurance premiums are based on risk, a fact that all employers must consider when thinking of what coverage they need for their business. Insurance companies do not require employers to provide information on employees with a disability. WorkCover premiums are determined by the risk profile of an industry and will only increase if the employee poses a genuine occupational health and safety risk in the workplace.
The facts: Employers often already employ a person with a disability and don’t know it. Disability awareness and training is available to employers and co-workers of people with a disability.
The facts: Research shows people with a disability have fewer occupational health and safety incidents in the workplace.
The facts: Wage subsidies may be available to help employers cover the initial costs of wages and training. In addition, productivity-based wage assessments may also be applied in some situations. See the section above.
The facts: Financial incentives are available to employers who take on an apprentice or trainee with a disability.
The facts: There are many people with a disability who are university graduates and who hold managerial and supervisory positions. Disability doesn’t necessarily affect the ability to learn. All candidates should be assessed on what they can do and their individual skill sets. Training is also available to improve skill levels where gaps exist.
The facts: Untrue. The difference between hiring a person with a disability and a person without a disability is that you are provided with ongoing support for as long as it’s needed. This is a huge benefit over employing a person without a disability.

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