“Deaf people can do anything apart from hear” – a powerful quote that, as if it were needed, reinforces the prevalent lack of belief and knowledge that people who are deaf or hard of hearing (HoH) can, and should, be employed to do the same jobs as a fully ‘able-bodied’ person. Employers and recruiters may have woken up to grappling equality, diversity and inclusion, as well as supporting value for staff, but how many actually understand, action a policy and have, or would even consider, deaf people in their workforce?

Imagine being able to do a job but unable to necessarily communicate effectively because the person you’re convincing can’t understand your language (sign). Why would someone not be able to use, type on or design something on a computer; make a meal or fix something or plan a strategy or event just because they are deaf or hard of hearing? Yes, it can affect balance and communication but they remain human beings with exceptional and individual skills that can be utilised to help improve businesses.

Founded by two partners: one with experience in the deaf arena; and the other with prior work providing social support to the LGBT community, Deafness Equality Acceptance Foundation (media partner for Able Magazine’s Be The Difference Employment Initiative) is excited to connect with existing organisations across the UK to try and help improve workplaces for deaf people. Highlighting opportunities for businesses to attract and welcome people who are deaf or hard of hearing, they work with partners who seek to improve accessibility to the jobs market for deaf people to ensure that they can make an impact, with a focus on the North West.

Their existence is primarily to provide insight to businesses and organisations, around the skills and benefits of employing deaf people, in order to combat ignorance and lack of understanding of deafness and the lives of deaf people. They also provide training and signpost to other resources that can equip them for the on-boarding of deaf staff. They have even signed up to Able Magazine’s Be The Difference campaign which is a great way to work with employers and feature those businesses who undergo training to be featured and have the option to join the cause.

With an estimated 9 million people in the UK who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (HoH), it’s more important than ever to ensure talent is recognised regardless of disability. To express an interest in exploring their insight and training, get in touch: office@deafequality.co.uk or find them on social media.

Find out more here: https://www.facebook.com/DeafEquality/