Policy Options for Overcoming Systematic Barriers to Employment for People with Vision Loss

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Working age adults with visual impairments in BC are not achieving the same level of employment as people with disabilities in general. People with visual impairments perceive three main barriers to employment: employers’ attitudes or willingness to hire people with visual impairments, lack of ongoing support for employers in the recruitment and retention of people with visual impairments and employers’ lack of understanding of the job candidate’s capabilities. This study investigates the barriers employers face in hiring people with visual impairments through two methodologies; semi-structured interviews and case studies. My analysis finds that the most effective mechanism for helping employers understand the workplace capabilities of people with visual impairments is to expose employers to working with people with visual impairments. Recommendations include implementing a BC Public Service Agency initiative to encourage public sector leadership in employing people with visual impairments.
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