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So, you want to start hiring PWDs?

The Workability Inclusion Network (WIN) Summit hosted by Willis Towers Watson last October 24, 2018, in the Baker McKenzie Halls of B&M Global Services Manila, BGC offered networking opportunities for attendees like Anderson Group BPO Inc. to start a PWD inclusive workplace initiative.

If you missed it and are looking to boost your company with a PWD workforce, we compiled the three main partner NGOs and an academic partner to boot, that you can get in touch with.

Workplace Inclusivity Philippine PWD Employee Sourcing Partners

Unilab Foundation – Project Inclusion

(02) 858 – 1000 loc. 8755

Project Inclusion aims to improve access to work for Persons with Disability and enable communities to adopt workplace inclusion. They aim to rewrite the disability employment narrative from a charity case to a business case from “Why hire PWDs?” to “Why not?” They believe in a barrier-free PWD workplace. Where inclusivity starts with “I” but also includes “us.”

PWD Facts and Figures

  • There are 15-16 Million PWDs in the Philippines according to WHO
  • Building a positive brand perception to the PWD community taps into a global consumer market with a $8 Trillion dollars in disposable income (as of 2016).
  • PWDs have difficulty accessing education; this may be due to non-PWD friendly physical structures or bullying. Thus they face lower chances of employment and are at high risk of poverty.
  • Republic Act of 10524 states that 1% of government positions and private companies to reserve positions for PWDs.
  • The key to PWD employee success is with the right skills and job matching.
  • Promote equal opportunities for all types of employees by being a leader for PWD inclusivity

The Unilab foundation’s Project Inclusion helps prepare job seekers, enable employers, and support transitions. They build a support system for the employees and their employers.  For corporate partners, they can aid in sourcing job matches, orienting the interview process, and conducting the workplace awareness and support training needed to accommodate the PWDs. So far, they have successfully helped 850 PWDs get their job match.

Company inclusive employment checklist

  1. Partner with schools and organizations who want to make inclusivity mainstream
  2. Find people who are aware or related to someone with PWD and turn them into allies.
  3. Empower PWDs with a platform to speak up and promote inclusivity. PWDs are the best spokesperson for themselves. (Nothing about us without us. – Joy Nostalg, PWD advocate)
  4. Normalize PWD conversations with PWD community activities

Autism Society Philippines

Mona Magno-Veluz

National President

Autism Society Philippines

Autism Society Philippines is the largest autism advocacy group in the country with 13,000 members in 96 chapters since its founding by Mona Magno-Veluz and her family in 1989. They lead the nation’s celebration of the world and national autism commemorations and represents the country in international autism communities.

Truths about Autism

Autism is…

  • the most underemployed disability community; it’s 17 points lower than the rest of the PWD community.
  • a unique disability that requires a different type of support for workplace inclusion than physical disabilities.
  • not an intellectual disability, it’s a developmental disability.
  • a planar spectrum, not linear meaning that there are behavioral, cognitive, social, linguistic, and functional variations that cannot be categorized into high-functioning to low-functioning
  • Employment inclusivity is not CSR; it upholds the fundamental right to work

Through their nationwide network of chapters, the group provides family and professional training, referral services, family counseling, find funding for autism services where there are none and advocates for autism inclusion in public and private policy. They have helped over 1,511 productive Persons with Autism to find work in industries spanning BPO, FMCG Retail, Full-Service Dining, Fast Food, Real Estate, Entertainment, and Government.

One large retailer who partnered with ASD observed the following benefits:

  • PWA workers had renewed sense of purpose and confidence at work
  • PWA workers exhibited excellent work ethic in punctuality, attention to detail, and willingness to learn and work.
  • The brand gained goodwill from customers online.
  • The program reinforces the business values of the company.
  • Employees developed loyalty to the employer for commitment to a socially relevant project.
  • Neurotypical employees felt personal growth as well. They saw improvement in their patience and compassion and felt they became better human beings by learning about the disability.

Leonard Cheshire Disabilities Philippines Foundation, Inc. (LCDPFI)



Facebook page: www.facebook.cpm/LCDPFI

LCDPFI is a strategic partner of UK-based NGO Leonard Cheshire, supporting PWDs in their efforts to pursue their studies, work, health, and social participation. LCDPFI is a member of the Leonard Cheshire Disability Global Alliance as a non-stock, non-profit, and national disability focused local organization established in September 2010.

The group aims to advocate and protect the rights and dignity of persons with disabilities in adherence to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD):

UNCRPD upholds the Right to:

  1. Education (Article 24)
  2. Work and Employment (Article 27)
  3. Equal Opportunity and Participation in the Society (Article 29 and 30)

They offer three programs, from promoting inclusive education to empowering young voices, and supporting PWDs to find meaningful employment in economic empowerment. According to the National Statistics Office (NSO) 2010 census, 1.57% (or 1.44 million) of Filipinos are PWDs.

LCDPFI not only works to help PWDs for a self-employment career track. They also work to serve as a bridge for persons with disability to find wage employment, offering capacity-building support for PWDs and building partnerships with stakeholders.

Partner companies of LCDPFI can be engaged in six programs: Funding support projects; Capacity development programs for PWDs; Volunteering and pro bono support; CSR “Adopt a Community-Based Livelihood”; Disability Sensitivity Training and workplace accessibility; and Disability Advocacy and Awareness Campaigns.

School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies | De La Salle – College of St. Benilde

Giselle Montero

Dean, School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies De La Salle College of St. Benilde

Giselle Montero, the Dean of the School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies De La Salle College of St. Benilde was the last to speak, representing the academe for the gathering. She notes that “It is our shared responsibility to enable persons with disability to realize their full potential.”

The School of Deaf Education and Applied Studies De La Salle College of St. Benilde (SDEAS – DLS-CSB) aims to break the cycle of poverty brought on by disability. As 25 % of the world’s population is affected by disability, 80% of them live in poverty and face thrice the usual challenge in finding work. Disability in traditional societies normally implies the denial of opportunities for economic, social, and human development.

To break this cultural barrier, De La Salle College of St. Benilde followed the Etzkowitz and Leydesdorff’s 1996 Triple Helix Model of Innovation in developing their SDEAS Innovative and Inclusive Education. They understood that innovation needs the cooperation of three crucial societal forces to take place: the government, the academe, and the industry. Benilde’s mission to be committed to building a just and humane society by being at the forefront of innovative education that is accessible to the poor and diversely-gifted learners can only be realized through forming linkages.

If you are interested in getting to know more about creating an inclusive workplace, check out our latest blogs!