GAAD:  More Than a Single Day

elebrate global accessibility awareness day in white on blue background with sign language BVI walking with cane wheelchair and an ear for hearing loss

Global Accessibility Awareness Day

A recent survey commissioned by National Industries for the Blind (NIB) shows that 68% of respondents are more likely to support a company that prioritizes diversity and 88% of Americans say companies should prioritize making workplaces more accessible to people who are blind or visually impaired.

And while the survey shows nearly nine out of 10 people in the U.S. agree workplace accessibility should be a priority, it also reveals that 56% still believe that doing so is difficult.

This shows us:

1. Most Americans want more diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplaces.

2. Over half of the respondents think creating an accessible workplace is a daunting and expensive process. It is the latter common misperception that has inspired the designation of the third Thursday in May each year as Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD).  GAAD strives to educate the world on the importance of daily work and life accessibility for the estimated one billion people worldwide (15 percent of the world population) who are living with at least one physical, cognitive, or sensory disability.

For persons with disabilities, accessibility barriers come in all forms. 

Sometimes it is the newly installed visual touch-screen self-checkout kiosk that has taken the place of a previously helpful cashier — preventing someone who is blind from completing a transaction independently; other times it is a business or recreational location that is not wheelchair accessible. 

The list of examples can be exhaustive.

At NSITE we believe that with a little extra forethought and attention, most employer workplaces can be adapted to support job seekers who have disabilities at minimal additional cost and effort. 

Although we focus primarily on training and supporting job seekers who are blind and visually impaired (nearly 70 percent of whom are not working) and the employers who wish to hire them, NSITE strives to educate people that employment is for everyone, regardless of a person’s particular disability.

So, if you are a blind or visually impaired job seeker pursuing greater economic independence or an employer who wishes to take your workplace diversity to the next level, we are happy to guide you every step of the way through the hiring process.

Global Accessibility Awareness Day is one day on the calendar.  Let’s keep the “awareness” going and turn it into every single day of the year.

-Doug Goist