Companies might be hiring workers with a disability to ‘tick a box’ before moving them on

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The ABC understands an alarming number of jobseekers with disabilities have been hired to ensure companies meet diversity targets but then promptly fired.

Key points

  • Disability discrimination commissioner says the retention of workers who have disabilities is still an issue
  • The Australian Human Rights Commission has asked for all businesses to implement retention practices, but many businesses have not
  • The unemployment rate for people with any type of disability is now twice the rate for those without

Sarah Lucock suffers from a mild intellectual disability and knows the frustration of not being able to hold down a job.

“In the past few years, I’ve looked for quite a lot of jobs,” she said.

“I may have a disability but I don’t go to show that in public that I have it and I can just be a normal person.”

After just a few weeks of employment at a suburban party and entertainment venue, she stopped getting shifts.

“I maybe had done a few shifts there and then I just heard absolutely nothing afterwards, no contact, no emails, nothing,” she told PM.

“I went down there to the centre and asked if I was going to be getting more shifts and they were just like, ‘sorry, there’s really just nothing more that we can really offer for you to have.”

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