How Target is fostering inclusion and supporting our colleagues with Disabilities

Matt Davies | Chief People Officer

With more than 15 years’ experience in HR, Matt joined Target Group in 2017. Matt has a background in Employee Engagement, People Projects and Employee Relations, and since being at Target has launched an award-winning Diversity and Inclusion Strategy. Matt is passionate about developing a People Strategy that enables Target to be an employer of choice, and creating a great place to work.

December 3rd is ‘International Day of People with Disabilities’ (IDPWD). It’s an opportunity to reflect and to focus. It’s also about leadership and participation and ensuring we have an inclusive, accessible, and sustainable environment for people with disabilities.

As the people behind IDPWD explain, ‘today is a day to look towards the future and create a world where a person is not characterised by their disabilities, but by their abilities’.

Supporting the 20% of our population who have disabilities

Disability is a wide-ranging term that includes physical, mental and social disabilities. A person is considered disabled if they have a self-reported long-standing illness, condition or impairment, which causes difficulty with day-to-day activities. There are 14.1 million disabled people in the UK; that’s around one in five adults. Interestingly 83% of people develop the disability throughout their lives.

To coincide with IDPWD, we thought we’d share how Target supports colleagues, clients, visitors and all stakeholders with disabilities.

Over 7 million people in the UK of working age are disabled or have a health condition. Many people develop their conditions over their lifetime, so they aren’t born with them. It’s important we have the right culture and policies to support existing and future colleagues. I want to ensure our business reflects the diverse range of customers we serve.

We’re delighted to be recognised as a Disability Confident Committed Employer and recently achieved Level One on our journey towards full accreditation.

What is Disability Confident?

Disability Confident is a Government accredited scheme. It encourages employers to think differently about disability and improve how they recruit, train and develop people with different disabilities.

The scheme was developed to support businesses as they embark on their disability journey. There are three levels to the Disability Confident journey:

  • Disability Confident Committed (Level 1)
  • Disability Confident Employer (Level 2)
  • Disability Confident Leader (Level 3)

Fostering inclusion – Our future commitment to colleagues and stakeholders

We’re inspired by the IDPWD’s commitment to create a world characterised by equal human rights.

We’ve identified the following key areas which will support our progress towards being a Disability Confident Employer in 2022:

  • Delivery of mandatory physical and social disability training to managers. This supplements our existing Disability Guidelines
  • Sharing good practice and supporting our colleagues with open and frequent dialogue. Making sure they have the right support and their needs are being met
  • Working closely with our Talent Acquisition team to develop resources that help people with disabilities to apply for roles with us
  • Training mental health first aiders as wellbeing officers and developing a more proactive approach

Target has a Diversity & Inclusion Committee who champion awareness and practical inclusion, providing practical support to colleagues across the business. We focus on five themes:

  • Gender
  • LGBT+
  • Disability
  • Multi-Cultural
  • Multi-generational

Join Us – Become a Disability Confident business

We’re looking forward to continuing our journey towards Level 3 Accreditation. If your business hasn’t started the Disability Confident journey, you can find more information here.

Learn more about the great work being undertaken to champion people with disabilties by the team behind IDPWD here.

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