Disability:IN together with the American Association of People with Disabilities, on Tuesday published findings from its 2023 Disability Equality Index, a comprehensive benchmarking tool for the Fortune 1000 and Am Law 200 to measure disability workplace inclusion among corporate peers.
A total of 485 corporations across 30 diverse industries including technology, banking and health care utilized the DEI in 2023 to benchmark their disability inclusion efforts, a 17% increase in participation from 2022. In addition to a growing contingent of Am Law 200 firms, more than 70% of the Fortune 100 and nearly half of the Fortune 500 participated this year.
“People today want to go to work for companies that they think are doing the right thing, that share their values and share their vision of the world, (including) making sure that people with disabilities have an equal shot at going to work at that company every single day,” Ted Kennedy Jr., co-chair of the Disability Equality Index, said.
The 2023 DEI report revealed encouraging signs of ways companies are implementing more disability inclusion throughout their corporate culture, leadership, employment and accessibility programs and practices from the previous year, such as:
- 93% encourage their employees with disabilities to self-identify, up from 91% in 2022;
- 72% market directly to the disability community by depicting people with disabilities in their external or internal marketing and/or advertising materials, up from 70% in 2022;
- 64% report having a requirement to make their digital products accessible and usable for people with disabilities, up from 62% in 2022.
On the other hand, the report revealed key areas for sustained attention in the years ahead:
- While 69% of companies issue annual diversity reports, only 24% include disability data in their reporting;
- 40% audit their internally facing digital products for accessibility;
- The voluntary self-identification rate among employees at participating companies hovers at 4.5%, up slightly from 4% in 2022;
- Only 7% of companies incorporate disability into documents that outline the nomination of corporate directors.
With scores of 100, these companies, headquartered in New Jersey or with a heavy presence in the state, among many others, led the pack:
- American Water;
- Johnson & Johnson;
- TD Bank;
The DEI was launched in 2015 by Disability:IN and the American Association of People with Disabilities and is acknowledged today as the most robust disability inclusion assessment tool in business. For more information, click here.