The 2017 Disability Equality Index (DEI) has been released with 110 companies participating and 68 employers earning a top rating of 100. The DEI is developed by the US Business Leadership Network (USBLN) in conjunction with the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). The purpose of the Index is to rate organizations “commitment to inclusive environmental, social, and governance policies.” With such a high amount of corporations achieving a top rating, companies are signaling a high priority for disabled employees.
The companies included all scored high with recruitment efforts (95%), specific disability-focused employee resource groups (88%), and senior support (86%). Where many companies struggle include the areas of interview accommodations (38%), website accessibility (26%), and inclusion within supplier diversity programs (51%). Despite the low numbers, all are increases from the past few years.
According to the Econo Times, “The companies participating in the 2017 DEI represent 21 different sectors of the American economy, and have a total U.S. workforce of approximately 7.2 million workers—or approximately 5% of all American workers. In addition to their impact on the American workforce, these companies have a substantial financial impact on the American economy, with all publicly held corporations totaling representing nearly $6 trillion in market value.”