The Disability Standard is a benchmarking assessment by the Disability Forum which helps employers measure how accessible and inclusive they are to their disabled employees, visitors and other users. The Disability Standard is similar to other equality charters the University is engaged with such as Athena SWAN, Race Equality Charter and the Stonewall Index. It too has three levels of award: bronze, silver and gold and covers ten areas of assessment.
In response to feedback in the University Staff Survey, and in support of our equality objectives, we are using the Business Disability Forum (BDF) online management tool to measure and improve our performance for disabled staff, service users and stakeholders. This will allow us to apply for the Disability Standard
Our previous Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Patrick Johnson said: “A team of colleagues from across campus, chaired by a senior University officer, is being formed. Once action plans have been developed to improve disability equality across the ten areas, we will seek external evaluation by BDF.
“We are determined to look at the situation and improve what is required. And we not only want the BDF’s seal of approval – we want that of our staff.”
The ten areas to be assessed are:
You promote your commitment to best practice on disability internally and externally.
You equip your employees so that they are confident interacting with disabled people, knowing what to do and how to do it.
You anticipate the needs of disabled people and have a robust process for making any adjustments that might be needed by individuals.
You attract and recruit disabled people, which gives you access to the widest talent pool at every level.
You value all your employees, including those who are disabled or who become disabled, and are committed to their retention and development.
6. Products and services
You value your disabled customers, clients and service users and address their needs when developing and delivering your products and services.
7. Suppliers and Partners
You expect your suppliers and corporate partners to reflect and enable you to meet your commitment to disability best practice.
When you communicate with disabled people, you are as inclusive as possible and whenever necessary you make adjustments for individuals.
Your premises are accessible to people with disabilities and whenever necessary you make adjustments for individuals.
10. Information and communication technology (ICT)
Your ICT is accessible and usable by disabled people and you also make adjustments for individuals.