Why disability employment isn’t a Fringe issue

Simon Abrahams, Creative Director & CEO at Melbourne Fringe.

“Organisations are going to have more impact if they reflect the society in which they operate,” says Simon Abrahams, Creative Director & CEO at Melbourne Fringe.

“Hiring someone with disability, with all of their unique perspectives, smarts and active contributions – means a better connected, diverse, and rounded organisation. Thinking differently makes us better at our jobs.”

This year, Melbourne Fringe hired an Access and Inclusion Coordinator. In the job advertisement, they actively encouraged people with disability to apply for the role. That’s how they found Carly Findlay.

“It’s brought a connection to the community that we couldn’t otherwise achieve. It’s meant relationships have been built by someone who understands people with disability, and can make sure our organisation is communicating effectively and inclusively with them,” he said.

There are demonstrated benefits to hiring people with disability. Services like JobAccess’ Employer Engagement - National Disability Recruitment Coordinator (NDRC) are available to link employers with candidates, and make the process as easy as possible.

Building a workforce that represents your community can have a tremendously positive impact on your organisation.

“Having people with disability working at Fringe means we have a more diverse, accessible Festival with artists, venues and audiences that include people with disability,” says Simon.

One in five Australians live with disability. For Melbourne Fringe, hiring Carly has just been the start of its disability employment practice.

“We would love to hire other people with disability. Any position is open to any person with disability and we’re actively looking for opportunities to create accessible pathways to employment with Melbourne Fringe,” says Simon.

For employers who are ready to embrace the benefits of hiring people with disability and creating a diverse, inclusive workplace – you aren’t alone. There are a range of services through JobAccess available – including help with recruitment, making workplace adjustments, and information on your rights and responsibilities – to make the process as simple as possible.

For Melbourne Fringe, hiring people with disability helps them relate to their audiences and brings a fresh perspective – it just makes sense. Find out what disability employment could do for your workplace by visiting www.jobaccess.gov.au

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