Provide disability equality training to staff
Staff who have attended disability equality training will be able to interact more confidently and more effectively with people who have disabilities. Remember that staff will need an ongoing programme of disability equality training. Disability equality training courses should be backed up by the development of written policies setting out the organisation’s commitment to providing accessible services. All staff should be able to access those policies, and the organisation should monitor those policies to assess their impact.
The training can be delivered:
- through eLearning (electronically supported learning such as computer-based training), such as the NDA’s eLearning Centre
- by an experienced trainer
- or through a mixture of those.
Look for a trainer who developed their training course after consulting people with disabilities. You could search for training through FÁS’s National Register of Trainers. Try entering disability into the “Programme name” box, and pressing the “Start Search” button. You should find reputable trainers’ details there.
Suggested curriculum for Disability Equality Training
- Definition of disability
- What do we mean by disability?
- How is it defined?
- What is the prevalence and range of disability in Ireland?
- What are the practical accommodations/considerations to meet the needs of customers with disabilities?
- Disability and society
- How do we view disability in society?
- How does the social model differ from the medical model?
- How does society restrict people with disabilities?
- How can we create a more inclusive society?
- Equality and disability
- What is reasonable accommodation?
- What are the legal duties and responsibilities of public bodies?
- What legislation covers disabled people’s rights to equal status and employment opportunities? This should include:
- the Disability Act 2005
- the National Disability Authority’s “Code of Practice on Accessibility of Public Services and Information Provided by Public Bodies”
- the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2006)
- the Employment Equality Acts 1998–2008
- the Equal Status Acts 2000–2008.
- How some people with disabilities can face discrimination in other dimensions, such as racism.
- Disability and communication
- What language should I use when interacting with, or talking about, people with disabilities?
- How does my organisation interact with people with disabilities?
- What myths and misconceptions exist about people with disabilities?
- How does media imagery portray people with disabilities?
- Proactive approach
- What are my organisation’s equal opportunities policies and procedures?
- What is accessibility?
- How could my organisation be more accessible?
- How can I improve my own practices to be more inclusive of people with disabilities?