What is DEOC?
The Disability Employment Opportunities Centre (DEOC) provides free employment services to persons with a disability including physical, developmental, and mental health barriers. The services at DEOC are self-directed and client driven. We offer a hands-on approach to becoming job-ready. Our barrier free design and specialized equipment encourages persons with barriers to be self-serving and independent in preparing themselves to become job ready.
DEOC Affiliated Sites
DEOC is a program of People for Equal Partnership in Mental Health- Nipissing (PEP). We work closely with PEP and the Nipissing Family Program to ensure that community members are provided with support in their employment search.
Employment Myths and Facts
There are myths out there when it comes to disabilities and individuals with disabilities in the workplace. We would like to break down some of these myths for you:
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Myth: Disabilities are only visible. If I can’t see it then the person doesn’t have a disability.
Fact: The Ontario Human Rights Code (OHRC) recognizes that the word disability covers a wide range of barriers and also recognizes that disabilities can be visible and/or invisible. “Disability” includes:
- any degree of physical disability, infirmity, malformation or disfigurement that is caused by bodily injury, birth defect or illness and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes diabetes mellitus, epilepsy, a brain injury, any degree of paralysis, amputation, lack of physical co-ordination, blindness or visual impediment, deafness or hearing impediment, muteness or speech impediment, or physical reliance on a guide dog or other animal or on a wheelchair or other remedial appliance or device,
- a condition of mental impairment or a developmental disability,
- a learning disability, or a dysfunction in one or more of the processes involved in understanding or using symbols or spoken language,
- a mental disorder, or
- an injury or disability for which benefits were claimed or received under the insurance plan established under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997
Myth: There aren’t that many people in Canada with a disability.
Fact: In 2012, almost 14% of the Canadian population aged 15 years or older—3.8 million individuals—reported having a disability that limited their daily activities. The amount people with a disability rose from 4% among 15- to 24-year-olds to 43% for persons aged 75 years or older. One in 10 people of working age (15 to 64 years) reported having a disability; among the senior population (65 years or older), the figure was 33%.
Myth: In Canada, people with disabilities are employed just as often as people without a disability.
Fact: In 2011, the employment rate of Canadians aged 25 to 64 with disabilities was 49%, compared with 79% for Canadians without a disability. Among Canadians with a disability, 12% reported having been refused a job in the previous five years as a result of their condition. The percentage was 33% among 25- to 34-year-olds with a severe or very severe disability.
Myth: Employees with disabilities are frequently absent from work.
Fact: Employers report performance rating of average or above average for 90% of employees with disabilities. Additional studies found:
- 86% of employees with disabilities have average or above average attendance records
- 33% of employers say that persons a with disabilities work as hard as other employees while 46% say that persons with disabilities actually work harder
Myth: People with disabilities are more likely to have accidents.
Fact: Two studies, one conducted by the Bureau of Labor Statistics during the 1940’s and a current study recently completed by the DuPont Company support the findings that workers with disabilities performed significantly higher than their counterparts without disabilities in the area of safety. These studies included people in professional, technical, managerial, operational, labor, clerical, and service areas. It evaluated individuals with orthopedic, vision, heart, health, and hearing disabilities. Conclusion: Workers with disabilities are often more aware, not less, of safety issues in the workplace.
Myth: People with disabilities can’t keep up with other workers.
Fact: Many studies show that employees with disabilities are just as productive and dependable as their co-workers without disabilities, and that staff retention is 72 per cent higher among persons with disabilities. That adds up to savings of millions of dollars every year in hiring and training costs.
The experiences of many employers show that when businesses hire people with disabilities:
- The pool of potential employees becomes larger
- Staff retention rates increase
- Absenteeism decreases.
Myth: A person with a disability cannot work in a position requiring physical labour.
Fact: It is important not to make assumptions about a person with a disability and what they are able to do. According to Statistics Canada (2006), 11.5 per cent of Canadians have mobility-related disabilities. But that does not necessarily mean that they can’t work in a physically demanding job. It’s ability, not disability, that counts.
Myth: People with disabilities don’t have the skills or education that I need for my business:
Fact: Over 50 percent of individuals with disabilities have high school diplomas and over one third have completed post-secondary educational programs. In fact, according to Human Resources and Skills Development Canada, individuals with disabilities are two thirds as likely to have a post-secondary diploma than adults in Canada without a disability.