Diversity Equity and No Inclusion

In this and coming blog entries I’m going to talk about disability and barriers to employment.

First up in here I’ll talk about my experience having a disability and working at a job.

I say: Good Luck advocating for yourself and others once you’re hired. My story is a tale of Diversity Equity and No Inclusion.

In June I filled out the online application to join the DEI Council. On the form I identified as person living with a disability. My platform I advanced had this 3-part agenda:

Giving employees hardship pay for working during the pandemic.

Creating a one-month paid time off option for staff who had been employed for 15 years.

Starting an internship program for teens and young adults with disabilities.

Readers, I was rejected for admission to the DEI Council. Was it possible that because my goal of economic reparations would benefit every staff person that the members of the first DEI Council rejected me out of hand?

Sadly, the current DEI Council didn’t connect the dots that paid time off would benefit BIPOC staff who experienced microaggressions on the job.

I wondered if a person with a disability was chosen for the second DEI Council.

According to a RespectAbility internet article corporate leaders don’t think about disability when forming policies on diversity. Race, gender, and sexual orientation/identity are examined.

Per RespectAbility: “Disability needs to be a part of every conversation that the business community has about diversity and inclusion.”

Five months later I still can’t get over the fact that the current DEI Council failed to see as I did that economic reparations should be part of the solution.

It was like they rejected me because my platform didn’t focus only on BIPOC individuals.

In the next blog entry in this carnival I will talk about the reality of barriers to employment when you have a disability.

Author: Chris Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Left of the Dial. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health. As well as an author and activist, Bruni is an artist and athlete.

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