Work and pensions minister Anne McGuire has urged employers to do more to fulfil their responsibility to employ disabled staff.
Speaking today at the TUC in her first speech as Minister for Disabled People, McGuire insisted that the government had played its part through equality legislation, but businesses needed to redouble their efforts to recruit the talent and skills into the workplace which Britain’s 10 million disabled people have to offer.
The government recently brought in changes to the Disability Discrimination Act1995 so that no employer, regardless of size, can reasonably discriminate against disabled employees or jobseekers.
Calling for employers to make a reality out of the reforms, she said: “Many employers are already realising that they need to recognise talent – not disability – when they see it.
“The trade unions have played a key role in driving the disability agenda. Now, I think the rest of society is catching up. More employers are realising there is a compelling business case for employing disabled people.
“It is not just an ethical responsibility, it is a business imperative,” she said.