The interactions we have as a society depend heavily on what we can see, hear, say, touch, and remember. It's important to keep in mind the wide range of ways people interact with the world so that we can design a workplace that is inclusive for all of us. The goal of this toolkit is to provide employees with an overall understanding of the disability community as well as how to be inclusive in day-to-day work activities, organizational planning and processes, and more.

Start Your Disability Inclusion Journey

A dark-skinned woman fixes her hearing aid in a mirror.

Understand the Who Before the How

Before we talk about the various aspects of accessibility, it's important to understand why accessibility matters. Who is the disability community? Let's take a look at the social model of disability, the history of the disability rights movement, current voices in the community, and more.

Older light-skinned man with glasses working on a laptop.

Digital Accessibility Standards and Resources

Digital inclusion is essential to recruiting and retaining disabled employees and students. We must think about inclusion throughout the life cycle of a program, product, or service so that we can ensure that our colleagues and students can access the world in an equally effective and independent way.

People with diverse skin tones look down at a camera with their hands stacked over each others' in a pact.

Disability Inclusion is Everyone's Responsibility

Disability inclusion requires us to look at both systemic and personal biases. We must change organizational processes in order to ensure inclusion. We must also change our own personal habits, both inside and outside the workplace to make inclusion a reality. 

A Note about Language

The Inclusive by Design website is geared towards the social model of disability, so we use identity-first language in several places on the site. In addition, in alignment with the APA Style Guide, we do our best to honor all community and individual preferences by using both identity-first and person-first language interchangeably in various places on the site. This site does not intend to declare that identity-first is the preferred language for everyone. As mentioned on the Disability Etiquette page, preference varies, so either identity-first or person-first language should be used based on the preference of a community or individual. Non-disabled employees new to disability inclusion should also review the "Terms to Avoid" section of the Disability Etiquette page to understand why euphemisms (e.g., differently-abled, otherly-abled, etc.) are not preferred by many in the disability community.

Photo credit: The first and second image on this page are from the Disabled and Here gallery.