The Access Ability strategy report synthesizes findings from research and roundtables about organizational inclusion of employees with disabilities. The findings reflect lessons learned by employers, by practitioners supporting employers, and by employees working to identify possible directions to make workplaces more equitable for employees with disabilities.

Research for the Access Ability strategy report included a review of publicly available literature, qualitative and quantitative data collection from public governmental and employer sites, and an environmental scan of Canadian employer initiatives on inclusion and accessibility and the resources that support them.

The report also reflects qualitative input from the participants of the Access Ability roundtable series, during which PPF gathered candid observations from diverse representatives from medium and large employers across Canada and across sectors about their efforts to improve inclusion of employees with disabilities. Participants included executives and leaders from human resources, equity, diversity and inclusion initiatives and employees with disabilities across these roles.

Access Ability asked questions such as:

  • Why do inequities persist for people with disabilities in the workplace?
  • What have organizations learned from their years of practice and progress in disability inclusion?
  • Why do strategies to improve disability inclusion sometimes fail to produce measurable results or lasting change, even when organizational support and leadership motivation are high?

While the Access Ability project did not expect to fully answer these questions, they served as a rationale and grounding point for research and consultation—and an invitation for further research and policy directions.

The research findings from this project have been used as a foundation for the Access Ability Executive Program, a PPF Academy program which takes an experiential peer learning and change management approach to advancing disability inclusion.

Employers’ Lessons Learned in Hiring, Retaining and Advancing Employees with Disabilities

February 2022

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Ability New Brunswick

Azrieli Foundation

Canadian Council on Rehabilitation and Work

Diversity Institute

Government of Canada

Government of Ontario

Future Skills Centre (FSC)



Ontario Disability Employment Network (ODEN)