Blind people can’t be employed, or can they? Many employees are not aware of the abilities of people who are blind or visually impaired. There is a valid reason for this. Its not common thing to know a co-worker or have had experience with one that is visually impaired. The prevalence of blindness and visual impairment among people who are blind are much less likely to be working compared to the general population.
The legally blind being a small group among the disabled does not in any way imply that they are not capable for employment. The attitude of negative employers is the main cause of visually impaired people finding employment. These negative attitudes come from a lack of education regarding people with visual impairments.
Do employees know how legally blind people are capable to handle the following:
- Pre-printed material
- Computer access for the internet, email and standard computer software
- General office equipment such as copiers, printers, scanner with LED display or multi-line telephone
- A cashier position such as taking money, making change and managing a cash register
If you are not aware of the above, then you are part of the majority of employees.
It is important for employees to acknowledge and embrace the legally blind as functioning individuals who are capable of any task given to them. Human resources need to be educated about accommodations for legally blind employees. Legally blind people are capable of performing various jobs that sighted people hold. Obviously there are jobs such as driving or jibs that require visuals are the exception. It is time we remove the misconception that blind people can’t be employed, the truth is they can if given the right skills training.