By Abiodun Busari |
United Nations Global Compact Network Nigeria and an international non-government organisation, Sightsavers, have called for disability inclusion in private sector employers in Nigeria and across West African countries.
The call was made as they maintained that disability-inclusion is a pivotal section of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs.
The organisations also urged businesses to advance disability inclusion in their operations by actively engaging persons with disabilities and their representative organisations in decision-making processes.
Speaking during a webinar, themed “Advancing Corporate Sustainability Through Disability Inclusion,” the Executive Director, UNGCNN, Naomi Nwokolo, said business leaders and corporate people must work together in achieving this.
Nwokolo said, “As business leaders and corporate citizens, we have a responsibility to ensure that our organisations are inclusive and accessible to everyone, including people with disabilities.
“Disability inclusion is not just a moral imperative; it is also a business imperative. Studies have shown that companies that embrace diversity and inclusion, including disability inclusion, are more innovative, productive, and profitable than those that do not.”
On his part, the Deputy Technical Director of Economic Empowerment at Sightsavers, Simon Brown, stated lamented that the world economy suffers $6 trillion because of the exclusion of persons with disabilities.
Brown said, “Disability inclusion is not just the right thing to do ethically, it’s also good for business.
“The global economy loses six trillion US dollars each year because of the exclusion of persons with disabilities.”
Sightsavers is an international organisation that works in more than 30 low and middle-income countries to end avoidable blindness, treat and eliminate neglected tropical diseases, and promote equality of opportunity for people with disabilities.
The UNGCNN is one of the 74 local networks (country offices) of the United Nations Global Compact, the world’s largest corporate sustainability initiative.