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IBM Is DiversityInc’s Top Company for Disabilities

May 5 2009 | by

DiversityInc revealed its annual Top 10 Companies for People With Disabilities list, with IBM again topping the charts.

IBM Corp., who was also 2008′s winner, “has been at the forefront of hiring, retaining and promoting employees with disabilities and is expanding its efforts globally. It also has been the most outspoken opponent of genetic testing for employees and has been clear and vocal in its values-driven mission,” DiversityInc said.

In second place is Ernst & Young; DiversityInc calls E&Y’s AccessAbilities employee-resource group “world-class.” The group’s members — two-thirds have disabilities — meet monthly through a conference call and have Abilities Champions who make sure disabilities-awareness messages and educational material are part of communications, meetings and events.

Not to be outdone, Cisco Systems placed third for providing “excellent benefits for people with disabilities and for employees who are caring for people with disabilities, including an onsite health center, an onsite pharmacy, healthcare incentives, job sharing and alternative career tracks for people with long-term family-care issues,” said DiversityInc.

The other seven companies on the 2009 list include, Procter & Gamble, Kaiser Permanente, SC Johnson, Aetna, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Sodexo, and KPMG. Starwood, for example, offers sign-language courses and work/life counselors, and its philanthropic donations include to the New York School for the Deaf. KPMG’s benefits include shared leave, shared backup care, flexible hours and job sharing.

Despite gracing the 2008 list, Eastman Kodak, PepsiCo and General Motors, among others, did not make the cut in 2009.

The list isn’t open to just any company. Only companies in the DiversityInc’s 2009 Top 50 Companies for Diversity are invited to compete in the program by answering survey questions. Specifically, they are asked about having active recruitment programs for people with disabilities; having a strong employee-resource group for people with disabilities; and having certain work/life benefits, such as flex time, telecommuting, caregiver assistance, and leaves of absence. DiversityInc also looks at the web sites of the companies to see what content and images they have about people with disabilities.

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