Business Disability Forum: exploring identity in the workplace

Business Disability Forum: exploring identity in the workplace

What does being disabled mean in the business world? Do you feel your identity is closely intertwined with your disability at work? This is a debate Business Disability Forum wants to explore at its latest event this December. Read on to find out more…

Following the success of our first Scottish Conference in December 2017, Business Disability Forum is delighted to announce this year’s conference theme will be Disability in Scotland, exploring identity, and will be held on 11 December 2018.

Join the event by registering on Business Disability Forum website

Hosted once again by the Royal Bank of Scotland at its impressive Gogarburn Headquarters in Edinburgh, this conference will be looking at all aspects of identity and disability with the following topics and more…

The people behind the job title

We will be bringing our podcast series on the people behind the job title live to the stage. Disabled people from all walks of life – from a computer scientist at Edinburgh University to senior managers at Network Rail and Royal Bank of Scotland – will be talking to us about their own experiences of disability and identity.

This will be followed by a session on monitoring and disability, in which Senior Business Disability Consultant, Adrian Ward, and Learning and Development Manager, Ruth Fisher will explore:

  • why organisations survey their staff to ask about disability;
  • how to ask the question and what to say in follow up communications with disabled colleagues;
  • what to do with the information collected including data protection regulations;
  • why people don’t identify as disabled and what this might say about your organisational culture.

We are also delighted to welcome a Scottish Government minister, who will be speaking about what the Scottish Government is currently doing to support more disabled people into employment and stay in work after they have acquired a disability.

Fresh from the Edinburgh Fringe Festival

Stend-up comedian Steve Day will bring his highly successful Edinburgh Fringe show to our stage.

Steve’s dad has Alzheimer’s, and there’s nothing he can do about it except remember the way he was. Steve has also been deaf since his teens, but has new hearing aids, so is now going through all the music of his youth. It reminds him of his dad.

There’s nothing else for it but to defy dementia, with music, songs and laughter. Laugh, cry, sing along if you want. If you like bittersweet comedy about deafness and memory loss then this is the show for you.

Identity and citizenship

We will look further into the theme of identity to consider the role of disabled people in society more broadly. Our panel – consisting of Sally Witcher from Inclusion Scotland, Jeremy Balfour MSP and Marsali Craig – will consider the role of disabled people in public life, whether as an elected MP or on a public board. They will answer questions such as:

  • why they chose to stand for election or apply for a public appointment;
  • how to make a difference and change the world;
  • the benefits and challenges of being in the public eye and why more disabled people should seek to do the same.

Finally, to close the day we are pleased to announce that Dr Caroline Casey, Founder of Binc, which champions inclusivity in the workplace, will speak about her own remarkable life and work with Business Disability Forum CEO, Diane Lightfoot.

In 2017 Caroline launched #valuable, a worldwide ‘call to action’ for business to recognise the value and potential of the 1 billion people living with a disability and position disability equally on the global business agenda.

Join the event by registering on Business Disability Forum website. If you’re not able to attend, check back on the website to read transcripts from the day.

By Business Disability Forum

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