Our first retailer to achieve the Accessibility Tick – The Warehouse Group

Please see their press release below –

The Warehouse Group is proud to announce it has achieved the Accessibility Tick. The tick recognises the programmes of work the Group is undertaking to support accessibility in its workplaces and stores.

The Warehouse Group CEO, Nick Grayston said with approximately one in four Kiwis affected by physical, sensory, mental or learning disabilities, it is important that access is given the right consideration as a business priority.

“We believe a diverse, inclusive and accessible workplace brings out the best in our people. That’s why we’re committed to creating an environment where all team members feel safe and confident to bring their whole selves to work and customers have full access to ours stores,” said Grayston.

There are multiple programmes of work in place to support accessibility across The Warehouse Group, including working closely with team members on matters that personally impact their needs the most while at work.

By 2025, the retail giant is striving to ensure that all products, services and buildings will be accessible for all. Some of the changes coming to stores over the next five years include; a trial of quiet sensory hours for neuro-diverse customers in The Warehouse stores, ensuring all new stores across the Group are fully accessible and inclusive, as well as ensuring that the e-commerce presence is just as accessible as a physical store would be.

Celebrating the Ready Willing and Able video series

Our partnership with The Inclusive Employment Taskforce Bay of Plenty has been amazing. We continue to explore ways to work together and provide employment opportunities.

The below 3 videos were created to illustrate the abilities that people with disabilities bring to open employment.

Joel – Tauranga Visitor Centre

Joel explores his vision loss due to retinitis pigmentosa and his employment at the Tauranga Visitor Centre.

Chris – Farmer Autovillage

Chris chats about his emloyment at Farmer Autovillage whilst living life in a wheelchair.

Sue – Welcome Bay Vet Clinic

Sue is a vet at the Welcome Bay Vet Clinic and talks about how she has returned to normal life after her spinal injury.

Fidelity Life proud to be recipients of the Accessibility Tick

Fidelity Life, New Zealand’s largest locally owned and operated life insurer and two-time ANZIIF New Zealand Life Insurance Company of the Year, has been awarded the Accessibility Tick.

Awarded by Access Advisors, the Accessibility Tick is an independent endorsement of an organisation’s commitment to being more accessible to, and inclusive of, people with disabilities.

Fidelity Life Chief People Officer Tanya Hadfield says the Accessibility Tick is about being accessible to all customers, advisers and job seekers.

“1 in 4 New Zealanders identify as having a disability. This means if we aren’t inclusive and accessible to all Kiwis, a quarter of the market might not be looking at us as a potential employer, business partner or life insurance provider.

“Achieving the Accessibility Tick gives us the confidence we can successfully employ people with disabilities, enrich our diversity and meet the needs of all customers.”

See Fidelity Life’s media release for more information.

Fidelity Life CEO Nadine Terora, Accessibility Tick's Candace McCabe and Fidelity Life CPO Tanya Hadfield with the Accessibility Tick certificate.

Blind Foundation next to receive the Tick

 Tanya Colvin, Accessibility Tick Programme Lead and Acting Chief Executive Greg Hurn with the Accessibility Tick certificate
Tanya Colvin, Accessibility Tick Programme Lead and Acting Chief Executive Greg Hurn with the Accessibility Tick certificate

The Blind Foundation has been awarded the Accessibility Tick for escalating its commitment to accessibility.

Tanya Colvin, Accessibility Tick Programme Lead, presented Acting Chief Executive Greg Hurn the award during a short ceremony this morning at Awhina House in Parnell, Auckland, 20 August 2019.

The Accessibility Tick, a Blind Foundation initiative set up by the Access Advisors, was established to help address the disability employment gap.

For the Blind Foundation, it is important that we lead by example, Acting Chief Executive Greg Hurn said.

“To be authentic in this work with others, we absolutely have to be doing all that we can to ‘walk the talk’ and to be trail blazers in breaking down barriers that are holding us back in accessibility today.”

Find the Full Article on the Blind Foundation website.

Air New Zealand proud to be latest recipient of the Accessibility Tick

Air New Zealand are proud to be the latest organisation to further their commitment to diversity and inclusion, reaching the required commitment to achieve the Accessibility Tick.

With our on-going support they aim to understand, benchmark and improve in the following areas; leading in digital accessibility as more customers use technology to interact with us, creating a more diverse workforce through recruitment of people with disability, further driving inclusion by educating our people about accessibility.

For more information, see their Press Release.

Westpac first NZ bank to receive the Accessibility Tick

Westpac NZ has become the first New Zealand bank to achieve the Accessibility Tick, for its commitment to becoming more accessible and inclusive of people with disabilities.

Acting General Manager of Consumer Banking and Wealth, Gina Dellabarca, says the Tick recognises the work that has gone into making Westpac accessible to people with a wide range of abilities and needs.

“We want to help Kiwis grow financially to help grow a better New Zealand, and making our business more available to all New Zealanders is a big part of that,” she says.

Read more about it on Westpac’s web site.

Westpac's Diversity and Inclusion team with the Accessibility Tick certificate
Westpac’s Diversity and Inclusion team with the Accessibility Tick certificate

The Accessibility Tick awarded to five more organisations

The Accessibility Tick is proud to award a further five organisations with the Tick in Disability Pride Week. This week Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC), Adecco, Auckland District Health Board, Ricoh NZ and Sudima Hotels have joined Vector as the first organisations in New Zealand to demonstrate their commitment to accessibility through this new programme.

Accessibility Tick programme lead, Tanya Colvin, says: “The levels of enthusiasm, care and dedication to getting accessibility right that I have seen across all of these organisations is inspiring.

“I believe we are at the beginning of creating a sea-change for accessibility to become a ‘business as usual’ consideration for New Zealand employers, and it is exciting. We know employers see the value in fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace, and in making their product or service offerings accessible to all customers. Now it’s time to tackle what this means for people with disabilities.”

The Accessibility Tick is a new programme helping employers be part of the solution in creating a more accessible and inclusive New Zealand for people with disabilities.

Disability Rights Commissioner Paula Tesoriero encourages employers to learn more about the Accessibility Tick. She says: “I support initiatives that build inclusion and aim to ensure employers take full advantage of the talent pool of disabled people.”

Access Alliance coordinator Dianne Rogers congratulates the five businesses on being awarded the Accessibility Tick. She says: “We applaud your efforts to create accessible environments for your employees and customers, and we look forward to working together to put accessibility at the heart of a more inclusive Aotearoa New Zealand.”

Recent labour market statistics show New Zealanders with disabilities are three times less likely to be employed than their non-disabled peers. The difference between employment rates of disabled and non-disabled people is called the disability employment gap. New Zealand’s disability employment gap is currently 47.7%.

The Accessibility Tick is also proud to announce partnerships with Workbridge and The Cookie Project. “Our Workbridge partnership is important because they will be able to provide both services and candidates to member employers. We love what The Cookie Project is doing and see them as a valued partner providing a future talent pipeline to member employers,” says Tanya Colvin.

“Congratulations to Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC), Adecco, Auckland District Health Board, Ricoh NZ and Sudima Hotels on achieving the Tick. The winners out of their work are New Zealanders with disabilities who can reference the Tick as a marker of confidence that accessibility and inclusivity are given precedence at these organisations,” says Tanya Colvin.

To find out more about the Accessibility Tick, visit: accessibilitytick.nz

ENDS

For more information please contact:

Kimberley Ross, Blind Foundation Communications Manager on behalf of Accessibility Tick kross@blindfoundation.org.nz | 022 011 3635

 

Vector first employer awarded with Accessibility Tick

Vector Limited

Media Release

The Accessibility Tick is a new programme helping employers be part of the solution in creating a more accessible and inclusive New Zealand for people with disabilities.

At the Inclusive NZ Conference in Wellington yesterday, Vector was recognised for its role in co-designing the Accessibility Tick programme.

Vector’s Chief Risk Officer, Kate Beddoe, says: “Diverse, inclusive, and accessible workplaces are win-win situations: employees feel valued and accommodated, which boosts productivity, raises morale, and results in a more successful business. Making our workplace even more welcoming will benefit these employees and means we can also tap into a talented pool of prospective employees.

“Being awarded the Accessibility Tick, alongside our Rainbow Tick and accreditation as the only large corporate business in New Zealand committed to the Living Wage, demonstrates Vector’s commitment to providing an accessible and equitable workplace for everyone.”

Accessibility Tick programme lead, Tanya Colvin, applauds Vector for its commitment to accessibility, and for its willingness to get involved at an early stage to co-design a programme that will resonate with the business community.

She explains that while there has been great appetite from New Zealand employers to be inclusive of people with disabilities for some time, the missing piece for many has been the ‘how’.

“We know employers see the value in fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace. We have seen them tackle inequities in areas such as gender and demonstrate their commitment to the LGBTTI community through the Rainbow Tick.

“Meanwhile the roadmap to accessibility has not been all that clear, so we are pleased to be helping employers take it out of the ‘too hard’ basket with the Accessibility Tick programme. The Tick provides them with the structure, tools and support to implement an action plan where they are committed to taking meaningful steps towards accessibility and inclusion through policy, culture and environmental changes,” says Ms. Colvin.

Disability Rights Commissioner, Paula Tesoriero encourages employers to learn more about the Accessibility Tick. She says: “I support initiatives that build inclusion and aim to ensure employers take advantage of the talent pool of disabled people.”

The Blind Foundation is a lead partner in the Accessibility Tick programme, which has grown from the organisation’s insight that a pan-disability initiative was needed to create systemic change supporting employment of people with disabilities.

Blind Foundation spokesperson Norman Evans says the organisation supports clients through its employment support service and while that has fostered many individual success stories, it is only a drop in the ocean in creating meaningful change for employment of people with disabilities.

“New Zealanders with disabilities are three times less likely to be employed than their non-disabled peers. Over more than 15 years, we haven’t moved the dial significantly in bridging that gap.

“The Accessibility Tick programme turns the traditional approach on its head, highlighting that the problem isn’t about people with disabilities – it’s about how workplaces are setup to include them,” says Mr Evans.

Some of the easily achievable steps Vector has taken to encourage a more accessible workplace include: integrating accessibility into their Health and Safety protocols; senior managers attending unconscious bias training; and changes to their recruitment processes and the way vacancies are advertised to encourage those with disabilities to consider Vector as a workplace.

Ms. Colvin says both employers, and potential employees benefit from the Accessibility Tick: “It serves as a mark of confidence for all parties that inclusivity and the needs of people with disabilities are not just taken seriously – they are welcomed.

“One in four New Zealanders identify as having a disability. If organisations are not inclusive and accessible, they could be missing out on a quarter of the market.”

The Accessibility Tick programme is currently working with a further nine organisations. These employers are expected to become foundation members when they are awarded with the Accessibility Tick.

More information on the Accessibility Tick is available online: accessibilitytick.nz

ENDS

Supplied photo: Tanya Colvin, Accessibility Tick programme lead, with Paul McCloskey, Vector’s Group Manager – HR, holding Vector’s Accessibility Tick award.

For more information please contact:

Kimberley Ross, Blind Foundation Communications Manager on behalf of Accessibility Tick  kross@blindfoundation.org.nz | 022 011 3635

Murielle Baker, Senior Communications Specialist at Vector
Murielle.baker@vector.co.nz | 021 02756461

About the Accessibility Tick

The Accessibility Tick programme helps New Zealand organisations become more accessible and inclusive of people with disabilities. We are a pan-disability social enterprise with a vision for bridging the accessibility and disability employment gaps. We recognise that New Zealand organisations have a variety of accessibility issues and we help to simplify that process and to get better outcomes.

About Vector

Vector is New Zealand’s largest distributor of electricity and gas, owning and operating networks which span the Auckland region. We’re leading the transformation of the energy sector to create a new energy future with sustainable energy technology, which includes solar power, energy storage, EV charging stations, and smart meters, and we’re constantly identifying and developing options that will provide value, choice and service for our customers.