NOD Appoints Goldman Sachs Chief Administrative Officer Ericka Leslie To Board Of Directors

Longtime Disability Rights Advocate Ericka Leslie Will Assist NOD in Advancing Disability Inclusion in the Workforce

Headshot of Ericka LeslieNEW YORK (April 27, 2022) – The National Organization on Disability (NOD) today announced Ericka Leslie, Chief Administrative Officer at Goldman Sachs, as the newest member to join its Board of Directors. Ms. Leslie, a champion, and advocate for disability rights, will join 15 other civic and corporate leaders from across the country working to advance disability inclusion across the workforce.

“The National Organization on Disability welcomes Ericka and we look forward to being the beneficiary of her years of wisdom and experience,” said NOD Chairman, Gov. Tom Ridge. “This year marks the National Organization on Disability’s 40th anniversary. The disability rights landscape has changed dramatically since our founding in 1982 and we are proud of the great strides we have made in advancing our mission of putting individuals with disabilities to work. Building on that success will take talented individuals such as Ericka joining our ranks. Her experience and commitment to championing people with disabilities will help us continue to advance our mission of disability inclusion in the workplace.”

“I am excited and honored to join this talented group of leaders in advancing and advocating for disability rights and building a more inclusive workplace,” said Ericka Leslie, Chief Administrative Officer at Goldman Sachs. “Throughout my career, I have remained committed to expanding opportunities for people of all backgrounds because it results in better outcomes and better decisions. This is an issue that I am personally passionate about and look forward to working with the National Organization on Disability to increase employment opportunities for Americans living with disabilities.”

Ericka Leslie serves as a disability champion for the firm’s disability inclusion network. In this role and in her current position as Goldman Sachs’ Chief Administrative Officer, Ericka is known as a leader committed to fostering an inclusive environment for diverse constituencies, including those connected to disability.

Ms. Leslie, a longtime employee of Goldman Sachs for more than 25 years, is a firmwide champion for Launch with GS, the company’s commitment to invest in companies and investment managers with diverse leadership.  She also serves as Co-Chair of the Partnership Committee, Firmwide New Activity Committee and Firmwide Operational Risk and Resilience Committee at Goldman Sachs.  Ms. Leslie serves as vice chair of the Board of Directors for CLS Group Holdings AG and previously served as chair and vice chair of the Stephen Gaynor School in New York City. She earned a BA in Accounting and Finance from the University of Albany in 1992.

About National Organization on Disability (NOD)

The National Organization on Disability (NOD) is a private, non-profit organization that seeks to increase employment opportunities for the 80-percent of working age Americans with disabilities who are not employed. To achieve this goal, NOD offers a suite of employment solutions, tailored to meet leading companies’ workforce needs. NOD has helped some of the world’s most recognized brands be more competitive in today’s global economy by building or enriching their disability inclusion programs. For more information about NOD and how its professional services, Leadership Council and Employment Tracker™ can help your business, visit www.NOD.org.

 

 

Disclosing a Disability to an Employer: Your Rights

Elana Gross, Monster contributor | Wednesday, March 16th 2022

 

Black and white headshot of a smiling woman with shoulder length hair wearing glasses

 

If you’re among the 12.7 percent of Americans that have a visible or invisible disability, you may have some questions about disclosing a disability to an employer in your resume, cover letter, or during the interview process—especially if you know you will need accommodations at some point during the hiring process and/or when you start work.

But do you have to disclose your disability by law? Should you? If you do mention your disability, when is the best time to bring it up?

You’re busy applying to jobs, so we did the research for you and spoke to experts to address some of the questions you may have.

By Law, Do You Have to Disclose Your Disability to an Employer?

No. You are not legally required to mention your disability while you’re being considered for a job. You do not need to disclose your disability on your resume, cover letter, or other application materials, or during an interview.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which prevents eligible employers from discriminating against qualified job applicants and employees if they have a disability. (The law applies to state and local government employers and private employers with 15 or more employees.)

Under the law, someone is considered to have a disability if they have, have a record of having, or are perceived to have a “physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity” such as walking, hearing, seeing, speaking, learning, or completing manual tasks.

Reasonable Accommodations

To be protected under the ADA, a candidate must meet the job requirements and be able to complete the “essential job functions” with or without a “reasonable accommodation.”

A reasonable accommodation is a change or modification to the work environment or way things are done that makes it accessible. For example, you could request for the employer to modify the hiring process by hosting the interview in an accessible space, providing an American Sign Language interpreter or reader, or offering you written materials in accessible formats.

You are not required to self-identify a disability on a job application or during an interview, even if you later disclose that you need reasonable accommodations.

An employer is required to provide reasonable accommodations unless they can show that it is an “undue hardship,” meaning there would be a “significant” difficulty or cost. However, they can’t refuse to provide a requested accommodation if there is some cost involved, and they must provide an alternative accommodation.

How Does the ADA Apply to the Hiring Process?

The law prohibits employers from asking “disability-related questions” or requiring medical examinations until they have made you a conditional offer. However, if you disclose that you have a disability or have a visible disability, an employer can ask for more information, but there are limits.

Employers are prohibited from asking invasive questions about your disability and should only ask questions about the accommodations you need and whether you’ll be able to complete the essential job responsibilities.

In those instances, the employer can ask you whether you can complete the essential job responsibilities with or without reasonable accommodations and for you to demonstrate or describe how you’d do it. Employers can’t refuse to hire you if you can’t complete nonessential job responsibilities.

There’s a Disability Question on a Job Application. What’s That About?

If you see a disability question on a job application, that’s not entirely unusual. Some companies have Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) survey questions at the end of an application to collect data that they are required to submit to the EEOC. The survey typically asks about the applicant’s gender, race, and whether they have a disability. The form should say that it is voluntary and provide you an option to decline answering.

Should You Disclose Your Disability to an Employer During the Hiring Process?

You know you don’t have to disclose, but should you? Granted, this might not be a choice for everyone. If you require a reasonable accommodation during the hiring process, the employer can ask why you need an accommodation and what you need. The employer may ask for “reasonable documentation.”(Check your state’s laws to see how much information employers can request.)

Jinny Kim, the director of the disability rights program at Legal Aid at Work, says the nonprofit legal services organization counsels clients to only disclose a disability:

  • if you need a reasonable accommodation during the hiring process, such as when you are invited to an interview
  • when you start the job
  • at any point during your time at the company

Legal Aid at Work recommends that clients consider the potential benefits and downsides of disclosing. The benefits include receiving necessary accommodations and gaining support and, depending on the workplace, downsides may include a risk of stigma and harassment and a loss of privacy.

What Are the Best Practices for Disclosing a Disability to an Employer During the Hiring Process?

Typically, you only need to tell the employer that you have an ADA-protected disability and share the reasonable accommodations you are requesting. Some states may allow employers to ask you or your medical representative for a specific diagnosis.

Eve Hill, a disability rights attorney at the law firm Brown, Goldstein and Levy, says to explain to the employer how you’ll do the job, your past accomplishments, and that the accommodations you need are not difficult to implement.

What Are Some Ways to Tell If an Employer Is Inclusive?

Moeena Das, the Chief Operating Officer of National Organization on Disability, a nonprofit that increases work opportunities for people with disabilities, suggests checking whether the company website is accessible and includes an accessibility statement. Similarly, she recommends checking whether the company has an employee resource group (ERG) focused on disabilities and whether they have partnerships with disability organizations.

Start the Hiring Process with a Free Resume Review

Now that you know more about your rights and the process of disclosing a disability to an employer, you’re ready to begin preparing for the job search. Want some help with that? Start by polishing your resume with a free resume review from Monster. We can show you how to improve it so that you have a better chance of getting interview requests. It’s quick and easy (and did we mention free?) and can really make a difference.

This article is not intended as a substitute for professional legal advice. Always seek the professional advice of an attorney regarding any legal questions you may have.

Originally Posted at https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/disclose-disability-on-resume

How Remote Work Has Made Working Accessible for Millions of People

remote work disability

BELINDA HOWELL/GETTY IMAGES

Until 2020, working from home was usually viewed as distraction-prone and unproductive, but as the pandemic forced people to stay home, everything changed. The Pew Research Center found 62% of American workers with a bachelor’s degree or more education say their work can be done from home. Similarly, the United States Census Bureau found more than a third of U.S. households reported working from home more frequently than before the pandemic. In fact, working from home can now be argued to be a better working style to make the most of your employees, especially those who are disabled. As someone who falls into this category, working from home has been a positive step for me, enabling greater accessibility that I wouldn’t have otherwise.

I completed a short stint at a local paper while enrolled as a university student in 2019. To get to the office I had to catch two buses, and the commute took an hour each way. As someone whose condition makes her extremely tired after physical exertion, I’d come to work sleepy and unfocused, and I’m sure I failed to do my best work under these circumstances.

I graduated in 2021, and since offices shut down to contain the spread of COVID-19, I found remote freelance work — the commuting difficulties I once faced immediately vanished. I was worried about my working setup when I was diagnosed with antiphospholipid syndrome, but since offices closed, I had no choice but to work from home. I had never even considered it an option before the pandemic. I now had an accessible alternative, and it was freeing — I feel more at ease in my own space and confident and more productive.

Disabled people make up 15% of the global population, meaning greater accessibility can improve millions of lives of the 1.3 billion people who identify as disabled. Remote working is an accessible option for these people, and the greater population.

Sarah Rose, a journalist from Belfast has Endometriosis, Adenomyosis and Crohn’s Disease and says that she could never work from home full time in the e-commerce sector. “I requested it in previous jobs but found working from home even with a declared disability was very hard to access,” she told The Org.

The pandemic changed things for the better for Rose, however. “It was like suddenly overnight working from home was accessible,” she said. “Prior to the pandemic, I was always exhausted and overwhelmed; I was always worried about work. How would I manage the exhausting commute and perform in pain? I always felt like I was running on empty.”

Rose recalls feeling “exhausted” when she arrived at work, but she feels capable of working from home now that she can manage her fatigue and pain alongside her career. She adds that working from an office would be unmanageable, especially since working from home has opened doors for her career. “It has given me more opportunities as I’m able to work,” she said. “Without being able to work from home or with a flexible model, I would not be able to commit to full-time employment.”

This presents just one instance that demonstrates working from home can produce better workers and should be kept for the future.

Keryn Seal from Devon works in sales for a SaaS startup. He says working from home has given him back more energy. Seal is completely blind and has been since the age of 20. Now 39, he feels the pandemic has made the workplace more approachable to disabled people purely by accident. “Everything became more remote and online focussed because a predominantly non-disabled workforce required it to be that way to remain productive,” he told The Org.

He adds that these changes gave “disabled people the things they’ve been asking for over the past decade.” The difficulties that in-person working presented to Keryn were vast, including the lack of flexibility given to him to account for his disability.

The former athlete adds that working from home was commonplace in his athletic endeavors. Still, when his career changed, he felt “constant scrutiny” on where his time was spent and “borderline micromanagement.” This feeling of being observed closely stemmed from the nature of Seal’s workplace. “I had to justify my daily activities and was questioned why I said certain things to clients in an email.” These seemingly small things became draining for Seal, and led him to ultimately feel micromanaged.

Disability advocate Nana Marfo works with those who have special educational needs and is the director of Unique Abilities. He gives an alternative view to COVID-19’s effect on disabled people: “The pandemic has highlighted the issue employers have regarding recruiting disabled people,” he told The Org. “It is at an all-time low due to companies thinking of liability insurance and how effective disabled people can be as an employee.” According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2020, 17.9 percent of people with a disability were employed, down from 19.3 percent in 2019 in the U.S. For people without a disability, 61.8 percent were employed in 2020, down from 66.3 percent in the prior year, showing Marfo’s trend.

Felicia Nurmsen, Managing Director of Employer Services at the National Organization on Disability (NOD) told The Org: “People with disabilities have been asking for accommodations but have been denied working from home opportunities.” She adds that she thinks this change was “one of the best things that may have occurred as a part of the pandemic — a silver lining if you will.”

NOD has worked on a Disability Employment Tracker for the past nine years, a free tool that tracks now close to 500 companies specifically to see how they’re progressing with their disability inclusion practice. The tracker internally focuses just on the workplace, and employment. Nurmsen said that it has shown progress in disability employment practices, including talent outcomes which measure the progression of disabled people in their careers.

“If we really don’t know where our people with disabilities are in the workplace and how we’re supporting them, then we really can’t say that we have a disability-inclusive culture,” Nurmsen said, highlighting the importance of the tracker.

She adds that workplaces are moving in the right direction regarding inclusivity. The employment tracker contrastingly shows a significant increase in new hires of people with disabilities as well as the number of people that are unemployed with disabilities is decreasing.

According to the 2021 NOD Employment Tracker report, employers demonstrated self-identification rates three times higher than those that only examined self-ID.

It is clear the workforce was always adaptable, though it took a pandemic to afford the opportunity to people with disabilities. This is sadly indicative of how society values the contributions of people like me.

Former Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge Gives First On-Camera Interview Since Suffering Stroke

December 28th, 2021 | Lori Burkholder, Anchor

Watch the interview here

He shared his journey following a health scare over the summer.

“I’m getting better every day by increments. I can tell. I’m doing great. Fabulous. Better than I was a couple months ago, that’s for sure,” he said.

In his first on-camera interview since he had a stroke in June, Ridge described what his life has been like.

“A good day is when you wake up in the morning and see the sun shining. I say, ‘Thank you, God, another day to hopefully do better than I did the day before,'” he said.

The stroke affected his left side.

“I can’t do everything I want to do because of some limitations. And the good news is once the therapy is completed, I’ll be able to get back and do everything I was doing before. That’s the goal,” he said.

Ridge goes to Niagara Therapy in Erie three days a week, working on getting back what the stroke stole.

He gets special help from Hope, a dog who was named for what she gives people like Ridge.

“She’s very popular. She’s very entertaining, sometimes a bit stubborn. She’s been great. He really does love working with her,” occupational therapist Markelle Blair said.

“If I can walk out of therapy session today feeling better or stronger or more agile or better prepared for tomorrow, then I’ve had a good day in therapy,” Ridge said.

Ridge continues to improve and said it’s all about the three Ps.

“It takes patience, perseverance and practice. Part of it’s a mindset, and I hope people who watch this would say, ‘Hey, Ridge can do it, I can do it. No big deal.’ You can restore a semblance of a normal life. You can do it. You can just do it,” he said.

Ridge hopes his journey inspires others, just like those who inspired him.

“I think of my condition. I think of Bob Dole, who had very limited use of his right arm. Incredible story – one of my personal heroes. I was honored to be invited to the celebration of his life and his legacy,” he said.

When asked what Ridge wants his legacy to be, he had this answer: “I’ve been privileged to serve my community and my country in multiple ways. I just want people to know I’m grateful for the opportunity for that service and hope they take a look back, regardless of political persuasion, and say, ‘Ridge might not have been the brightest light bulb in the chandelier but we know he worked hard and we’re grateful for that.’ I hope that’s it.”

Ridge said he’s thankful for all the people who have reached out to him since his stroke. He also encouraged stroke survivors to take advantage of all the resources available because he’s proof that those resources make a difference.

Gov. Tom Ridge Attends Funeral of Sen. Bob Dole; Salutes His Legacy on Disability Rights

Friday, December 10th 2021

 

Gov. Tom Ridge, chairman of the National Organization on Disability, was in attendance today at the funeral of former U.S. Senator Bob Dole at the National Cathedral in Washington.

“Any discussion about the opportunities that exist today for people with disabilities in America must include the heroic contributions of my friend Bob Dole,” said Gov. Ridge. “Himself a World War II veteran who returned home with a disability, Sen. Dole wielded his power and influence in the Senate to advance the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990, signed into law by another World War II veteran and friend, President George H.W. Bush. Sen. Dole, who at the time was the minority leader, used his bipartisan influence to push the legislation forward. It is not hyperbole to say that the ADA likely never would have passed without his support and advocacy amongst his colleagues. In fact, Sen. Tom Harkin has referred to Sen. Dole as the linchpin to the Republicans as they advanced the final language in the bill.

“Bob Dole is from America’s Greatest Generation, and his contributions are too many to count. For those of us who spend time in the disability field, and for me personally, who was privileged to cast an affirmative vote for the ADA as a congressman, his legacy will forever be remembered. And I hope that it is equally appreciated by millions of his fellow Americans who access the rights provided in the ADA every day of their lives. Myself now included.”

NOD Rallies for Companies to Commit to More Diverse and Inclusive Workforces in 2022

Annual Employment Tracker Reveals an Increase in Hiring People with Disabilities, While Self-ID Rates Decrease

 

NEW YORK (December 8, 2021) – The National Organization on Disability (NOD) is encouraging all companies to look closer at the 80-percent of working age Americans with disabilities who are not employed and to make disability inclusion part of their overall business strategy in 2022. While recent reports and results from NOD’s annual Employment Tracker are trending positive with an increase in people with disabilities entering the workforce over the last 12 months, self-identification (self-ID) rates have decreased from 4.09 in 2020 to 3.68 in 2021.

The NOD Employment Tracker is the only free assessment tool available that focuses on the workforce, to help companies better gain a deeper understanding of how their key business practices correlate to improved talent outcomes related to hiring, retention and tenure. Companies can access the free NOD Disability Employment Tracker here.

“I am cautiously optimistic and encouraged by the latest reports that show the labor force participation rate for working-aged people with disabilities has increased by 11.3 percent over the past year,” said NOD President Carol Glazer. “This is tremendous progress for the disability community and for that we need to celebrate.  However, we can’t stop here. There is more work to be done to ensure that all people with disabilities feel comfortable identifying with a disability, no matter their type of disability or the environment within which they work.”

 

In its ninth year – and with companies who together employ more than 10 million Americans already taking the annual survey – the NOD Employment Tracker assists companies to make disability inclusion part of their overall business strategy and to find the right talent while removing inclusion barriers for good.  According to the 2021 Employment Tracker report, employers that track not only self-ID rates, but other talent outcome metrics, such as promotions of employees with disabilities, demonstrated self-identification rates three times higher than those that only examined self-ID.

The Tracker data also showed NOD’s Leadership Council members performed better and were more effective at implementing best practices, programs, and policies. Specifically, these members have 38% higher self ID rates and are better than non-members at adopting the most effective disability inclusion practices.

Glazer added, “I would encourage all employers to take advantage of our Employment Tracker to access how they benchmark against more than 200 participating companies and receive pertinent information to create a diverse and inclusive workforce.”

 

For 2022, NOD will continue to partner with Talmetrix, a national employee feedback, research and insights company. By using recent market research, the two organizations created a dynamic disability benchmarking tool that provides companies with the cutting-edge, outcome-based data metrics they need to build a more inclusive workforce, which is proven to enhance innovation and increase engagement with employees and customers.

 

Companies who complete the Tracker by March 11, 2022 will receive a free Scorecard report, benchmarking their performance against all other participants in key workforce inclusion areas: (Strategy, Talent Outcome Metrics, Climate & Culture, Talent Sourcing, People Practices, Workplace Tools & Accessibility, and Veterans (optional). The 2022 Scorecard reports will be available for participating companies in early summer 2022. In addition to receiving this powerful benchmarking tool, top performing companies are eligible to compete for NOD’s annual Leading Disability Employer Seal.  A list of the 2021 Leading Disability Employers can be found here.

 

ABOUT NATIONAL ORGANIZATION ON DISABILITY 

The National Organization on Disability (NOD) is a private, non-profit organization that seeks to increase employment opportunities for the 80-percent of working age Americans with disabilities who are not employed. To achieve this goal, NOD offers a suite of employment solutions, tailored to meet leading companies’ workforce needs. NOD has helped some of the world’s most recognized brands be more competitive in today’s global economy by building or enriching their disability inclusion programs. For more information about NOD and how its professional services, Leadership Council and Employment Tracker™ can help your business, visit www.NOD.org.

NOD Appluads Biden’s Executive Order Barring Subminimum Wages for Individuals with Disabilities on Federal Contracts

The National Organization on Disability (NOD) applauds the final rule announcement by the U.S. Department of Labor to ensure that workers with disabilities performing work on or in connection with covered federal contracts cannot be paid subminimum wages. As our chairman, Gov. Tom Ridge, testified before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, it is discriminatory that any individual, or group of individuals, be paid less than minimum wage, a practice which is still allowed by Section 14(c) of the Fair Labor Standards Act. We are thrilled by this executive action, which ensures that individuals with disabilities can participate equally in the workforce.

Today’s announcement is one of many efforts that the Biden Administration has taken to support competitive, integrated employment for people with disabilities. We at NOD are hopeful that the final Build Back Better Act will include funding to support states in phasing-out subminimum wages for individuals with disabilities.

We were also encouraged by Senators Casey and Daines recent introduction of the Transformation to Competitive, Integrated Employment Act to fully phase-out the use of 14(c) under federal law, which would bolster the administration’s executive order.

NOD is proud to have supported these policies and advocated for their passage, in coordination with more than a dozen of the leading disability rights organizations in the country. We are grateful for the Biden Administration’s commitment to support individuals with disabilities and look forward to continuing this important work together.

Are We Beginning to Narrow the Gap on Disability Inclusion in the Workplace?

By Carol Glazor, President of NOD

 

After decades of seeing no real change, something finally may be shifting, and more people with disabilities are finding jobs.

NOD’s 2021 Employment Tracker shows that the percentage of new hires with disabilities among major employers is increasing. While the numbers are still too low, it is more progress than we have seen in a generation.

I believe the reason is a convergence of a few things. The constant drumbeat about the need for disability inclusiveness in the workforce from organizations such as ours. People with disabilities also have been caught in the more recent rising tide of awareness about discrimination and inequity, along with other marginalized groups.

Even though people with disabilities are disproportionately represented in low-wage, high-contact jobs that can’t be done remotely, others of us who for years asked for remote work as an accommodation, won that right during the pandemic.

And there’s always the economy. While job openings reached historically high levels in the spring, businesses are scrambling to find workers. Increasingly, they’re turning to previously-untapped labor sources.

We still have a long way to go, especially as nearly 1 million people with disabilities lost their jobs during the beginning months of COVID. But the numbers are ticking upward. The labor force participation rate for working-age people with disabilities increased from 32.7 percent in September 2020 to 36.4 percent in September 2021, up 11.3 percent or 3.7 percentage points. For people without disabilities, the labor force participation rate also increased, but at a much lower rate — only 0.8 percentage points, from 75.7 percent in 2020 to 76.5 percent in September 2021.

In other good signs, NOD’s Leadership Council made up of companies seeking to better their disability workforce numbers, added eleven new members in 2021, the largest increase we’ve seen since the Council was created. The number of companies filling out our Employment Tracker survey that gauges performance in disability workforce inclusion increased by 20%, to a new high of 228 companies.

And we could see even bigger gains. The Biden administration is focused on increasing funding for “Home and Community-Based Services,” which will allow more people with disabilities to get and hold jobs, and is asking Congress to provide grants to states to phase out subminimum wages for people with disabilities.

This is all positive, and as we close out National Disability Employment Awareness Month, I am happy to have more to say this year than the usual list of apprehensions and negative statistics about job numbers. This is no time to celebrate, however. More companies need to include everyone when they have job openings, and Congress needs to act on behalf of people with disabilities.

Are You Ready To Challenge Your Accessibility Assumptions?

By Tamar Savir | Medium, October 25th, 2021

We kicked off the #NoMouseVMware challenge this week, inviting employees to navigate a website or a tool for 30 minutes using only the keyboard.

A woman standing next to a computer. A cat is walking past the computer with a computer mouse in its mouth.

Not everyone relies on a mouse or a trackpad when using their computers. The general “cat” population may be surprised to know there are many keyboard-only users among us. For example, people who are blind or have low vision use assistive technology such as screen readers or braille displays and rely on keyboard functionality to navigate a page or browse content online. Other examples include people with dexterity difficulties. Approximately 7% of working adults have Parkinson’s, arthritis, or carpal tunnel syndrome. They find it easier to use the keyboard. Whatever the reason is — necessity or preference — there are many keyboard-only users navigating a world that was not designed for them.

 

Making the digital world more inclusive is something we can all contribute to.

 

An important first step is to experience the digital world the same way that keyboard-only users’ do. We’ve invited VMware employees to take the #NoMouseVMware challenge. You can join us too! Choose a website, or an app or tool, and navigate it using only a keyboard for 30 minutes. So, without a mouse (or a trackpad!) try to:

  • Navigate a menu bar
  • Write an email
  • Check out a newsfeed
  • Scroll down a timeline
  • Watch a video
  • Read an article
  • Subscribe to, or purchase, an item
  • Download a document
  • Review your PowerPoint slides

 

Navigation 101

A cat sitting next to a computer with a "no mouse" sign on the screen

 

Before you start, here are a few tips on keyboard navigation:

  • Press Tab to move to the next link, form element or button.
  • Press Shift+Tab to move to the previous link, form element, or button.
  • Press Enter or space bar to activate the current link or button.
  • Use arrow keys, Escape, or other keys if it makes sense.

 

How long did it take before you hit a roadblock?

A cat dragging a computer mouse in its mouth

 

Or felt frustrated enough to throw your hands up in the air? Ten minutes? Five? Post a comment if you experienced at least one of the options listed below:

  • You couldn’t locate or lost where you were on the page because there wasn’t any visual indication.
  • You had to tab excessively to get to the main page content because there was no skip link.
  • You opened a modal window and noticed keyboard focus didn’t move to it.
  • You skipped over entire parts of the page that you knew you should be able to interact with.
  • You noticed focus jumped to active elements on the page in a random and illogical order.

Surely you can add a few more bullets to the list!

If a 30-minute challenge felt so painful, annoying and/ or frustrating, imagine how difficult it must be for someone who experiences it every day. We encourage you to think about your customers, potential hires and, of course, employees who are:

  • Using keyboards only to navigate your products and website.
  • Sitting through a training or sales pitch, and using the keyboard to navigate your PowerPoint presentations, email or other content.

Making the digital space accessible is everyone’s responsibility. Whether you are part of Marketing, Products, Sales, HR or any other function — we all have a role to play. Let’s become better accessibility advocates. Commit to use the keyboard more often, and if something isn’t working, raise a ticket or get it fixed.

With your help, we can build a future that is accessible for all.

 

Devoted Community Activist and Actor Robert David Hall Receives Lifetime Achievement Award From NOD at Annual Forum

Robert David Hall headshot

NEW YORK (OCTOBER 1, 2021) – Robert David Hall, who starred as ‘Dr. Al Robbins’ on CBS TV’s “CSI: Crime Scene Investigation” and one of the most prominent actors with a disability working today, is the recipient of the National Organization on Disability’s (NOD) 2021 Lifetime Achievement Award. Hall, who lost both of his legs in 1978 when an 18-wheel truck struck his car, is receiving the award in recognition of his exceptional contributions as a leader and advocate for people with disabilities. Hall also is the longest serving member on NOD’s board of directors. He was presented with the award at NOD’s online Annual Forum, “Disability Inclusion in the Next Normal” on September 30, 2021.

“It is our honor to present David with this Lifetime Achievement Award,” said NOD President Carol Glazer. “David does so much behind the scenes to advocate for disability rights, not only professionally, but in his private life as well. He has paved the way for actors with disabilities and has been an incredible role model for so many. His work is leaving a legacy. I am proud to call him my colleague and friend.”

Hall’s other achievements include serving as a past member of the national board of the Screen Actors Guild (SAG), and was also the national chairman of the Performers with Disabilities Caucus for SAG, the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and the London-based trade union Equity. Along with his time on NOD’s board, he has served on the Mark Taper Forum’s Other Voices Project, which promotes empowerment of writers and performers with disabilities in the American theater. In 2010, he had the privilege of introducing President Barack Obama at the 20th Anniversary celebration for the Americans with Disabilities Act on the White House lawn.

I’m honored and grateful to receive the NOD Lifetime Achievement Award,” said Hall.

“I dedicate this award to my late Mother and Father; Dad was tough, Mom was encouraging, and all my siblings knew they were loved. Along with many others, I have dedicated many years to advocating for people with disabilities, and I stand proudly by NOD’s mission to recognize everyone’s abilities and talents, especially in the workforce. I encourage all companies (especially those in the media and entertainment fields) to see people with disabilities as they are —productive, resilient, and hard working. People with disabilities can do anything if they are given the opportunity. I like to think that I’m a small part of that big picture. Thanks especially to my wife, Judy, who loves me fiercely and overlooks most of my imperfections.”

 


About the NOD Annual Forum

Diversity and inclusion leaders from global companies attended the National Organization on Disability’s Annual Forum on September 30. Academy Award winner Marlee Matlin kicked off the two-hour virtual showcase entitled, “Leadership Council Forum: Disability Inclusion in the Next Normal” with an inspiring keynote address.  Emceed by actress Santina Muha, the Forum addressed the challenges that business leaders continue to face in a shifting economy and post-COVID era as they prepare to bring employees back to the office or continue providing a remote work environment. It also unpacked the opportunities the global pandemic has afforded employees with disabilities as it relates to digital accessibility, mental health programs and better workplace flexibility. For more information about Robert David Hall and other 2021 award winners, visit https://bit.ly/39qd5Nc.

                                                                                                                 

About National Organization on Disability (NOD)

The National Organization on Disability (NOD) is a private, non-profit organization that seeks to increase employment opportunities for the 80 percent of working-age Americans with disabilities who are not employed. To achieve this goal, NOD offers a suite of employment solutions, tailored to meet leading companies’ workforce needs. NOD has helped some of the world’s most recognized brands become more competitive in today’s global economy by building or enriching their disability inclusion programs. For more information about NOD and how its professional services, Leadership Council and Employment Tracker™ can help your business, visit www.NOD.org.