#004 – Disability in the Workplace

March 27, 2017

employees with a disability and employees collaborate for workplace success with laura mckeen

Laura McKeen, is a disability advocate on the board of directors for Community Living London, and a Partner at Cohen Highley LLP Lawyers. Laura and her firm are inclusive employers, who have employed individuals with a disability for the last 25 years, and have been recognized for the David C. Onely Award for Leadership in Accessibility in 2016. In this podcast, Laura shares her firm’s inclusion practices; including a strong partnership with Community Living London, and accommodations her firm has made that enable high performance.

Laura and I also discuss what employers are looking for when they are hiring, and how an individual with a disability can uniquely position themselves to present their best qualities and capabilities. Laura shares that individuals with a disability are often innovative, and can share many examples where they have created outside of the box solutions in their life. 

We also discuss some of the myths of employing an individual with a disability, such as costs to accommodate, lower performance, and absenteeism. It may or may not surprise you, but in a 2014 study, the Ontario Chamber of Commerce found that the average cost to accommodate is $500.00. This is low compared to what some organizations may think the cost actually is.

Laura also shares the benefits that her organization are receiving from employing individuals with a disability, such as, lower turnover, lower absenteeism, increased employee moral, and a more inclusive culture. All of these factors contribute to higher profits for the company, while providing a purposeful day, and income for the employee. That’s a win-win!

What you will learn in this episode:

– Discover Cohen Highly LLP’s inclusion practices

– Learn how to best present yourself as a job candidate with a disability

– Debunking the myths of employing an individual with a disability

– Learn the business benefits of hiring an individual with a disability

How to contact Laura McKeen and Cohen Highley LLP Lawyers:

Website: www.cohenhighley.com

E-mail: [email protected]

Learn more about Laura: Click Here

Location: London, Ontario, Canada


8 Myths About Hiring Employees with Disabilities, by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce – View Report

Business Benefits of Accessible Workplaces, by the conference board of Canada – View Report

Partnership Council on Employment Opportunities for Persons with Disabilities Report, published by the Government of Ontario – View Report

Love & Respect,


The podcast is available on iTunes and Podbean (android) so that you can listen while on the go from your smartphone!

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