Ready, Willing & Able
Ready, Willing & Able
Ready, Willing & Able (RWA) is a national initiative of the Canadian Association for Community Living (CACL), in partnership with the Canadian Autism Spectrum Disorders Alliance (CASDA) and Community Living Ontario. Funded by the Government of Canada and active in 20 communities across the country, RWA is designed to increase the labour force participation of people with an intellectual disability and those on the autism spectrum (ASD).
It is designed to build on and increase employer capacity and demand to hire job seekers who have an intellectual disability or those on the autism spectrum. This is done by creating effective and responsive connections between employers and community agencies that support individuals who have an intellectual disability and ASD.
The vision of Ready, Willing & Able is the development of an inclusive and effective labour market, with an employment rate for people who have an intellectual disability or ASD on par with the national average.
Employers cannot afford to overlook this untapped workforce. With the partnership of business leaders, Ready, Willing & Able can create a more inclusive and effective labour market in Ontario. Make a commitment to hire a person with an intellectual disability or ASD. Not only is it the right choice to make, it’s the right choice to make for your business.
Is your business ready, willing and able to hire a person with an intellectual disability or ASD? Here’s what you need to know to build an inclusive labour force:
Like people without a disability, individuals with an intellectual disability or ASD are all different, with unique strengths, weaknesses, skills and talents. RWA assists employers with placing candidates in positions that align with their skills and strengths. As such, the employees will likely have exactly what you are looking for, including experience and interest in your field of work and a strong dedication to their role. Remember, performance comes in different packages!
Many employers find it difficult to find long-term, motivated and reliable employees. Employees with intellectual disabilities or ASD are an underutilized labour source that will enhance the creativity of your workforce, provide a broader base of experience and help shift the emphasis to individual strengths and talents.
Full-time hours are not necessary. Part-time employment, seasonal or summer employment may be exactly what a potential employee with an intellectual disability or ASD is looking for.
RWA is dedicated to providing support to employers and their employees. If needed, necessary supports (i.e. job coaches, on-the-job accommodations or workplace modifications) can be made available; either initially or on an on-going basis.
Every employee is different, with unique abilities and needs. As such, all employees, with or without disabilities, require accommodations of some sort. Most of the time, accommodations for employees with an intellectual disability or ASD do not cost your business anything at all. If necessary, RWA will provide disability awareness training, workplace modifications or assistive technologies.
It is expected that employees with intellectual disabilities or ASD will be paid at the same rate as your other employees in similar roles.
As a responsible employer, you already provide a safe workplace, Workers Compensation and general insurance coverage. Hiring someone with an intellectual disability or ASD does not increase your liability.
Many employees have reported that hiring individuals with intellectual disabilities or ASD has enhanced their teamwork and improved the dynamic of their workplace. However, if issues do arise, RWA will provide the needed support to help you.
For more information about how Ready, Willing and Able can work with your business, please contact any of the following: