Social innovation

Activity 3. Creating social innovation and piloting

The aim of the activity is to realize a process for developing a new enterprise-oriented method for engaging employers to employ people with disabilities and improving the organization and working conditions for reducing the risk of occupational diseases and disabilities through pilot implementation of developed test tool for local conditions.

The inclusion of people with disabilities as a workforce is one of the hallmarks of advanced economies and civilized societies. The main role is played by employers who, in parallel with the creation of jobs and the dynamic of national economic life, also carry out social functions. These are bilaterally dependent processes whose symmetrical parallelism predetermines the success or failure of economic activity. Awareness of such a relation (labor market – people with health problems) is one of the preconditions for realizing the idea of ​​employment of people with disabilities and prevention of work risk.

Feasibility studies show that in EU countries with functioning employment systems for people with disabilities and occupational diseases, poverty is lower. The new challenges facing the labor market are related to the social commitment of employers and respect for ethical standards and rights of employees – the right to a safe working environment, reduced risk of occupational diseases, protection of the right to work for all, incl. and people with disabilities.

The change in Bulgaria and the EU, related to the aging of the population and the shortage of qualified staff, is increasingly dynamic. Investing in improved working conditions to maintain employee health and attract people with disabilities as a workforce is one of the new enterprise solutions.

The experience of the applicant shows that the stigma attached to them by society and employers is extremely strong and dismissive. Lack of sufficient information in the community leads to fears, prejudices, stigma and self-stigma – the disabled themselves impose self-restraints on communication and work, leading to their social exclusion. The pilot introduction of innovative practices will achieve a reasoned proposal to integrate and adapt people with disabilities into the work environment and improve working conditions for the risk factors that lead to occupational disabilities and illness. The introduction includes hands-on workshops for employers focused on the benefits of hiring disabled people from a growth perspective and training on the benefits of this sustainable perspective.


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