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Original Research Articles

Assistive Technologies in a Workplace Environment: Barriers for the Employment of People with Disabilities

Authors:

Maria Jakovljevic ,

Department of Economics, University of Zadar, Ulica Mihovila Pavlinovića bb, HR-23 000 ZADAR, Hrvatska, HR
About Maria
Maria Jakovljevic has been recently appointed as an Associate Professor at the Department of Economics, the University of Zadar, Croatia. She was an academic staff member at University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. She specializes in Business Informatics, Life Sciences, Interdisciplinary Innovations, and Information and Communication Sciences. She is leading the commission body for the Quality Assurance at the Department of Economics, University of Zadar. She is also a member of the Publishing Committee at the University of Zadar, as well as an active peer reviewer. She presented papers both nationally and internationally.
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Sheryl Buckley

School of Computing, University of South Africa, ZA
About Sheryl

Sheryl Buckley is Acting Chair of the Department in the School of Computing (SoC) at the University of South Africa (UNISA). Her passion lies in the Information Science discipline. She is a committee member of a number of international organisations as well as an active peer reviewer. She has presented and published papers locally and internationally.

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Abstract

Purpose: The employment equity policies and implementation of technology-specific guidelines within the South African ‘Code of Good Practice on the Employment of People with Disabilities’, was created to encourage employment equity for employees with disabilities, by companies in Johannesburg.  

This study reports on the results of the investigation in assistive technologies in a workplace environment, and barriers for the employment of people with disabilities in the South African environment.

Method: Qualitative data, collected from two retail and service companies in the form of semi-structured individual and focus group interviews, was analysed using a constant comparative method, identifying major themes and sub-themes.

Results: A surprisingly small number of persons with disabilities were found to be employed by participating companies, which tended not to focus on these people when formulating their policies and plans. In addition, technological aspects of the Code were largely unacknowledged, with little effort being made to accommodate the needs of persons with disabilities. An even lower incidence of assistive technology usage was found, along with a large number of conceptual and perceived barriers that hinder the employment of people with disabilities and the implementation of appropriate technology.

How to Cite: Jakovljevic, M. and Buckley, S., 2011. Assistive Technologies in a Workplace Environment: Barriers for the Employment of People with Disabilities. Disability, CBR & Inclusive Development, 22(2), pp.55–78. DOI: http://doi.org/10.5463/dcid.v22i2.32
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Published on 15 Oct 2011.

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