International Day of Persons with Disabilities is December 3rd and was proclaimed in 1992, by the United Nations General Assembly. The observance of the day aims to promote an understanding and awareness of disability issues while rallying support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities and increase visibility on the gains the community has made in every aspect of political, social, economic, and cultural life.
At Gap Inc. we are guided by our purpose, Inclusive, by Design and a deep commitment to Create for All, with All. As part of this work, Gap Inc. has partnered with Disability:IN, the leading non-profit resource for business disability inclusion worldwide, as a proud member of their Inclusion Works program. Through Disability:IN and Inclusion Works, we are learning from a team of disability inclusion experts and programs to help us better understand the evolving practices to promote inclusion for this community. As we learn, we will evolve how we best serve our employees – and how we show up for our customers.
As we begin this partnership and journey, we recognize that learning and building awareness around disabilities is the first step with shifting mindsets about this community to drive change. With a world largely made for people who can see, hear, walk and talk with little or no difficulty, according to the World Bank about 1 billion people have some form of disability, and one-fifth of those (110 to 190 million) have significant disabilities. In many cases, these communities need special adaptations to thrive in the world; often, however, the products or adaptations designed for people with disabilities end up being used and enjoyed by people of all abilities.
According to research institute PolicyLink, this is described as the "Curb-Cut Effect: a vibrant illustration of how laws and programs designed to benefit vulnerable groups, such as the disabled or people of color, often end up benefiting all."
At Gap Inc., a sense of belonging is always in style, and it takes all of us working together every day to drive a culture of inclusion.