On April 3, 2019, Bangladesh Business & Disability Network (BBDN) hosted a Consultation meeting with Leonard Cheshire and private sector representatives at the Six Seasons Hotel, to discuss their collaborative intervention to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities and make Bangladesh’s private sector more inclusive.
“In bangladesh we need to move away from a welfare and charity based model of disability inclusion, to a rights based model. As equal citizens, we must recognize the rights of people with disabilities to education, skills training and employment”, said Salahuddin Kasem Khan, Chairman, BBDN.
Ms. Tiziana Oliva, Executive Director-International, Leonard Cheshire, who attended as Chief Guest, introduced Leonard Cheshire’s global agenda and spoke about exploring new technology to better accommodate employees with disabilities in the workplace. Citing global examples, she emphasised that it is not just the right thing to do, but that it is good for business. “Diversity in the workplace has resulted in good management practice”, she stated.
“We are fortunate to be in a positive disability climate from the government’s perspective so the time is ripe for disability initiatives to be going forward”, said Murteza Khan, CEO, BBDN
Members of the BBDN network, including private sector companies and DPOs, spoke about the benefits, challenges and opportunities in increasing employment for people with disabilities in Bangladesh.The group further discussed ways in which to reach out to more companies and using technology to address existing challenges like creating a digital database.
Among the many corporate members of BBDN, BSRM, Ananta Group, Square Group, Shwapno, Akhtar Furnishers, Coats Bangladesh, Envoy Textiles, Standard Chartered Bank, AB Bank, Jamaluddin Textiles, Rotary international, ABC Ltd. and Sonali Aansh Group were enlighten the program.
Beside the Corporate members, Consortium partners- LC London and Bangladesh office, CBM country office, Plan international, DFID Country representatives and ILO are presented.