Free Employer Toolkit

The toolkit offers a variety of informative tools. Learn about the skills people with disabilities bring to the workplace and use our ‘how-to’ resources, that provide practical tips and strategies on successful recruitment, hiring, inclusion and retention of people with disabilities.

COVID-19 Tools

COVID-19 has significantly impacted Canadian businesses, forcing many employers to adapt. The value of diversity and inclusion has never been as important as it is today. Employers seeking to recover from the pandemic will be looking to their teams for resilience and adaptability. Once the world shifts back to normal, businesses that foster an inclusive workplace and hire with diversity in mind stand to benefit the most!

Visit our new COVID-19 tools for further information on how hiring people with disabilities will translate into overall business success after the pandemic.

COVID-19 Tools

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WORDS DO MATTER tool 5 icon teminology2x

Language is critical in shaping and reflecting our thoughts, beliefs and feelings. Some words degrade and diminish people with disabilities. Always try to avoid stereotypical depictions of people with disabilities. Promote "people first!"


Still, individuals have their own preferences. If you are not sure what words to use, simply ask the person!

Person with a disability Disabled person; invalid person; handicapped
Person with multiple disabilities The disabled; the challenged; crippled
Person with Tourette Syndrome That person has Tourette Syndrome
Person who has Cerebral Palsy He suffers from Cerebral Palsy

Many people with disabilities dislike terms such as "physically challenged" and "differently abled". If you are not sure what words to use, A-T-P: Ask The Person!

Person who uses a wheelchair Confined to a wheelchair; wheelchair-bound
Person who has a physical or mobility disability Cripple

The wheelchair is what enables the person to get around and participate in society; it’s liberating, not confining.

Person with a disability since birth Birth defect; deformity; congenital defect
Has Down syndrome Mongol; mental
Person who is blind The blind person
Person with a visual impairment Visually impaired
Short-statured person Dwarf; midget
Hearing impaired (Lack of speech usually results from impaired hearing) Deaf and dumb; deaf and mute

People with disabilities are generally comfortable with the terminology used to describe daily activities. For example, people who use wheelchairs go for “walks,” and people with visual impairments “see” what you mean.


HIRE for TALENT has made every effort to use the most respectful words possible while writing these materials. We realize, however, that the most appropriate terminology may change over time. We developed these materials with the intent to respect the dignity and inherent rights of all individuals.

This document is provided for information purposes only. The content provided is not legal advice and should not be used or relied upon as such.
Applicable law may differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction; if you are seeking legal advice, you are advised to consult a lawyer in your province or territory.

Take the Challenge!

Which is proper to say? A person with a visual impairment or A visually impaired person

Words do matter. Put the person first. It is proper to say: A person with a visual impairment

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Facts & Stats

Growing your business requires the ability to attract talent in a shrinking market. Workplaces with a diverse, healthy, inclusive culture are becoming employers of choice.
Hire for Talent is focused on workers with disabilities because this talent pool, and the support services attached, have profound impact on workplace inclusion.
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Canada’s projected worker to retiree ratio will be 2:1 within 15 years. Recruitment from diverse talent pools will be essential!
The inclusion of people with disabilities generates measurable improvements in performance, innovation and company image.