Part 4: Self-ID and Self-Disclosure
Employers that focus on fostering inclusive environments are more likely to attract job candidates with disabilities. In this final installment of our series on “Understanding the Candidate Experience for Job Seekers with Disabilities,” we’re exploring self-ID/self-disclosure, and ways to build an inclusive work environment that encourages both.
What’s the difference between Self-ID and Self-disclosure?
Self-Identification or “self-ID” is the act of checking a box on a disability disclosure form. It is required by federal contractors through the voluntary self-identification form for Section 503 requirements.
Self-disclosure is the act of personally communicating a disability to another person. It is a personal decision and can occur at any time and be shared with anyone. An individual is only required to disclose when requesting an accommodation.
Unlike a self-ID campaign that uses a form to ask employees if they have a disability, self-disclosure can occur in various ways, including:
Why don’t individuals self-ID?
People choose not to self-ID for various reasons, including the following:
Why don’t individuals self-disclose?
Many people with disabilities report having felt discriminated against during the employment process because of a disability. These experiences often discourage them from self-disclosing at work. Here are other reasons why people don’t self-disclose:
How can you increase self-ID/disclosure?
To increase self-ID/disclosure, employers should focus on creating a culture and environment of inclusion. Here are some tips to help:
Talk about it. It can all start with you. Bring up any of these best practices to your team or manager, or share your personal story if you identify as having a disability, are a caregiver, or are passionate about inclusion, and feel comfortable disclosing the information.
Additionally, your organization can create a self-ID campaign to encourage current employees to identify has having a disability. In this case, employers should:
Employers must make understanding and improving the candidate experience for job seekers with disabilities a priority. For an in-depth look at how to do this, and get insights from actual employees on self-ID, download our e-book, “Understanding the Candidate Experience for Job Seekers with Disabilities.”
For more resources and guidance on the candidate experience, contact the Getting Hired team.