More understanding, less obstacles for people with disabilities

The inklusion@ergo network has kicked-off

People & stories, 04.11.2020

Anyone who goes through life with a disability will encounter hurdles from time to time. The new inklusion@ergo network is designed to help reduce these within our company. The idea: No one should be excluded. Everyone is part of the team.

It is perfectly normal to be different. And that works best if you are aware of your own prejudices and hurdles in everyday life. In order to overcome them, employees at ERGO have launched the inklusion@ergo network. "The point is that no one should be excluded or sidelined," says Ursula Deschka. She is a member of the ERGO Board of Management and sponsor of the new inclusion network. The focus of the network is on the exchange of personal experiences that everyone has had for themselves regarding the topic of "handicap" and on making the ERGO Group as barrier-free as possible.

The problem of restrictions in everyday life

"Every person counts - in our society, but also in companies," says Ursula Deschka. Often it is the case that the physical or mental handicap does not restrict people themselves. It are rather the restrictions in everyday life that are the greatest barriers. Here is an example: Fewer stairs mean more freedom. For people in wheelchairs or with baby carriages. With a ramp it is often easier. Such issues must be addressed. And the new inclusion network is exactly the right address for this.

"It is my wish that all colleagues develop a much better understanding of the topic of inclusion," says Ursula Deschka and adds: "And that they deal with the topic more consciously, sensitively and thoughtfully in their everyday work and private lives. That is why an important goal of the network is to present "inclusive" events in order to facilitate dialogues and make the topic visible.

Inclusion is an important topic - also at ERGO

ERGO alone employs 1.000 people with disabilities. These are employees who have special needs and sometimes need support. Ursula Deschka: "We also have a lot of colleagues who look after someone in their environment. For example their children, their partner with a disability. That is also very demanding.

Here in Germany, we have over ten million people with disabilities. That is 13 percent of the population. And only four percent were born with a handicap. So the issue is very important. It can affect anyone.  

Reduce reservations

Therefore, it would be good if all people were considered when making decisions. This is called inclusion. It can also start on a small scale: Simple texts, for example - easy to read, no foreign words, no barriers. Another goal of the new network: "We reduce reservations or fears about how to address affected colleagues, how to deal with them. It is therefore not only about consideration but also about the courage to simply address questions about the topic.

Everyone who is interested should become involved in the new network. Being different together - that is perfectly normal.

Article by Nicola Putz and Benjamin Esche.

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