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How Deaf Job Seekers Can Spot if an Organization is Clueless About Hiring Deaf People In a Job Ad

Updated: Jul 15, 2018

Generally, most job seekers know that organizations aren't legally allowed to discriminate against someone based on race, color, religion, sex national origin, age (50 or older), disability or genetic information. As a deaf or hard of hearing job seeker, the question is…how can you readily identify an inclusive employer by just reading the job ad? Here are a few things to look for:

Look for the equal opportunity statement

Most job ad or description include this statement, so this in itself, does not necessarily help you to determine the organizations’ commitment to hiring a diverse workforce to include deaf and hard of hearing people. Nonetheless, this may show that the organization or company are taking the extra step of creating the equal opportunity statement in their own words which may signal to you the genuine search for such candidates.

Where did you see the job ad?

This is a huge indicator. If you see the organization or company advertising on niche job boards, particularly one specifically for deaf and hard of hearing job seekers, this should be a big sign that they are open to hiring a deaf or hard of hearing individuals.

Do the employers speak the same language?

One sign that the organization or company is knowledgeable about recruiting and hiring from the Deaf Community is the words used in their job ads or descriptions. Look for keywords; deaf and hard of hearing vs. hearing impaired, for example. In addition, the clueless employers use “TTY” or “TDD” in the job ad even if these devices have been largely obsolete in the Deaf Community for more than 15 years now. Look for another outdated language in the job ad to give you some clues about the employers’ hiring practices of deaf and hard of hearing people.

Is the organization or company prepared or able to accommodate a deaf employee?

Reasonable accommodation has to be arranged upon request. Does the job ad mention this as an option? This is an important question that you want to look out for. If the organization or company appeared to be flabbergasted when you ask for an American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter, this a dead giveaway that the organization is clueless about working with a deaf or hard of hearing person even if it is a deaf-related job.

Although it may not be easy to really tell if an organization or a company has a clue about hiring a deaf or hard of hearing person simply based upon reading the job ad or description; however, a job ad could be the first impression you get about the organization's diversity practices.

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