Building Abilities: BCITO Launches New Resource to Boost Deaf Participation in Construction

Building Abilities: BCITO Launches New Resource to Boost Deaf Participation in Construction

To coincide with New Zealand Sign Language Week (May 6-12), BCITO has launched a new website aimed at demonstrating the opportunities for Deaf New Zealanders in the construction industry.

The Building Abilities site features stories of Kiwis who have succeeded in BCITO apprenticeships and gone on to careers in the building trades, alongside resources from BCITO and Deaf Aotearoa to help learners and employers.

There are more than 4,500 Deaf users of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL), and around 23,000 New Zealanders across the country use it regularly. However, lack of awareness about Deaf people’s abilities remains a significant barrier to work.

“Sometimes employers have no experience or knowledge of Deaf people and/or NZSL, so they are hesitant. Yet more often than not, Deaf people begin a job, and the employer realises that the Deaf individual is more than capable of doing the same work as their hearing workmates,” says Lachlan Keating, Chief Executive of Deaf Aotearoa.

While exact figures around the number of Deaf people who are unemployed or underemployed are unknown, the employment rate for all New Zealanders with disabilities is half that of the general population. This includes members of the Deaf community. […]

Click here to read more at the original web page at bcito.org.nz

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