In November 2011 the company’s CEO, Mike Plaxton, accepted an award on behalf of the company from Santi Prompat, Minister of Social Development & Human Security, for their contribution towards people with disabilities.
It was worth the two years of hard work.
On accepting the award, Mike said he did so on behalf of the almost two million people who are living with a disability in Thailand.
Eight young people with varying disabilities are now working at the company’s Bangkapi headquarters, the majority of whom are graduates of the Redemptorist Vocational School for People with Disabilities in Pattaya.
The graduates are employed, not because of their disabilities, there is little pressure to employ a person with a disability, but because the company wanted to open their application to all sectors of society.
Most people living with a disability do not want charity. Nor do they want to be pitied or employed just because the company wants to be seen to be ‘doing the right thing’.
A graduate with a qualification does not want to be employed in work that no one else wants to do. Instead they want to be treated fairly, as individuals, and be allowed to prove to a new employer that they are just as worthy of a position as the person sitting at the desk next to them.
A graduating student thanks the teaching staff at the school.
A person with a disability wants to show that the skills and abilities they have gained are beneficial to a company, and their disability should not be a barrier which bars them from gaining suitable employment.
Each year the first Saturday in December sees the graduation ceremony for the successful students at the Vocational School in Pattaya.
For two years the students have studied a variety of courses, electronic repair, English and computers, and they gained not just new skills but the confidence to go into the workforce as equals.
If a large multi-national company such as Krungthai-AXA Life has benefited from such an initiative, then other companies could also gain valuable human assets by opening their recruitment processes to all sectors of society in its appointment of new employees.
Joining the workforce as equals.