For the first time ever, TDS Telecommunications LLC (TDS®) has received a top score of 100 for the Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion on the Disability Equality Index (DEI).
“TDS continues to raise awareness of how diversity impacts our culture, so it’s an honor for TDS to be named one of the Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion,” said TDS’ Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Partner Mindy Begenat. “TDS and the Achieving a Better Life/Work Environment (ABLE) Associate Resource Group are continuously working to make sure that people with disabilities are represented and heard at all levels of our company.”
In the last year, TDS associates raised awareness about mental wellness and health and encouraged associates to learn more about different interview styles of people on the autism spectrum, and about associates who are living with invisible disabilities. A team of TDS associates also organized a press conference to educate the public on the new 3-digit 988 hotline that routes callers to the new national Suicide & Crisis Lifeline.
Globally, people with disabilities represent over one billion people. Disability is a natural part of the human experience, and it crosses lines of age, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status and religion.
“The DEI has definitely assisted TDS and our ABLE ARG with improving our disability inclusion culture,” said Begenat.
The DEI is a joint initiative between Disability:IN and the American Association for Persons with Disabilities (AAPD). It is the world’s most comprehensive benchmarking tool for Fortune 1000 companies and an objective assessment of their disability inclusion policies and practices.
By taking the DEI, companies can demonstrate their commitment to disability inclusion and equality, as well as broader social issues. In its ninth year, the DEI continues to see an increase in participation by businesses.
“Businesses have the power to drive the global advancement of disability inclusion, and we’re thrilled to see more companies than ever leverage the Disability Equality Index to measure their progress. We recognize these top-scoring companies as a ‘Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion’ for their passion and efforts to lead the way in creating greater equity for people with disabilities in the workplace, marketplace, and supply chain,” said President and CEO Jill Houghton, Disability:IN.
Each year, the DEI takes about 40 hours to complete. It is modeled off the Corporate Equality Index that highlights LGBTQ-inclusive workplace policies.
TDS is pleased to join UScellular in the DEI rankings, which earned a score of 100 for the fourth year in a row. To view the 2023 Corporate Disability Equality Index, click here.
The Disability Equality Index (DEI) is a comprehensive benchmarking tool that helps companies build a roadmap of measurable, tangible actions that they can take to achieve disability inclusion and equality. Each company receives a score, on a scale of zero (0) to 100, with those earning 80 and above recognized as a “Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion.”
The DEI is a joint initiative of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), the nation’s largest disability rights organization, and Disability:IN, the global business disability inclusion network, to collectively advance the inclusion of people with disabilities. The organizations are complementary and bring unique strengths that make the project relevant and credible to corporations and the disability community. The tool was developed by the DEI Advisory Committee, a diverse group of business leaders, policy experts, and disability advocates. Learn more at: www.DisabilityEqualityIndex.org.
About the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD)
AAPD is a convener, connector, and catalyst for change, increasing the political and economic power for people with disabilities. As a national cross-disability rights organization AAPD advocates for full civil rights for the 60+ million Americans with disabilities. Learn more at: www.aapd.com.
Disability:IN is a global organization driving disability inclusion and equality in business. More than 500 corporations partner with Disability:IN to create long-term business and social impact through the world’s most comprehensive disability inclusion benchmarking and reporting tool, the Disability Equality Index (DEI); best-in-class conferences and programs; expert counsel and engagement; and public policy leadership. Join us at disabilityin.org/AreYouIN #AreYouIN, #DEI23, #BestPlaceToWork.