Supporting Disadvantaged Groups: Open Doors Project

Founded by Diageo, the Open Doors Project is a new group committed to working together to increase access to the labour market for marginalised groups by providing high-quality work experience placements, employability training, or other structured supports, to give individuals the experience, skills and confidence to find a job.

Mei Lin Yap speaking at Open Doors launch 2018 | Cpl

The initiative will focus on three key disadvantaged groups:

  • Refugee, asylum seekers and non-native English speakers
  • Young people under 25 with educational barriers
  • People with living with mental ill health or sensory, intellectual or physical disability

The new group will work with these groups and also commit to engaging companies and employers to support access to employment for marginalised groups, all the while helping to grow a more diverse and inclusive workforce and recruit individuals with a fresh and different approach to solving problems at work.

Why Cpl are involved with the Open Doors Initiative

Cpl is proud to be a member of the Open Door Project and support those in our community who are struggling. Diverse talent is essential to creating effective solutions and process for our people, our clients and our candidates and we’re proud to have a broad range of employees, who each come from different backgrounds and share a unique perspective.

We firmly believe that a disability, mental, physical or otherwise, can be a strength rather than a barrier. In a recent Diversity and Inclusion survey, 10% of our employees indicated they have a disability. We have implemented training, partnerships with disability groups and inclusive hiring methods to ensure an equal and accessible work environment for all.

We also have strong relationships with minority and educational groups across Ireland including Employment for People from Immigrant Communities, Junior Achievement and Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disability.

Speaking about Cpl’s partnership with the Open Doors Initiative, Cpl CEO Anne Hearty said…”Our people are passionate about giving back to those less fortunate in society and encouraging inclusivity in the workplace. Open Doors’ vision to open opportunities to those who may currently be marginalised from employment is an important one, especially in a time of full employment.” 

Mei Lin Yap speaking at Open Doors launch 2018 | Cpl

To launch the initiative Cpl employee Mei Lin spoke in front of the Taoiseach on Thursday September 27th about what it’s like try and find a job as a person with a disability. Mei Lin’s powerful speech highlighted the need for companies to proactively commit to giving disadvantaged groups an opportunity.

The number of people living with a disability in Ireland is 643,131 (13.5% of the population). 130, 067 are at work (6.5% of the workforce). Among those aged 25-34, almost half (47.8%) were at work whereas by age 55 to 64 only 25% of those living with a disability were at work. This is just one of the urgent issues the Open Door project has pledged to improve.

If you or your business are interested in learning more about the Open Door project please Contact Liam Reid (liam.reid@diageo.com) or Jeanne McDonagh (jeanne.mcdonagh@diageo.com).