On 16 February 2021, the Employment for All Awards were formally delivered to the winners of the competition launched last year. The award ceremony, which was planned to take place during the 2020 Employment Conference of EASPD in Paris, had been postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the winners had been announced already in May 2020, they had not received their awards until now.
An occasion to host the award ceremony presented itself at the Policy Webinar on the role of the EU on ensuring inclusive labour markets. The event was organised by the Inclusive Labour Market Alliance, of which EASPD is part.
Dr. Fabrizio Fea, the Chair of the EASPD Member Forum on Employment, opened the award ceremony by referring to the pandemic: “Today, more than ever before, it is important to identify and recognize valid and concrete practices supporting work with dignity for persons with disabilities”.
The award in the category ‘Service provider’ was delivered to Vorarlberg, Austria-based Dafür Unternehmens–und Personalberatung GmbH. The organisation offers support in finding and sustaining paid, meaningful and productive employment through the focus on strengths, a strong network and considering both the employer’s and the job seeker’s perspective. Simon Öhe, who received the award on behalf of Dafür, thanked the Social Service Ministry of Austria for funding the services. He also thanked all the job coaches who have been working successfully for many years in Austria. The award to Dafür was delivered by Member of the European Parliament Katrin Langensiepen.
The award in the category ‘Employer’ was given to Barcelona, Spain-based inclusive company Grupo Sifu. The entreprise employs more than 4.500 people, of which 89% have some type of disability and 31% are considered persons with high support needs. Cristian Rovira, who accepted the award on behalf of Sifu, stated, “We are just an example of over 8,000 inclusive enterprises that exist in Europe. Inclusive entreprises are a very important tool for employment of persons with disabilities, especially for people with high support needs”. The award to Dafür was delivered by Member of the European Parliament José Gusmão.
EASPD and its partner LADAPT wish to thank all the participants who submitted their practices for the Employment for All Award. You can find out more about these inspiring practices in the Employment for All Awards Booklet.