Predictors of Employer-Sponsored Disability Accommodation Requesting in the Workplace
Keywords:Disability, Workplace accommodation, Employer-sponsored disability accommodation, Theory of Planned Behaviour
Employer-sponsored disability accommodation is contingent upon employees being willing to request such accommodation. This paper examines individual, organizational, and institutional predictors of accommodation requests among adult workers with disabilities using data collected from 5,418 respondents to a Statistics Canada post-census survey. The Theory of Planned Behavior provides a frame of reference to develop a series of hypotheses about how each type of predictor influences accommodation requests. One key finding is that different predictors are significant for each category of accommodation. Another important finding is that individual variables directly related to disability accounted for greater variance in requesting than other aspects of personal identity, organizational factors or institutional considerations. There was some evidence of decision-making based on attitudes, specifically fear of stigmatization. However, the data suggest that norms in the form of industry and occupation-specific logics are also salient influencers. Meanwhile institutional forces meant to act as behavioral controls, such as legislation and union protection, do not seem to have the intended influence on accommodation requesting. This suggests that other forms of intervention, such as community education, may be required to encourage the requesting of needed workplace accommodation.
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