Zain has launched a new inclusion initiative.
Known as "We Able," the initiative aims to have Zain classified as inclusive for people who are differently abled by 2022.
According to the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for West Asia (ESCWA), the unemployment rate in the MENA region for people whoa re differently abled is as high as 86% for women and 66% for men.
Commenting on the new initiative, Zain group CEP and vice chair Bader Al-Kharafi said: “Zain’s influential role in society means we must maintain our pioneering outlook with respect to creating positive change in the workplace and in all other areas of our activities. We are proud to stand as an example for other corporates to follow and the implementation of the 'We Able' initiative reflects our commitment to develop and implement a sustainable [differently abled] inclusion program. We believe it is high time that the contributions that people [who are differently abled] are able to make in our workforces and in society in general be recognised, and we are pleased to have the opportunity to raise awareness in this area through our words and more importantly through our actions.”
Maryam Saif, chief diversity and inclusion officer at Zain, said: “We have reflected on this issue for some time and concluded that as an organisation we need to further develop and promote this area in the workplace. We are delighted to launch this initiative that builds on Zain’s diversity and inclusion achievements and activities.”
Saif continued: “We have spent the first two quarters of this year preparing for our approach. With collective research, feedback and advice, we are implementing our strategy, with an emphasis on the development of a framework that will guide the integration of people into our company policies and culture.”
Many countries across the MENA region have minimum quotas on the percentage of employees whoa re differently abled, and Zain is committed to fulfilling and exceeding current quotas as well as investing in the training and further development of affected individuals.