The Enel Group’s US-based company, Enel North America today announced it has been recognized in the 2021 Disability Equality Indexâ (DEI) as a best place to work for disability inclusion. Celebrated by business leaders and disability advocates alike, the Disability Equality Index, a joint initiative of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and Disability:IN, advances the best practices that should be expected of all large employers. Of the 319 businesses to qualify in 2021 with scores of 80 or above, Enel is one of only fifteen from the energy industry to be included on this prestigious list.
“Diversity and inclusion are among the parameters by which we measure ourselves at Enel,” said Enrico Viale, Head of Enel North America. “Inclusion in the Disability Equality Index list is a recognition of our continued commitment to disability inclusion and equality, as well as broader social issues. Fostering diversity and inclusion provides companies with a key opportunity to innovate, while improving the workplace environment for all.”
In 2021, following the global pandemic, the Disability Equality Index was modernized to add recognition of innovative technology to advance digital and remote accessibility; mental wellness benefits; services for employees with hearing loss, and flexible work options. Enel has many important disability initiatives underway, including:
- Installing smart sensors and proximity devices for machinery,
- Assisting colleagues with impaired mobility with work-related travel,
- Redesigning office common areas to improve accessibility for all,
- Incorporating voice recognition and speech synthesis technologies to make communication easier for colleagues of all hearing abilities,
- Increasing availability of audio descriptions for the blind and visually impaired,
- Providing subtitles and sign language interpreting as part of the work environment,
- And designing activities to foster the professional development of all employees.
Enel is committed to enhancing and expanding actions regarding digital accessibility, autonomy, mobility, development and employability of people with disabilities. In 2019, the company joined the “Valuable 500”, a global movement calling for the participation of 500 private companies aimed at unlocking the business, social and economic value of people living with disabilities across the world.
Enel also extends disability initiatives beyond its employee base, and directly into its business actions through the company’s innovation and sustainability strategy and is committed to enhancing and expanding actions regarding digital accessibility, autonomy, mobility, development and employability of people with disabilities. For example, in January 2020, Enel X, the advanced energy services arm of Enel, introduced JuiceAbility, a charging device for electric wheelchair batteries that uses the same infrastructure available for the company electric vehicle chargers. And in November 2020, through Enel’s Value for Disability strategic plan, the company launched a global "Innovability Challenge" seeking tailored approaches to improve the way in which people living with disability can move around public or private buildings, contributing to sustainable development goals (SDGs) to transform the world: SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, SDG 10: Reduced Inequality, SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities.
“The Disability Equality Index shines a spotlight on companies that believe they have a stake in creating a more equitable society for people with disabilities. It is a conduit for our work championing disability rights for the 60 million Americans with disabilities and knocking down barriers to employment, technology and healthcare, and we're thrilled to see the progress being made today,” said Maria Town, President and CEO of AAPD.