December 3, 2021 – Today is International Day of Persons with Disabilities. It’s a day to remind all people about the importance of disability inclusion and how it’s an essential part to upholding human rights and sustainable development. Participation and leadership from people with disabilities not only allows inclusion of all people in our local communities, but an opportunity for all.
At Ahold Delhaize, the inclusion of people with disabilities is a priority. More importantly, it is vital be fully reflective of all communities. Therefore, many of our local brands have and are continuously working on several partnerships and initiatives while creating opportunities to support all associates and customers within local communities. Below are just some examples of how our brands are working towards achieving an inclusive workplace for all:
For Delhaize Serbia, the inclusion of people with disabilities is not only a strategic priority in its Diversity & Inclusion agenda, but it’s also their aspiration to be fully reflective of their marketplace. To achieve an inclusive workplace, it’s more than employment, it’s also about everyday activities. This year, Delhaize Serbia achieved the following in being a better inclusive workplace:
Delhaize Serbia’s journey doesn’t end here, it is continuously working towards a better and inclusive workplace for people with disabilities.
Giant Food has several partnerships and initiatives throughout the year to support associates and customers with disabilities. Below are some of Giant Food’s initiatives which they’re continuously working to expand:
Food Lion supports disability awareness by providing job opportunities and a sense of belonging to associates living with a disability. William Kidwell joined Food Lion a little more than two years ago as a cashier, through the Center for Independent Living, which provides employment assistance for individuals with disabilities. William became a triple amputee following a motorcycle accident in 1995 and he spent four months in the hospital. William shares why he feels he belongs at Food Lion.
“I’m part of the team. They count on me. When we need more people to work, I’m asked like everyone else. I run lane #7, the express lane. Customers know I’m going to be there. We focus on what I can do and that means a lot to me.”
“I feel accepted by everyone at my store. One example of acceptance is that even though I run the express lane, some customers with a basket full of groceries just want to check out with me. They know me and I know them. They want that personal experience. Managers jump into help so we can just keep the lane moving. It’s great to feel that connection and support.”
“At our store we love Shop & Earn. It feels great for me to teach customers about it. We show them how to use it on their phones and I can see their smiles when they see those savings. I love to help people like that.”
“I love my job and it began with Food Lion giving me a chance. Lots of other people would have looked at me and focused on what I couldn’t do because of my disabilities. Food Lion believed in me and told me I could do it. Leaders told me I’d be good out front. That gave me the confidence I needed to show everyone what I could do. We really have a good team. I love it, I do.