More than half (54 per cent) of workers with disabilities don’t feel enabled by their employer to “reach their full potential in the workplace,” according to a survey from George Brown College.

The survey, which polled more than 900 Canadian workers with disabilities, found just a third (32 per cent) said their employer was very helpful and supportive. Among respondents who questioned the type of support they received, 34 per cent said they saw their managers as “somewhat helpful and supportive,” while one in five (20 per cent) said their organization was “not at all” helpful.

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It also found respondents lacking support from their colleagues and employer were 62 per cent less likely to have a positive attitude toward their disability than those feeling fully supported at the workplace. Among those who said they feel their employment is affected by their disability, a fifth (20 per cent) said their compensation was “unacceptable and should be improved a lot,” while 24 per cent think it could be somewhat improved.

Additionally, respondents said they face unique struggles at the workplace, citing perceptual (46 per cent) and physical (44 per cent) barriers. Nearly a quarter said the most common physical barriers impacting them in the workplace are design and accessibility (22 per cent) and individual limitations (22 per cent).

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Two-thirds (67 per cent) of respondents agreed that workers with disabilities should receive equal opportunities in the workplace, even if it requires additional investment in resources from employers to help and support these workers. As well, two-fifths (44 per cent) agreed there’s an unconscious bias against people with disabilities in the workplace.

Roughly a third (32 per cent) said they don’t think Canadian companies are doing enough to support the needs of people with disabilities in the workplace. “Workers with disabilities want their employers and colleagues to support them in being as productive and valuable to the organization as possible,” the report said.

Read: New federal initiative aiming to increase employment rate of persons with disabilities