Equality for people with disabilities in the workplace: an overview of the emergence of disability as a human rights issue

  • C. Ngwena University of the Free State, South Africa


In essence, the article explores the development of disability as a human rights issue with a particular focus on equality in the workplace. It draws from developments that have been taking place at the international plane as well as in other jurisdictions. Throughout, the article seeks to ultimately relate disability to the South African workplace. It is submitted that human rights jurisprudence has been slow in harnessing equality as a normative tool for overcoming prejudice and indifference in the workplace environment. However, in the last two decades or so, there has been a paradigm shift, with disability emerging as a human rights issue at international and domestic levels. The growing recognition of the concept of reasonable accommodation as a mechanism for realising equality for people with disabilities in the workplace, is one of the most promising signs of a new approach to disability.


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