Attitudes and behaviour of employers to recruiting persons with disabilities: Attitudes et comportement des employeurs à l’égard du recrutement de personnes en situation de handicap

Thomas Bredgaard, Julia Salado-Rasmussen

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftsartikelForskningpeer review


Despite more than two decades of strategies and policies to promote equal employment opportunities and avoid discrimination against persons with disabilities, major employment and participation gaps still remain. Persons with disabilities have significantly lower employment rates, and higher inactivity and unemployment rates than persons without disabilities. If they do work, they are less likely to be in full-time employment and more likely to be in subsidised or supported employment. In terms of income, persons with disabilities have lower relative income levels and a higher likelihood of living in poverty (OECD, 2010, WHO, 2011, European Commission, 2017). Employers are crucial in determining the position on the labour market of persons with disabilities. They decide how to post vacancies, whom to invite for interviews, which candidates to recruit and which work and wage conditions to offer employees (Bills, Di Stasio, & Gërxhani, 2017). Each of these decisions could either favour or disfavour persons with disabilities. Despite the societal importance of these decisions, we know surprisingly little about how and why companies make different decisions regarding persons with disabilities (Karpur et al., 2014, Bruyére, 2016; Bredgaard, 2018). In this article, we propose a new analytical framework that distinguishes between the attitudes and behaviour of employers towards the recruitment of persons with disabilities. This allows us to identify four different types of employers: (1) the committed employer (positive attitudes and positive behaviour), (2) the dismissive employer (negative attitudes and negative behaviour), (3) the sceptical employer (negative attitudes and positive behaviour) and (4) the passive employer (positive attitudes and negative behaviour). We apply the typology to a survey on recruitment of persons with mobility impairments in Denmark. In the next section, we review the literature on employer attitudes and behaviour towards the recruitment of persons with disabilities. In the third section, we present the typology for measuring employer attitudes and behaviour. The fourth section describes the Danish case and the data of the study. The fifth section analyses the results of the employer survey. In the last section, we present our conclusions on the empirical findings and discuss the applicability of the employer typology
Udgave nummer1
Sider (fra-til)61-70
Antal sider10
StatusUdgivet - jan. 2021


  • Socialt arbejde og sociale forhold