At RFPIO, we believe that if you aren’t actively inclusive, you will be unintentionally exclusive.
According to the most recent census data, there are over 5 million people who are deaf or hearing impaired living in India — and yet only 1,500 people of hearing know Indian Sign Language (ISL).
At the same time, the number of deaf and hearing-impaired people entering the workforce is expected to increase by 50% over the next five years.
When we saw these statistics… we decided we needed to do something to create an inclusive and welcoming environment for the deaf community.
The RFPIO India team attended a virtual sign language workshop, taking our first company-wide step towards inclusivity
In 2015, K Murali, who is hearing impaired, quit his clerical job to found a school that empowers the deaf and hearing population through education. Today, the school has nearly 50 students and five teachers, giving vocational training to deaf students in skills like website design.
In addition to empowering the deaf community through education, the organization also teaches Indian Sign Language to people with hearing, with the mission of creating a more inclusive society.
On July 3, we invited Sneha Murali (K Murali’s daughter) to host a virtual sign language workshop with the RFPIO India team. We invited all 93 members of the India team to join the 2-hour workshop, where Sneha gave an intro lesson, equipping the India team with the basic tools they’ll need to start communicating in Indian Sign Language.
We’re creating an inclusive environment, because we know we’re better together
The Indian Sign Language workshop is just a small part of RFPIO’s initiatives in creating a more inclusive community.
We believe that technology has the potential to create a more inclusive future—and we would like to be part of it.
Because we know that people work best when we’re working together—we’re happier, funnier, and smarter when we’re together. That’s why we’re committed to bringing everyone together. We know that we’re better together.
If you’d like to do more research on how to create an inclusive and welcoming community for people with disabilities in the tech industry, here are some excellent resources that can get you started:
- Learning from the Deaf Community, by Brianne Huntsman
- 5 Things Everyone Should Know about People With Disabilities, by Andrew Pulrang
- Advocating For A More Inclusive World, by KR Liu