Part of a Whole

My name is Nicolas Steenhout.
I speak, train, and consult about inclusion, accessibility and disability.

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Diversity and Inclusion podcasts found to be not accessible

A recent tweet directed people to a post about “22 podcasts to increase your awareness around diversity and inclusion”. I was not surprised to discover that less than 14% of these podcasts have transcripts. Diversity and inclusion (D&I) expert rarely include disabled folks. Most D&I experts are ableist and discriminatory towards the disability community.

About the post

The post found on Medium was tweeted by an organisation that builds comprehensive disability inclusion programs for global organizations, focusing on the workforce, workplace, and marketplace. This group claims to be specialists in inclusion for disabled folks. Yet they are promoting podcasts that are not accessible. How ironic is that?

Podcast transcripts

The Medium post does not provide links to the promoted podcasts! I found the podcasts’ website after a bit of searching. I then searched for transcripts for each of the 22 shows. I did not find many. It is possible that transcripts exist for some of the shows I identified as not having transcripts. But if I couldn’t find transcripts, they might as well not exist.

Out of 22 podcasts on diversity and inclusion, 19 have no transcripts. That means only 3 shows provide transcripts. That’s only 13.64% of the shows recommended by a disability advocacy group on the topic of diversity and inclusion are accessible. At the risk of repeating myself: How ironic is that?

Even the 2 shows hosted on NPR don’t appear to have transcripts. Wut?

Disability oriented shows

There are 3 shows that include the word “disability” in their description on the Medium post. Only one of these show has transcripts. The show is Divercity Podcast. I was going to link to their site. I won’t because the site has many accessibility issues and can’t easily be used by disabled folks. So, again… How ironic is that?

Diversity and inclusion must include disability

I routinely see content about diversity and inclusion. On Twitter, in the news, in clients’ websites. D&I is a hot topic growing hotter by the minute. And yet… Yet, once again, disability is forgotten.

Diversity without disability is no diversity at all. I wish diversity and inclusion experts got a handle on that.

What now?

I ask you – what can we do to turn this around? How can we ensure that disability advocacy organizations promote only accessible content? How can we reach out and educate diversity experts and get them to think and include disability in their thinking and their discourse?