Walgreens, Meijer among top-ranking DEI retailers

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Walgreens, Meijer among top-ranking DEI retailers

By Deena M. Amato-McCoy - 09/27/2018
Only four retailers received a perfect score on the Disability Equality Index (DEI), a ranking that recognizes outstanding disability inclusion efforts.

CVS Health, Meijer, Walgreens and Walmart all earned a top score of 100% on the DEI, a milestone that also earned each company the honor of being named a “Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion.” (This honor is reserved for companies that achieve a top score.) This year’s index was based on efforts across 145 companies.

The DEI is a joint initiative between the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and the Disability:IN, a comprehensive benchmarking tool for disability inclusion. The Index measures key performance indicators across organizational culture, leadership, accessibility, employment, community engagement, support services and supplier diversity.

Unlike the other recognized retailers, Meijer is the only family-owned, regional chain to earn the honor. The Grand Rapids, Michigan-based retailer first participated in the study in 2017, earning a score of 90%.

In addition to creating an environment that rewards its team members for fostering programs that promote inclusivity, in 2017, the company launched a new team member resource group called Meijer Disability Awareness & Advocacy Group (mDAAG). Meijer also has extended its disability accommodations policy to include job candidates, and expanded its team member training curriculum by integrating disability into the spectrum of diversity awareness. Meijer also continues to expand its involvement in state vocational rehabilitation programs.

“We are absolutely thrilled to not only achieve a top score on the DEI, but to be named as a Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion — a monumental achievement for our organization,” said Meijer senior VP of human resources Michael Rotelle. “I am very proud of the progress Meijer team members have made over the years to create more inclusivity and opportunities for team members with disabilities. We are humbled to be among so many fine companies that share our devotion to inclusion.”