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Amazon Singapore commits to tripling hires for persons with disabilities

By Liu Hongzuo - on 9 Feb 2023, 1:58pm

Amazon Singapore commits to tripling hires for persons with disabilities

From left to right: (Bottom row) Ms. Ku Geok Boon, CEO of SG Enable, Mr. Steve Walter, VP, People Experiences and Technology APAC MENA LATAM, Amazon, Mr. Eric Chua, Senior Parliamentary Secretary, Social and Family Development, Ms. Gan Siow Huang, Minister of State, Manpower, Singapore.

Amazon’s Operations facilities in Singapore today (9 February 2023) signed a Memorandum of Understanding with SG Enable, with a view to create more equal career opportunities for persons with disabilities in Singapore.

The commitment to inclusivity will enable Amazon to hire 15% of its workforce from diverse cohorts of persons with disabilities over the next three years, according to its official statement.

The partnership also includes providing logistics-training courses co-developed with SG Enable’s Enabling Academy, in training persons with disabilities with skills and career-progressive opportunities within the logistics industry. 

Amazon also provides further mentorship and internship opportunities to students with disabilities, via SG Enable’s RISE mentorship and Institute of Higher Learning Internship programmes. 

From L to R: Mr. Manuel Berbuer, Mr. Muhammad Faezin Bin Mohamed Yasin, Ms. Gan Siow Huang, Ms. Ku Geok Boon, Mr. Steve Walter, Ms. Yasserah Binte Mohamed Yasni, Mr. Eric Chua, Ms. Siti Nasidha Binte Hazaman.

Amazon added that the company had onboarded differently-abled associates since July 2022, using tailored training programmes, job coaches, and occupational therapists garnered via SG Enable’s network of specialists. Accessibility changes at Amazon’s workplace include the addition of emergency buzzers with vibrations, lights for better visual cues, reinforcing gloves that vibrate to give packing cues, and safety mirrors. 

“Working at Amazon provided me with the opportunity to learn about operations and logistics. Working here has also taught me how to pick items for customers on time. The work has helped me to gain some income as I had a difficult time searching for a suitable job,” said Steven Chong, 48, an associate at Amazon Fulfillment Centre with DHH (deaf, or hear of hearing).

The MoU signing was witnessed by Ms Gan Siow Huang, Minister of State for Manpower, Singapore.

Earlier last month, Amazon saw its largest job cull in its history, with more than 18,000 employees affected (1% of its global workforce). This is amidst an ongoing downturn in the technology sector, with thousands of big, small, and medium firms retrenching its workforce from late 2022 till today (tracker here).

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