Guides to Inclusive Communication

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Guides to Inclusive Communication

Below is a collection of articles that discuss best practices and the importance of diversity and inclusion across many types of communications both in the workplace but also on a personal level. Additionally, some tangential resource articles and paywalled sources have been included as they offer support to the findings as presented.


  • Published by the National Association of County and City Health Officials (NACCHO)
  • In order to provide guidance for county and city health officials, his guide helps to “promote the highest level of inclusion and engagement of people with disabilities within all local health department (LHD) programs.” Suggested within the guide are tips covering the following topics:
    • Consult & Engage Local Disability Community
    • Identify Community Resources
    • Practice Respectful, People-First Language
    • Use Multimodal Communication
    • Share Information on Current & Future Efforts
  • Published by Disability:IN, a leading nonprofit resource for business disability inclusion.
  • This is a collated sample of best practices implemented by companies who have received recognition as being one of the ‘Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion’.
  • From the New York-based non-profit organization, Understood, this article (presented in both English and Spanish) provides etiquette tips to help assist in better communicating with employees who have disabilities.
  • The number one tip is to “focus on the person, not the disability.”
  • Published by Change Conversations, a “collaborative blog written by a group of individuals employed by, or interning with, Marketing Partners, Inc.”
  • This article is presented as a guide to assessing the inclusivity practices in the workplace and to evaluate the level of unconscious bias that might be present, how to address, and how to correct it. The “goal is to build an inclusive, welcoming community, and the first step toward that goal is an awareness of any bias in our daily language. The values of diversity, inclusion and equity are inextricably linked to social justice.”
  • This article from Sustainable Brands discusses the importance of transparency and setting aspirational goals in the workplace to support both diversity and inclusion.
  •, this article looks at the importance of diversity and inclusion in the recruiting process and provides a look into the benefits as well as the challenges surrounding a diverse workplace.
  • The Department of Aging and Disability Services for the state of Connecticut, provides best practices and a roadmap for preparing virtual communications in a post-Covid world for people with disabilities.
  • Published by Employee Benefit News (EBN), this article reviews best practices for working with neurodiverse employees in the workforce. Chiefly among the data is the “need to develop strategies to best accommodate this talent pool and create a safe and inclusive workplace in which to thrive. Part of this entails having an environment that encourages open and clear communication for all team members to connect with leaders, colleagues and each other.”
  • This case study, prepared by Sarah McMullen a disability consultant, looks at the success of Pfizer’s inclusivity practices. Interview highlights with a Pfizer employee include, “Pfizer has provided a really welcoming work environment in terms of providing any resources or support needed so I can work comfortably. Mostly having access to any accommodations that I may need to perform my work. Whether it's getting special setup for my workspace or be able to work remotely on days when it's a challenge for me to come into the office. Everyone here makes me feel comfortable to ask for any type of special accommodations that I might need. Also, Pfizer is really good at making any type of work gathering and events accessible for me. This has never been a concern.”
  • On the Microsoft website, the company provides their own case study on the importance of hiring employees with disabilities as well as the features within Microsoft products which assist the workers in performing tasks.
  • This document is presented by the US Department of Labor and outlines detailed resources, tips, and guides for businesses to refer to when planning to better prepare an inclusive workplace.
  • From accounting giant, ADP, this guide provides a framework for businesses to design their inclusivity practices. Within the guide, the importance of “developing anything from internal policies to new products to client-facing marketing campaigns, (to get) input from employees and clients with disabilities helps ensure that you are addressing their needs rather than operating on assumptions.”
  • Published by Interact, this in-depth article takes a look at multiple aspects at integrating a successful workplace strategy for both diversity and inclusion. Some of these include: “don’t make assumptions: ask staff how they identify themselves, be mindful of using your own reference group, and the importance of recognizing the need for inclusivity beyond the written word.”


  • Published by the University of Chicago this document provides guides and assistance for best practices in communicating with deaf and hard of hearing learners at events, virtually, and in the classrooms.
  • In this listicle presented by Inclusive City Maker, some of the tips include: to smile, act naturally, ensuring not to infantilize your conversation partner, and patience.
  • Published by Deque, under the category of Accessibility Best Practices, this article provides insight on how companies can and should communicate with their customers. The five most important factors are “respect, displaying a welcoming attitude, courtesy, patience, and a desire to help.”
  • Published by MHS Health Wisconsin, this handout provides tips and strategies sto best communicate with those with disabilities ranging from mobility, vision and/or hearing loss, speech difficulties, and cognitive issues.


  • Published by McKinsey, “reinforces the link between diversity and company financial performance—and suggests how organizations can craft better inclusion strategies for a competitive edge.”
  • Published by Deloitte Insights, the article looks like “​increasing the number of female supply chain professionals is not only a proven growth strategy, it offers a competitive advantage. Here’s how supply chain leaders can help bridge the skills shortage with more women, expand hiring and retention, and ultimately help to unleash women’s still untapped potential—and why they should.”
  • This article, while from the UK, provides important insight surrounding the difficulties in “complying with preventative measures, like social distancing, can be challenging, particularly for people who rely on carers” amongst the global Covid-19 pandemic.


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