For tasks like wringing a towel dry, applying labels on products, and sorting vegetables, you might find them extremely easy, but they can in fact be huge obstacles for people with disabilities. Many companies and government organizations with disabled employees are trying to find ways to streamline their work environments to help them become independent and contribute to society. It can be something about the work system, or physical assistive devices. Job re-design is now an important issue in work efficiency.
(Group picture of Deputy Director-General Chenyang Shih of Workforce Development Agency and winners of the 15th Golden Wingspan Award and the 5th Job Re-design Creative Competition. )
On October 12, the 15th Golden Wingspan Award and the 5th Job Re-design Creative Competition held by the Ministry of Labor took place at the GIS MOTC Convention Center. Forty-eight outstanding organizations and twenty-three winning teams of the Job Re-design Creative Competition were awarded for their contribution in helping people find jobs and have stable income.
Due to a recent accident, Deputy Director-General Chenyang Shih of Workforce Development Agency was in a wheelchair herself as well. She mentioned in her speech: “It is difficult just to put my feet on the floor before going to work.” She sincerely thanked all the participants for their efforts in helping people with disabilities, and asked companies to try to create more job opportunities for people with disabilities and senior job seekers.
(Submissions this year were classified into the four groups of Sensory Disability Design, Movement Disability Design, Cognitive Learning Disability Design, and Middle and Old Age Design.)
These 48 outstanding organizations won because they either have a certain number of disabled employees, or have created friendly work environments and incentive measures for their disabled employees. Tong Kwang Valve Industrial Co., Ltd. won for 5 consecutive years for helping their disabled employees fit in at work. They do it because they believe in giving back to society. Senior Manager Donghui Xu (許棟輝) said that his job title is what some people refer to as “grease monkey,” and he believes that his disabled co-workers can be just as productive. “As long as you are put in the right place, you can be an important cog in the wheel.”
The theme of the 5th Job Re-design Creative Competition was “Give Me Five, Employment High, Good to Have You.” In order to meet different user demands, submissions this year were classified according to their target users, into Sensory Disability Design, Movement Disability Design, Cognitive Learning Disability Design, and Middle and Old Age Design. The first prize was NT$200,000. The content of design includes work environment streamlining, equipment or device streamlining, assistive devices for employment, and streamlining working conditions or regulations. Assessment criteria included the compatibility and coverage between the design and the theme, the innovation and presentability of the presentation, and the feasibility of the execution, promotion and mass production.
The evaluation committee said that this year had the most and best submissions, which is why there was no vacancy in any place. Many submissions have collaborated with local industries, namely agricultural product processing, handmade art and hotels. It helps in improving both the sustainability of businesses and personal performance.
(Packing a bar of soap is easy to most people, but can be an obstacle for people with disabilities. )
Acceptance speaker Dr. Russ Kan is a visually impaired person himself. He currently works at Ideas Network, Institute for Information Industry. His submission is “Mobility In a Box,” which helps seniors and people with visual impairment get used to their work environments within a short time. Dr. Kan also reminded us that many people get injured from accidents, and during their recovery, they might temporarily need assistive devices that disabled people use. Therefore these products are important to everybody. They can help people get back on their feet.
(You can easily decorate jars of different shapes into beautiful products with this holder. )
Among all the winners in the Middle and Old Age Design group, China Motor Corporation is the biggest winner of them all. For years, they have been trying to improve working conditions, especially on fatigue from heavy lifting, leakproofness of oil pipe pads, labor-saving design of handling storage racks, and the streamlining of squatting tasks. Not only do they reduce occupational injuries, but also increase work efficiency. Therefore the evaluation committee advised China Motor Corporation to promote their products to other industries as well, so that even more people can benefit from them.