Hachette UK has become the first publisher to win a British Dyslexia Association (BDA) Smart Award, in recognition of its efforts to promote good practice for supporting the needs of dyslexic and neurodiverse individuals.
Over the last year, Hachette UK has undertaken steps to ensure that dyslexic employees and customers are better supported, in addition to raising awareness and understanding. This includes creating the first set of guidelines for producing dyslexia-friendly texts and workplaces, which was written by Hachette UK’s Disability and Representation Network, the Accessibility Network, and Jessica Kingsley Publishers, in consultation with the British Dyslexia Association.
Members of the Accessibility Network have also undertaken ‘Specific Learning Difficulties and Performance in the Workplace’ training and have more recently taken part in a panel on ‘Measuring Communication Skills in Exams for Dyslexic Students’.
Cecilia Rushton, co-chair of Hachette UK’s Accessibility Network, commented: “We are delighted to be the first publisher to win the British Dyslexia Association Smart award! Thank you to the British Dyslexia Association for their support, and to our colleagues at Jessica Kingsley Publishers, who have worked together to make Hachette UK a more dyslexia-friendly business.
“We look forward to growing our relationship with the British Dyslexia Association as we continue to improve awareness of neurodiversity in the workplace. The award is a big step forward in meeting Hachette UK’s commitment to be the publisher and employer of choice for all.”
Hachette UK has also set up a group-wide Neurodiversity and Inclusion Working Group, which aims to raise awareness and support for individuals with neurodiverse identities, both internally and externally. Hachette UK’s Accessibility network will continue to work with the British Dyslexia Association as part of its efforts to recognise the difference and the diversity of individuals, which forms part of a wider diversity and inclusion programme at Hachette UK, otherwise known as Changing the Story.