Deaf Unity announces the Deaf and Disability Careers Fair 2016

Published: May 7th, 2016

Deaf Unity prepares for the Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair 2016. 

Young deaf people at a Deaf Careers FairDeaf Unity and Bristol North West MP Charlotte Leslie have joined forces to host a Deaf and Disability Careers Fair.

The aim of this event is to build on Deaf Unity’s hugely successful Deaf Careers Fair 2014, which was nominated for the 2014 Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development People Development Award. 

The Deaf and Disability Careers Fair will be held on 9th September 2016 at the Greenway Community Centre in Southmead, Bristol. You can find out more about the event and how to get involved, here

Reaching Out To Deaf Communities and Other Disability Groups

The Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair 2016 is part of a series of specialist deaf regional careers fairs that Deaf Unity is hosting for deaf people across the UK. By working with a range of local partners who have an interest in deaf and disability issues, Deaf Unity wishes to reach out to deaf, hard of hearing, and disabled People outside of London and beyond.

Fundamentally, it’s part of major initiatives to address the chronic unemployment and underemployment of the deaf and disabled community in the UK. Extensive efforts have been made to develop good working relationships between employers within the Deaf and Hearing worlds. In addition to the standard range of stalls normally present at mainstream careers fairs, the Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair also includes a series of workshops addressing employment challenges, and provides helpful tips such as interviewing skills. Those workshops will inform the deaf, hard of hearing and disabled communities on such issues.

Leading On From The Success of the First Deaf Careers Fair

The first Deaf Careers Fair held in London 2014 linked more than 140 deaf and hard of hearing people with a range of equal opportunities employers. Participants benefited from a range of exciting speakers from the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities such as Paul Burstow MP, Terry Day, Manager of the GLA Diversity and Social Policy Unit, Tracey Abbots, from the Business Disability Forum, who talked about the role of disability and the business forum, Tracie Redshaw from Clarion about the Government’s Work Programme and Work Choice.

Stephen Isherwood, CEO of the Association of Graduate Recruiters attended the event, and talked about what employers really want from prospective staff.  Additionally, important information was shared by Jeff Brattan Wilson from the Royal Deaf Association regarding the Equality Act and how it applies to deaf people. The day was rounded off by a personal tale from Mark Nelson – a deaf entrepreneur from the hugely successful Remark, a deaf-run company.

Deaf Unity has enjoyed great success with its other recent projects, such as the 2013 Learners Conference and the 2014 Deaf Friendly Model United Nations Conference – in partnership with Oxford Model United Nations Society. Both have highlighted the great need to address the challenges deaf and disabled people face in an academic learning environment, and then moving into the world of employment. For example, many people with hearing difficulties and disabilities are lacking in accessible resources, important careers advice and relevant role models to help them move into employment.

A Unique Careers Opportunity for the Deaf Community

Many existing mainstream careers fairs do not provide an adequate range of communication support for deaf people to learn about their different industries of interest. Moreover, these fairs do not tackle issues specific to deaf or hard of hearing people, and don’t enable dialogue on examples of good practice. Deaf Unity’s Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair 2016 will bring unique support to the deaf community through workshops, talks and interactive activities. 

Bristol North West MP Charlotte Leslie said:

“I am thrilled to support this remarkable event which not only puts people directly in touch with employers but also addresses some of the obstacles which have traditionally been a barrier to deaf and disabled people finding work. We have previously run jobs fairs in Bristol North West which were very well attended and I am sure there will be a lot of interest in this.

“I constantly meet people who are desperate to work and who would be real assets to any company but sadly it is not always easy to persuade the employer so I hope we can both help jobseekers and also help to make progress in the future.”

Deaf Unity’s CEO Abdi Gas said:

Deaf Unity is proud to be able to build on its ground breaking 2014 London Deaf Careers Fair in order to link more Deaf, Hard of Hearing and Disabled People with equal opportunity employers and especially for a local MP to take up this initiative and to introduce it to the South West Region of the United Kingdom. We hope that other MPs will be able to take up similar initiatives and organise similar careers fair throughout the regions of the United Kingdom.

“The rationale behind this event is one of the many reasons for having established Deaf Unity. It is a true reflection of what the united and supported deaf community is able to achieve working in partnership with the mainstream environment and an example of the vast range of the underutilised skills and talents that exists within the deaf community. Such successes can only be achieved through partnership working with the wider community.”

Click here for more information on the Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair 2016. Keep an eye out on our Facebook and Twitter feeds for updates, and please download our Exhibitors booking form if you’d like to take part in the Fair. 

Note to Editors

Charlotte Leslie MP and her team from Bristol North West Parliamentary Constituency are delighted to have the support of Deaf Unity, a deaf-led learning and development charity based in both Bristol and London, to organise a second Deaf and Disability Careers Fair.

The second Deaf and Disability Careers Fair builds on the many activities that Deaf Unity has so far undertaken. Like the first Deaf Careers Fair, it aims to provide an effective forum for many employers to work in partnership to develop models of good practice and activities to address the chronic unemployment and underemployment of the deaf community. The UK Council on Deafness considers that unemployment within the hearing community is at the rate of 1:10 whereas for the deaf community it is 1:4. Effective engagement between employers and the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and Disabled communities are a step forward towards reducing this rate.

Bristol North West constituency takes in the City of Bristol wards of Avonmouth, Henbury, Henleaze, Horfield, Kingsweston, Lockleaze, Southmead, Stoke Bishop, and Westbury-on-Trym. Deaf Unity is very keen to work with the HR Departments of many employers and MPs within the Deaf and Hearing worlds to develop and enhance expertise in the Deaf employment field. HR support would be vital for developing many potential future learning and develop projects that are on the horizon for Deaf Unity. Deaf Unity hopes to introduce a deaf version of the Model United Nations programme to develop influencing and negotiating skills. The Deaf and Disability Careers Fair provides a forum to discuss and develop those skills.

If you’re an organisation looking to attend the Deaf and Disabilities Careers Fair, click here for more information

Please contact Alasdair Grant at if you have any questions


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2 Responses to “Deaf Unity announces the Deaf and Disability Careers Fair 2016”

  1. Asif Iqbal Rana says:

    Great effort to community.

  2. Jennifer Innes says:


    I’m looking to see if there is an opportunity to sponsor a stall at the fair in September in Bristol?

    We are an online BSL interpreting service who provide services to both individuals through Access to Work and also to organisations.

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