(July 13, 2021, Washington, DC) — For the fourth consecutive year, Steptoe has been named one of the Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion by the Disability Equality Index® (DEI). The firm again achieved a high score of 90% to be recognized on the list.
The DEI was launched in 2015 by Disability:IN and The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) and is acknowledged today as the most comprehensive benchmarking tool for the Fortune 1000 and Am Law 200 to measure disability workplace inclusion against competitors. The DEI is modeled off the Corporate Equality Index that highlights LGBTQ-inclusive workplace policies.
The 2021 DEI measured: culture and leadership; enterprise-wide access; employment practices (benefits, recruitment, employment, education, retention and advancement, accommodations); community engagement; supplier diversity; non-US operations (non-weighted). Also in 2021, following the global pandemic, the DEI was modernized to add new non-weighted questions about innovative technology to advance digital and remote accessibility; mental wellness benefits; services for Deaf and hard of hearing employees, and flexible work options.
"The Disability Equality Index shines a spotlight on companies that believe they have a stake in creating a more equitable society for people with disabilities. It is a conduit for our work championing disability rights for the 60 million Americans with disabilities and knocking down barriers to employment, technology and healthcare, and we're thrilled to see the progress being made today," said Maria Town, president and CEO of the AAPD.
Steptoe's flagship Washington office integrates accessibility best practices throughout its design. Every floor of the LEED Silver compliant space is single-planed with elevators, permanent ramps and multiple mobility and egress measures in place. They include height-adjustable desks, wide passageways, accessible facilities and restrooms, some that are private and gender-neutral, and an advanced building emergency management system with detailed plans and crisis team members on each floor who can alert first responders of individuals who may require additional assistance during a fire evacuation or other emergency.
All of Steptoe's workspaces are in professionally managed buildings that are ADA compliant. The firm exceeds that baseline by having an ergonomics program in place, and providing additional assistive technologies, software and hardware as needed.
Steptoe's pro bono program also provides legal services that specifically focus on disability. The firm's lawyers regularly work with clients suffering from disabling mental and physical health conditions to obtain public benefits crucial to securing and maintaining housing, an adequate food supply, and other life necessities.
In 2021, 319 corporations, including 67 Fortune 100, 164 Fortune 500, and 180 Fortune 1000 utilized the DEI to benchmark their disability inclusion efforts.
For more information, please visit the Disability Equality Index website.
In more than 100 years of practice, Steptoe has earned an international reputation for vigorous representation of clients before governmental agencies, successful advocacy in litigation and arbitration, and creative and practical advice in structuring business transactions. Steptoe has more than 500 lawyers and other professional staff across offices in Beijing, Brussels, Chicago, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington. For more information, visit www.steptoe.com.