DSi is delighted to announce the publication of the Case Study on Best Practices in the Inclusive Employment of Persons with Intellectual Disabilities in Bangladesh.

This case study investigates the barriers that persons with intellectual disabilities face in Bangladesh in finding and retaining inclusive employment and highlights good practices in providing an inclusive and accessible work environment.

Twenty people were interviewed in Bangladesh, including persons with intellectual disabilities, family members, and employers.

Persons with intellectual disabilities described a range of barriersincluding discrimination in recruitment processes, extreme levels of underpayment (25% of the wage of someone doing the same job in one case or in other cases50% of the national minimum wage), and bullying and harassment in the workplace.

Family members highlighted a lack of inclusive education, inaccessible transport, discrimination, and bullying and harassment as critical barriers.

Employers raised a lack of understanding of intellectual disabilities, discrimination by other employees, and worries about reasonable accommodation as the main barriers.

The interviews with persons with intellectual disabilities emphasised the need to adapt work practices and workplace culture as a whole in order to create an inclusive environment for persons with intellectual disabilities, not just provide individualised adaptation and support.

A positive example was provided of an inclusive work environment created for Nuruzzaman, an employee with Down syndrome, by training staff and promoting a friendly and supportive environment.

The case study finishes with recommendations for the government of Bangladesh and employers, including measures to prevent discrimination, incentivise employment in the private sector, and train the workforce to create inclusive environments for persons with intellectual disabilities and all other employees.

Download the full document here:

Inclusive Employment Case Study (PDF)

Our thanks to our Fellow in Bangladesh, Ishaque Mia, for taking the lead on this project.


In addition to developing the case study, we recruited 5 self-advocates with intellectual disabilities to work with us on developing webinars on best practices related to the inclusive employment of persons with intellectual disabilities. The self-advocates led the webinars, speaking on behalf of people with intellectual disabilities in their country.

Watch the recorded sessions below:

Muthoni from Kenya

"We have a right to live well. We need clothes, we need food, we need houses. For us to get money to buy all these things we need work. I have a right to work."

Samuel from Uganda

"We have experiences and skills we can share with employers if given a chance. It is upon you, employers, to give us that chance, so people become aware that we exist and we are working, we can live an infinite life."

Eric from Rwanda

"If people with disabilities don't get opportunities then we will never know what they are capable of."

Favour from Nigeria

"We are loyal to our employers."

Fahim from Bangladesh

"Employers do not want to give us jobs as they do not understand our needs."

 "Employers are not willing to give us a reasonable salary."


This work is funded by Inclusive Futures, a UK Aid-funded consortium of 16 disability and development organizations led by Sightsavers working to create a future that is inclusive of people with disabilities.

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