Welcoming diverse employees: Meet James Hubley

Friday, October 10, 2014 - 10:21am

By Margaret Schwartz

While others can see an object clearly from 400 feet away, James Hubley has to be 380 feet closer to see it.   

Hubley, an administrative support clerk in People Services, lives with limited vision. He is blind in his right eye and maintains 20/400 vision in his left.

Hubley’s vision loss has not prevented him from being a positive and dedicated employee.

In September 2013 Capital Health took an important step to remove barriers to employment for members of diverse communities by launching the Diversity in Employment policy. The policy is one piece of a larger Employment Equity Program that is committed to achieving a diverse workplace and a culture of belonging.

A 2010 workplace diversity survey showed that African Nova Scotians, Aboriginal peoples, recent immigrants and people with disabilities were underrepresented in our workforce compared to in the community.

The Diversity in Employment policy says Capital Health job postings must promote a culture that values diversity and encourages diverse communities to apply. We are seeing progress.

“I find my work environment very busy and very welcoming,” says Hubley. “I gave Sarah Teal a list of the tools I use at home, and she used this to accommodate me.” Teal is manager of recruitment and HR information management with Capital Health.

Hubley uses a software magnification program called ‘Zoom Text’ to make the text larger on his computer screen. This technology was made available to him during the skills test portion of his application. Hubley also uses a ‘video-reader’ tool, a large button phone, a neon-coloured keyboard and a CCTV reader to enlarge paper documents.

“James was eager to accommodate us as well, and bring in his own equipment,” says Teal. “I am amazed by his extensive HR knowledge and his ability to use technology.” 

Hubley described the application process with Capital Health as “do-able” and “convenient.” He encourages members of diverse communities to apply.

“It’s like the lottery; you can’t win it if you don’t play it,” he laughs. “Get your name in there. If you have the qualifications, anything is possible.”

On Oct. 9, 2014, Capital Health hosted a Diversity Learning Event and Celebration to launch a diversity lens tool kit and to celebrate diversity and inclusion at Capital Health.
Capital Health will continue to work toward a diverse workplace that promotes a culture of belonging.