Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Robert Loo, Faculty of Management, The University of Lethbridge, 4401 University Drive, Lethbridge, Alberta T1K 3M4, Canada.
Attitudes Toward Employing Persons With Disabilities: A Test of the Sympathy-Discomfort Categories
Version of Record online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 34, Issue 10, pages 2200–2214, October 2004
How to Cite
Loo, R. (2004), Attitudes Toward Employing Persons With Disabilities: A Test of the Sympathy-Discomfort Categories. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 34: 2200–2214. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.2004.tb02697.x
- Issue online: 31 JUL 2006
- Version of Record online: 31 JUL 2006
While persons with disabilities comprise approximately 17% of American and Canadian populations, they comprise a mere 3% of the workforce. This study examined the attitudes of 231 Canadian management undergraduates toward employing persons with disabilities. Participants were assigned to MacLean and Gannon's (1995) fourfold table of low-high combinations of the sympathy and discomfort scales derived from the Interaction With Disabled Persons scale (IDP; Gething, 1991). Results showed that the fourfold classification of attitudes was useful in identifying differences in attitudes, as measured by the 13-item Attitudes Toward Employing Persons With Disabilities instrument (ATEPD; Loo, 2002). Scores on the IDP and ATEPD were independent of social desirability scores. Recommendations are presented for organizations and educators to promote positive attitudes toward employees with disabilities.