Cafes hiring people with hearing disabilities in India
Asia-Pacific, Misc., July 14 2017
JAIPUR: Cafes run wholly and solely by people with disabilities are now becoming a trend in Pink City. These restaurants have unique and interesting ways in which the customers can interact with the employees with hearing disabilities.
A franchise from Nathdwara, Thadiwala, which hires only female employees with hearing disabilities, has started its outlet in Vaishali Nagar.
Every employee, including the chef and the cashier, are with hearing disabilities here.“We have set up light bulbs on the tables which are connected to our kitchen. So, whenever a customer takes a table or is ready to order, he can just press a button and the staff will come. A notebook is then given to the customer for writing the order from the menu,” said Neha Parikh, co-owner, Thadiwala.
This apart, some other hotels too are open to hire and train people with hearing disabilities. Red Fox, for example, has a policy of hiring 20 per cent of their staff as people with disabilities.
“We have 18-20 employees in Jaipur who cannot hear and speak. They are trained to work in various departments like housekeeping and food and drinks,” said Vivek Kumar, general manager, Red Fox.
Similarly Vitthal’s Kitchen, a cafe near Lakshmi Mandir, has six serving employees with hearing disabilities. The restaurant has code numbers written opposite the food names in the menu.
The customer is given a note book where they have to mention the code number along with the quantity.
“As far as the interaction between each other is concerned, they themselves taught us the sign language when they joined us,” said Ashish Sharma, owner, Vitthal’s Kitchen.
However, these employees do not get proper career and salary growth as the regular employees, working with them, rues Kamlesh, a translator at Poddar Institute of Deaf.
“In restaurants, sometimes the customers underestimate the skills of people with disabilities. Often in hotels, they get mistreated by their peer due to their disability. Some are even blamed for theft by the co-workers. This often degrades their confidence,” says Kamlesh.