Impact of Mental and Physical Illness in the Hiring Process
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Opening ParagraphOne of the most common experiences of adulthood is that of work. Arguably, the most challenging part of work is the hiring process, even for adults without a mental illness. However, for individuals with a history of mental illness, obtaining meaningful work can be even more challenging (Diska & Rogers 1996; Gouvier, Systma-Jordan, & Mayville 2003). This discrepancy in hiring practices is often due to the negative stigma that persons with mental illness face (Baert, De Visschere, Schoors, Vandenberghe, & Omey 2016; Feldman & Crandall, 2007; Link, Phelan, Bresnahan, Stueve, & Prescosolido 1999; Rösch, Angermeyer, & Corrigan 2005). Stigma against mental health disorders deepens the struggle of such individuals in obtaining a job. In addition to individuals with mental illnesses having difficulty in obtaining a job, persons with a physical disability also report challenges in the hiring process (Bjelland, Bruyere, Von Schrader, Houtenville, Ruiz-Quintanilla, & Webber 2010; Gouvier, Sytisma-Jordan, & Mayville 2003). Clearly, the presence of an impairment negatively impacts such individuals in the hiring process. However, it is unclear if there is a difference between individuals with a mental disorder and physical disabilities in the hiring process when all factors are controlled. The present study aims to explore whether there is a difference in hiring rates for applicants with a physical disability, for applicants with a mental illness, and individuals with no disclosed impairment.