Diversity, Equity and Inclusion promotes growth and innovation. It is how we listen, learn and work together to realize our potential.
We create an environment that provides the right ingredients to amplify innovation by removing barriers to welcoming diverse talent and perspectives into our organization. This strategic focus is essential to drive positive culture change and to unlock the power and potential of innovation to fulfill unmet customer needs.
Grocery shopping can be a daunting and challenging experience for individuals with sensory sensitivities, including those with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Bright lights, loud store announcements and large crowds of other shoppers can present barriers to some individuals in performing quick and easy tasks that many people take for granted. As a result, individuals with sensory sensitivities often ask others to go shopping for them or choose to shop late at night when not as many other customers are around.
As a family nurturing families, we are committed to supporting families of all abilities and ensuring that our stores reflect the customers and communities we serve. Instead of putting the accountability on our customers to accommodate their own disabilities, in 2019 we introduced our Sensory-Friendly Shopping Program to stores across Canada to create a more inclusive grocery shopping experience for everyone.
Customers can conduct their grocery shopping in a reduced stimulus environment during specified dates and times depending on their location. For example, all Sobeys Ontario stores offer Sensory-Friendly Shopping hours, Wednesdays from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. In Alberta, our Safeway stores offer Sensory Friendly Shopping every Monday from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Since launching the program, our customers have expressed positive feedback about their store being a quieter, more comfortable place to shop during Sensory-Friendly Shopping hours.
This past year, we launched ScripTalk, an audible prescription label reader service in all Lawtons stand-alone pharmacies and in-store pharmacies within Sobeys stores across the country.
More than 70% of senior leaders have actively participated in our Strengthening Inclusive Leadership program.
The Diversity Self Identification process was launched less than one year ago with the participation at the senior leadership level at 59%. This important information will be leveraged to support the expanded Diversity, Equity and Inclusion mandate.
We have a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council made up of 14 cross-functional senior leaders who drive the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion strategy forward.
We are committed to keeping Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the heart of our organization by embedding it in our core values and through our leadership behaviours. In May 2019, we launched a new Inclusive Leadership program to strengthen the value of inclusive leadership and educate our leaders about how to engage and leverage the full potential of inclusion. More than 70% of our leaders, including our executive team, have completed the program to date. Key themes and learning outcomes are applied to enhance existing initiatives and programs that provide leaders with practical tools to strengthen inclusive leadership.