According to a National Survey of Consumer Attitudes towards Companies that Hire People with Disabilities, 92% of the American public view companies that hire people with disabilities more favorably than those that do not. And, 87% of the public would prefer to give their business to companies that hire people with disabilities. Studies such as this one are very valuable in making the business case to employers as to why employers should hire people with disabilities. What are some of the facts, statistics, or things you present to employers to help them understand the benefits of hiring workers with disabilities? Share your information and experiences in making a return on investment (ROI) case for hiring disabled workers here!
People with disabilities can work and want to work. Given the growing body of evidence that demonstrates that workers with disabilities meet or exceed the job performance of co-workers without disabilities, the continuing high unemployment rate and low labor force participation rate of people with disabilities deprive the nation of a valuable pool of talent. Increasing the employment of people with disabilities produces significant benefits to the economy, the nation, and people with disabilities themselves.
The primary focus of the survey was to determine how knowledgeable HR professionals are regarding various governmental incentives for hiring individuals with disabilities. In addition, the survey sought to find out how many companies actually take advantage of employer incentives and who in companies make decisions about using them. A secondary focus of the survey was to assess HR professionals’ attitudes and opinions regarding the impact of the ADA on the employment of individuals with disabilities; determine the level of effort companies expend in recruiting individuals with disabilities; and gain insight into senior managements' personal experiences with disabilities. Furthermore, the survey sought the opinions of HR professionals on how best to improve the employment of individuals with disabilities
Webinar: Explores serving individuals with disabilities in a demand-driven system and ways to be responsive to employers by promoting the employment of people with disabilities as an untapped labor source of qualified workers. It shares practices for making the business case for hiring people with disabilities and working with employers. Resources such as web-sites, business cases, fact sheets, employer toolkits, and other materials to use with employers when promoting the recruitment and retention of people disabilities are presented.
“Diversity” may often be associated solely with individuals who represent multi-cultural minority groups. However, it is representative of individuals who exhibit a myriad of unique and differing attributes, characteristics and life experiences. Diversity is evident in aspects of race, culture, religion, age, language, gender, disabilities, sexual orientation, class and any traits which make us different from one another. Along with the nation’s growing diversity is a rise in globalization, in which communities, cultures and economies around the world have become more interconnected through the expansion of technology, communication and trade. As a result, all types of associations and the public sector must aim for the highest quality and most effective workforce to compete in a global marketplace.
JAN has recently released two new Fact Sheetsb on The Interactive Process for the Reasonable Acccommodations Process. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the interactive process is not necessarily required under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), but from a legal standpoint, going through the process is a way for employers to show that they are making a good faith effort to comply with the ADA. And from a practical standpoint, it is a way to streamline the accommodation process and help insure that effective accommodations are provided. JAN Releases Fact Sheets on The Interactive Process: The Federal Sector. The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 requires the Federal sector to provide effective, reasonable accommodations for employees with disabilities. To help determine effective accommodations, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), recommends that agencies use an "interactive process," which simply means that employers and employees with disabilities who request accommodations work together. An effective interactive process is essential to Federal agencies in complying with Executive Order 13548.
On March 15, 2010, the Department of Justice (DOJ)released a new publication, “ADA Update: A Primer for Small Business.” This publication is designed to assist small businesses understand the new and updated accessibility requirements. In addition, DOJ is announcing the release of a new publication explaining when the various provisions of its amended regulations will take effect. Both documents are available tomorrow on DOJ's ADA website, www.ada.gov.
The US Business Leadership Network and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce recently issued a publication, "Leading Practices on Disbaility Inclusion." Successful businesses recognize that incorporating disability in all diversity and inclusion practices positively impacts their companies’ bottom line. Corporate CEOs understand that it is cost-effective to recruit and retain the best talent regardless of disability. Chief technology officers know that technologies that are usable by all employees lead to greater productivity. Senior purchasing managers recognize the economic benefits of broadening their supplier bases to include diverse categories, such as disability owned businesses, and savvy marketing directors eagerly embrace opportunities to increase their companies’ share of new markets. While businesses sometimes encounter serious challenges as they seek to implement inclusion strategies, many employers have overcome these hurdles with robust and creative practices. Through the Leading Practices on Disability Inclusion initiative, the US Business Leadership Network (USBLN?) and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce invited business leaders to share their successful disability inclusion strategies. This publication highlights successful strategies that can be used by businesses of all sizes to create a more inclusive workplace, marketplace, and supply chain. Real-life examples, such as these, are important to help businesses realize the wide range of opportunities available and the potential for replicating success. The companies and leaders featured in this publication provide valuable insights on the successes they have realized through the inclusion of people with disabilities in all aspects of their corporate enterprises as well as in their marketing. In addition to these effective strategies, an assessment is included as a tool to initiate or enhance your company’s disability-friendly corporate practices.
NTAR issued a Brief entitled, "Integrating Job Opportunities for People with Disabilities into State and Regional Economic and Workforce Development Strategies," Across the nation, state and regional economic and workforce development officials have begun to work together more systematically and strategically in an effort to better address the economic needs of a geographical area, including creating jobs for local residents. A new perspective has emerged that recognizes the need for a skilled and ready “talent pipeline” to support local economic growth. This Brief offers some background on recent trends in economic and workforce development strategies, and highlights two regions that have been piloting initiatives to include opportunities for people with disabilities in their regional activities.
Workforce3One is an e-learning, knowledge sharing webspace that offers workforce professionals, employers, economic development, and education professionals a dynamic network featuring innovative workforce solutions. Online learning events, resource information, and tools help organizations learn how to develop strategies that enable individuals and businesses to be successful in the 21st century economy. Workforce3 One offers online learning events (webinars) that highlight promising practices and provides a space to share ideas. The Disabilities Team, which oversees the Disability Employment Initiative, and previously the Disability Program Navigator Initiative, within the ETA Division of Adult Services is hosting disability- and employment-related Workforce3 One webinars through the month of June. The Disability and Employment Community of Practice will be spotlighting a few that include information, resources and strategies to help the workforce system provide more meaningful employment opportunities to job seekers with disabilities and other challenges to employment. In this spotlight, we highlight some promising practices to help the public workforce system connect with the business sector on the advantages of a diverse and inclusive workforce.
Workforce3One is an e-learning, knowledge sharing webspace that offers workforce professionals, employers, economic development, and education professionals a dynamic network featuring innovative workforce solutions. Online learning events, resource information, and tools help organizations learn how to develop strategies that enable individuals and businesses to be successful in the 21st century economy. Workforce3 One offers online learning events (webinars) that highlight promising practices and provides a space to share ideas. The Disabilities Team, which oversees the Disability Employment Initiative, and previously the Disability Program Navigator Initiative, within the ETA Division of Adult Services is hosting disability- and employment-related Workforce3 One webinars through the month of June. The Disability and Employment Community of Practice will be spotlighting a few that include information, resources and strategies to help the workforce system provide more meaningful employment opportunities to job seekers with disabilities and other challenges to employment. In this spotlight, we highlight a national “free” resource that workforce professionals can tap into to learn more about resources and workplace accommodations for persons with disabilities.
The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE) has identified two main factors for the deficit in STEM workers in the U.S. First, the STEM labor force is rapidly turning over as baby boomers retire. Second, too few U.S, students are preparing for STEM careers, especially engineering. Each of these is occurring while the U.S. business community is calling for a doubling of the number of annual STEM graduates by 2015. In addition to graduates with bachelor’s degrees, there will be a need for more STEM technicians with associate degrees and certificates. Unfortunately, many U.S. students arrive at a decisive point in their education without the requisite foundational skills to pursue these opportunities. A recent report from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, "Pathways to Prosperity: Meeting the Challenge of Preparing Young Americans for the 21st Century,"posit that career and technical education is an essential component in attempts to enhance the employability of American students. This can be assisted through the adoption of career exploration, career clusters, career pathways, rigorous programs of study, and the integration of academic learning, career education, and technology. In addition, encouraging students to pursue STEM pathways early enough in their schooling will help to build interest in STEM careers, leading them to acquire the academic preparation essential for higher- level positions in these occupations. The issue of promoting STEM training and employment is critical for persons with disabilities. Persons with disabilities are under-represented in STEM training and careers.
During the May 2006 DPN Project Leads monthly conference call, Bryna Helfer, of the Department of Transportation Federal Transit Administration, provided an overview and discussion of the new SAFETEA-LU provisions around disability, especially coordinated planning and mobility management, and how DPNs can be involved and/or connect the initiatives to the workforce development system. This information brief highlights some of the provisions that may be available for states and local areas to tap into to help address the transportation needs of job seekers with disabilities.
Disability Program Navigator projects across the country responded to three questions about transportation challenges and effective strategies to address some of these challenges at the community and state level. The information was entered into a chart that is separated by state and then contact and includes responses to the following areas: • Challenges at the community level in terms of access to employment transportation • Strategies within the community to address employment transportation challenges • Involvement in any CTAA funded employment transportation programs
This document highlights some information on transportation initiatives and programs that can provide communities and One-Stop Career Centers with resources and suggestions to help customers address their transportation needs. The following resources from the Community Transportation Association of America (CTAA) and the Federal Transit Administration’s United We Ride (UWR) program offer transportation options and strategies for the public workforce system to help bridge the transportation gap to employment for individuals with disabilities, older adults, low-income and others with challenges to employment.
Recognizing the importance of transportation in serving their customers, several of the WIBs, One-Stop Career Centers, and Disability Program Navigators have developed and implemented effective solutions to connect their customers to the workplace. This Webinar highlighted these successful strategies and demonstrate: (1) how the workforce investment system can leverage diverse federal funds to support local transportation to employment and training activities; (2) transportation options currently available to serve the targeted service groups; (3) models the workforce investment system and service providers can replicate; and (4) how the workforce investment system can work with community partners to facilitate access to transportation resources, to connect its customers to training and jobs.
Topics covered: Incorporating the Ticket message into intake, orientation, and outreach; Maximizing self-identification and dealing with disclosure concerns; Using data matching to identify Ticket holders; Creating a clear referral process; The Ticket assignment discussion: critical elements for successful engagement; Potential Ticket customers: who to target. http://connectpro97884399.adobeconnect.com/p75486908
On January 3, 2012, DOL/ETA issued Training and Employment Notice (TEN) No. 21-11, "Strategies to Meet One-Stop Career Centers' Business and Job-Seeker Customer Needs for Employment-Related Transportation Services." The purpose of this TEN is to: 1) provide successful strategies to the public workforce system for connecting individuals with disabilities and other multiple challenges to employment with transportation to jobs and training; and 2) help business access a diverse workforce. Transportation is a key asset for future workforce planning, business creation, and economic development. On an individual level, transportation can sometimes be overlooked as a critical service for jobseeekers, employees, or individuals needing training.
In November of 2011, TransCEN issued a Technical Report, "Strategies Used by Employment Service Provders in the Job Development Process." Historically, the role of job developers employed in the state/Federal vocational rehabilitation program and the community-based rehabilitation programs has been to identify and secure paid employment for individuals with disabilities, particularly those with significant disabilities. Past strategies have included a “carrot and stick” approach, where the carrots are tax incentives and other benefits to employers for hiring people with disabilities, and the stick being in compliance with the mandates of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) (Luecking, 2008). More recently, several authors have recommended that job developers adopt a broader marketing approach to their activities in terms of creating demand for the jobseekers they represent by demonstrating their value to business by using relationship marketing approaches, and emphasizing the mutual benefits of their partnerships (Gilbride & Stensrud, 1999; Luecking,Fabian & Tilson, 2004; Luecking, Cuozzo, & Buchanan, 2006). In the challenging job market of the last few years, it is now more important than ever for job developers to be aware of and apply the most effective strategies in their efforts to assist job seekers to secure and maintain jobs. The purposes of this Technical Report are to: a)describe the results of the study of job development/placement professionals’ strategies in the employment process; b)compare these results to employer perceptions of the employment process; and c)identify implications for job development/ placement practice.
President Obama's hiring incentives will hopefully bring down the 13.1 percent veteran unemployment rate. The Disabled Veterans National Foundation (DVN)is filling in the information gap that often interferes with veterans getting jobs. The DVNF announced that it will connect unemployed veterans with the career resources that have come out of the VOW Act. "We are working diligently to help disabled and underserved veterans, including our women veterans, access the benefits created under the new law and connect them immediately to the training, financial assistance and secure jobs they need and deserve," wrote Raegan Rivers, Chief Administrative Officer, DVNF, in a press release. "Just as they fight for us on the battlefield, it's up to us to fight for our troops and their families when they come home," President Obama said after signing the VOW To Hire Heroes Act. "Today, a deeply grateful nation is doing right by our military and paying back just a little bit what we owe our veterans." For more information about VOW, go to http://www.benefits.va.gov/vow/ For more information about DVN's efforts, please go to: http://www.dvnf.org
On February 16, 2012, GAO 12-419T, GAO issued a Report entitled,"Innovative Collaborations Between Workforce Boards and Employers Helped Meet Urgent Workforce Needs." This testimony discusses collaboration between workforce boards, employers, and others. Workforce board officials and their partners in the 14 initiatives cited a range of factors that facilitated building innovative collaborations. Almost all of the collaborations grew out of efforts to address urgent workforce needs of multiple employers in a specific sector, rather than focusing on individual employers. The partners in these initiatives made extra effort to engage employers so they could tailor services such as jobseeker assessment, screening, and training to address specific employer needs. In all the initiatives, partners remained engaged in these collaborations because they continued to produce a wide range of reported results, such as an increased supply of skilled labor, job placements, reduced employer recruitment and turnover costs, and averted layoffs. While these boards were successful in their efforts, they cited some challenges to collaboration that they needed to overcome. Some boards were challenged to develop comprehensive strategies to address diverse employer needs with WIA funds. For example, some boards’ staff said that while their initiatives sought to meet employer needs for higher-skilled workers through skill upgrades, WIA funds can be used to train current workers only in limited circumstances, and the boards used other funding sources to do so. Staff from most, but not all, boards also said that WIA performance measures do not reflect their efforts to engage employers, and many boards used their own measures to assess their services to employers.
The Role of Public Transportation as a Job Access Mode: Lessons from a Survey of Persons with Disabilities in New Jersey by Andrea Lubin and Devajyoti Deka, Ph.D., researchers at the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center at Rutgers University, examines the role of public transportation in providing job access to persons with disabilities. The paper draws from a survey of persons with disabilities implemented during a seven-month period beginning in September 2010. The survey was distributed through the New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services and other venues. The survey was distinctive in that, unlike many other studies, it acquired data from persons who are actively seeking employment. The paper provides information on the availability, usage, needs, barriers, and perceptions of the survey respondents about different public transit modes, and discusses the implications for agencies providing public and human services transit. The report also includes a review of recent literature on accessible work transportation and the role of public transportation for people with disabilities. Survey data show that public transit is widely used by people seeking employment. In spite of accessibility improvements, challenges remain. The cost of service has increased, making cost optimization a significant challenge for public transit agencies providing services to people with disabilities. Although public transit agencies could reduce costs by attracting larger numbers to fixed-route transit, people with certain disabilities may avoid fixed-route transit due to difficulties in accessing and interpreting service-related information, such as understanding transit schedules and announcements. Safety perceptions can also serve as barriers to public transit for people with disabilities. The authors conclude that public transportation is critical to job access for persons with disabilities.
The NTAR Leadership Center has recently released a report, Using Braided Funding Strategies to Advance Employer Hiring Initiatives that Include People with Disabilities, on using braided funding strategies to advance employment of people with disabilities Using Braided Funding Strategies to Advance Employer Hiring Initiatives that Include People with Disabilities. Many state and local disability employment services are operated by a number of different public and nonprofit agencies (e.g., the vocational rehabilitation system, the local school system, the One-Stop Career Center system, and many community-based employment service providers). These organizations often find it necessary to access funds from more than one program, agency, or funding stream. As a result, many program administrators and staff face the challenge of developing effective strategies to braid disability employment funding. This report profiles four employer-responsive programs in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, and Connecticut that have implemented braided funding strategies to support hiring initiatives with key business partners. These cases demonstrate advantages to braided funding strategies, particularly where participating businesses are able to deal with a single point of contact for funding and disability employment services.
Learn how to develop effective partnerships in order to build Career Pathways in your community, region, or State. This newly released guide provides a step-by-step outline, with integral tools, that you can use when convening workforce, education, human and social services, employers, organized labor and other partners.
On April 11, 2012, the Center for the Study of Social Policy, issued a publication entitled, "Promoting Workforce Strategies for Reintegrating Ex-Offenders." When formerly incarcerated individuals reintegrate into the community, they face a number of barriers to employment. By providing ex-offenders with the supports and services they need to find and maintain employment, states can reduce recidivism. Participation in comprehensive education and employment programming while incarcerated and a continued connection to education and employment services after release have been shown to reduce recidivism. Using strategies such as progressive sanctions that hold ex-offenders accountable but that also keep them in the community connected to family and employment, can be just as effective, if not more effective, than a costly revocation. When ex-offenders are productively engaged in their communities, working and supporting their families, the community is safer and their families are more economically secure. According to the Pew Center on the States, there has not been significant improvement in the performance of corrections systems in many states despite the massive increase in corrections spending. More than 4 out of 10 adult offenders in the United States return to prison within three years of their release. This is not just significant for ex-offenders and their families but also for the communities in which they live and the taxpayers in the state. Strategies for Policy Makers 1.Enhance workforce preparation during incarceration. 2.Improve placement services. 3.Expand partnerships with employers. 4.Remove barriers to employment for ex-offenders. 5.Promote access to transportation by amending driving restrictions 6.Promote access to health care. 7.Support opportunities for affordable housing.
In April 2012, the New America Foundation issued "The Assets Report 2012: An Assessment of the Federal Asset-Building Budget." Excerpts... While recovery from the Great Recession appears be taking hold, economic hardship remains pervasive. Poverty is still on the rise and many families feel that the forces of recession have displaced them from the middle class. Expanding opportunities for upward mobility has become a common call. The spotlight remains focused on the American Dream, what it takes to achieve it, and the role of government in that process. We think of “success” as being able to raise a family, educate our children, buy a home, start a business, and live securely in our retirement years...Being able to save/accumulate assets is an essential foundation for success. Over time, these resources can be invested productively in ways that promote economic mobility and well-being. It is the mobility and resiliency features of savings and assets that justify the wide range of Federal policies and programs intended to promote their accumulation. In our calculations, direct spending programs and policies that are embedded in the tax code together account for $548 billion in pro-savings and asset building resources for fiscal year 2013. Given the scale of these commitments and the importance of their objectives, these policies deserve scrutiny to insure that these investments are achieving their intended outcomes. Our assessment of policy, however, reveals several fundamental inequities. The poorest Americans, who have had the most difficulty saving and for whom appropriate interventions would have the greatest impact, are instead offered less accessible or meaningful ways to accumulate assets compared to middle- and upper-income families. If we are to broaden savings and asset ownership, we must understand how the Federal government’s policy affects asset building for low and moderate-income Americans, including persons with disabilities.
Minnesota's career , education, and job resource Newsletter, ISEEK, just issued an article, entitled, "Hidden Disabilities in the Workplace: Do You or Your Co-Worker have a Hidden Disability?" This article gives examples of hidden disabilities (non-visible), information on disclosing non-visible disabilities (including the pros and cons, and when to disclose).
On April 17, 2012, DOL/ETA issued TEN No. 38-11, "Benefits of Collaborating Between State/Local Workforce Investment Boards and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program)." The purpose of this TEN is to encourgage the workforce system to collaborate with the U.S. Department of Commerce's MEP Program to provide assistance and support to small and medium-sized manufacturing firms with the ultimate goal of supporting economic growth while preserving and creating jobs.