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October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month
"Every day, individuals with disabilities add significant value and talent to our workforce and economy," said the U.S. Secretary of Labor. "Individuals with disabilities offer employers diverse perspectives on how to tackle challenges and achieve success. Individuals with disabilities have the right talent, right now."
Observed annually in October, NDEAM celebrates America's workers with disabilities both past and present and emphasizes the importance of inclusive policies and practices to ensure that all Americans who want to work can work and have access to services and supports to enable them to do so. With continued advances in such supports, including accessible technology, it is easier than ever before for America's employers to hire people with disabilities.
The theme for the 2019 National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is "The Right Talent, Right Now". This theme emphasizes the essential role that people with disabilities play in America's economic success, especially in an era when historically low unemployment and global competition are creating a high demand for skilled talent.
During NDEAM, another focus is on mentoring - mentoring of youth and adults with disabilities who are job/career seekers about the process and the benefits of competitive integrated employment & mentoring by organizations actively practicing disability inclusion to orgs and businesses that are interested in implementing disability inclusion and inclusive hiring as a strategy.
Disability Mentoring Days offer employers an opportunity to:
1) Engage an untapped demographic of people with disabilities,
2) Help people with disabilities develop confidence about their own employability,
3) Recruit short-term and long-term interns/employees, and
4) Demonstrate positive leadership to other employers.
Primary objectives of the Disability Mentoring Days program:
1) Help participating students and job seekers with disabilities learn more about potential employment opportunities and develop connections to the local business community;
2) Counteract unconscious biases, myths, and stereotypes held by employers to make them more comfortable with disability and more likely to hire employees with disabilities in the future.
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