Go Team USA!
The excitement is set to continue in Rio next week, as the 2016 Summer Paralympics Games kick off on September 7. Recently, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and U.S. Paralympics have taken steps to educate about the important role para-sports play in challenging misconceptions about the talents of people with disabilities, both on and off the field of play. Research also indicates that participation in sports helps young people—including those with disabilities—develop the skills they need for future workplace success.
Disability Mentoring Day
With National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) 2016 right around the corner, plans for Disability Mentoring Day are in full-swing around the nation. Held annually on the third Wednesday of October, Disability Mentoring Day promotes career development for students and job seekers with disabilities through hands-on career exploration and ongoing mentoring relationships. Employers of all sizes are encouraged to take part, and the program’s sponsor, the American Association of People with Disabilities, offers a range of resources to help them do so.
Telecommuting on the Rise
For those in office-based workplaces, it’s likely little surprise that the prevalence of telecommuting, whether periodically or full-time, has risen drastically in recent years. But, according to a research report recently published by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), the reason is not improved technology, as most people assume, but rather shifts in workforce demographics and priorities. Research indicates that telecommuting and other flexible work arrangements can also help employers tap into more diverse talent pools, including people with disabilities.
New Webpage for Small Businesses
The U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has created a special webpage with resources to help small businesses increase their capacity to recruit and retain qualified people with disabilities. Among the featured resources is the “Steps to Success” toolkit, which provides examples of 10 best practices in action. Developed based on information gleaned from ODEP’s Add Us In initiative, the toolkit also describes approaches that business associations can use to educate their members about the value disability diversity adds to their workplaces.
Helping Workers Keep Their Jobs After an Injury, Illness or Disability
SEPTEMBER 13, 2016, 12:00 – 1:30 P.M. ET
This joint webinar and live policy forum, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy’s Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work (SAW/RTW) Policy Collaborative, will share actionable recommendations for policies that can improve the SAW/RTW outcomes for workers who experience injury, illness or disability. Employers, policymakers, individuals, service providers and researchers are invited to join in the conversation, whether in-person or online.
Speaking the Same Language: Making Closed Captioning Work
SEPTEMBER 15, 2016, 2:00 – 3:30 P.M. ET
Today, more and more tools are available that allow businesses to create their own videos in-house, whether for purposes of training employees or promoting their products or services. But, it’s important for such videos to include captions for accessibility. In this webinar, Beth Lund, a Technology Accessibility Specialist with Ashford University, will discuss free and low-cost tools available to help and standard best practices for creating captioned videos.
Disability Diversity in the Higher Education Workforce
October 13, 2016, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET
Hosted by EARN in collaboration with the Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC), this webinar will address how to incorporate disability into college and university workforce diversity plans as a way to foster a more inclusive academic environment and campus community. Eight important dimensions to disability inclusion in the higher education environment will be discussed, as well as best practices being utilized by HERC member institutions.
Earlier this summer, the U.S. Business Leadership Network (USBLN)—an EARN partner—and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) announced the results of their 2016 Disability Equality Index (DEI) survey, an annual effort to gather information about best practices for disability inclusion across industries. Top scoring companies are featured in the 2016 “DEI Best Places to Work” list.
Business Strategies that Work: A Framework for Disability Inclusion is a compilation of promising policies and practices for recruiting, hiring, retaining and advancing qualified individuals with disabilities. It’s a great resource for employers seeking a menu of ideas for advancing inclusion within their companies, and/or HR and Diversity and Inclusion professionals seeking to educate senior management on the importance of doing so.
The Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion (EARN) is a resource for employers seeking to recruit, hire, retain and advance qualified employees with disabilities. It is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy under a cooperative agreement with The Viscardi Center. For more information, visit AskEARN.org
Preparation of this material was funded by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, Grant No. [OD-26451-14-75-4-36]. This document does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Office of Disability Employment Policy, U.S. Department of Labor, nor does the mention of trade names, commercial products, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.