October 6, 2017
In this Issue: National Disability Employment Awareness Month 2017 Issue!
This week marked the start of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) 2017, with a host of events and activities across the nation. Observed each October, NDEAM celebrates the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities and educates about the importance of a disability-inclusive workforce – to not only people with disabilities, but also the employers who stand to benefit from their skills. In honor of NDEAM, Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Disability Employment Policy Jennifer Sheehy penned a blog post highlighting the many ways “Inclusion Drives Innovation” in America’s workplaces and economy. Read the blog post.
Get Your NDEAM 2017 Poster!
One easy way for employers to show their support for National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is to display this year’s official poster in their workplaces. Available for free in both English and Spanish, the poster is a colorful illustration of this year’s theme, “Inclusion Drives Innovation” and can be downloaded from the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy website or ordered in hard copy. Download or order the NDEAM poster and learn other ideas for how employers and employees can participate in NDEAM.
Disability Mentoring Day
Plans for this year’s Disability Mentoring Day on October 18 are in full-swing. Held annually during National Disability Employment Awareness Month, 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. Learn more about Disability Mentoring Day.
Disability Mentoring Toolkit
Just in time for National Disability Employment Awareness Month, the National Disability Mentoring Coalition (NDMC) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the availability of a new Disability Mentoring Toolkit. This toolkit can assist all federal agencies and other employers interested in leveraging mentoring as a strategy for increasing the recruitment, hiring, retention and advancement of people with disabilities, including disabled veterans. In tandem with the toolkit launch, NDMC released a related white paper, “Mentoring as a Disability Inclusion Strategy.” Access the toolkit or the white paper.
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Small Business & Disability Employment: Steps to Success
When it comes to ensuring a workplace inclusive of the skills and talents of people with disabilities, not all businesses, especially small businesses, may know where to start. Small Business & Disability Employment: Steps to Success provides a path, outlining effective strategies for recruiting and retaining qualified people with disabilities as well as ways business associations can help their members understand the value disability inclusion adds to their workplaces and communities.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
Thursday, October 12, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET
Webinar: Strategies for Retaining Talent after Injury or Illness
Taking proactive steps to retain qualified employees is simply smart business. This includes employees who experience injury or illness or acquire disabilities as they age. Hosted by EARN in collaboration with the National Industry Liaison Group (NILG), this webinar will explore effective strategies that many leading employers, including federal contractors, are using to ensure valued employees can stay at work or return to work following injury or illness, thereby enhancing both corporate continuity and workforce inclusion. Register for the October 12 webinar.
Thursday, November 2, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. ET
Meeting: Federal Exchange on Employment and Disability (FEED)
The next meeting of the Federal Exchange on Employment and Disability (FEED) will take place on November 2 at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission headquarters in Washington, D.C., and the discussion topic will be “Creating Affirmative Action Plans: Best Practices for Federal Agencies.” FEED is an interagency working group focused on increasing disability inclusion in the federal workforce, and participation is open to federal employees at any level involved in recruiting, hiring, retaining and advancing employees with disabilities at their agencies. Learn more about FEED.
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This year’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month theme, “Inclusion Drives Innovation,” highlights the many ways that America’s businesses benefit from the divergent thinking disability offers. Not surprisingly, this includes many technology corporations. Just one example is IBM, which was recently named 2017 Employer of the Year by the U.S. Business Leadership Network. IBM traces its commitment to workforce inclusion of and technology innovation for people with disabilities back 100 years.
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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.