September 8, 2017
In this Issue: Disability Equality Index, NDEAM Planning and More
DEI 2017 “Best Places to Work” Announced
Last month, the U.S. Business Leadership Network – an EARN partner – and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) announced the results of their 2017 Disability Equality Index (DEI) survey, an annual effort to gather information about best practices for disability inclusion across industries. Roughly 100 companies participated in the DEI this year, with a record 68 earning the top rating of 100 percent. These companies, along with those that scored a 90 or 80 percent, comprise the 2017 “DEI Best Places to Work” list. Read more about the DEI results.
Only One Month Until NDEAM!
With the calendars now flipped to September, National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) is right around the corner. 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 many employers who stand to benefit from their skills. In this spirit, employers are encouraged to take part in the campaign. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy offers a range of ideas to help get started. Visit the NDEAM webpage.
September is National Alcohol and Drug Addiction Recovery Month, which educates that substance use disorders are treatable and people in recovery across the nation live healthy, productive lives. In fact, for many people in recovery, employment plays an important role in continued sobriety. A number of workplace accommodations can help support employees in treatment for or recovery from addiction, and the Job Accommodation Network offers a range of resources to help employers and employees understand them. Learn more about accommodations for people with alcoholism or drug addiction.
Honoring Disability Mentors
The National Disability Mentoring Coalition recently announced that 25 individuals and four organizations will be inducted into its Susan M. Daniels Disability Mentoring Hall of Fame this year. Established in 2015, this recognition honors leaders who have demonstrated a commitment to advancing career exploration opportunities for young people with disabilities. Among the individuals on this year’s list are several employer representatives who have helped institute mentoring initiatives through their companies. Read more about the 2017 inductees.
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To grow and to thrive in today’s economy, employers in all industries need a highly skilled workforce. Now, more and more are discovering a proven strategy for building one: apprenticeship. Apprenticeships also are an effective strategy for increasing workforce inclusion; because of the range of opportunities available, they provide a good career path for people from all backgrounds, including people with disabilities.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR
Thursday, September 14, 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. ET
Webinar: Creating Inclusive Higher Education Work Environments for People with Mental Health Disabilities
In the higher education workplace environment, policies and practices that support success for faculty and staff with mental health conditions are also sound management practices that benefit all workers and employers. During this webinar, hosted by EARN in collaboration with the Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC), a panel of experts will explore this issue in depth. While geared toward higher education, the content that will be shared is widely applicable, and employers in all industries are encouraged to participate. Register for the September 14 webinar.
Thursday, September 20, 2:00 – 3:30 p.m. ET
Webinar: Reasonable Accommodation Update
Sponsored by the ADA National Network, this webinar will address recent reasonable accommodation court decisions so that employers can better understand their responsibilities under the relevant provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It will also review the process for implementing reasonable accommodations from both the employee and employer perspective. The presenters will be Equip for Equality’s Director of Legal Services, Barry Taylor, and Staff Attorney, Rachel Weisberg. Register for the September 20 webinar.
Thursday, October 12
Event: NDEAM Employer Conference
Sponsored by the National Business and Disability Council at the Viscardi Center, this event will explore current disability employment topics and trends and highlight best practices, including related to accessible technology. It will take place at the Viscardi Center’s headquarters in Albertson, NY, where attendees will also take a tour of the organization’s facilities, including the Henry Viscardi School, which educates children with significant physical disabilities and prepares them to be leaders and full members of tomorrow’s workforce. Register for the October 12 event.
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In a new video, Jessica Rafuse, NGO Program Manager, Accessibility, Corporate and External Legal Affairs at Microsoft, explains how the technology giant benefits from a disability-inclusive mindset, in both the workplace and marketplace context.
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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.