October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month and we are celebrating at SpArc Services!
The Employment Services team at SpArc has a growing caseload, with several program participants taking on new positions in community-based jobs. Additionally, the staff of the Employment Services program launched a new partnership with a food bank where program participants from SpArc can try out new skills and train for real-world working endeavors while volunteering. Job developers are out and about meeting employers and taking participants to work experiences in the community so participants can get exposed to real-life situations and opportunities in the workforce.
In this important month, we asked Lamees Jimenez, Associate Director of Employment Services, to offer employers some tips on creating a more inclusive workplace for people with disabilities. Here’s what Lamees recommended:
- Start from your leadership, implementing company-wide initiatives and training programs to eliminate biases against individuals with disabilities.
- Recognize special events and awareness months as a jumping off point for having conversations about eliminating bias. A great one coming up in 2023 is the month of July, recognizing the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990. Employers and employees can gather more tools and resources for best practices.
- Diverse hiring makes companies stand out to prospective employees. Typically, bottom-line earnings, employee retention, satisfaction, and recruitment are improved with a diverse workforce.
- Reach out to prospective partner agencies like SpArc Services to discuss the possibilities of working with people with disabilities. We find that when employers are proactive, right from the hiring process, the results are beneficial in multi-faceted ways.
To learn more about working with SpArc, please contact Lamees Jimenez at firstname.lastname@example.org