LCS

October marks the annual celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month. This year’s theme is “Inclusion Drives Innovation.”

In July of this year, the National Organization on Disability released results that provided insights into the employment practices of more than 175 companies. The results show that companies with a higher than average workforce of individuals with disabilities share five key inclusion elements.

Strategy & Metrics — Senior leaders discuss and publicly promote overall diversity. They have a plan of action for improving disability inclusion practices that is driven by a disability champion who is accountable to advance this strategy.

Climate & Culture — Priority is given to creating employee/business resource or affinity groups that are specific to disability. Most critically, those groups have annual budgets that allow them to take visible and impactful action.

Recruiter Training — Recruiters, who are on the front line with job candidates, are trained in, and know how to find and use the company’s accommodation process. This helps ensure candidates gain access to the supports needed to be a successful candidate and land the job.

People Practices — HR teams are trained to proactively ask new hires if they need an accommodation in the post-offer and pre-employment stages. This improves the employee experience and ensures that there are no gaps in providing support to employees with disabilities from day one.

Workplace & Technology — As new facilities are built, universal design principles – a set of design guidelines that ensure the physical workplace works well for people of every ability – are routinely applied.

LCS, in partnership with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR), works diligently with the local business community to encourage businesses to hire individuals with disabilities. LCS has had feedback from local employers that ranks individuals with disabilities as some of its best and most dedicated workers. LCS believes that “potential is limitless” and, as we work hard to spread this belief we are grateful to the many area employers that have provided employment and/or internship opportunities for the individuals that LCS and DVR mutually serve. For information about the employment services that LCS offers, contact Alison at 262-598-0098 or hoffmana@lcsracine.org.

A success story

Gerard is a former LCS Explore and E-Now! participant. Gerard learned employment skills in LCS Explore and moved into career exploration with E-Now! where he completed his application for DVR employment services. Gerard now works part time at a local business in a job that he proudly refers to as his “profession.” On his days off he volunteers at Aurora. Gerard is happy to be leading a life where he is independent and actively involved in the community.

Conference

LCS is pleased to be one of the sponsors of the Nonprofit Leadership Conference that the University of Wisconsin-Parkside is hosting on Nov. 14. Highlighting the conference is the keynote speaker Vu Le, executive director of Rainer Valley Corps, a nonprofit in Seattle that promotes social justice. Information about this important conference can be found at www.uwp.edu/nonprofit.

For information about LCS, contact Mary Beth at popchockm@lcsracine.org.

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