July 21, 2020

Workplace inclusion has further to go as ADA celebrates 30 years

Despite three decades of improvement, people with disabilities still face discrimination and obstacles to returning to work, according to Allsup and Allsup Employment Services

Belleville, Illinois — July 21, 2020 Americans with disabilities celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) this month. Despite this monumental achievement and three decades of progress, more remains to be done for disability inclusion in the workplace, according to Allsup, a nationwide provider of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) representation and return to work services, and Allsup Employment Services (AES), a Social Security Administration (SSA)-authorized Employment Network and subsidiary of Allsup.

“Job applicants with disabilities fight an uphill battle against overt discrimination and implicit bias, from the initial job interview to responsibilities and promotions,” said Diane Winiarski, director of Vocational Rehabilitation Services for AES. “It’s important to always work to further inclusion and increase opportunities for this pool of talented individuals.”

One of the programs designed to help people with disabilities get jobs is the SSA’s free Ticket to Work program, which provides access to Employment Networks (ENs). These organizations help qualified candidates with disabilities transition back into the workforce. ENs provide vital assistance with personalized career planning, benefits coordination, vocational guidance, and job interview and job placement assistance, all while protecting SSDI and Medicare benefits as people transition to full-time work.

People who have worked with Allsup Employment Services to return to work said the following:

I have always loved my job, social work is my passion. So naturally, I was upset when I realized my medical condition prevented me from working. But as I got better, my employer supported my ambition to return to work by allowing me to slowly increase my hours and have a flexible schedule. To have such an accommodating employer is a blessing. – Mavis Bryant, Case Manager, Florida

Going back to work was a difficult transition, but my employer had a set plan of action and checklist to help ease me back into the job. I fix aircrafts for a living, so they recognize that I can’t do certain physical tasks anymore because of my hip, like going up long flights of stairs, and instead allow me to do other work that I excel at. They put my safety and my health first. – James Wright, Aircraft Mechanic, California

Because the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in job shortages across the country, people with disabilities must work even harder to get hired today. Many employers are still influenced by false myths about disabilities in the workplace. “The current employment rate for people with disabilities stands at 16.5%, much higher than the 11.1% national average,” Winiarski said. “We still have a long way to go.”

Learn more about the ADA anniversary by visiting www.adaanniversary.org.

For more information about returning to work while receiving Social Security disability benefits, call (866) 540-5105 or visit www.allsupemploymentservices.com.

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