HARRISBURG, Pa., Oct. 17, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Governor's Cabinet for People with Disabilities with the departments of Human Services (DHS) and Labor & Industry today kicked off the fifth Pennsylvania Disability Employment & Empowerment Summit (PADES) in Erie. Earlier this month Governor Tom Wolf proclaimed October as Disability Employment Awareness Month in Pennsylvania.
The two-day event brings together employers, people with disabilities, and related government agencies to learn about: work-based experiences that help students access career paths, information and trends on PA high-demand occupations, advancements in adaptive technology, no-cost supports that assist employment success, and making state government responsive to the needs of businesses and workers with disabilities.
PADES topics also will include: trends in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and agricultural careers, school-to-work transition innovation, and employment rules when hiring youth.
"The Wolf Administration is committed to providing employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities. All Pennsylvanians deserve to have the option to work - increasing their income, independence, and quality of life," said DHS Secretary Ted Dallas. "The annual PADES conference brings stakeholders together to provide that opportunity."
"What Pennsylvania and PADES are doing to help people gain not just jobs, but rather careers, demonstrates the untapped potential of people with disabilities, who we know are some of the most loyal and valuable members of a company's workforce," Labor & Industry Secretary Kathy Manderino said.
Pennsylvania employers will learn the benefits of hiring qualified individuals with disabilities and they can network with peers who recruit and hire individuals with disabilities.
There will be guest speakers, breakout sessions, and a job fair at the Bayfront Convention Center in Erie. Each year, PADES moves to highlight a different region of the commonwealth.
Walk-in registration is permitted and is $20 for the two-day event.
For more information, visit www.padesummit2016.org.
MEDIA CONTACT: Rachel Kostelac, DHS, 717-425-7606
Sara Goulet, L&I, 717-979-7462
DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS MONTH
WHEREAS, the United States Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy recognizes October 2016 as the 71st National Disability Employment Awareness Month with the theme "#InclusionWorks;" and
WHEREAS, all Pennsylvanians should have the opportunity to live and work with dignity, freedom, and economic self-sufficiency. The vast majority of individuals with disabilities want to work and can be successful in competitive, integrated employment; and
WHEREAS, the national unemployment rate for people with disabilities in 2016 was 8.7 percent, compared to 4.6 percent for people without disabilities, and Pennsylvanians with disabilities, including Pennsylvania's veterans, have proven to be valuable employees who contribute positively to the bottom line of companies for whom they work; and
WHEREAS, through the Business Services and Outreach Division of the Pennsylvania Office of Vocational Rehabilitation and the "Hiring People with Disabilities How-To Guide," Pennsylvania businesses are encouraged to employ people with disabilities; and
WHEREAS, Pennsylvania continues to promote awareness about disability employment through its annual Pennsylvania Disability Employment and Empowerment Summit, an event that brings together employers, individuals with disabilities, advocates, service providers, and government officials to discuss employment issues and provide information about programs and services that will enhance the quality of life for Pennsylvanians with disabilities.
THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, do hereby proclaim the month of October 2016 as DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS MONTH in Pennsylvania.
GIVEN under my hand and the Seal of the Governor, at the City of Harrisburg, this twenty-ninth day of September two thousand sixteen, the year of the commonwealth the two hundred forty-first.
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SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Human Services; Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry