The U.S. Labor Department has a number of new grants it’s soliciting related to the employment of people with disabilities.
- $1.1 million to help the government run a center that’ll prepare disabled youth for employment.
- Another $1.1 million to start a technical assistance center to help improve employment rates for people with disabilities. The center will “identify and promote successful retention and return-to-work strategies for individuals with disabilities, particularly mature workers, and also serve as a central repository of information on best practices necessary to increase employment opportunities.”
- $950,000 for an accessible technology center. Different from the second bullet above, this one will focus specifically on workplace technologies.
Despite the ADA, tax credits, and the good work of JAN, the U.S. unemployment rate for people with disabilities is around 13%. Worse is that many people with disabilities aren’t reflected in that statistic because they’ve left the workforce altogether. (The federal government also keeps track of the number of people with disabilities in its own workforce.)