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ODEP News Brief

July 24, 2015

White House Celebrates ADA

The White House marked the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) earlier this week, with an event at which President Obama spoke about progress made and still to come, especially related to employment. "Americans with disabilities can do the job, and they're hungry for the chance and they will make you proud if you give them the chance," he said. The event was kicked off by Haben Girma, the first student who is deaf-blind to attend Harvard Law School. In coordination with the event, the White House released a fact sheet outlining the Obama administration's disability-related efforts.

Watch the event video
Read the White House fact sheet

DOL Commemorates ADA25

This week the U.S. Department of Labor hosted an event featuring disability employment champions Senator Tom Harkin and Delaware Governor Jack Markell, both of whom contributed their opinions and insight about its impact and promise related to employment in a conversation with Secretary of Labor Tom Perez. The event was one of a series of DOL activities to mark the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Watch the video archive of the event
View DOL's ADA 25th anniversary webpage

Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities to Meet August 10, 2015

The Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities (the Committee) will hold its fifth meeting on August 10, 2015, by Webinar, from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM EDT. During the meeting, the Committee will discuss the draft of the interim report, and will vote on whether to approve the interim report. Members of the public wishing to participate in the Webinar must register in advance, by July 31, 2015. Organizations or members of the public wishing to submit a written statement may do so by July 31, 2015. Instructions on submitting comments can be found in the Federal Register Notice.

Register for the Webinar
Read the Federal Register Notice

Secretary Perez Visits Northrop Grumman to Discuss Disability Inclusion

Secretary of Labor Tom Perez visited Northrop Grumman's headquarters in Virginia this week to talk with its workers and management about how they deliver on the global services firm and federal contractor's commitment to disability inclusion. "Northrop Grumman has been in the vanguard when it comes to hiring people with disabilities, recognizing the assets they bring to the table and adopting innovative policies to ensure they are accommodated in the workplace," noted Perez in a blog post about his visit, which was one of many events he participated in this week to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Read the Secretary's blog post

Letter to Governors on Employment First

On July 22, 2015, Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard, and Delaware Governor Jack Markell signed a letter to the Governors of States and U.S. territories urging them to adopt policies and practices that promote the employment of people with significant disabilities in integrated settings earning at or above the minimum wage.

Read the letter

Senator Tom Harkin Discusses the Role of Employment in Advancing the ADA

This week, Senator Tom Harkin, author and sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), wrote a blog post for about the progress he feels the law has made in the 25 years since its enactment and the work still to come, especially related to employment. He also recognized companies that have demonstrated exemplary disability inclusion efforts, calling on others to follow their lead in order to deliver on the ADA’s promise over the next 25 years.

Read Senator Harkin's blog post

Webinar to Address Employment of Women with Disabilities

On Tuesday, July 28 at 1:00 p.m. ET, the U.S. Department of Labor's Women's Bureau will host "Women and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)," a webinar addressing the ADA's impact on the employment of women, including issues related to pregnancy and domestic violence. Featured speakers will include Jennifer Sheehy, Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for Disability Employment Policy; Rachael Langston, Staff Attorney at the Legal Aid Society's Employment Law Center; and Anna Darzins, Haas Scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Social Welfare.

Register for the webinar

NDEAM 2015 Poster Now Available

The official 2015 National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) poster is now available, along with various other materials that can assist employers and organizations in planning observances. Held each October, NDEAM is a time to celebrate the diverse contributions of America's workers with disabilities. The theme for this year — which is NDEAM's 70th anniversary — is "My Disability is One Part of Who I Am."

View the NDEAM webpage
Order posters in hard copy

Awards Ceremony to Recognize WRP Participants

The annual Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP) Awards Ceremony will take place on July 28 at the National Youth Transitions Center in Washington, D.C. At the event, four WRP participants will receive the Judith C. Gilliom Award, which recognizes those who exemplify exceptional service and the positive contributions of individuals with disabilities to the federal workforce. The awards are named for the U.S. Department of Defense's (DoD) Disability Program Manager for 25 years and one of the founders of the WRP, which is co-sponsored by DoD and ODEP.

Register for the event
Learn more about the WRP

Guide Helps Employers Create Inclusive Internship Programs

The Office of Disability Employment Policy recently released a new resource for employers seeking to diversity their workforce with the skills and talents of people with disabilities, especially young adults with disabilities. Inclusive Internship Programs: A How-to Guide for Employers addresses the benefits of internships to both individuals and employers and the various things employers should consider when establishing internship programs to ensure they are open to all qualified candidates.

Read the guide

Complete Getting to Work Training Curriculum for HIV/AIDS Service Providers Now Available

All three modules of Getting to Work: A Training Curriculum for HIV/AIDS Service Providers and Housing Providers are now available. This multi-media curriculum educates about proven strategies for incorporating employment into the HIV/AIDS service menu and was developed collaboratively by the Office of Disability Employment Policy and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of HIV/AIDS Housing, with input from several organizations leading the way on this issue.

Read the news release
Go to the curriculum

PEAT Marks ADA25 with New Web Content

In celebration of the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the ODEP-funded Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology (PEAT) has published a blog post by policy thought leader Bobby Silverstein on the ADA's past and future impact on accessible workplace technology. Other new features of include an interview with disability rights lawyer Lainey Feingold, as well as an updated site design and navigation. PEAT encourages users to check out's new look and join the conversation around accessible technology's impact on the employment of people with disabilities.

Read the PEAT blog post by Bobby Silverstein
Read PEAT's interview with Lainey Feingold

EEOC Updates Schedule A Series

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, in partnership with the Office of Disability Employment Policy and the Office of Personnel Management, recently updated The ABCs of Schedule A, a series of guides that provide information about the Schedule A appointing authority, which allows for the expedited, non-competitive hiring of qualified individuals with disabilities by federal agencies. The series comprises five guides in total, one each for hiring managers, HR professionals, disability program managers, service providers and applicants with disabilities.

Access the guides
Read the press release

NCSL Honors ADA25, Issues New State Resource Package

In honor of the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) issued a blog post about state-level efforts to increase the workforce inclusion of people with disabilities and resources that can assist state policymakers in doing so, including a new customizable resource package it helped develop as part of its partnership in the ODEP-funded National Employer Policy, Research and Technical Assistance Center for Employers on the Employment of People with Disabilities.

Read the blog post
View the state resource package

Women's Bureau Shines a Light on Employment of Women with Disabilities

The U.S. Department of Labor's Women's Bureau recently released two publications specific to the employment of women with disabilities — an issue brief titled Key Characteristics of Working Women with Disabilities and a fact sheet titled A Guide to Hiring Women with Disabilities. The former provides a summary of demographic information, while the latter addresses the potential benefits of hiring women with disabilities and promising practices for recruitment and retention.

Read the issue brief
Read the fact sheet

Updated National HIV/AIDS Strategy Sets Priorities through 2020

The White House Office of National AIDS Policy will release the "National HIV/AIDS Strategy: Updated to 2020" on July 30, 2015. The updated Strategy will be released in Atlanta, Georgia, and the entire event will be live streamed.

Read the blog from the director of the White House Office of National AIDS Policy
Watch an informational video on the Strategy