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Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez
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News Release

ODEP News Release: [01/09/2013]
Contact Name: Bennett Gamble or Laura McGinnis
Phone Number: (202) 693-4667 or x4653
Release Number: 12-2469-NAT

ODEP launches media campaign encouraging youth with disabilities to pursue career goals

WASHINGTON — To help millions of people recognize what they can do to make a difference in the lives — and future careers — of young people with disabilities, the U.S. Department of Labor's Campaign for Disability Employment has released a new video public service announcement titled "Because." The PSA features real people with disabilities — not actors — who are pursuing and realizing their goals and passions as a result of the support they received from everyday people in their lives. Because nearly 1 out of 5 Americans has a disability, the PSA is intended to replace myths and misperceptions about disability employment with new views of what people with disabilities can do.

"Many people who achieve success and have found satisfaction in their careers have done so because one person believed in them and urged them to set their expectations high," said Kathy Martinez, assistant secretary of labor for disability employment policy. "This PSA challenges viewers to rethink their ideas about what people with disabilities can achieve and consider what they might do to encourage young people with disabilities to pursue their personal and career goals."

The PSA is being distributed to more than 1,400 television, including cable, English- and Spanish-language stations.

"Because" is the latest product of the Campaign for Disability Employment — a unique collaboration of leading business and disability organizations with the Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy that promotes the hiring, retention and advancement of people with disabilities. Campaign members include the American Association of People with Disabilities, the Job Accommodation Network, the National Business and Disability Council, the National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce, the Society for Human Resource Management, Special Olympics and the U.S. Business Leadership Network.

To download the PSA and posters or learn more about the Campaign for Disability Employment, visit http://www.whatcanyoudocampaign.org.