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ODEP News Brief. Driving Change - Creating Opportunity

May 20, 2022

Building Mental Health-Friendly Workplaces Event

The U.S. Department of Labor will present a virtual Mental Health Awareness Month event on “Building Mental Health-Friendly Workplaces” on May 25 at 2 p.m. EDT. The event will highlight the department’s commitment to promoting mental health-friendly workplaces and ensuring America’s workers can access the equitable and inclusive mental health services they need. Featuring insightful dialogues and knowledge sharing, the event will explore mental health parity, the role of the workplace in addressing the nation’s mental health crisis, and strategies for fostering work environments that support workers with mental health conditions. Featured guests will include Marty Walsh, U.S. Secretary of Labor; Julie Su, U.S. Deputy Secretary of Labor; Ali Khawar, Acting Assistant Secretary, Employee Benefits Security Administration; and Taryn Williams, Assistant Secretary, Office of Disability Employment Policy.

Mental Health Short Course for Employers

The Employer Assistance and Resource Network on Disability Inclusion published a short course on “Creating a Mental Health-Friendly Workplace.” This video-based resource helps employers learn strategies for supporting worker mental health and wellness. It discusses the four mental health pillars outlined in EARN’s Mental Health Toolkit and provides resources and best practices for cultivating a mental health-friendly workplace.

Workforce Recruitment Program College and University Registration

Colleges and universities are invited to participate in the Workforce Recruitment Program. The WRP is a recruitment and referral program that connects federal employers nationwide with college students and recent graduates with disabilities who are eager to demonstrate their abilities in the workplace through internships or permanent jobs. To allow their students access to the WRP, colleges and universities must register before June 30, 2022.

The Racial Wealth Gap

The LEAD Center webinar on “The Racial Wealth Gap: Financial and Other Resources for Historically Black Colleges and Universities” is now available in the archive. In the webinar, presenters from the U.S. Department of Labor, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the ABLE National Resource Center discussed the unique economic challenges faced by Black youth and young people with disabilities and the importance of accessible, inclusive financial education.

Employment Networks

The Employment First Community of Practice webinar on “Employment Networks” is now available in the archive. In the webinar, a panel of experts discussed Employment Networks and provided suggestions and perspectives from the administrative, state-wide and provider level on ENs’ benefits for Competitive Integrated Employment opportunities.

Nondiscrimination, Technology and the Americans with Disabilities Act

The Partnership on Employment & Accessible Technology added a new resource to its AI & Disability Inclusion Toolkit on “Nondiscrimination, Technology and the Americans with Disabilities Act.” This article highlights nondiscrimination provisions in the ADA on technology in the workplace.

The Changing Nature of Work

The National Conference of State Legislatures, in collaboration with the State Exchange on Employment & Disability, published an online resource on “The Changing Nature of Work.” This resource webpage features state government responses to the rise in telework and automation, among other workforce trends, for an inclusive economic recovery and increased workforce participation.