Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

National Disability Employment Awareness Month

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. The Council offers numerous educational materials and resources about employment and employment issues, and success stories that highlight what can be achieved when employers and delivery systems work together to increase the employment of individuals with developmental disabilities. Take advantage of the following items to review and/or refresh your knowledge and understanding about employment.

Partners in Employment – An online course designed to help people with developmental disabilities find meaningful jobs and plan a career.  Participants create a resume or portfolio, learn how to network, prepare for an interview, and understand the hiring process - >

Meet the Future Face of Employment – The technology fields offer a broad range of jobs and careers for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Parents, educators, VR staff, and employers can take specific actions to facilitate the education, training, and employment processes.

It's My Choice – A publication that contains a series of guides and checklists to help prepared persons with developmental disabilities for their planning meetings so they can more fully participate in discussions/decisions about services and supports to meet individual needs in a variety of life areas including employment.

Project SEARCH - Student interns are provided work opportunities and practical learning experiences to enhance their academic preparation and expose them to the world of work. There are currently five Project SEARCH sites in Minnesota.

Moments in Disability History – The ADA Legacy Project preserved and promoted the history of the ADA and the disability rights movement. Monthly "Moments in Disability History" recognized the leaders in the movement and significant events that resulted in the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Employment issues were addressed in "Moments" about Civil Rights, Section 504 Regulations, Stories of Discrimination (including US Representative Tony Coelho's story), and Stories from No Pity.

Disability Justice Resource Center – Created to help members of the legal community better understand complex disability justice issues for people with disabilities, and identify and eliminate biases against people with disabilities including in the area of employment.

The Jobs Challenge for People with Disabilities (2012) – Individuals with developmental disabilities are being directly employed in a broad range of business fields and a wide range of positions in both public and private sectors. In all instances, the experiences of employees and employers have been overwhelmingly positive.

Employer Survey (2005) – A customer-focused study of 600 Minnesota employers (businesses that employed individuals with disabilities and businesses that didn't) was conducted to identify and measure issues and perceptions that constitute barriers to employment for individual with disabilities.

Innovative Employers in Minnesota (2008) – Through a nominations process, Minnesota businesses that are using innovative employment practices in hiring people with developmental disabilities and promoting an inclusive work environment were identified and recognized.

1962/2012 Minnesota Survey of Attitudes about Developmental Disabilities (2012) – A 50-year survey of Minnesotans (general population and individuals with developmental disabilities) comparing perceptions and current attitudes that include employment. Over 90% believed that, with the right education or training, people with developmental disabilities could be very productive workers.

(October 5, 2015)

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St. Paul, Minnesota 55155
Phone: 651-296-4018   Toll-free number: 877-348-0505   MN Relay Service: 800-627-3529 OR 711
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The GCDD is funded under the provisions of P.L. 106-402. The federal law also provides funding to the Minnesota Disability Law Center, the state Protection and Advocacy System, and to the Institute on Community Integration, the state University Center for Excellence. The Minnesota network of programs works to increase the IPSII of people with developmental disabilities and families into community life.

This project was supported, in part by grant number 2301MNSCDD-02, from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects with government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official ACL policy.

This website is supported by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award totaling $1,120,136.00 with 83 percent funded by ACL/HHS and $222,000.00 and 17 percent funded by non-federal-government source(s). The contents are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by ACL/HHS, or the U.S. Government.