Virginia employers honored for championing disability employment

virginia-newThe Amazon Fulfillment Center in Chesterfield County, which has hired more than 40 clients of the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS), was among the Virginia employers honored this month for outstanding commitment to hiring and supporting people with disabilities in the workplace.

DARS held six awards ceremonies across the state to recognize Virginia’s champions of disability employment and to celebrate October as Disability Employment Awareness Month. The final awards ceremony was held today at Stratford University in Virginia Beach. Previous events were held in Central Virginia, Northern Virginia, Southside, the Peninsula and the Shenandoah Valley.

Virginia prospers when all of its workers have a chance to contribute to our great Commonwealth,” said Governor Terry McAuliffe. “These employers deserve credit for providing job opportunities to individuals with disabilities, but the real reward for these businesses is a productive, capable, vigorous workforce committed to high-quality products and services and a stronger economy that benefits everyone.”

Among the 30 Disability Employment Champions Award recipients this year are:

  • Amazon Fulfillment Center, Chesterfield County
  • The Hershey Co., Stuarts Draft
  • Skookum Contract Services, Fort Lee
  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  • Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA), Norfolk
  • Walmart Supercenter, Stuart

“These employers cut across a variety of economic sectors, from commerce to manufacturing to retail,” said Dr. William A. Hazel, Secretary of Health and Human Resources. “The jobs they create enable workers with disabilities to learn skills, earn wages and engage with coworkers and their communities.”

DARS’ Division of Rehabilitative Services offers vocational rehabilitation to assist people with disabilities to prepare for, secure, retain or regain employment.

“This month raises awareness about disability employment issues and honors the many diverse contributions of Virginia’s workers with disabilities,” said DARS Commissioner Jim Rothrock. “Truly advancing disability employment is about much more than just hiring; it is about creating a common ground of career opportunities and a continuum of inclusion in the Commonwealth.”

 

This year’s theme for National Disability Employment Awareness Month is “Expect. Employ. Empower.” Learn more about this national campaign to raise awareness about disability employment issues and the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities here.

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