Americans with intellectual and developmental disabilities experience very high rates of unemployment. Peter Berns of The Arc discusses efforts toward inclusive workplaces, enhancing the diversity, productivity and quality of the overall workforce. This discussion continues in part 2 of Intellectual Disability Employment.
Interview recorded Sept 27, 2017.
Traynham: Americans with intellectual and developmental disabilities face unemployment rates as high as 80%, and that's according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Hello, everyone, and welcome to "Comcast Newsmakers." I'm Robert Traynham. Peter Berns, CEO of The Arc, joins me to discuss how his organization is raising awareness of this and taking action. Hello, Peter, and welcome to the program.
Berns: It's very nice to be with you again, Robert.
Traynham: 80% is a number that, for me, feels so uncomfortably high. Why is 80%, that number, so high
Berns: Well, you know, it's really a huge problem for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and so many of them can work and want to be working, but they are just not given the opportunity. And, in part, I think that's because a lot of people have low expectations and don't really understand the contribution that they can make in the workplace.
Traynham: Is it as simple as raising the awareness with HR and hiring folks Is it, quite frankly, maybe erasing some stigma What is it How do we bridge this divide here
Berns: Well, the real problem's with stigma. You know, I think with people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, conditions like Down syndrome or autism, folks don't know them. They have low expectations of them. They tend to see the disability and think about the disability, rather than their abilities. And so, that's one of the things that we as an organization are working very hard to do, is to help sensitize employers to understand what people with disabilities can do and how great they can be as employees.
Traynham: Peter, I think some HR individuals, or folks that are in a hiring capacity, they may say, "I'm not aware of any individuals that, perhaps, may apply for an opening. Where do I proactively go and seek these individuals " In other words, "How do I become a little bit more proactive and lean in to help lower this 80% "
Berns: Well, a great place, frankly, is to start with our organization, The Arc. We're a nationwide charity federation. We have 655 chapters in 47 states and the District of Columbia, and one of the things that our chapters do is help do match-making and help employers find individuals with disabilities to work in jobs that they're having trouble filling.
Traynham: You touched upon this a few months ago, and I think it's important to go back on, and that is the ability, and frankly the hungriness, if you will, of individuals that want to work. They're able to work and they want to work, so how do you bridge that gap with the individuals that actually want to work Do you help them with resume writing skills, interviewing skills, and perhaps maybe a job bank, or all of the above
Berns: Well, really, all of the above. Our chapters all around the country are helping individuals with disabilities to prepare for jobs. They help them with their resumes and help them learn about what's really involved in being in a workplace, and they help employers learn how to go about recruiting and hiring and onboarding and retaining individuals with disabilities in the workforce.
Traynham: Part 2 of our conversation is up next, in which Peter outlines the return for companies that invested employees with non-apparent disabilities, including those on the autism spectrum. Click the link below to join us.
The Asian American Pacific Islander community makes up six percent of the U.S. population, but is growing more than four times as rapidly as the total U.S. population. Asians are the largest group of immigrants to enter the U.S. as immigrants. A conversation with Janelle Wong, Senior Researcher at AAPI Data about the fastest-growing but one of the understudied racial groups in the United States.
The 2018 Special Olympics USA Games will be hosted this summer in Seattle, with more than 4,000 athletes and coaches representing 50 states and the District of Columbia. Jason Schriml of the Special Olympics USA Games discussed the impact the games and this organization that highlights athletes with intellectual disabilities through highly competitive sports, uplifting experiences, and demonstrating inclusion for all.
Preparations are underway for the 2020 United States Census. A fair and accurate count of all communities is of major importance, as data gathered is used to determine federal funding, congressional representation and more. For some populations, including Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, the process can be of concern due to immigration status, language barriers and fear of providing personal information. John Yang, President and Executive Director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice-AAJC joins Robert Traynham to discuss the importance of an accurate count, especially for the AAPI population in America.
Filipino Americans make up the third largest subgroup of Asian Americans today, with millennials comprising nearly a quarter of this population. And while there about 4 million Filipino and Filipino Americans living in the U.S today, this population is underrepresented in political and leadership roles. Brendan Flores, National Chairman of the National Federation of Filipino American Associations joins Robert Traynam to discuss the welfare and well-being of Filipino Americans and efforts to strengthen the personal and professional development of young Filipino Americans.
According to the Pew Research Center, the U.S. Asian population increased 72 percent between 2000 and 2015, resulting in the fastest growth rate of any major racial or ethnic group. And as this population continues to grow, there remains a lack of involvement in politics and corporate leadership positions. Kendall Kosai, Deputy Director at OCA National discussed programs designed to help high school students explore their identity, and encourage them to become future community leaders.
Korean Americans, like many other Asian Americans, are recent immigrants to the United States, emigrating in large numbers after 1965. As first and second generation Americans, many still have close ties with their homeland, where family and friends still reside. A discussion with Sam Yoon, Executive Director of the Council of Korean Americans on the Korean American community, including their ties to both North and South Korea.
Americans with intellectual and developmental disabilities experience very high rates of unemployment. Peter Berns of The Arc discusses efforts toward inclusive workplaces, enhancing the diversity, productivity and quality of the overall workforce. Click here for part 1 of Intellectual Disability Employment.
Interview recorded Sept 27, 2017.
Elena Russo talks with Joe Haggerty, President and CEO, Alexandria Chamber of Commerce. They discuss the networking opportunities for 750 local businesses in the chamber.
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The value of connectivity can be measured by its endless benefits in innovation, growth and knowledge. San Leandro Vice Mayor Lee Thomas engages Lisa Kim on a discussion of municipal fiber throughout the city in an effort to grant limitless connection data for students.
Interview Recorded September 14, 2017. Hosted by Lisa Kim.
Yolanda Vazquez speaks with Lee Bachu, Chair for the Maryland Commission for Women. Members are selected and appointed by the Governor. The main mandate is listen to the needs of the women and to meet the goals of the state of Maryland. The Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame recognizes accomplished women throughout the state, such as Clara Barton & Rachel Carson. The commission has been hosting public forums such as “Voices of Maryland”, relating to women’s issues on transportation, health insurance, pay equality, day care and other issues focusing on the future of women.