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DHHS helps more than 6,700 workers with disabilities find meaningful employment

Placement rate up 7 percent; October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services
For Release: Immediate
Date: October 03, 2012
Contact: Jim Jones, 919-368-04840

Reporters/Editors: Local Vocational Rehabilitation offices in or near your community can connect you with a business that has hired people with disabilities, or someone with a disability who has found a job. Please see contact information at the end of this news release to localize this good news.

RALEIGH – The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, through its Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services, assisted 6,716 people with disabilities with finding work from July 2011 through June 2012. The division, which serves people with disabilities and employers interested in hiring them, placed 7 percent more people than the year before.

October marks National Disability Employment Awareness Month and DHHS reminds businesses that employing people with disabilities can be a win-win situation.

“Governor Perdue’s top priority is getting people back to work,” said Division Director Linda Harrington. “That’s our central mission, providing to all our consumers the needed counseling, training, education or other services to get them ready to work. We can then match them up with businesses’ needs, saving the employer time and money.”

Besides pre-screening, Harrington says there are other factors that give DVRS’s applicants an edge with prospective employers:

  • Services “stay on the job.” Agency professionals provide continuing, no-cost follow-up consultation to make sure the employee and job remain a good match.
  • The agency compensates employers for providing their referral on-the-job-training. At training’s end, the employer has the option to hire the trainee as a regular employee.
  • There are tax incentives for hiring people with disabilities and for adapting the workplace to accommodate a new employee’s specific disability. National data shows that often no accommodations are required in these situations. When required, accommodations can usually be met at minimal or no cost.

According to the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation, individuals, on average, “pay back” the cost of their services through taxes in two to four years of employment. Further, employment of these individuals generates savings in the cost of no-longer-needed benefits.

Says Harrington: “We serve every county in North Carolina. For every employer, we have a local office not very far away.”

For local office and other information: or 1-800-689-9090

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