DURHAM, NH – January 9, 2015. As the overall economy continues to grow, more Americans with disabilities are earning a paycheck for the third consecutive month, reflecting a positive end to 2014, according to today’s National Trends in Disability Employment – Monthly Update (nTIDE), issued by Kessler Foundation and University of New Hampshire’s Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD). Innovative programs are supporting the transition from school to careers for students with disabilities.
Comcast Cable executive and Southington native Tom Wlodkowski was back in Connecticut recently, at the Xfinity Store in West Hartford, showing off a new “talking guide” for vision impaired TV viewers. It’s a TV that tells you what’s on. Instead of viewing the available programs by scrolling through a menu of shows, you hear a voice read theprogram options to you. And if you’re blind, like Wlodkowski, that’s a very useful thing. Image Credit: Jason Sullivan, Getty Images.
Disabilities experts are joining forces with PepsiCo in a new hiring initiative in Burnsville, one of two company sites in the nation to launch Pepsi ACT, Achieving Change Together. The company is seeking to ease the process for jobseekers with disabilities to obtain employment with the PepsiCo. One means used is a unique training program that couples classroom soft skills training with hands-on, job-based skills training. At ProAct in Eagan, trainings are being conducted as hiring efforts ramp up in preparation for Pepsi’s “100 Days of Summer,” the time when product demand rises and drives the need for more employees. The program focuses on the two entry-level positions where most of the company’s frontline employees start their careers; loader and merchandiser. Connecticut-based Ability Beyond, a national consulting fi rm that works with companies of all sizes to increase hiring of individuals with disabilities, is partnering with Pepsi ACT, nationally and collaborates with ProAct for the Burnsville site.