Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana marks National Disabilities Employment Awareness Month by honoring employees

Throughout October, Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana joins employers, government agencies and nonprofits in honoring the contributions of workers with disabilities by celebrating National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM).

Each and every day, Goodwill employment services are offered free of charge for anyone looking for a new job or a better career.  Among the more than 2,300 individuals served by Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana in 2018, more than 4% of those reported a disability and looked to us for help securing employment.

NDEAM dates back to 1945, when Congress designated the first week in October to recognize people with disabilities.  This year’s theme, “The Right Talent, Right Now,” emphasizes the benefits of welcoming the talents of all people, including people with disabilities, to the workplace.  

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the jobless rate among workers with disabilities is double that of those without disabilities.  At a time when companies are struggling to find skilled and reliable workers, Goodwill Industries would like to call upon employers to consider hiring or expand opportunities for individuals with disabilities.  

“We know that work can be a powerful source of pride, identity and self-sufficiency,” said David Tinkis, President/CEO of Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana.  “Goodwill not only celebrates the contribution of workers with disabilities, we also want to bring awareness to issues they face in gaining meaningful employment.  By doing so, we help build stronger families and make North Louisiana a more vibrant community with a stronger economy.”

To commemorate NDEAM, Goodwill Industries will initiate a new Disability Employment Coalition on October 1st to ensure that all individuals with disabilities, who want to work, will have access to services and employers that will enable them to do so.  The coalition is open to all employers and the public who may have an interest in the topic.  Confirmed attendees include Louisiana Rehabilitation Services, Eldorado Casino, Shreveport Convention Center, Brookshire’s Grocery, Bossier Parish Community College and the Service Companies.  

To find out more about the coalition, or the employment services offered at Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana, contact Lynn Stevens, Director of Workforce Development, at 318-629-5980 or visit www.goodwillnla.org.