Two people using wheelchairs wearing black work uniforms pose with a man with down syndrome between them who is dressed in work attire. All are smiling for the camera.

October is Disability Employment and Down Syndrome Awareness Month

Governor Tom Wolf recently signed official proclamations declaring October 2022 as both Disability Employment and Down Syndrome Awareness Month. The Governor signed the two proclamations to recognize the over 200,000 individuals living with Down Syndrome in the United States, and to re-establish the Commonwealth’s commitment to welcoming the talents of all people, including those with disabilities, into the workplace with equal opportunity.

In the proclamations, Governor Wolf sites the areas in which the Commonwealth has made strides and where we seek to improve on disability employment and Down Syndrome initiatives:

Down Syndrome

WHEREAS, while research and early intervention have resulted in dramatic improvements in the life span and potential of those who are affected, more investigation is needed into the causes and treatment of Down Syndrome;

WHEREAS, individuals with Down Syndrome should have equal opportunity to achieve the universally desired goals of self-fulfillment, pride in their achievements, inclusion in their community and reaching their fullest potential;

Read More…

Disability Employment

WHEREAS, all Pennsylvanians should have the opportunity to live and work with dignity, freedom, and economic self-sufficiency. Workplaces that welcome the talents of all people, including people with disabilities, are a critical part of our efforts to build an inclusive community and strong economy;

WHEREAS, Governor Wolf signed the Employment First Act into law in June 2018 to reflect the commonwealth’s goal to make competitive, integrated employment the first consideration and preferred outcome for individuals with a disability; and

WHEREAS, the Employment First Act created the Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities and the Employment First Oversight Commission. The Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities is a collaboration of cabinet members and leaders across Pennsylvania. This group will review existing laws, regulations, policies, and procedures to recommend changes that ensure implementation of Employment First. The Employment First Oversight Commission establishes measurable goals and objectives to guide agencies and report annual progress;

Read More…