PNS Daily Newscast - February 22, 2018 

President Trump holds a listening session at the White House as the demand for action to curb gun violence spreads across the nation; also on today's rundown; an Arizona ballot initiative would require 50 percent renewable energy by the year 2030; and a new report find local democracy is being "run-over" by Lyft and Uber.

Daily Newscasts

People With Disabilities: Untapped Work Force

October 30, 2009

JEFFERSON CITY, MO - People with disabilities are a huge untapped workforce, according to the latest statistics. About half the people with disabilities in the U.S. who want to work have a job. October is Disability Employment Awareness Month; a time when thousands of Missourians with disabilities are looking for work and have the skills of which employers may not be aware.

Charles Nickolaus, with the Missouri Planning Council for Developmental Disabilities, says raising awareness and educating employers will help get people with disabilities into the workforce. One of the greatest barriers is the perception that people with disabilities can't do the job, when actually, he says, in some fields, they are more than qualified and often bring a unique perspective to the job.

"People with disabilities often use a lot of technology in their everyday life. They're actually very well-suited for working in the technology fields."

People with disabilities often are covered by Medicaid, which Nickolaus says can be a good fit for a company struggling to provide health care for its employees. But, he says, that's not the only advantage.

"There are several tax credits for employers who have been extended, so that any kind of accommodations that an employer would need to make to the workplace, can be done at a very reasonable or no cost."

According to Missouri Vocational, state residents with disabilities who were assisted in getting community-based employment increased their incomes by a total of $46 million last year alone.

Heather Claybrook, Public News Service - MO