Governor Colyer was pleased to announce Friday that Kansas now ranks ninth in the nation for employing individuals with disabilities. According to a recent “National Trends in Disability” report published by the Institute on Disability at the University of New Hampshire, 44.7 percent of Kansans with disabilities, ages 16-64, are employed in our state, compared to the national average of 35.9 percent.
“Every person has value and giving individuals with disabilities opportunities for meaningful employment empowers them toward self-sufficiency and a greater sense of personal growth,” said Gov. Jeff Colyer. “I am pleased to see that our state continues to improve it’s ranking in this very important area, and I hope to continue to see more and more employers finding ways to create employment opportunities for Kansans with disabilities.”
The Kansas Department for Children and Families (DCF) has assisted more than 14,500 Kansans with disabilities become successfully employed through the agency’s Rehabilitation Services (RS) programs over the past 10 years.
“By offering a helping hand to Kansans with disabilities, we give them a wonderful opportunity to realize their full potential,” said DCF Secretary Gina Meier-Hummel. “This new ranking is more than just a number, it translates to thousands of Kansans who have achieved self-reliance.”
Gov. Colyer signed a proclamation on Oct. 1, in Topeka, designating October as Disability Employment Awareness Month. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Marissa Boyle, attended the proclamation signing and shared why it is vitally important to recognize Disability Employment Awareness Month.
“It is huge to help someone move forward towards a goal they want and become more self-sufficient,” said Boyle. “Employment opportunities help individuals with disabilities build a different social network, provide financial support for themselves or their family or go to school and complete a degree. It is very rewarding work.”
To learn more about Rehabilitation Services, visit www.dcf.ks.gov.