GOV. MALLOY: STATE RECEIVES $3 MILLION GRANT TO EXPAND TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT ASSISTANCE FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
(HARTFORD, CT) – Governor Dannel P. Malloy today announced that the Connecticut Department of Labor’s Office of Workforce Competitiveness has been awarded $3,058,706 from the U.S. Department of Labor to provide additional education, training and employment opportunities for youth and adults with disabilities. The grant will be used to better connect with those individuals who need assistance and related services that will help them overcome barriers to employment.
“Connecticut has a diverse and talented labor force, and a competitive marketplace that benefits from the skills these workers provide,” said Governor Malloy. “This grant will allow our state to build upon the employment and training services currently offered for youth and adults with disabilities and better connect them with employers who can greatly benefit from their skills and experience.”
Connecticut was one of eight states that received grants totaling $18.5 million under the U.S. DOL’s Disability Employment Initiative. As a recipient, Connecticut’s Labor Department is required to introduce Disability Resource Coordinators into the local career centers, known as American Job Centers, who will work with residents seeking employment assistance that can include job search skills, training, education or finding solutions to physical, programmatic or communications accessibility workplace barriers.
“One of our goals is to help individuals with a disability move into careers and not just a job,” noted Labor Commissioner Sharon M. Palmer. “This grant allows us to increase our efforts to reach out and work one-on-one with job seekers who may have a disability, but with certain accommodations or training, would most definitely make valuable contributions to the workplace.”
“To thrive in the competitive international marketplace, employers need access to a diverse pool of qualified job seekers,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez. “These federal grants expand that pool and show our commitment to creating career pathways and employment opportunities that result in economic self-sufficiency for people with disabilities.”
All projects under this initiative build upon previous department initiatives, such as hiring staff with expertise in disability and workforce issues. The grants support extensive partnerships and collaboration across multiple workforce and disability service systems in each state, including: vocational rehabilitation, mental health, intellectual/developmental disability agencies, independent living centers, business leadership networks, and other community and nonprofit organizations.
For Immediate Release: October 2, 2013