Employment Program Benefits Adults with Disabilities as well as Employers
CINCINNATI, OH – The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy announced the official theme for October’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month: “Profit by Investing in Workers with Disabilities.” The theme recognizes the overall contributions of workers with disabilities and brings awareness to employers in local communities. Individuals with disabilities represent a highly skilled group of people that can help employers remain competitive in today’s economy.
At a time when many Ohioans are having trouble finding suitable work or any employment at all, the REM Ohio Cincy Oilers are happy to be working at a job they sincerely love. The Oilers began operations 6 years ago and continue to recognize the importance of employing people with disabilities today.
The employees at the Cincy Oilers have become efficient in oil changes as well as running their own hand car wash service. While these vehicle services remain their everyday work, this service center offers much more to customers. Employees complete a 20 point vehicle service check up (ie: tires, lights, fluid levels, etc) for every customer’s vehicle. REM Ohio’s employees (job coaches) provide ongoing education, support, and assistance to ensure a quality experience for each customer, as well as an effective teacher and coach to every vocational participant employee at Cincy Oilers.
The employees at the Cincy Oilers continue to learn and achieve personal and professional milestones- both in their work goals and also in their personal lives. “While teaching each program participant how to successfully service a vehicle, effectively manage their time and materials, and advance their technical skills that can transfer to other employment opportunities,” says Sandra Kollhoff, REM Ohio Program Coordinator. “Professional traits such as how to get along with coworkers; what good customer service entails; overall safety in a vehicle service center: and self pride and satisfaction in a job well done. When we see satisfied customers drive away in a well serviced vehicle- each worker recognizes that it is because of his or her own hard work and determination.”
Through reasonable accommodations, supportive working environments, and a dedication to working effectively with people with all levels of abilities- an investment in workers with disabilities results in great outcomes for all.
In honor of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, REM Ohio would like to recognize the individuals who continue to demonstrate excellence through community employment each year at the Cincy Oilers:
- Ryan S.
- Benjamin M.
- James M.
- Douglas M.
- Michael H.
- Marvin M.
- James T.
- Shannon D.
- Harold H
- Milton C.
- Brian K.
- Ronald B.
- Mark M.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau Statistics for July 2011, the vast majority of people with disabilities do not work. The percentage of people with disabilities in the labor force was 21.2. By comparison, the percentage of people with no disability in the labor force was 70.2.
Undoubtedly, many employers may worry that employing a worker with a disability may be fraught with pitfalls. They may worry about making expensive or time consuming accommodations. Or may be concerned about the disabled individual’s interactions with coworkers (and vice versa) or how reliable he or she may be as an employee. These may be legitimate initial concerns; however, employing a person with disabilities can be a win-win situation for everyone involved.
Additionally, wage and tax incentives are available to employers to encourage employment of workers with disabilities from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). After an employee has worked 400 hours, the company is eligible to receive a tax credit of 40 percent of the disabled employees first $6,000 in wages.
REM Ohio has recognized this win-win situation and has been a powerful force in the supported employment field for individuals with intellectual or other developmental disabilities. Those interested in purchasing an oil change or car wash can stop by and visit us at 370 Northland Blvd,
If you are an employer in Ohio and would like to discuss the possibility of providing employment to an individual with disabilities, please call us at 330.864.5895 or 419-389-9600 or visit our website www.rem-oh.com