Employment Resources            

Some of the resources below are specific to finding a job while others are general resources about information people with dwarfism may want to know about in their careers.  This is not meant to be an all-inclusive list of disability-related resources; rather it is a list of places to call first.  There are many universities, technical assistance centers, and other entities that provide information on employment and people with disabilities at a local or regional level. Also, consider that there are many local networking opportunities outside of LPA that can be a catalyst to a new job or career. Inclusion does not equal endorsement from LPA.

LPA Members can also contact Becky Curran Kekula, LPA Employment Committee Chair, via email for more information.


Resources

Vocational Rehabilitation: each state and most tribes have agencies that provide vocational rehabilitation services for people with disabilities.  These state agencies go by different names but have the same purpose- to assist with employment goals.   Some vocational rehabilitation agencies only have enough funding to provide services to people with the most significant disabilities and create waitlists due to this.  

JAN:  Job Accommodation Network is a resource on appropriate workplace accommodations.  It helps employers and employees learn more about potential accommodations.  JAN has compiled a partial list of accommodations for LPs as well.

Local Centers for Independent Living (referred to as CILs or ILCs depending on location) can assist with a variety of services including advocacy, independent living skills training, peer counseling, and information and referral to other agencies.  Some CILs provide employment services like mock interviewing and resume training.  A list of locations across the country is at: http://www.ilru.org/projects/cil-net/cil-center-and-association-directory

Assistance with Social Security (SSI/SSDI) and other benefits:  Want to work but don’t want to lose your benefits? If someone needs info on how going to work will impact SSI/SSDI benefits, WIPA (Work Incentives Planning and Assistance) programs provide a detailed analysis of options.  There are also programs that let you keep Medicaid while working.  Local contacts and more information can be found at: http://www.chooseworkttw.net/findhelp/

The Social Security Disability Benefits With Dwarfism link explains two programs for people with disabilities provided by the Social Security Administration: 1) Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is for people who have worked before but are no longer able to maintain employment due to a disability and 2) Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, is for people of all ages who have never worked. 

 


Questions on Accommodations and Discrimination

EEOC:  The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is the federal agency responsible for enforcing employment laws.  Disability specific information can be found at: http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/types/disability.cfm

State Protection and Advocacy Organizations: have the authority to provide legal representation and other advocacy services, under all federal and state laws, to all people with disabilities (based on a system of priorities for services. http://www.ndrn.org/en/ndrn-member-agencies.html

ADA Regional Centers: Regional ADA Centers “provide information, training, and technical assistance to employers, people with disabilities, and other entities with responsibilities under the ADA. The centers act as a "one-stop" central, comprehensive resource on ADA issues in employment, public services, public accommodations, and communications.”  A list of the regional centers is at: http://www.adata.org/

State Civil Rights Offices:  Some states have civil rights laws that go beyond the ADA and therefore complaints may be more appropriate to be filed with them.  You can reach out to your state's Civil Rights Office for information on filing complaints.


Job Searching

While some of these resources can give you an advantage in the hiring process, this does not mean you should not pursue traditional routes to opportunities

Federal Government Hiring under “Schedule A”:  Schedule A refers to the process where the federal government can hire people with disabilities through a job application process before those jobs being available to the general population.  An Executive Order required federal agencies to increase employment of people with disabilities.  

Social Security Administration Hiring Initiative for PWDs (not just for Social Security Recipients) https://www.ssa.gov/careers/dib.html

Federal Contractors: federal contractors, which make up a large percentage of the American workforce, are required to recruit people with disabilities.  Some of these positions are available through the job searches below.  

LPA maintains a list of federal agencies and contractors that have reached out to LPA looking for qualified candidates.  Opportunities are emailed to interested members as they are available.  To be on the list, please contact the LPA Employment Chair, Becky Curran Kekula

Connectors between people with disabilities and employers: There are some organizations and service providers that direct links to employers through career fairs or job searches.

Our Ability Connect: A searchable database of job openings for people with disabilities

Bender Consulting: Serves as a headhunter agency for companies looking to hire people with disabilities.

Lime Connect:  introduces highly accomplished individuals with disabilities to scholarships, fellowships, and careers with the world's leading corporations.

Getting Hired: A job search engine for people with disabilities and veterans

My Employment Options: Individuals who receive SSI or SSDI through Social Security can utilize their “Ticket to Work” to access employment resources at  http://myemploymentoptions.com/

NTI An agency that provides training and support for individuals interested in work at home positions.  Does not charge a fee to individuals- but just be VR clients or have a Ticket to Work (be receiving SSI/SSDI)

Think Beyond the Label:  A national campaign to promote disability hiring.  It also hosts virtual career fairs and a job search. 


Internships for College Students

Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP) through US Department of Labor:  LPA has many members that participated in the WRP when they were in college.  The WRP is a recruitment and referral program that connects federal and private sector employers nationwide with highly motivated college students and recent graduates with disabilities who are eager to prove their abilities in the workplace through summer or permanent jobs.

American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) Summer Internship ProgramEach summer, AAPD places college students, graduate students, law students, and recent graduates with all types of disabilities in summer internships with Congressional offices, federal agencies, non-profits, and for-profit organizations in the Washington, DC area. Each intern is matched with a mentor who will assist them with their career goals. AAPD provides the interns with a living stipend, transportation to and from Washington, DC, and fully-accessible housing. Individuals with any type of disability currently attending a US college or university are invited to apply. The Federal IT Summer Internship Program is only available to current students who are US citizens. More information about the AAPD Summer Internship Program can be found here: https://www.aapd.com/summer-internship-program/

NextGen Leaders Initiatives:  NextGen Leaders are college students and recent graduates with disabilities who have demonstrated talent and leadership in the STEM, finance and business fields. Disability:IN NextGen Leaders have the opportunity to connect with leading brands across all industries. Students are matched one-on-one with mentors from Disability:IN Corporate Partners and experience an all-expense-paid trip to the Disability:IN Annual Conference where NextGen Leaders network and interview with companies like Boeing, Facebook, JPMorgan Chase, and Microsoft. More information about the NextGen Leaders Initiatives can be found here: https://disabilityin.org/what-we-do/nextgen-leaders-initiatives/apply-faq/.

Last update: January 2020