What Kansas City's Center for Disability Inclusion is doing to narrow the employment gap
October is National Employment Disability Awareness Month, but there’s still more organizations need to do to create accessible workplaces.
Unemployment among people with disabilities is particularly high. According to a recent report from the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor statistics, only 21.3% of disabled Americans are employed compared to 65.4% of people without a disability.
Here in Kansas City, the Center for Disability Inclusion works with companies both locally and nationally to advance disability inclusion in the marketplace. Their goal is to narrow the unemployment gap between people with a disability and those without.
Darla Wilkerson, the CEO of the Center for Disability Inclusion, said that one in four people have a disability and 74% of those with a disability have a non-apparent disability. Wilkerson's organization strives to provide resources for companies to implement a disability inclusion policy.
"A lot of our work has to do with just bringing awareness to what disability is, and awareness to looking at our policies or practices, and some of those systemic barriers as well as our attitudes," Wilkerson said. "Our conscious and unconscious bias can be very strong limitations or barriers for people to access employment."
- Darla Wilkerson, CEO of the Center for Disability Inclusion