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<<Press Releases Posted: 10-01-2016

National Disability Employment Awareness Month 2016 Theme is ‘#InclusionWorks
OCTOBER 3, 2016

WASHINGTON, DC — Goodwill of Greater Washington (Goodwill) is once again pleased to be joining the Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) in celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) throughout October. This year’s theme: “#InclusionWorks

“By fostering a culture that embraces individual differences, including disabilities, businesses profit by having a wider variety of tools to confront challenges,” said Jennifer Sheehy, deputy assistant secretary of labor for disability employment policy. “Our nation’s most successful companies proudly make inclusion a core value. They know that inclusion works. It works for workers, it works for employers, it works for opportunity, and it works for innovation.”

Observed in October, NDEAM is a nationwide campaign celebrating the skills and talents workers with disabilities bring to our workplaces. Led nationally by ODEP, NDEAM’s true spirit lies in the many grassroots observances held nationwide every year. Each spring, the theme for each year’s celebration is announced to help organizations and groups plan their events.

ODEP created this year’s theme with input from a wide variety of its partner organizations, including those representing employers, people with disabilities and their families, and federal, state and local agencies. The hope is that the hashtag theme spurs both individuals and groups to post images and stimulate discussion on social media about the many ways “inclusion works.

“Goodwill of Greater Washington is proud to join the DOL in recognition of the significant contributions and achievements of workers with disabilities”, said Brendan Hurley, Goodwill of Greater Washington Chief Marketing Officer. “We will do all we can to spread the word to Goodwill constituents and beyond.”

Goodwill of Greater Washington’s contracts division employs almost 200 people at 13 sites including the Bureau of Engraving & Printing and the Senate Office Building. 78% of all the labor hours at these contract sites are performed by individuals with significant disabilities. The hourly wage with benefits for all contracts employees exceeds $15 an hour.

NDEAM dates back to 1945, when Congress declared the first week in October “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” The word “physically” was deleted in 1962 to acknowledge individuals with all types of disabilities. The week was expanded to a month by Congress in 1988 and its name was also changed to NDEAM. When ODEP was created in 2001, it was given responsibility for NDEAM, including selection of its annual theme.

For more information about NDEAM, including specific ideas for how different types of organizations can participate, visit

Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP): ODEP’s mission is to develop and influence policies and practices to increase the number and quality of employment opportunities for people with disabilities. For more information, please visit the ODEP website at

ODEP Media Contacts:

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