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Category archive for: Democrats

810 Hawaiians with Disabilities Leave the Workforce

Washington, D.C., March 23 –While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 810 people with disabilities left Hawaii’s workforce last year. Said Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, president of RespectAbility, “After strong job growth for people with disabilities in the state, this is a troubling development. People with disabilities want the income and dignity of work, just like anyone else.”

The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 59,469 working-age (ages 18-64) people with disabilities living in Hawaii. Out of that number, only 25,546 have jobs. That means the Aloha state has a 43 percent disability employment rate. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that Hawaii ranks 14th out of the 50 states for disability employment. While some Hawaiians with disabilities left the workforce last year, the state’s disability employment rate has been steadily increasing over the years from 31.6 percent in 2015 to 43 percent in 2017.

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Rhode Island Gains 7,758 Jobs for People with Disabilities, Jumps From 47th to 19th in Disability Employment Rate

Washington, D.C., March 20 – Amid a nationwide trend of job growth for people with disabilities, Rhode Island has overcome great challenges to become 19th in the nation in terms of disability employment. According to the 2018 Disability Statistics Compendium, out of 75,806 working-age (18-64) Rhode Islanders with disabilities, 30,787 have jobs. Last year, 7,758 Rhode Islanders entered the workforce, propelling the Ocean State’s disability employment rate up to 40.6 percent. That is a 10.6 percentage point increase over the previous year and represents the single biggest percentage point increase of any state.

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New Mexico Gains 7,921 Jobs for People with Disabilities, Yet Ranks 43rd in the Nation for Disability Employment

Washington, D.C., March 17 – Nationwide 111,804 people with disabilities got new jobs last year, including 7,921 new jobs for New Mexicans with disabilities. New Mexico now ranks 43rd in the nation in terms of the state’s employment rate for people with disabilities. Overall, there are 169,264 working-age (18-64) New Mexico natives with disabilities and out of that number, 57,005 have jobs. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows New Mexico has an employment rate of 33.7 percent for people with disabilities. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that job gains for New Mexicans with disabilities have dramatically increased compared to the prior year.

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North Carolina Loses 16,355 Jobs for People with Disabilities; Ranks 42nd in the Country for Disability Employment Rate

Washington, D.C., March 13 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 16,355 people with disabilities in North Carolina exited the workforce last year. North Carolina now ranks 42nd in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities with only 232,875 of the 689,612 working-age (18-64) North Carolinians with disabilities having jobs. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows North Carolina has a 33.8 disability employment rate.

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Montana Loses 1,484 Jobs For People With Disabilities; Ranks 8th in the Country For Disability Employment Rate

Washington, DC., March 12 – While nationally 111,804 jobs were gained by people with disabilities, 1,484 people with disabilities Montana exited the workforce last year. Montana now ranks 8th in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities with 31,935 of the 69,553 working-age (18-64) Montanans with disabilities being employed. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Montana has maintained a 45.9 percent disability employment rate.

Gov. Steve Bullock has highlighted his continuing commitment to his constituents with disabilities for the past several years. From ongoing efforts to strengthen “public schools instead of privatizing them” to reimagining programs “to better serve Montanans with disability in living the lives they choose and deserve,” Gov. Bullock has been a vocal and active supporter of the disability community.

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As Pennsylvania Gains 6406 Jobs for People with Disabilities, Gov. Wolf’s Employment First Policy Helps Pennsylvanians with Disabilities Find Work

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, March 11 – More people with disabilities in Pennsylvania continued to gain new jobs last year, continuing a trend from the year prior.

The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Pennsylvania is currently ranked 30th out of 50 states with 329,760 of the 880,799 working-age (18-64) people with disabilities being employed. This gives the state an employment rate of 37.4 percent for people with disabilities. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that in 2017, the employment rate was at 35.5 percent. From 2017-2018 Pennsylvania’s employment rates increased for people with disabilities as 6,406 Pennsylvanians with disabilities found new employment opportunities.

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10,033 New Jobs for People with Disabilities in Colorado as Gov. Jared Polis’ Administration Wants to Ensure Independence

Washington D.C., March 9 – Colorado now ranks 11th in the nation for employment rates of people with disabilities with 141,691 of the 311,449 working-age (18-64) Coloradoans with disabilities being employed. The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows Colorado has an employment of 45.5 percent for people with disabilities. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that during the previous year, Colorado’s employment rate for people with disabilities was 42.7 percent. From 2017-2018 Colorado’s employment rates increased for people with disabilities as 10,033 Coloradoans with disabilities found new employment opportunities. Colorado’s previous Governor, John Hickenlooper, had prioritized jobs for people with disabilities.

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9400 Nevadans with Disabilities Lose Jobs, Leading to New Gov. Steve Sisolak Saying They “Are Great Asset to our Workforce”

Washington, D.C., March 8 – During the 2019 National Governors’ Association winter meeting, newly elected Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak made his commitment to people with disabilities crystal clear: “We view people with disabilities as people with abilities, tremendous abilities that are great assets to our workforce.”

The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows that there are 183,918 working-age people (ages 18-64) with disabilities living in Nevada. Out of that number, 73,968 Nevadans with disabilities have jobs. That means the Silver State has a disability employment rate of 40.2 percent. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that Nevada ranks 22nd out of the 50 states for disability employment. Census Bureau data also shows that more than 9,400 people with disabilities in Nevada lost jobs last year.

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1381 Connecticuters with Disabilities Gain Jobs as Gov. Ned Lamont Promises “Absolute Opportunity”

Washington, D.C., March 8 – During the 2019 National Governors’ Association winter meeting, newly elected Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont vowed to do “everything we can to make sure” people with disabilities have “the absolute opportunity to work and thrive in our communities.”

The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows there are 189,419 working-age people (ages 18-64) with disabilities living in Connecticut. Out of that number, 76,096 have jobs. That means the Nutmeg State has a disability employment rate of 40.2 percent. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that Connecticut ranks 21st out of the 50 states for disability employment. Census Bureau data also shows that 1,381 people with disabilities entered the state’s workforce last year.

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8,000 Michiganders with Disabilities Lose Jobs, Leading to New Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Saying “Everyone Needs a Path to Prosperity”

Washington, D.C., March 7 – During the 2019 National Governors’ Association winter meeting, newly elected Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer pledged to “forge relationships” with her state’s disability community. She said people with disabilities are “a strong, vocal, powerful community in the state of Michigan” and “everyone needs a path to prosperity and dignity in work.”

The newly published 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium shows that there are 727,451 working-age (ages 18-64) people with disabilities living in Michigan. Out of that number, only 246,196 Michiganders with disabilities have jobs. That means the Great Lake State has a disability employment rate of only 33.8 percent. Further analysis by the nonpartisan advocacy group RespectAbility shows that Michigan ranks 41st out of the 50 states for disability employment. Census Bureau data also shows that more than 8,000 people with disabilities lost jobs in the state of Michigan last year. Continue reading 8,000 Michiganders with Disabilities Lose Jobs, Leading to New Gov. Gretchen Whitmer Saying “Everyone Needs a Path to Prosperity”

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20,000 Illinoisans with Disabilities Gain Jobs, are “One of the Priorities” for New Gov. JB Pritzker

Washington, D.C., March 7 – During the 2019 National Governors’ Association winter meeting, newly elected Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker vowed to make people with disabilities “one of the priorities” as he rebuilds his state’s policies and programs.

Speaking of the budgetary challenges created by his predecessor, Pritzker said, “services and programs, including some employment programs…just got wiped out.” He emphasized the need to “rebuild these services, many of the opportunities” that people with disabilities were using to enter Illinois’ economy.

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2100 New Jerseyans with Disabilities Get Jobs as Gov. Phil Murphy Vows to Serve “the Entire Disability Community”

Washington, D.C., March 7 –During the 2019 National Governors’ Association (NGA) winter meeting, Gov. Phil Murphy of New Jersey spoke about his commitment to serve “the entire disability community.” In New Jersey, he added, “we rise or fall as one family.”

Gov. Murphy pointed to his own cabinet, which includes a newly created Office of the Ombudsman for Individuals with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities and Their Families, as a testament to his commitment to serve New Jerseyans with disabilities and vowed, “we’ve got a lot of elements in our budget” that will positively impact people with disabilities.

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The State of the Union and Addressing Disability Issues

Washington, D.C., Feb. 7 – Often presidential addresses to the nation fail to include people with disabilities and the state of their lives. However, President Donald J. Trump did not make that mistake in this year’s State of the Union address on Tuesday night. He mentioned Americans with disabilities and issues relevant to the disability community: employment, medical research and health care.

Unemployment for Americans with Disabilities Reached an All-Time Low

Trump, in proudly announcing our country’s strong economy, pointed to our record low unemployment numbers. When declaring these statistics for communities of color, he also boasted of an “all-time low” in unemployment for Americans with Disabilities.

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Candidates Who Support Opportunities for People with Disabilities Won Big

Washington, D.C., Nov. 19 – Key senate and gubernatorial candidates from both sides of the political aisle who support opportunities for people with disabilities won big this election, showing that disability rights is a winning issue.

There are 56 million people with disabilities (one in five Americans), more than 35 million of whom are eligible voters (one-sixth of the electorate). According to a recent survey, 74 percent of likely voters have a disability themselves or have a family member or a close friend with disabilities. Voters are more likely to support candidates who prioritize ensuring that children with disabilities get the education and training they need to succeed as well expanding job and career opportunities for people with disabilities.

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The Power of Women in Politics

Reflections from a Policy Fellow on AAPC

Washington, D.C., Nov. 13 – The American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC) conference about the power of women posed a key question: “Was it the year of the woman?” There were four panels of distinguished women consultants who spoke on “the year of the woman,” the women voting bloc, the founding of consulting firms by women, and the look ahead to 2020. The consensus – it turned out to be the year of the democratic woman.

Celinda Lake, the founder of Lake Research Partners, who previously conducted a poll on the attitudes of disabilities with voters, gave the best answer of the day. “I am sick of the year of the woman,” she said. “I hope we get a decade.”

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Disability Advocates Cardin and Hogan Win Re-Elections

Rockville, Maryland, Nov. 9 – Both Republican Gov. Larry Hogan and Democratic Sen. Ben Cardin successfully defended their seats against their challengers, Ben Jealous and Tony Campbell. Hogan and Cardin’s success shows that disability rights is a nonpartisan issue.

This past year was a year of steady job growth in Maryland. Last year, 5,944 people with disabilities got new jobs. In total, there are 334,505 working-age people living with disabilities in Maryland. That total includes people who are blind or deaf or have other visible conditions such as spinal cord injuries, as well as people with invisible disabilities including learning disabilities, mental health or Autism. Among them, 137,517, or 41.1 percent have jobs. In comparison, 80.2 percent of working-age residents of Maryland without disabilities are employed. Maryland ranks 17th compared to the rest of the country for employment of people with disabilities.

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Disability Advocates Casey and Wolf Win Re-Elections

Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Nov. 9 – Both Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and Sen. Bob Casey, Jr., successfully defended their seats against their challengers, Scott Wagner and Lou Barletta. Each of these individuals have spoken about the importance of including the more than 1.7 million Pennsylvanians living with a disability in society – from education to employment to health care.

“I am delighted that Pennsylvania has spoken so resoundingly in favor of two public servants who have been consistent supporters, in word and deed, of Pennsylvanians with disabilities,” said RespectAbility Board Member Richard G. Phillips, Jr., of Lima, Pennsylvania. “Gov. Wolf and Sen. Casey can now get back to the important work of creating more opportunity for all Pennsylvanians, regardless of disability.”

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Disability Advocates Rosen and Sisolak Win Elections

Carson City, Nevada, Nov. 8 – Both Democrat Steve Sisolak and Jacky Rosen were elected to new positions in Nevada – Sisolak defeating Adam Laxalt for the governorship and Rosen defeating incumbent Dean Heller for U.S. Senate.

While campaigning, both Rosen and Sisolak completed a disability issues questionnaire for Senate and gubernatorial candidates put out by RespectAbility, a nonpartisan, nonprofit national organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities. The questionnaire included 10 questions on topics important to people with disabilities and those close to them. Rosen’s competitor, Heller, also completed the questionnaire. His responses can be viewed on the Respectability Report. Sisolak’s opponent, Adam Laxalt, did not respond to requests to complete the questionnaire.

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Disability Supporter Cuomo Wins New York Gubernatorial Re-Election

Down Ballot Disability Supporters in New York City Also Win Big

New York City, Nov. 8 – Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo has won re-election, defeating Republican challenger Marcus J. Molinaro for New York’s governorship.

In the weeks prior to the election, Cuomo made new commitments on jobs for people with disabilities in a proclamation sent to RespectAbility in October in honor of Disability Employment Awareness Month. RespectAbility is a nonpartisan, nonprofit national organization working to end stigmas and advance opportunities for people with disabilities.

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