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National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) 2021

October 1, 2021

Every October, National Disability Employment Awareness Month offers us an opportunity to celebrate the many contributions of people with disabilities to America’s workplaces and economy. This year's NDEAM theme, “America’s Recovery: Powered by Inclusion,” reflects the importance of ensuring that people with disabilities have full access to employment and community involvement during the national recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has a variety of resources to help you celebrate the month, including:

  • Posters in English and Spanish,
  • Sample articles and proclamations, and
  • Sample social media posts and tips to ensure your posts are accessible.

ODEP also has a "31 Days of NDEAM" calendar with daily activity ideas as well as specific ideas for disability-related organizations and employers.

Presidential Proclamation

In the White House's National Disability Employment Awareness Month proclamation, President Joseph Biden said: "When we passed the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) 31 years ago, our Nation moved closer to fulfilling its foundational promise of liberty, justice, dignity, and equality for all. I was enormously proud to co-sponsor the ADA as a member of the United States Senate — a truly bipartisan effort that was personal to millions of families.  For more than 60 million disabled Americans, the ADA is much more than just a law. It provides a vital source of opportunity and self-sufficiency, allows for increased economic participation, and serves as a powerful shield against discrimination in the workplace. National Disability Employment Awareness Month is a chance for us to celebrate workers with disabilities and recommit ourselves to dismantling barriers to access and inclusion in the workplace."

ACL NDEAM Activities and Announcements

Disability Employment Resources from ACL

Resources for People with Disabilities and their Families and Friends

  • Centers for Independent Living are consumer-controlled, community-based, cross-disability, nonprofit agencies that provide an array of independent living services, including services that can help with employment.
  • ACL-funded state assistive technology programs provide information on tools and services that can help a person with a disability perform activities that might otherwise be difficult, whether at home or in the workplace.
  • The Job Accommodation Network is an ODEP-funded technical assistance center providing free, expert, and confidential guidance on workplace accommodations for applicants and employees with disabilities.
  • The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Learning and Working During the Transition to Adulthood (Transitions RTC) has fact sheets for young people with mental health conditions who are entering the job market on applying for a jobkeeping a job, and disclosing a disability at work. Also, the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (RRTC) on Community Living and Participation of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities (TU Collaborative) produced a Practical Guide for People with Mental Health Conditions Who Want to Work.
  • Job seekers who are blind or have visual impairments may want to explore Career Advantage for VIPs, developed by the project on Transition Services that Lead to Competitive Employment Outcomes for Transition-Age Individuals with Blindness or Other Visual Impairments. The eight instructional modules cover the processes of self-assessment, career exploration, job searching, resume development, job accommodations, and more. 
  • The ADA National Network has a fact sheet on Work-Leave, the ADA, and the FMLA.

Resources for Employers

  • Funded by NIDILRR, the ADA National Network provides information, guidance and training on how to implement the Americans with Disabilities Act. Browse resources for employers or call 800-949-4232.
  • ODEP's Resources for Employers Page provides tools to help effectively recruit, retain, and advance people with disabilities.
  • The Campaign for Disability Employment is a collaborative effort to promote positive employment outcomes for people with disabilities by encouraging employers and others to recognize the value and talent they bring to the workplace.
  • NIDILRR's Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Employer Practices Related to Employment Outcomes Among Individuals with Disabilities looked at the literature and surveyed human resources professionals on the effect of inclusive human resources and practices.
  • The California Employment Consortium for Youth and Young Adults with Intellectual and Other Developmental Disabilities (CECY) has posted several videos that illustrate how employers are successfully integrating and supporting employees with intellectual and developmental disabilities. CECY is one of 14 Partnerships in Integrated Employment (PIE) grants being funded by ACL's Administration for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. 
  • For those on the hiring side interested in building an inclusive workforce, engaging frontline personnel, and encouraging strategic planning related to changing policies and workforce dynamics that impact the demand for qualified candidates with disabilities, visit the tools, resources, and training available from the Diversity Partners Intervention: Moving the Disability Employment Needle Trough Value Added Relationships Between Talent Acquisition Providers and the Business Community at

Resources for States, Policymakers, and Nonprofits

ACL has a collection of disability employment resources for people with disabilities and their familiesemployersservice providers and educators, and states and policy-makers.

Last modified on 05/18/2023

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