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For Immediate Release

North Carolina is an Employment First State

Easterseals UCP’s Employment Director’s Advocacy Pays Off

Raleigh, NC, April 10, 2019

North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper signed Executive Order No. 92, Employment First for North Carolinians with disabilities.  Through the order, the governor directs state government to become a leader in recruiting and creating an inclusive job climate for workers with disabilities.

Employment First ensures that people with disabilities are working in integrated and inclusive settings making minimum wage or better.  About 35% of people ages 18 to 65 with disabilities are employed in North Carolina, which is a contrast to the 76% of working age people without disabilities who are have jobs. 

employmentFor ten years, Bridget Hassan, Easterseals UCP’s Employment Director has been advocating for advances in employment services that benefit people we serve with disabilities.  She has served in a leadership role with an advocacy organization called the North Carolina Association of People Supporting Employment First (NC APSE) and has worked with state leaders to develop and make Employment First a reality in the state of North Carolina.

(Photo: NC Governor Roy Cooper and dignitaries, Bridget Hassan on right of Governor)

Bridget said, “I am lucky to work for an organization that not only allows me to advocate for change that will have impact on people’s lives, this organization expects me to do this as a part of my job.  It is my privilege to talk to the people we support to determine what changes will have the impact, figure out how that change should occur, get other like-minded people on board and work hard to make that change happen.”

She believes by being a leader in this effort, the state of North Carolina will serve as an example to other businesses in North Carolina and will demonstrate that hiring people with disabilities is a good thing for business, the community and the state.

Link to the executive order:  https://files.nc.gov/governor/documents/files/EO_92.pdf

Easterseals UCP provides meaningful and exceptional services so that children and adults living with disabilities and mental health challenges can live, learn, work and play in their communities.

Learn more about Easterseals UCP at www.eastersealsucp.comSign up for the Easterseals UCP eNews.


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