Campaign for Disability Employment Talking Points

The Campaign for Disability Employment encourages all individuals and organizations to support its efforts by promoting that at work, it’s what people can do that matters! One easy way to do this is to incorporate disability employment messages into various communication activities, such as speeches, presentations, editorials, articles and e-mail alerts. The following talking points may provide a starting point for content ideas.

Talking Points for Employer and Business Audience

Main theme: Good workplace policies and practices for people with disabilities benefit everyone and make good business sense.

    • People move in and out of disability throughout their lives; therefore, universal strategies that consider the needs of all employees help ensure the widest pool of talent.
    • An inclusive and flexible corporate culture fosters innovation and enhances corporate continuity efforts by helping employers manage change and retain the talents of an aging workforce.
    • The stimulus that drives innovation and growth is talent; organizations that identify and recognize talent are best positioned to succeed in both good times and bad.
    • Employees with disabilities:
      • Have talent.
      • Help businesses gain a competitive edge through innovative thinking.
      • Mirror an important and increasingly expanding customer base.
      • Are experienced problem solvers with a proven ability to adapt.
      • Value and want to work.
    • All employees need the right tools and resources to perform their jobs effectively
    • Consumers both with and without disabilities favor businesses that employ people with disabilities.

Talking Points for People with Disabilities (including Youth) or Disability Service Provider Audience  

Main theme: Work is fundamental to identity; it offers purpose and the opportunity to lead an independent, self-directed life.

    • Work means more than a paycheck; it yields independence, civic engagement, self-belief, dignity and a sense of righteous belonging.
    • Your experience with disability can give you a competitive edge in a job or in starting a business.
    • You have the skills and abilities to establish and run a successful business and an important role to play in America’s economic recovery.
    • You are empowered to ask for the tools and resources to perform job functions effectively.
    • You define your own limitations.
    • People with disabilities of all ages should have the expectation of work; you have the talent to pursue a meaningful career and are a critical component of America’s future educational and economic success.
    • You have the right to be evaluated based on your ability and performance at work and not to be discriminated against based on your disability.

Talking Points for Family or Educator Audience

Main theme: You play a key role in the expectations young people with disabilities develop for themselves; it is critical to strengthen these expectations by instilling a love of learning and cultivating a clear vision of work and community participation.

    • Consistency is key in infusing strong expectations; the assumption of work should be echoed by all people of influence in young people’s lives.
    • Young people with disabilities should be encouraged to take risks and be given the freedom to fail and learn from challenges.
    • Mentoring builds leadership, interpersonal and problem-solving skills and offers benefits for both mentor and mentee.
    • Lifelong learning starts with quality education; young people with disabilities should understand the value of education and its link to future independence and success.

Talking Points for General Public Audience

Main theme: America works best when everybody works.

    • Inclusive workplaces strengthen America’s ideals and economy.
    • Capitalizing on the talents of all segments of the population is essential for America’s economic recovery and growth.
    • The status quo is unacceptable and opposes America’s promise of equal opportunity for all.
    • Employing people with disabilities creates a more inclusive America, one where every person is recognized for his/her accomplishments.
    • Businesses that employ people with disabilities reflect the diversity on which America prides itself.
    • Many technologies originally designed for people with disabilities enhance work performance and daily life for everyone.
    • Tools developed for people with disabilities lead to innovative products and services that in turn create opportunities for American businesses.
    • Everyone has a role in, and benefit to gain from, improving employment rates for people with disabilities.