October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month. According the the Americans With Disabilities Act, a person can be said to have a disability if they fall within some of the following distinctions:

1. If he or she has a physical or mental condition that substantially limits a major life activity (such as walking, talking, seeing, hearing or learning).
2. If he or she has a history of a disability (such as cancer that is in remission).

3. If he or she is believed to have a physical or mental impairment that is not transitory (lasting or expected to last six months or less) and minor (even if he does not have such an impairment).

As Kathy Martinez, the assistant secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor wrote in announcing this month: “The importance of work extends far beyond any one individual. When all people are able to contribute and be recognized for their abilities, society as a whole reaps the benefits. Local economies are bolstered. Communities are strengthened.

This essential principle is at the heart of this year’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) theme: A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?” This theme conveys that we all have a role to play in—and can benefit from—increasing employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

Employers must foster workplaces that are welcoming to current and potential employees with disabilities. But the responsibility doesn’t stop there. Those of us with disabilities must understand the intrinsic value of work and the skills and talent we have to offer. Youth with disabilities must grow up with the expectation of employment; and parents, educators and other adults of influence in their lives must reinforce this. America’s future success requires us to capitalize on the talents of all segments of the population, and the responsibility for making that happen must be shared. There is something everyone can do—every day of every month.

Here at Sinai Hospital, VSP, a hospital department and vocational rehabilitation provider for over 45 years, is doing a lot to foster a strong and inclusive workforce. Through its array of comprehensive vocational services, VSP increases employment opportunities to over 300 Baltimore area individuals with disabilities and economic need annually. 

Recognized as one of the region’s workforce development leaders, VSP utilizes a client-centered approach by offering career assessment, work adjustment training, office technology skills training, job placement and direct employment to both youth and adults at VSP’s Seton Business Park facility or within over 30 LBH departments at Sinai, Northwest Hospital and Levindale. A single-point-of-entry system (intake) allows streamlined access to VSP's complete array of services.

Each year, VSP services have resulted in dozens of secure jobs for our participants with advancement opportunities leading to economic self-sufficiency. On average, LifeBridge Health hires 50 of our graduates annually into a variety of positions throughout the health system. Many other graduates obtain employment with local employers.

With strong LifeBridge Health department partnerships in providing venues to train and support our trainees, our caring, skilled professionals provide a continuum of services all of which are tailored to the needs of our clients. As a LifeBridge Health employee/member, you can be proud to know that each and every day; we are fulfilling the intent of National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

Click here to read some truly inspirational VSP success stories.

- Writen by Mira Appleby, manager for Program Development at VSP

To schedule an appointment with one of our highly trained physicians and find out why LifeBridge Health is Baltimore's premier health care organization, call 866-404-DOCS.

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  • Congratulations to #SinaiHospital and the VSP program, recently recognized by the National Fund for #Workplace Solutions as a "Young Employer Champion." The hospital earned this recognition for its proactive hiring practices and systems designed to foster young employees. Members of the VSP team accepted the award at a recent event. Sinai Hospital was one of just 11 employers from across the country to receive this honor. #Baltimore

    lifebridgehealth: "Congratulations to #SinaiHospital and the VSP program, recently recognized by the National Fund for #Workplace Solutions as a "Young Employer Champion." The hospital earned this recognition for its proactive hiring practices and systems designed to foster young employees. Members of the VSP team accepted the award at a recent event. Sinai Hospital was one of just 11 employers from across the country to receive this honor. #Baltimore"
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  • #TipTuesday Use smaller plates to help your portion control and avoid overeating this holiday weekend. #independenceday #july4th

    lifebridgehealth: "#TipTuesday Use smaller plates to help your portion control and avoid overeating this holiday weekend. #independenceday #july4th"
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  • We are so grateful for the McKesson Foundation, which provides #GivingComfort kits to patients, like Darnell Grant, undergoing treatment at the Alvin & Lois Lapidus #Cancer Institute. The kits include comfort items, like soft blankets and socks, inspirational messages, books, magazines, snacks and more, all meant to soothe our patients and provide them with hope during such a difficult time. #LifeBridgeHealth

    lifebridgehealth: "We are so grateful for the McKesson Foundation, which provides #GivingComfort kits to patients, like Darnell Grant, undergoing treatment at the Alvin & Lois Lapidus #Cancer Institute. The kits include comfort items, like soft blankets and socks, inspirational messages, books, magazines, snacks and more, all meant to soothe our patients and provide them with hope during such a difficult time. #LifeBridgeHealth"
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  • #LifeBridgeHealth was pleased to host more than a dozen #Japanese health care executives and #doctors from the Nihon Hospital Alliance. Through their conversation and exchange of ideas, LBH executives and clinical leaders learned more about the Japanese health system while sharing about changes in the U.S. health industry, ranging population health to genetic research. #HealthCare #Clinical

    lifebridgehealth: "#LifeBridgeHealth was pleased to host more than a dozen #Japanese health care executives and #doctors from the Nihon Hospital Alliance. Through their conversation and exchange of ideas, LBH executives and clinical leaders learned more about the Japanese health system while sharing about changes in the U.S. health industry, ranging population health to genetic research. #HealthCare #Clinical"
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  • #TipTuesday: Now that summer is here, we want to remind you about the importance of protecting your eyes from the #sun. By wearing #sunglasses with proper #UV protection you can help reduce the risk of cataracts and other #eye damage. #CataractAwarenessMonth

    lifebridgehealth: "#TipTuesday: Now that summer is here, we want to remind you about the importance of protecting your eyes from the #sun. By wearing #sunglasses with proper #UV protection you can help reduce the risk of cataracts and other #eye damage. #CataractAwarenessMonth"
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  • #SinaiHospital pediatrician Dr. Joseph Wiley received some big hugs and #support Friday when he spoke at the "Ribbons in the Sky" #event, which raised awareness about #SickleCell anemia - an inherited blood disorder affecting 100,000 Americans. #LifeBridgeHealth #SickleCellAwareness #SickleCellWarrior #HealthCare

    lifebridgehealth: "#SinaiHospital pediatrician Dr. Joseph Wiley received some big hugs and #support Friday when he spoke at the "Ribbons in the Sky" #event, which raised awareness about #SickleCell anemia - an inherited blood disorder affecting 100,000 Americans. #LifeBridgeHealth #SickleCellAwareness #SickleCellWarrior #HealthCare"
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  • #LifeBridgeHealth's community development team was pleased to support the Pikeswood Civic Association's Spring Beautification #Event in #Randallstown. Along with sponsoring the event as part of our Community Small Grants Program, two members of our #team rolled up their sleeves and dug in to help with the weekend's projects. #CommunityInvolvement #HelpingHand #HealthCare #Maryland

    lifebridgehealth: "#LifeBridgeHealth's community development team was pleased to support the Pikeswood Civic Association's Spring Beautification #Event in #Randallstown. Along with sponsoring the event as part of our Community Small Grants Program, two members of our #team rolled up their sleeves and dug in to help with the weekend's projects. #CommunityInvolvement #HelpingHand #HealthCare #Maryland"
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  • #TipTuesday: Raising a #healthy eater isn't as hard as it may seem. Research shows that encouraging your child to help you with meal preparation will raise their curiosity and acceptance of new #foods. #HealthyFood #HealthyEating #Nutrition #LifeBridgeHealth (Picture Source: @usdagov)

    lifebridgehealth: "#TipTuesday: Raising a #healthy eater isn't as hard as it may seem. Research shows that encouraging your child to help you with meal preparation will raise their curiosity and acceptance of new #foods.
#HealthyFood #HealthyEating #Nutrition #LifeBridgeHealth (Picture Source: @usdagov)"
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  • Some delicious treats were the right prescription for the grand re-opening of the #SinaiHospital outpatient #pharmacy. #dessert #cupcakes #celebration

    lifebridgehealth: "Some delicious treats were the right prescription for the grand re-opening of the #SinaiHospital outpatient #pharmacy. #dessert #cupcakes #celebration"
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  • #LifeBridgeHealth Chief Financial Officer Dave Krajewski and Retail Pharmacy Director Rose Jose prepares to cut the ribbon for the "Grand Re-Opening" of the #SinaiHospital Outpatient #Pharmacy. #HealthCare #Celebration #ReOpening

    lifebridgehealth: "#LifeBridgeHealth Chief Financial Officer Dave Krajewski and Retail Pharmacy Director Rose Jose prepares to cut the ribbon for the "Grand Re-Opening" of the #SinaiHospital Outpatient #Pharmacy. #HealthCare #Celebration #ReOpening"
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