EARN’s website provides resources, online training and news to support employers in their efforts to recruit, hire, retain and advance qualified individuals with disabilities. All resources on AskEARN.org are free, and we encourage employers and service providers to reference them, use them in trainings and share them with others.
Use the drop-down menus above or the search bar to get started, or read on to learn more.
The Topics menu includes six topic categories, each of which centralizes information on a different aspect of disability inclusion.
A common question we hear from employers is “Where can I find qualified job candidates with disabilities?” This section of the website will tell you. It features recruiting tips, as well as dos and dont’s for the interview process and ways to proactively hire disabled veterans. It also highlights effective strategies for communicating a commitment to inclusion, and ways to leverage internships and mentoring as recruiting strategies.
The best way to retain great employees, whether they have disabilities or not, is to foster an inclusive and supportive workplace culture. This section of the EARN website reviews a range of effective practices that can help keep and advance employees with disabilities within your workplace. You’ll learn about reasonable accommodations and productivity enhancements, workplace flexibility, issues impacting aging workers, employee resource groups (ERGs), and disability etiquette basics designed to provide all employees with a greater comfort level. You’ll also gain an understanding of return to work and stay at work practices to help you retain employees after the onset of an illness or disability.
There are numerous laws and regulations that relate to the employment of people with disabilities, among them the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Browse through this section to learn which laws apply to you and find resources to assist you in complying with them. You’ll also find information on employer financial incentives available to certain employers who hire people with disabilities.
Are your company’s doors open to everyone? Learn what it means to have an accessible workplace—physically, virtually and attitudinally. You’ll find resources on basic ADA standards, assistive and accessible technology, and the importance of buying and implementing workplace technology that can be used by all applicants and employees.
As a part of doing business with the Federal Government, federal contractors assume certain obligations. This section features what federal contractors need to know about their responsibilities under Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act as well as the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act. Recent updates to these laws require covered federal contractors to proactively recruit and advance employees with disabilities and disabled veterans, and invite applicants and employees with disabilities to self-identify as such.
EARN is committed to supporting public-sector entities in their efforts to become model employers of people with disabilities. In this section public-sector employers can learn about Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act, the history of federal disability employment efforts and the Schedule A Hiring Authority. They can also find information of the Federal Exchange on Employment and Disability (FEED), EARN’s interagnecy working group for Federal Government employees working on issues to disability inclusion. They can also access Federal Agency Employment Strategies: A Framework for Disability Inclusion, a framework summarizing legal/regulatory requirements and strategies used by public and private sector employers to recruit, hire and retain qualified individuals with disabilities.
EARN has publications on a variety of topics for employers, federal and state agencies and policymakers. Our publications cover everything from employee resource groups (ERGS) and mentoring to encouraging self-identification of disability and centralized accommodations programs. These publications can be downloaded and shared freely.
EARN’s Online Training Center is a one-stop resource for comprehensive, curated multimedia training on disability inclusion. The Training Center, which can be found by clicking on the “Training Center” tab in the navigation bar, offers employers and others interested in disability employment strategies access to a variety of training on strategies, policies and practices for advancing inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace. It includes a guide on how to use the EARN Training Center, which provides instructions on planning and delivering effective live workshops using Training Center content. In the Training Center, videos can be found by filtering by topic and/or type (webinar or training). Using the Training Center you can also explore the Inclusion@Work Framework, which outlines seven core components of a disability-inclusive organization, along with a menu of strategies for achieving them. The framework is broken down by segment with relevant videos and strategies listed on each segment page.
lnclusion@Work is an employer policy framework developed by EARN in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP). It outlines seven core components of a disability-inclusive organization, along with a menu of strategies for achieving them. The framework is housed within the Dinah Cohen Training Center for Disability Employment & Inclusion and is broken down by segment with relevant videos and strategies for each.
EARN’s Mental Health Toolkit is a gateway to background, tools and resources that can help employers learn more about mental health issues and cultivate a welcoming and supportive work environment for employees who may be facing mental health issues. It also presents an easy-to-follow framework for fostering a mental health-friendly workplace, all built around the “4 A’s”: Awareness, Accommodations, Assistance and Access. The toolkit has four sections: Understand the Issue, Create a Mental-Health Friendly Workplace, Model Successful Programs and Learn More. You can find the toolkit under the “Resources” tab in the navigation bar.
The Small Business & Disability Employment: Steps to Success toolkit provides businesses with a path for ensuring a workplace inclusive of the skills and talents of people with disabilities. It outlines various effective employment strategies and how different small businesses across the nation have put them into action. For those involved in business associations, such as chambers of commerce, this guide also describes strategies for engaging member organizations in the issue and raising awareness in their communities. This toolkit can be found under the “Resources” tab in the navigation bar.
EARN has resources that are applicable to employers across all sectors, as well as resources designed specifically for federal employers, such as the Section 501 Info Center. Section 501 of the Rehabilitation Act prohibits federal agencies from discriminating against qualified people with disabilities in employment and requires them to take proactive steps to recruit and retain them. The Section 501 Info Center explains the basics of Section 501 and provides links to relevant materials, including a page on promising disability inclusion practices for federal agencies. The Info Center is housed under the “Federal & State Government Employment” topic section of AskEARN.org.
Are you looking for promising practices in disability employment and disability inclusion news? EARN makes it easy to stay up to date on the latest disability employment news and information. Subscribe to our e-newsletter and e-blasts, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube and visit our News & Events section to learn about upcoming events and webinars, developing news and promising practices in the world of disability diversity and inclusion.
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