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The Dignity of a Job

The dignity of a job

As we slowly recover from the worst recession since the Great Depression of 1929 we must continue to recognize the unemployment rate which is presently at 85%. If you are shocked at this number so was I since it represents the unemployment rate for those with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities (ID/DD). This is a tragic situation that can be addressed and corrected by small but effective steps by all of us.
Approximately 15 years ago our small medical office decided to offer employment to persons with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities. Our experiment has taught us many valuable lessons.

1- Persons with ID/DD are reliable, enthusiastic and capable employees
2- Bonding occurs between the “normal” employees and those with ID/DD
3- Dan with Autism and Elizabeth with Down syndrome constantly have a smile on their faces, never complain and are proud of their contributions to the care we provide to our patients.
4- Our patients appreciate the efforts we have made to enhance the lives of Dan and Elizabeth

What can we all do to address the 85% number? Contact you doctor, lawyer, accountant, grocer, supermarket, pharmacy and any other establishment encouraging them to give persons with ID/DD a chance to succeed. There is nothing like a job to give someone a sense of contributing to society, a sense of dignity.

Lanny Edelsohn MD

Permanent link to this article: http://www.familiesspeakingup.com/2013/01/01/the-dignity-of-a-job/

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