Posts Tagged ‘workers with disabilities’


America is a place where your job determines your worth.  It is shorthand for your personality, your motivation, your education, your skills.  What you do equals your values, your interests, and your plans.  In America, you are what you do.

We are one of the only places on earth where “what do you do” comes up in the first 30 seconds of almost any conversation.

Part of my passion is rehabilitation of people with disabilities.  Jobs are an extraordinarily helpful part of recovery from mental health concerns.  Working decreases hospital stays, increases medication compliance, increases community inclusion, and increases self-esteem while reducing acute mental health symptoms.

Working saves all of us money – it’s less people on disability, welfare and food stamps.  It’s less people in the emergency room.  It’s fewer police calls to deal with suicidal behavior.  It’s fewer beds in the psych ward because people didn’t take their medication.  Working is the key.

Working is super important.  If you’re not working, you don’t have a purpose, don’t have a strong self-concept.  You’re not contributing anything, you have little to do on a daily basis.  Is it any wonder that retirees maintain their mental and physical health better if they’re doing some sort of work, even volunteer work?  It is fundamental to our functioning as human beings.

People with disabilities have it especially tough, for three major reasons that all go together.  We’ll list them, then discuss how they interact.