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Lt. Gov. Brian Calley, Justice Richard Bernstein: Hire Michiganders with disabilities

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

MI Hidden Talent tour will highlight untapped skills, local hiring resources   

LANSING, Mich. – Lt. Gov. Brian Calley and Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein today announced a partnership to highlight the opportunities for hiring Michiganders with disabilities across the state.

The MI Hidden Talent tour aims to showcase the skills of Michiganders with disabilities that are often overlooked. The effort will encourage businesses to develop disability hiring policies while connecting businesses with resources to fulfill workforce needs. 

“Hiring Michiganders with disabilities would change the dynamic for many companies across our state,” Calley said. “There are more than 500,000 working-age adults whose talent could move a company to the next level – but they need to be given a chance first. We are working to implement more inclusive employment policies at the state level and are ready to encourage businesses statewide to do the same with this tour. The time is long overdue to celebrate different abilities in the workplace.”

At each stop, Calley and Bernstein will highlight a local business setting an example for others in hiring as well as local partners available to help other businesses follow suit. 

 “Employers that hire disabled people are ultimately rewarded with team members who bring passion, energy, and loyalty to the workplace. Disabled employees rally their fellow workers and serve as a unified force who can teach the values of resiliency, compassion, and understanding,” said Justice Richard Bernstein. “More often than not, people who have infirm bodies also possess the strongest souls and the most powerful spirits, traits which enhance the workplace and our economy as a whole. People with disabilities are hardworking, energetic, and engaged people who will be loyal to their employer. The offer of employment for a disabled person is a game changer – they do more and achieve more because they are thrilled to have been given an opportunity.”

The tour will include seven stops. The first three include:

Wayne/Oakland County: Monday, March 30; 5-7 p.m. at Embassy Suites, Livonia, MI; Hosted by Livonia, Westland and Farmington Chambers.

Upper Peninsula: Tuesday, March 31; 11 a.m. at Holiday Inn in Marquette
Hosted by the Lake Superior Community Partnership, the Greater Ishpeming Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce and 40 Below.

Great Lakes Bay: Wednesday, April 1 at 11:30 a.m. at Horizons Conference Center in Saginaw; Hosted by The Saginaw County Chamber and Dow.

Businesses interested in attending these events should contact host chambers to register. Details for the remaining tour stops will be announced soon.