Harris County Emergency Corps (HCEC) employees provided local teens and young adults with disabilities valuable training in how EMS services help save lives and gave insight into possible career options on July 30, 2016. More than a dozen 17 to 22-year olds gained first-hand insight into HCEC’s operations through observation, simulation, and hands-on instruction. “This visit offered them a glimpse of employment opportunities that exist in the community, while at the same time providing them with the chance to learn about the various operations involved in an organization,” said Jeremy Hyde, Harris County Emergency Corps CEO.
The teens and young adults are part of the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) program. DARS is state agency that assists Texans with disabilities with preparing for, obtaining, and maintaining employment.
DARS believes that individuals with disabilities enhance workforce diversity and can offer employers unique skill sets and perspectives. Individuals with disabilities experience numerous challenges in finding jobs.
The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment found that not only is the unemployment rate for people with disabilities higher than for those without disabilities; but also individuals with disabilities are more likely to work part-time and, on average, earn less than individuals without disabilities at every level of educational attainment.