In recognition of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), National and State APSE (Association of People Supporting Employment) Chapters recently conducted a state-led “Take Your Legislator to Work Day” campaign.

In recognition of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), National and State APSE (Association of People Supporting Employment) Chapters recently conducted a state-led “Take Your Legislator to Work Day” campaign. The objective of this campaign is to raise awareness about the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and the belief that employment and careers should be the expected and preferred outcomes of all publicly funded services for individuals with disabilities, i.e. Employment First.

The goal of Take Your Legislator to Work Day is to ask employees with disabilities to invite their legislator or local elected officials to visit their workplace to show first-hand the power of community-integrated employment for people with disabilities. The Take Your Legislator to Work Day provides a powerful opportunity to showcase the skills and talents of people with disabilities in the workplace.

On Friday, Oct. 23, Rep. Lindell Shumake (R-Hannibal) met with Learning Opportunities Quality Works, Inc. and together visited two local businesses. Shumake and LOQW visited the Mark Twain Cave and Camp Ground where LOQW, Inc. has provided support to various employees over recent years. The Mark Twain Cave and Campground, one of the area’s premier tourist attractions, has partnered with LOQW for the past four years to fill their workforce needs throughout the business including custodial, maintenance, and campground registration and shop clerks.

Shumake also visited the Mark Twain Dinette. While here Shumake visited with management and staff of The Dinette, including two staff supported by LOQW, about the importance of workplace diversity and the value that employees with disabilities bring to a business. The Mark Twain Dinette has partnered LOQW for more than five years to help support their workforce needs.

Linda Coleberd, owner of the Mark Twain Cave, said that “working with LOQW, Inc. has been great and we have received numerous compliments from people visiting the Cave and Campground in regards to how clean the facilities are.”

LOQW and others around Missouri and the Nation have hosted similar events in an effort to celebrate businesses that see the value in workers with disabilities and to provide education and outreach on the importance of a diverse workforce.