The Mayor’s Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities (MACPD) would like to remind residents and businesses that October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
Individuals with disabilities represent a valuable and capable portion of the labor force. Unfortunately, physical barriers and misconceptions about people with disabilities often limit their employment opportunities. In 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national unemployment rate for persons with a disability was 13.4 percent. In 2010, the Saint Paul unemployment rate for persons with a disability was 15.7 percent. In comparison, the unemployment rate in 2011 for the city of Saint Paul was 7.1 percent. The MACPD asks businesses and residents to identify and eliminate the physical and institutional barriers that limit gainful employment of persons with disabilities.
On November 1, in celebration of the many contributions of people with disabilities, the Twin Cities Reel Abilities Disabilities Film Festival begins. The four-day film festival features award-winning films by and about people with disabilities. Films will be shown throughout the Twin Cities as the Disabilities Film Festival is the largest festival in the country dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of the lives, stories, and artistic expression of people with different disabilities. This will be the first year the Twin Cities hosts the ReelAbilities Film Festival. For more information and schedule of events, check out ReelAbilities Twin-Cities or the ReelAbilities Facebook page.