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NBDC Offers Federal Contractors Educational Programs

October 16, 2013
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The National Business & Disability Council (NBDC) at The Viscardi Center is offering its members a tiered set of briefings and educational programs to further educate them on the Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 rule change recently announced by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) requiring that 7% of their workforces be made up of people with disabilities. The change, effective March 2014, will impose significant obligations on federal contractors and subcontractors to show they are actively working towards building and maintaining a diverse, and inclusive, workforce.

“As a comprehensive resource for disability employment best practices, we are offering this webinar, as well as more in-depth programs, so that federal contractors have a better understanding of the Section 503 rule change, how it affects them and what they must do to maintain and exceed compliance,” said Laura M. Francis, Executive Director at the National Business & Disability Council at The Viscardi Center. “We hope the Section 503 rule change has a tangible affect on the extremely low labor force participation rate of people with disabilities.”

The OFCCP focused programs, which may be delivered at members’ offices, include:

Executive Briefing – 60-90 minutes for C-Suite and Senior Executives
This briefing highlights key provisions of the new regulations, referencing the nearly 40 years of implementation of the current Section 503 regulations, such as ‘Who is a qualified individual with a disability?’; a contractor’s right to define jobs and job-related entrance and performance standards;  how the concept of reasonable accommodations is and has been interpreted, and how rarely the defenses of ‘undue hardship’ and ‘business necessity’ have been successful; sourcing to find the talents of qualified individuals with disabilities; the challenges of balancing employees’ right to privacy about their disabilities vs. the dire contractor need to know about disclosed disabilities; necessary recordkeeping; and consequences for failing to comply with the OFCCP’s rules.

Training the Trainers of Managers and Supervisors – 4- to 8-Hour Training Programs
Given the amount of current training on Diversity and Inclusion trainings presently – and presumably – occurring, this program provides detailed training for individuals already responsible for disability and diversity initiatives that enable them to be current on these new regulatory requirements and that compliment the contractor’s existing D & I efforts in disability.  Diving much deeper into recruitment resources and self-disclosure techniques, NBDC trainers would create the capacity in your existing trainers to train your employees on these regulatory obligations, or NBDC could conduct these trainings for the contractor.

Consulting Services
Many contractors want to know if their current training, medical screening, job-intake processes, policies for making reasonable accommodations, and accessibility of their ICT (information and communications technologies) meet standards and/or best practices available today. Others may want to know whether their physical plants and operations meet the ADA’s accessibility guidelines. Whatever the issues may be, the NBDC can provide skilled consultants to meet with and assess current policies, practices and procedures might create unnecessary risk as it implements the requirements of the new 7% Rule.

For more information, please contact Laura Francis at lfrancis@viscardicenter.org or 516.465.1519.

NBDC’s services are offered through tiered membership levels or on a consultant basis and assist businesses in developing strategies to implement, grow, measure and create solid disability programs. These include talent acquisition, advancement and retention strategies; customized training seminars and workshops; facility and IT accessibility surveys; and an information hotline for disability-related employment issues. Its initiatives to assist employers with expanding their recruiting of people with disabilities include Job Postings Services that aid in attracting qualified people with disabilities to their companies, the NBDC National Resume Database® that provides access to resume listings 24/7 and the Emerging Leaders summer internship program for college students with disabilities.

Founded by Dr. Henry Viscardi, Jr., who served as disability advisor to eight U.S. presidents and became one of the world’s leading advocates, The Viscardi Center provides Pre-K through High School education, school-to-work transition services, vocational training, career counseling and placement, assistive technology and workforce diversification assistance to children, adolescents, and adults with disabilities and businesses. A global leader, it employs more than 300 professionals, including experts in education, human resources and technology. Learn more at viscardicenter.org



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