FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. — October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month, a time to educate ourselves on disability employment and to recognize the ingenuity and contributions of workers with disabilities. Our installation relies on the hard work and dedication of our total workforce and we recognize the potential that exists when including every teammate’s skills and talents. Those with disabilities have experience in problem solving, are adaptable and can contribute to the accomplishment of our mission.
The history of National Disability Employment Awareness Month dates back to 1945, when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October each year, “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1962, the word “physically” was removed to acknowledge the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities. In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
Our nation enjoys success with contributions from all Americans, including those with disabilities. Likewise, the Army is strong because we value inclusion, diversity and equality. All of our leaders should inspire and foster a climate of inclusion in order to build readiness through cohesive teams.
Let us continue to strive for a community that fully recognizes and includes the talent and drive of those with disabilities.
For more information about National Disability Employment Awareness Month and our disability program, call the Disability Program Manager at the Fort Leonard Wood Equal Employment Opportunity Office at 573.596.8048.