…Competitive Employment of People with Disabilities Is in the Mission

This month, Illinois ABLE celebrates National Disability Employment Awareness Month. And there is no better way to celebrate than with  Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs’ visit to Planet Access Company (PAC) in Des Plaines, Illinois, where he saw first-hand how competitive employment of people with disabilities can empower employees and benefit the bottom line.

PAC is a social enterprise of Search, Inc., employing people with disabilities to help handle hundreds of thousands of products that are processed through its warehouse every year. Search, Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit disability services provider that provides a full range of flexible, personalized services including supported living arrangements, adult learning and employment programs, as well as medical, behavioral, therapy and home-based services.

PAC is helping change the bleak disability employment picture in the state of Illinois, where less than 10% of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities are employed. Over 40% of PAC’s permanent workforce is comprised of workers with disabilities. Data collected by Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management from July 2018 through February 2019 showed that PAC team members with intellectual/developmental disabilities outperformed their teammates without disabilities over the 8-month study period.

By the way, did you know that if you own an IL ABLE account and you work, you can contribute more each year to this tax-free savings program?  Learn more here.

Congratulations to Planet Access Company and Search, Inc.!




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