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VIUCEDD Partners with VIDOL & VIDHS to Employ People with Disabilities

Sinage of UVI's VIUCEDD

The Virgin Islands University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (VIUCEDD) is partnering with the Virgin Islands Department of Labor (VIDOL) and the Department of Human Services’ Vocational Rehabilitation Program to create employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

“The employment of people with disabilities is a top priority for VIUCEDD as well as for many federal agencies,” said Dr. Kimberly Mills, associate director of VIUCEDD.  “We are excited to be able to contribute to the national body of knowledge about smart and effective ways to get and to keep people with disabilities employed. Everyone deserves an opportunity to have meaning and enjoyable work.” 

Candidates with disabilities on St. Croix and St. Thomas will be paired up with a job coach and a pre-selected employer by members of the interagency team.  The candidates will be trained in the specific skills they need to be successful on the worksite for which they have been selected. 

The disability employment project will feature two monthly trainings beginning in June 2016, on St. Thomas and St. Croix.  One of the trainings will be for people with disabilities who are seeking employment, and one will be for employers who wish to hire people with disabilities.  The results of this employment intervention pilot program will be used to create new and better disability employment projects in the Virgin Islands, throughout the Caribbean, the United States mainland, and around the world. 

“The VIDOL is extremely excited about this initiative,” said Arah C. Lockhart, director of workforce development.  “We look forward to this partnership and the ensuing collaboration, which will certainly increase employment opportunities and outcomes for persons with disabilities.”

This project is being headed by VIUCEDD associate director, Dr. Kimberly Mills.  For more information, please contact Dr. Mills at Kimberly.mills@uvi.edu; (340) 692-4265.