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October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month

James Clarke, second from left, Hanscom Diversity, Equity and Inclusion affirmative employment program manager, reads the National Disability Employment Awareness Month proclamation to Col. Katrina Stephens, installation commander, from left, Marianne Montler, DEI disability program manager, and Chief Master Sgt. William Hebb, installation command chief, during a signing at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., Oct. 1. NDEAM is held each October to recognize the many and varied contributions of people with disabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Maki)

James Clarke, second from left, Hanscom Diversity, Equity and Inclusion affirmative employment program manager, reads the National Disability Employment Awareness Month proclamation to Col. Katrina Stephens, installation commander, from left, Marianne Montler, DEI disability program manager, and Chief Master Sgt. William Hebb, installation command chief, during a signing at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., Oct. 1. NDEAM is held each October to recognize the many and varied contributions of people with disabilities. (U.S. Air Force photo by Todd Maki)

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- National Disability Employment Awareness Month is held each October to recognize the many and varied contributions of people with disabilities. 

Reflecting on this year's theme, “America’s Recovery: Powered by Inclusion,” officials will strive to highlight Hanscom’s commitment to an inclusive work culture.

“This month we rededicate ourselves to eliminating barriers for all members of the workforce, including those with disabilities,” said Brian Zeiger, NDEAM Committee chair. “We must include the talent and drive of all in the recovery from this pandemic.”

In a pre-recorded message to the workforce, Col. Katrina Stephens, installation commander, discussed the importance of an inclusive workforce.

“Hanscom Air Force Base is proud to observe this year's campaign and spread the important message that we value all contributions and perspectives,” she said.

Stephens will sign a proclamation Oct. 1 recognizing National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

Officials will host a storyteller event focused on employment topics for disabled people Oct. 14 at 11:30 a.m. Personnel can participate via ZoomGov with meeting ID 161 3960 7113.

The history of NDEAM traces back to 1945 when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October as "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.

To learn more about how to participate in National Disability Employment Awareness Month this October and throughout the year, visit www.dol.gov/NDEAM.