Commander puts focus on employing those with disabilities

Story and photo by Ignacio

The Special Emphasis Program Committee and the Baumholder Military Community observed National Disability Employment Awareness Month Oct. 11 with a presentation on Smith Barracks by Maj. Gen. Aundre F. Piggee, 21st Theater Sustainment Command commander.

The theme for this year’s observance was, “Profit by Investing in Workers With Disabilities.”

“There are more than 54 million Americans with disabilities,” Piggee said. “Percentage-wise, that’s about 21 percent of the American work force.”

The military and federal government lead the way in employing people with disabilities. In a proclamation by U.S. President Barack Obama earlier this year, he noted that more people with disabilities work for the federal government today than in all the past 20 years.

The National Disability Employment Awareness Month observance is in October, but Piggee pointed out that it should not be limited to just one month.

“We need an environment that is inclusive and recognizes a person’s abilities every day and not just on the given month,” he said.