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Image of recipients of National Disability Employment Awareness Month Award

Maximus’ DiverseABILITY Team in Santa Barbara, California, was one of four groups from local businesses recognized during the 17th Annual Mayor’s Awards program on October 26 as part of the city’s recognition of National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

Santa Barbara Mayor Randy Rouse presented Maximus with the Design/Accessibility Award for developing innovative and creative solutions for accessible structures, buildings or services, or providing accommodations to create equal and aesthetic access,” according to the award criteria.

The Maximus DiverseABILITY Team connects job seekers to remote work opportunities. In partnership with California’s Unemployment Insurance program, also supported by Maximus.

“The recognition from Santa Barbara’s mayor acknowledged the team for our efforts in hiring and helps us to socialize our efforts providing more awareness and opportunity for individuals who can benefit from the flexibility and opportunities for employment,” said Melissa Janowski, senior director of Human Resources at Maximus. “We hope that this effort helps provide a road map for other companies to create similar work and hiring opportunities, taking advantage of technology and the shift to remote work that helps facilitate inclusive hiring practices for diverse, disabled, and veteran job seekers.” 

Rebecca Soto, senior manager for DiverseABILITY at Maximus, agreed adding subject matter experts build partnerships with community agencies and rehabilitation specialists to find employment for individuals who may not have these opportunities.

“It reinforces the importance of our team, and we are honored by the recognition,” she said. "Maximus’ DiverseABILITY program serves as a community partner, resulting in a positive economic impact through employment opportunities. This relationship allows Maximus to fill our open jobs and meets our genuine desire to be diverse, inclusive, and equitable in our hiring practices,” Soto added.

The DiverseABILITY Team partners with local and Maximus teams to help drive the hiring of individuals with disabilities onto its projects, ensure workers have access to necessary accommodations and help foster an inclusive workplace. Since January 2018, the DiverseABILITY Team has created and delivered disability and veteran awareness training to more than 500 stakeholders and hiring managers across more than 31 of the company’s largest citizen engagement centers in the U.S.

This year’s National Disability Employment Awareness Month theme is “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation,” highlighting the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in the workforce. 

For more information, visit the U.S. Department of Labor’s Disability Employment Policy.