Like so many others, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) are also concerned and equally affected, with many being laid off or furloughed. But times of difficulty can bring out the best in people, and we wanted to share with you how Brian has risen to the challenge at his job as an essential worker.
Working full-time at Publix for 7 years, Brian is eager to take on any task. One of approximately 110 Supported Employment Services (SES) program participants at EmployAbility working in an essential job during the COVID-19 crisis, Brian has expanded his duties to work beyond the Customer Service department and is helping by sanitizing shopping carts, ringing up customers, and assisting elderly shoppers during Publix’s senior shopping hour.
Aware of the risks posed by the virus, Brian takes precautions to keep himself and others safe, but his desire to help others is what drives him to do all he can to help. “The best part of my job is that I get to help people. That’s why I love it so much,” he says. While he misses going to church and spending time doing fun activities with his extended family, he is proud that his job at Publix gives him the chance to do what he can to help others get through a difficult time. He explains, “I’m proud to have a job that helps people, especially now.”
During this difficult time, Brian and the 100+ others in EmployAbility’s Supported Employment Services prove every day that people with IDD are integral to our local workforce, especially in times of crisis. Brian’s EmployAbility job coach says his strong work ethic, genuine desire to help others, and willingness to take on new responsibilities, make him a shining example of how valuable a team member someone with IDD can be.
Thank you for believing in the impact people with IDD can make when given the opportunity. Together, we are changing lives by breaking down barriers to inclusion.