Prince George’s Continues Disability Apprenticeship Program

Image of apprenticeship applicationProject HIRE is an apprenticeship program which provides individuals with developmental and/or intellectual disabilities between the ages of 18 and 25 a meaningful paid job training experience with a Prince George’s County Government agency.

Project HIRE participants are placed within a Host County agency for a period of one year and during that time they have an opportunity to enhance current skills, learn new skills, and gain on the job work experience. Program participants must be associated with a supportive Employment Provider Agency, be a Prince George’s County resident with an intellectual or developmental disability between 18-25 years of age, and available to work Monday through Friday for a maximum of 8 hours.

The Prince George’s County program highlights the benefits for hiring Project HIRE program participants, including: a reduction of employee turnover, a minimal cost for providing accommodations, and state tax credits.

Employees with disabilities are more likely to keep a longer tenure with a company, meaning your training and recruitment costs can be minimized. They also tend to seek stable and reliable work, and are thus less likely to resign and move on to another job. The U.S. Department of Labor Job Accommodation Newtork reports that accommodations are usually low cost (less than $500) and in half the cases, no cost was made to accommodate the employee’s needs (e.g. dress code allowances, flexible scheduling, and telecommuting). Employers are able to claim credit for employees with disabilities who have been certified by the Maryland State Department of Education, Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS) or the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) as having met established criteria.

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