The AI Workforce of Tomorrow – the Shifting Landscape of Texas Careers  

Check out the free AI webinar here!

With every passing day, our reliance on artificial intelligence (AI) increases. As consumers, AI makes our lives easier. For businesses, AI can speed up customer service and increase sales. For workers and job seekers, many would prefer if AI never existed because they are concerned AI replaces human jobs or makes getting your foot in the door more difficult. But are those fears and prejudices warranted? Or is there an unfair stigma about AI? The reality is, when you dig deeper, when one door closes more open.  

What is AI? 

Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with what exactly AI is, you’re not alone.  

What do Siri, Google Voice Assistant, or Alexa all have in common? They are AI. In the simplest of terms, AI is coding computers to act and think like people. Most commonly, AI systems are used to make getting information to a customer easier and faster. In 2020, TWC implemented AI to create Larry the Chat Bot to assist with unemployment claims. Larry quickly grew from answering 20 of the most common questions to over 100 and has helped millions of Texans. To date, the bot has answered over 19.5 million questions.   

Misconceptions about AI and Careers 

The common misconception is that AI means historically stable, good-paying jobs are going to be stolen by computers and machines. It’s true, some jobs may be replaced by AI, but that’s only looking at one side of the coin, so to speak. It’s better to think about AI as not replacing a workforce, but supporting the workforce which supports the customer.  

For businesses, utilizing AI can free up staff to focus on harder tasks or provide more focused customer support. As an example, TWC utilized AI to assist tele-center staff during the COVID-19 pandemic. Creating a chat bot that could answer common questions instantly and simultaneously to thousands of users helped take some of the burden off tele-center staff. This allowed staff the time to concentrate their efforts on assisting customers with more difficult or unique situations. AI was used to assist staff in helping Texans in need, not take away jobs.  

For workers, the use of AI can not only remove some low-value tasks from your plate, but AI itself can actually add more jobs with higher-paying salaries. An AI system needs to be built, coded and maintained to operate as intended. And that’s only the technical side of it. There is a human side to AI too. In order for AI to know how to react and respond, humans have to teach it. Before an AI system can be launched there will need to be client relations and conversations about design. These are positions that are more people-oriented and not reliant on technical skills. 

Many of these tasks can be done by workers with middle skills that require only very short-term training, certifications or education but can connect Texans to a lifetime of increased career potential and earnings. 

Whatever skills you may want or need, TWC is here to help and your area Workforce Solutions Office is an excellent resource for finding local opportunities. 

Be a Wizard Behind the Curtain 

Behind every good AI system, there are the wizards behind the curtain. It takes a host of designers, coders, technology scientists, maintenance technicians and engineers to create, run and maintain these processes. These are in-demand, high-paying jobs and recently, TWC earmarked up to $9 million in grant funding to put more Texas workers on a path to careers in these rewarding middle skills job.  

The initiative to end the middle skills gap builds on existing TWC programs and services, which are available to all Texans through or through 180 Workforce Solutions Centers around the state.  

Call your local Workforce Solutions Center to find out what middle skills training opportunities there are in your area, and check out the free AI webinar here to see how TWC is approaching in-demand careers associated with AI.  

Head Starts for Youth  

The growing demand for high-skilled technical workers to fill positions associated with AI means Texas must continue to attract more students into STEM fields. It’s important to introduce students to STEM-based training at an early age to better prepare them to compete for the high demand careers of the present and future. Our specialized industries rely on TWC programs like Camp CodeSummer Earn and Learn, Explore STEM! and the Governor’s Summer Merit Program to inspire young Texans to continue their studies in science and engineering fields which gives them a head-start towards rewarding careers with competitive salaries. 

Looking Ahead 

AI is part of our lives and will continue to expand and grow along with technology. And while some of us may still be frightened that machines will take over and turn us into batteries, the reality of it is the more AI expands, the more high-paying, exciting career opportunities there will be in Texas. TWC supports, and will continue to support, programs that help hard-working Texans gain the middle skills they need to succeed in our fast-pace, competitive, rewarding Texas economy.  

Contact your area Workforce Solutions Office to find local training opportunities to hear more about TWC’s approach to harnessing the power of AI to create more jobs for Texans, check out the free AI webinar here

100 Businesses that Hire Veterans in Texas

We know how difficult it can be for Texans to find jobs; we also know that it can be much more difficult for veterans to find jobs. That’s why we’ve created the statewide annual veteran job fair Hiring Red, White, and You! Each year in November, over thirty locations around the Texas area host a hiring event for the 967,000 war veterans who are either actively working or looking for jobs.  

Find your closest statewide Hiring Red, White, and You hiring fair location → 

How can vets find jobs when it’s not November? How can returning veterans get jobs during any time in the year? Easy. The Texas Workforce Commission has compiled a list of employers who hire veterans. These employers offer jobs for veterans and care about the mental health and wellbeing of our nation’s heroes. Many of these veteran-friendly employers make it possible for transitioning and transitioned service members to obtain and maintain home loans, health care, and long-term employment! 

So job seekers, what businesses employ and train retired members of the armed forces, air force, and more? Check out our list below. We’ve provided links where applicable to make applying easy! 

100 Businesses that Hire Vets in Texas 

  1. AARP
  2. Academy Sports & Outdoors
  3. Accenture Federal Services
  4. ADP
  5. Aflac
  6. Albertsons/Tom Thumb
  7. Allied Universal
  8. Allstate
  9. Amazon
  10. Applebee’s
  11. Aramark
  12. Army & Air Force Exchange Service
  13. Bank of America 
  14. Bass Pro Shop
  15. BBVA Compass Bank
  16. Bed Bath and Beyond
  17. Boeing
  18. Bridgestone
  19. Burlington Coat Factory
  20. Cabela’s
  21. Cargill 
  22. Caterpillar Inc
  23. Charles Schwab
  24. Cintas
  25. City of Lubbock  
  26. Coca-Cola
  27. Crane Service Inc. 
  28. Crayola
  29. CVS Health
  30. Dell
  31. DHL
  32. Dollar Tree Stores, Inc. 
  33. Dow Chemical
  34. Enterprise
  35. Experian
  36. Family Dollar
  37. Farmers Insurance  
  38. FedEx Freight 
  39. FedEx Office 
  40. Frito-Lay/PepsiCo
  41. GameStop, Inc.
  42. GEICO
  43. Gold’s Gym
  44. Goodwill Industries
  45. Grand Canyon University 
  46. H&R Block
  47. HEB
  48. Hilton
  50. International Paper
  51. Jackson Hewitt Tax Service
  52. JCPenney 
  53. JPMorgan Chase
  54. Komatsu
  55. LegalShield / IDShield  
  56. Liberty Mutual
  57. Lowe’s Home Improvement 
  58. McAfee
  59. Midwestern State University
  60. New York Life 
  61. Nokia
  62. Penske Logistics
  63. Pappasito’s Cantina & Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen
  64. PepsiCo
  65. Peterbilt Motor Company
  66. Phillips 66 
  67. Prudential
  68. ResCare 
  69. Roto-Rooter
  70. Sanderson Farms
  71. Service King Collision Repair
  72. Seton Healthcare Family
  73. Sheraton
  74. Sitel 
  75. Six Flags
  76. Spectrum
  77. Starbucks
  78. Stripes
  79. Sysco  
  80. Target
  81. Texas Rangers Baseball Club
  82. The Home Depot
  83. Toyota
  84. Troops into Transportation
  85. Troops to Teachers  
  86. TrueGreen 
  87. Tyson Foods 
  88. Union Pacific Railroad
  89. United Airlines
  90. United Health
  91. UPS
  92. US Army 
  93. US Border Patrol 
  94. US Foods
  95. USAA
  96. UTHealth
  97. Valero
  98. Walgreen’s 
  99. Wells Fargo
  100. Xcel Energy

Over 2,100 businesses hire veterans at our Hiring Red, White, and You! event in November. Find out more about this event → 

Note: This is not a complete list of businesses that hire Vets. Businesses on this list have attended one of our annual veteran hiring events. To see a all businesses that hire Veterans in Texas, check out our 2017 Hiring Red, White, and You Employer Attendee List! 

Hope Springs Eternal: New collaborative program in Texas prison gives female inmates opportunities to ‘dwell in possibility’ – and join the industry workforce

By Margaret Hession

Sometimes the best quotes have a special power to inspire us to change our mindset, see things from a fresh perspective, and perhaps propel us into action.

“I dwell in possibility,” said the poet Emily Dickinson. She also stated, “Hope springs eternal.”

At Lockhart Correctional Facility in Lockhart, Texas—a minimum-security prison located in Caldwell County, 32 miles from downtown Austin and better known for its barbecue than its jail—on every wall, along every corridor in the facility, female inmates have painted their favorite inspiring quotes with murals, including quotes by Dickinson.

Lockhart Correctional Facility believes in second chances for its inmates and prepping these females for future work success. It provides many work opportunities, educational and vocational programs to its offenders and is managed by Management & Training Corporation (MTC) who believe in rehabilitation through educational opportunities. Their motto is BIONIC (an acronym for Believe it or not I care).

One of the new pilot programs teaches female inmates trade skills in manufacturing to set them up for employment in industry upon their release into society.

“I was brought in in shackles and released in shackles. Today, for my graduation ceremony, I walked in the front door like everyone else—a free woman, only this time I have a college certificate and an industry certification,” said Casey Brem, 35 of Midland, wiping tears from her face.

Brem is one of 14 students who graduated on August 24, 2019 from the Certified Production Technician program.  She was released early in July, but continued her studies for the program at home and then voluntarily returned to the facility via a 5-hour drive from Midland with her mother to graduate alongside her 13 fellow students.

While completing the course work through ACC, the 14 students also took their national manufacturing certification assessments with a nearly 100% success rate and walked across the stage to receive their diploma from their Engineering Program Instructor, Rosalba Schramm, and Don Tracy, the administrator of ACC correctional educational program.

“This program would not have been made possible without the partnership between Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) and Workforce Solutions Rural Capital (WSRCA), the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ), and Lockhart Correctional Facility who went above and beyond,” said Tracy, from the podium where he called out each of the inmates by their first name and acknowledged the journey they had taken together.

“It takes partnerships. Meanwhile, these women have worked so tremendously hard,” Tracy continued. “They’ve earned this.”

The training is funded through a Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) program and utilized existing manufacturing equipment available within the industry program at the facility.

What will happen after graduation? As each participant has a different release date from incarceration after they graduate from the program, they will work closely with TWC Workforce Solutions Rural Capital case managers to review career options with local employers in Hays and Caldwell counties (and other WFS offices across the state) to leverage their certifications.

“It was an honor to help celebrate with these graduates and their families as they accomplished this milestone in their personal and professional lives,” said Workforce Solutions Rural Capital Area CEO Paul Fletcher. “This manufacturing certification program came as a result of listening to the workforce needs of our industry partners, and then tapping into our strong community partnerships to deliver training solutions.”

“Today tells us what can be done when thinking outside the box happens with people with big ideas and big hearts,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez, who was the main commencement speaker at the graduation. He received no less than eight standing ovations from the inmates and their families.

“With a 3.4% unemployment rate in Texas, this is precisely the way we become innovative in our thinking and solve a shortage for skilled workers. Everyone deserves a second chance and these hardworking and inspiring women today only reinforce that message in magnitude,” Alvarez continued.

This is the first time ACC and WSRCA has partnered with the staff at the prison to offer a program like this. Nevertheless, it seems likely to be repeated with funding for the second cohort already approved.

Warden Jennifer Brown believes in the program and in its ability to change lives for her inmates.

“We all make mistakes and these are someone’s mother or future mother—someone’s sister or daughter,” said Warden Brown – a female with 27 years in the prison industry who stood up to clap for each of her graduating inmates—and who got her own standing ovation.

“These women deserve every opportunity to become all they can be, improve their circumstances and have a second chance at improving their lives,” Brown continued. “I’m so grateful to The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ), and others who without their support none of this would be possible,” Brown added.   

If adequate employment, training and certification is a prerequisite for successful re-entry into society for all inmates, then this program has already succeeded.

The inmates believe in the importance of the pilot program although some expressed surprise that females were included in the first ever pilot.  

“I couldn’t believe they would offer this opportunity first to women. They rarely if ever offer things first to women,” said Alison Albanese, 36, of Corpus Christi, during her commencement speech, fighting back tears and drawing tears from all of her cohorts. “We are just so grateful. You don’t know how grateful we are,” Albanese continued.

When asked what she would tell an employer who might be hesitant to hire an ex-offender, fighting back tears, as she held onto her own daughter who came to see her mom walk the stage, Misty Campbell, 46, of Amarillo, stopped thoughtfully, looked at her daughter, and then wiped tears from her eyes.

“They should know that we have to work three times as hard as a non-offender and we know that. We have to work harder to establish that trust more than anyone else does.  We are just happy for the opportunity to be treated like human beings and we will do whatever it takes,” Campbell stated.

“I’m not the same person who walked in here 4 years ago. This certification has built up my confidence. It has given me hope,” Campbell continued. “I’m ready for another chance.  I am stronger this time. I’ll do better.”

Sometimes hope does spring eternal.

To see a KXAN video story of these students please click here:

Summer Work Program Entering Second Year, Aims to Connect 2,000 Texas Students with Jobs and Soft Skills: Colton Head is Ready

Work experience equips you with certain soft skills such as effective communication, time management, and problem solving, all of which are sought after by employers.

Last year Colton Head learned these soft skills while working at H-E-B in Austin. This year, Colton and other students in Texas will receive paychecks again by participating in Summer Earn and Learn, a program that provides students with disabilities, aged 14-22, with work-readiness training and paid work experience. The program is a partnership between TWC, Texas Workforce Solutions Offices and Texas Workforce Solutions-Vocational Rehabilitation Services (TWS-VRS).

Colton started gaining work experience in the 2017 Summer Earn and Learn program through Workforce Solutions Capital Area. While working at H-E-B, Colton provided customer service, stocked groceries and retrieved carts from the parking lot. Colton said the positive experience he gained motivated him to participate in the 2018 program.

Photo Colton Head
Photo: Colton Head

“H-E-B was my first job, and when I started working, I was nervous. But after a few days, I quickly learned how to complete my job duties,” said Colton. “It was a great experience to learn about working and receiving a paycheck.”

Later this month, Colton will know more about his 2018 employment placement. He hopes the job will relate to his career interest of photography. He recently completed photography and digital imaging classes at Austin Community College. To hone his skills, he’s been volunteering to take photos for family and friends.

“I’m trying to get into the habit of taking my camera with me wherever I go, because my mom constantly stresses the importance of always being ready for your career goals,” said Colton.

Though he knows his summer will be busy with work and photography, Colton is confident he will be successful and cites the support of his mom and TWS-VRS counselors as motivators.

“I just really appreciate people who take the time to help you, to make you feel comfortable,” he said.

Last year, more than 1,500 students participated in Summer Earn and Learn and worked in positions as assistant graphic designers, customer service representatives, peer counselors and others. Small and large businesses who participated in the program include Alamo College in San Antonio, the Clements Boys & Girls Club in Killeen and CVS, H-E-B, and Verizon locations throughout the state.

Workforce Solutions Offices are actively reaching out to students, parents and employers to spread the word about the 2018 Summer Earn and Learn program and encourage participation. Informational efforts include:

For more information about the Summer Earn and Learn program, contact your local Workforce Solutions Office.

Five Ways Employers Can Use People First Language

People First Language refers to an objective and respectful way to speak about individuals with disabilities by emphasizing the person rather than the disability. A primary example includes saying “people with disabilities” rather than saying “the disabled” or “the handicapped.” By speaking and writing about the person before the disability, People First Language helps create a culture of inclusion.

Employers using People First Language in the workplace can help foster a culture of respect that supports the recruitment and retention of a skilled workforce as well as a valuable customer base.

Below are five ways employers can use People First Language in the workplace:

  • Verbally: Use People First Language when communicating verbally with employees and customers.
  • Orientation: Include information about People First Language during new employee orientation.
  • Signage: Ensure signage and other posted materials around the workplace include People First Language.
  • Communications: Incorporate People First Language in internal and external digital communications.
  • Meetings: Remind employees about People First Language during staff meetings.

People with disabilities are an underutilized and untapped segment of the workforce. Approximately 1.6 million Texans who are working age have a disability, and roughly a quarter have a bachelor’s degree or higher.1 However, only about half of people who happen to have a disability are employed.2

Did you know that 33 percent of hiring managers and executives reported that employees with disabilities stay in their jobs longer?3 And, employees with disabilities are rated by supervisors as being equally or more productive than coworkers and as achieving equal or better overall job performance.4

So how can employers tap into this large, skilled talent pool? One way is by creating a culture of inclusion by using People First Language as shown in this chart.

Say This in the Workplace Don’t Say This in the Workplace
Accessible parking, bathrooms, etc. Handicapped parking, bathrooms, etc.
Person who uses a wheelchair or a mobility chair Confined to a wheelchair; wheelchair bound
People who are blind or visually impaired The blind
Person with a learning disability Learning disabled

The Texas HireAbility campaign raises awareness about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities and highlights the contributions of people with disabilities in the workforce.

The Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities helps people with developmental disabilities achieve their potential for independence, productivity and integration into their communities.

1 U.S. Census Bureau, 2015 American Community Survey (ACS) 1-Year Estimates.

2 U.S. Census Bureau, 2014 American Community Survey (ACS) 1-Year Estimates.

3 K. Lisa Yang and Hock E. Tan Institute on Employment and Disability Collection, Leveling the Playing Field: Attracting, Engaging, and Advancing People with Disabilities. (2013).

4 Center for Workforce Preparation and U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Disability: Dispelling the Myths – How People with Disabilities Can Meet Employer Needs. 

Project SEARCH at Seton Healthcare Family Increases Employment Rate for Students with Intellectual Disabilities

Project SEARCH at Seton Healthcare Family, part of Ascension, is a business led workforce development effort which successfully prepares and trains individuals with intellectual disabilities for competitive employment. Through yearlong internships, individuals build marketable vocational skills in three areas of the hospital which allows for seamless and total immersion in the workplace.

For the past 10 years, Project SEARCH at Seton has developed strong community collaborations between business, school districts, vocational rehabilitation agencies and other disability service providers all with the same goal of competitive employment for each Project SEARCH participant.

Project SEARCH at Seton collaborated with Texas Workforce Commission on a video demonstrating the benefits of hiring individuals with unique skill sets. In the video, Seton executives discuss the importance of recruiting and retaining a workforce that reflects the community they serve. To date, Seton has a return on investment of about 1.8 million dollars in terms of productive time from Project SEARCH interns over the past 10 years.

For Project SEARCH graduates, this experience is an opportunity to build essential vocational skills in a critical care setting while leveraging their talents. From 2007-2016, Project SEARCH at Seton has graduated 158 interns. Of those graduates, 91 percent transitioned into competitive employment either at Seton or in the community. This is an outstanding result compared to the national unemployment rate for individuals with disabilities, which is over twice the unemployment rate for individuals without disabilities.

Our video profiles three employees, Naomi, Sabrina and Daniel, who discuss how employment through Project SEARCH at Seton has impacted their lives, launched their careers, and ultimately, provided an opportunity for them to play a vital role in healthcare delivery throughout Central Texas.

Texas Workforce Commission is partnering with the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities and the Texas Workforce Solutions network for a campaign called Texas HireAbility to raise awareness about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities.

New Career Initiative & Programs Prepare Students with Disabilities for Employment

1.PNGTeenagers and young adults who want to jump-start their careers can benefit from Pathways to Careers, a Texas Workforce Commission initiative to expand pre-employment transition services (Pre-ETS) to students with disabilities. These career-focused services will include work opportunities, such as internships, apprenticeships, summer employment and other job opportunities available throughout the school year.

The first Pathways to Careers program is Summer Earn and Learn which will launch statewide this year. The program will provide 2,000 students with disabilities with work readiness training and paid work experience. The 28 Texas Workforce Solutions Board Offices, in partnership with Texas Workforce Solutions– Vocational Rehabilitation Services (TWS-VRS) staff will implement the Summer Earn and Learn program and coordinate the skills training and paid work experience.

The Boards will identify business partners and pay the students’ wages. Local TWS-VRS offices will assist with recruiting students and providing case management services.

Workforce Solutions Gulf Coast is partnering with the Houston Independent School District (HISD) to launch a Summer Earn and Learn program.

“We’re pleased to partner with HISD in providing summer jobs and career exploration for students with disabilities,” said Gulf Coast Executive Director Mike Temple.” We truly appreciate HISD’s commitment to the future for these young adults.”

Workforce Solutions for Tarrant County is partnering with its local schools and Goodwill Industries of Fort Worth to implement its summer program.

“In addition to Goodwill, other employers we’ve reached out to include CVS Pharmacy, Klein Tools and the City of Mansfield Park and Recreation” said Workforce Solutions for Tarrant County Executive Director Judy McDonald. “Helping students with disabilities gain work-related knowledge and skills is extremely important, and we want to enlist the support of as many employers as possible.”

Other Pathways to Careers programs are still in development or preparing to launch and will expand upon Pre-ETS and career-related education to students with disabilities. Read more about those programs in future editions of Solutions.

Tips for Employers Interviewing People with Disabilities

By Michelle Colvard

People with disabilities, like me, live full lives. In a typical day, I don’t give any more thought to the fact that I use a wheelchair than someone who wears glasses gives thought to their eyesight.

I am a research compliance officer in the healthcare industry, I have spina bifida, and I use a wheelchair every day. I have been hired as a person with a disability and, as a manager; I have hired individuals who have disabilities. Some people may associate having a disability with weakness or with inability. But I represent the opposite view: having a disability fosters resilience, problem solving and critical thinking. These skills serve anyone well, particularly in the workforce.

Throughout my life, I learned how to dance (in my wheelchair), drive cars, race cars as a hobby, earn a master’s degree while working full time, and, now, raise a child. We do the things we care about because we’ve adapted to the world and helped the world adapt to us. Part of this adaption occurs in the workplace. So, as a manager, here are a few tips for other hiring managers to keep in mind during the hiring process of individuals who happen to have a disability:

  • Focus on Abilities, not Disabilities – Individuals with disabilities have education, skills, and professional experiences to offer employers. Don’t assume a person is incapable of doing a job just because they have a disability. During the interview, ask how the candidate will use his or her abilities to be successful in the role.
  • Focus on Job Description and Skill Set – Employees with disabilities want to be treated like all other employees: with consistency. Don’t lower your expectations for candidates with disabilities. Be fair when interviewing all candidates; focus questions to understand how candidates’ skill sets align with job descriptions.
  • Use People First Language – People with disabilities are people first, with the disability being just one part of who we are. Don’t talk to or about us in a manner that places our disability first. Utilize best practices defined by the concept “People-First Language” and say “a woman who uses a wheelchair” instead of “a wheel-chair bound woman.”

Remember that job candidates with disabilities likely have a pretty good idea of how they can be successful in the positions for which they are applying. Just like you would any candidate, give them a fair chance to explain.

Texas Workforce Commission is partnering with the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities and the Texas Workforce Solutions network for a campaign called Texas HireAbility to raise awareness about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities.

Significant Moments in Disability History Contribute to Employment of People with Disabilities

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) has partnered with the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities and the Texas Workforce Solutions board partners to launch the Texas HireAbility campaign to raise awareness about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities. The campaign was launched in October in conjunction with National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). As we end our celebration of NDEAM, we reflect on the significant moments in our history that are important to these efforts.

Many events in national and Texas state history have positively contributed to equal employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

Disability History Timeline (1).jpg

These moments in history are significant for establishing vocational rehabilitation programs, services and policies to help people with disabilities prepare for, obtain, retain and advance in high-quality employment in Texas and across the United States.

Our efforts to raise awareness and assist individuals with disabilities as they pursue their career goals will continue through our ongoing Texas HireAbility Campaign. For more information about vocational rehabilitation services for people with disabilities and to learn more about the Texas HireAbility campaign, visit

Follow us on FacebookLinkedIn and Twitter for more updates about #TXHireAbility.

Five Key Facts About Hiring People with Disabilities

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) has partnered with the Texas Governor’s Committee on People with Disabilities and Texas Workforce Solutions to launch the Texas HireAbility campaign to raise awareness about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities. The campaign was launched in October in conjunction with National Disability Employment Awareness Month.

According to 2015 U.S. Census Bureau data, approximately 82,000 Texans with disabilities of working age (18-64) are actively seeking employment. Below are several key advantages for businesses looking to recruit, hire and retain these qualified Texans.

  • Studies show employees with disabilities are rated by supervisors as being equally or more productive than coworkers and as achieving equal or better overall job performance.
  • 33% of hiring managers and executives reported that employees with disabilities stay in their jobs longer. Businesses which hire employees with disabilities report increased employee retention and less absenteeism.
  • 59% of workplace accommodations for employees with disabilities cost nothing, while most others have a onetime cost of $500 or less.
  • Hiring people with disabilities does not increase a company’s workers’ compensation liability. Workers’ compensation rates are based solely on the business’ accident record and operational hazards.  Employing  workers with disabilities does not impact the rates.
  • The labor laws businesses must follow when firing underperforming employees are the same for employees with or without disabilities. These employees can be terminated when appropriate documentation is maintained to support the decision.

For more information about the benefits of hiring people with disabilities, and to learn more about National Disability Employment Awareness Month, visit

To learn how creating a culture of accessibility positively impacts business, watch and share this webinar produced by the Texas Workforce Solutions and the Texas Workforce Commission in collaboration with Seton Healthcare Family.

Follow us on FacebookLinkedIn and Twitter for more updates about #TXHireAbility.