SNYDERSVILLE, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) – Governor Tom Wolf has signed a bill that will help students with disabilities gain competitive employment. The Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation is tasked with facilitating job and career development between schools and employers in an effort to help students with disabilities get jobs that pay.
    Allied services Vice President, Bob Ames, thinks the bill is a step in the right direction saying, “I think anytime you can have individuals be trained ahead of times and get them ready for job preparedness it’s beneficial”. Ames says there are always jobs for individuals with disabilities and that people under-estimate what they’re capable and willing to do.  Burnley serves about 100 individuals with disabilities in their training facility and as well as out in the community. Worker, Ekinadese Ekhator says, “It will help them learn things and lean how to interact with other people”. East Stroudsburg Area School District says they already have something similar in place for their students, but this bill will free up some district funds. Lynda Hopkins of East Stroudsburg Area School District says, “Our students can go ahead, go out, get the experience, be paid for their internship experience and then they can be just as qualified for a job as somebody without disabilities”. The Office of Vocational Rehabilitation received an additional 5-million dollars in the state’s 2015-2016 budget for a total of 45.4 million in state funds.