Positive Parenting: Helping girls with disabilities land jobs

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) – From Spring 2019 to Spring 2020, the unemployment rate for young adults surged from 8.4 percent to 24.4 percent. Experts say many young people are trying to make up for lost work due to the pandemic, but young women with disabilities may have a particularly difficult time gaining employment. Thankfully there’s a new program that may benefit these young women.

Experts say as many as one in three young adults are out of school and unemployed.

While finding a job isn’t always easy, it can be particularly challenging for young women with disabilities. Research shows this group faces discrimination due to gender and disability.

Researchers compared a group of over 350 teenage girls: half received the curriculum Paths to the Future. The other half did not. They found the curriculum to be effective in teaching young women new skills, such as self-advocacy and increasing awareness of new career options.

The scientists say parents can adopt some of the strategies at home. Role playing job interviews is one beneficial activity. Also, celebrate personal strengths to foster confidence. And encourage young women to advocate for themselves when it comes to finding a job. Explaining workplace laws for people with disabilities may also help empower your teen.

The United Nations estimates that 75 percent of women with disabilities are unemployed and women with disabilities who are employed often earn less than their male counterparts and women without disabilities.

Copyright 2021 WILX & Ivanhoe Broadcast News. All rights reserved.

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