January 2018 – John Robinson
Gov. Cuomo came out with his budget one week after the State of the State (in which he never mentioned disability). In November 2017, Our Ability had the chance to sit down and request funding to continue our initiative to employ individuals with disabilities in New York. We requested funds to continue our support of the Employment First initiative. In the 2014 Employment First executive order, Gov. Cuomo stated:
Equality and inclusiveness play a central role in the history of New York State, and today we are continuing that legacy by standing up for the employment needs of people with disabilities, Governor Cuomo said. This Executive Order relays what we stand for as New Yorkersit(sp) will help provide fair opportunities to all people, and I am proud to move our state forward by signing it.
Without financial support, are these words empty? What does NY stand for?
Not surprisingly, Our Ability and the New York Business Leadership Network will not be funded in Gov. Cuomo’s budget. Our business group is made up of 30 businesses across New York State-24 joining us in the past year! The business community is supportive of this initiative. Unfortunately, employment of individuals with disabilities is not a ‘vote-getter.’
This is extremely disappointing. Disability employment, if it truly is the first option, should be supported.
We wish to thank our businesses members for writing letters of support. One prominent business member wrote: “Sorry to hear John. As always, I admire your persistence. You have our support.”
We will continue to work with the financial support of our members and grantors. Our Ability will continue to put pressure on this governor to follow-up his word and support individuals with disabilities and their employment dreams.
John Robinson, Executive Director