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(Albany, N.Y.) – Today, one day before International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3rd, Our Ability was recognized by Zero Project for their work developing Jobs Ability, a chatbot to help persons with disabilities update their professional profiles which allows them to gain access to jobs that are better suited to their abilities. Our Ability was one of 71
awardees among 38 countries around the world, and only 1 of 12 in the United States to win. Each Innovative Solution will receive the Zero Project Award at the Zero Project Conference 2023 in Vienna, Austria.
The Zero Project’s mission is to work towards a world with zero barriers. Worldwide, the Zero Project finds and shares solutions that improve the daily lives and legal rights of all persons with disabilities.
“We’re so honored to be given this award,” said Our Ability CEO John Robinson. “We’re so proud to see our hard work pay off and be recognized. And ultimately, the persons with disabilities we’re helping every day to find fulfilling jobs, are the real reason why we do what we do.”
In 2021, Our Ability partnered with the Ontario Disability Employment Network (ODEN), based in the Toronto area. They currently run the Jobs Ability job portal exclusively in Canada, with the cooperative title, Jobs Ability Canada. ODEN nominated Our Ability for this award.
“I’m so thankful to ODEN and their team for the collaborative work we’ve been able to accomplish these past couple of years,” Robinson continued. “This nomination and subsequent award is such an impactful surprise, and I’m so grateful.”
“Jobs Ability provides an opportunity to engage the business community nationwide in a new way, with cutting-edge technology, as well as highlight the skills of individuals across Canada who have a disability, to ensure they have a pathway to employment,” says Jeannette Campbell, CEO of ODEN. “Our mission at ODEN is to increase employment opportunities for people who have a disability through helping businesses reach this talent pool for their labor needs. We believe Jobs Ability Canada will deliver on that.”
On Zero Project’s web page, the organization describes how they are committed to supporting the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD), by researching, identifying, communicating, and supporting Innovative Solutions globally and across all sectors of society. The Zero Project 2023 annual research cycle was dedicated to the theme of Independent Living & Political Participation, and information and communication technologies, (ICT).
Independent Living emphasizes that persons with disabilities have the right to choose where and with whom they live on an equal basis with others, as stipulated by Article 19 of the CRPD. This includes access to residential support services, including personal assistance, and support to prevent isolation from the community. Political Participation – as highlighted in Articles 21 and 29 of the CRPD – stipulates that persons with disabilities have the right to express their opinions and participate in political and public life. This includes both their right to vote and be voted for during elections as well as the protection of their votes and their identity as voters.
The countries with the highest numbers of Awardees are the United States of America (12); Israel (8); Austria (5); Chile, Kenya, and Spain (3 each); and Germany, India, Japan, Singapore, Sweden, and Turkey (2 each). For the first time, [Zero Project] has awarded an innovative solution from Djibouti. A full list of awardees can be found here.
Jobs Ability is an AI-driven portal that engages with persons with disabilities to harness employment interests and skills. Our unique chatbot, named “Abi,” (short, for ability) was developed to help users update their professional profiles to gain access. Then, those abilities are matched to open positions from corporate partners. Our Ability works directly with companies to build bridges in employment with a generally untapped workforce.
Our Ability is very thankful to its sponsors, Pfizer, CVS Health, Berkshire Bank, Cornerstone, and Lowe’s Home Improvement.
To learn more about Our Ability and Jobs Ability, visit https://www.ourability.com/.
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About Our Ability. As pioneers in disability inclusion, employment and workplace accessibility, Our Ability acts as a bridge between individuals and businesses through education and collaboration. Our goal is to empower employers to understand and leverage the increasingly valuable employment population of people with disabilities, proven to lower job turnover rates and boost morale and productivity.