The need is clear: Americans with disabilities make up nearly one-fifth of our population. Yet the unemployment rate among them is twice that of the population overall. For women and minorities with disabilities, the rates are even higher.
CVS Health is committed to breaking down the employment barriers faced by people with disabilities, including limited access to skills training, and, too often, unfairly low expectations. That’s why our Workforce Initiatives team is working hard to provide people across our nation equal access to the security and prosperity that stable jobs and stable communities provide.
Over the past two decades, the team has developed relationships with vocational rehabilitation agencies, non-profits, and schools to provide job coaching, mentoring, training and follow-up support. These collaborations have yielded successful skills development programs, job training, and placement opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, as well as visually impaired students.
“Innovation comes from cultivating a workforce that fosters creativity and inclusion and reflects the diversity of our customers and the communities we serve,” says CVS Health VP of Workforce Strategies and Chief Diversity Officer David Casey. “As a pharmacy innovation company, we know that skilled, productive workers with disabilities can be brought successfully into the workforce, where they can make powerful contributions to our economy and our society.”
David recently joined Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to celebrate one of our most recent examples of how CVS Health is pursuing innovative workforce strategies, a mock CVS Pharmacy store within the Wilson Workforce and Rehabilitation Center (WWRC). The Center supports young people with disabilities and teaches them the retail and materials handling skills they need to gain meaningful employment, whether at CVS Pharmacy or another retailer.
Kayla Wayte, one of the first graduates of the program, has Asperger’s syndrome and says she has benefitted from the communications skills she built during her training. “It was my motivation in high school to get a real job, and [the program] really helped me be a good customer service person. Helping people in general is something I really, really love to do.”
In addition to our newest relationship with WWRC, CVS Health has partnered with dozens of other disability programs nationwide, including:
- Ken’s Krew
- Michigan Commission for the Blind
- Goodwill Industries
- Workability 1
- California State Department of Rehabilitation
- El Valor
Learn more about how our commitment to diversity is a part of everything we do at CVS Health.