Employees contribute their passion and commitment while gaining valuable experience.
Nearly 80 percent of people with intellectual and development disabilities (IDD) in the U.S. are unemployed. Many of us take our jobs for granted, but employment offers us the chance to demonstrate our abilities, to contribute to society and be valued outside our homes. People with IDD are often denied opportunities for jobs because society underestimates the ways in which they can contribute.
At PPD we recognize the value everyone can bring to the workplace and embrace the differences each employee contributes. At our global headquarters in Wilmington, North Carolina, PPD employs eight people with intellectual or development disabilities, six of those through ABLE to Work USA, a local nonprofit that connects businesses with potential employees.
The colleagues PPD employs through ABLE to Work USA mainly contribute in facilities roles.
“We do a little bit of everything—recycling, moves and transfers, catering,” says Mitch Henry, associate director of facilities. “We like to offer a variety of tasks. There’s a lot they can do to help.”
Cobi Harrison has been with PPD since the ABLE to Work USA program began in 2016. Others have used it as professional training and moved on to jobs at other companies.
Mitch has received positive feedback from the employees, their colleagues within the facilities team and from PPD employees throughout the building.
The ABLE to Work program has provided employees that should be inspiring for each of us,” says Donna Crawford, senior executive assistant. “I value their drive and talent, and have enjoyed engaging with these team members daily.”
“Words can’t describe the last two and a half years at PPD, which have been an unbelievable and positive experience,” says Kevin Grotsky, an ABLE to Work team member. “The entire facilities team is awesome, truly a team effort. My duties include housekeeping, moving boxes and delivering mail. Even though it’s only part time, I hope to remain at PPD for a long time.”