Governor Ige Welcomes Summer Youth Employment Participants

Posted on Jul 8, 2016 in Main, News

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July 8, 2016

223 Youth with Disabilities Working for State, County Agencies

HONOLULU — Gov. David Ige today welcomed fifteen youths with disabilities working for the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DLIR) and the Department of Taxation (DoTAX) at the Keelikolani Building in downtown Honolulu. The youth are among the 223 disabled youth placed into short-term summer employment in a collaboration between the Department of Human Services (DHS) and DLIR.

“It is wonderful to see these eager young people in their first jobs where they are learning the valuable skills they’ll need to continue in the workforce,” said Gov. Ige. “Employment is central to community living, with full participation in all aspects of our society. We are proud to be able to offer these opportunities for people with disabilities to contribute their skills and talents to Hawaii’s workforce.”

DHS’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) counselors work with DLIR workforce staff to place participants in temporary summer jobs with the State and Counties. Funding for the program comes from DVR.

“It’s been a good experience for a number of reasons including for my resume, preparing for college and a career,” said participant Julian Kim. “I didn’t know what to expect, but people have been real nice and I am able to check out if I want to work for the State, plus, I have met new people.”

“DVR assists job seekers with disabilities prepare, secure, and retain competitive employment in an integrated work setting,” stated DHS Director Rachael Wong. “It’s fabulous to see these young people engaged with the workforce and prepared for meaningful employment.”

The Summer Youth Employment Program is a six to eight-week program during the months of June to August for youth 16 to 24 years of age. The participants work up to 30 hours per week for $10.00 per hour. The participants in the 21 agencies of the Executive Branch are technically DLIR employees.

“This is the first time we have implemented a program like this,” said DLIR Director Linda Chu Takayama. “It has been a resounding success for the students and for the regular staff, who have been clamoring for the students to stay on permanently. We hope to continue the program next year and invite the private sector to join us.”

DLIR received $2,923,674 in 2011 and $2,500,000 in 2015 in DEI funds to improve education, training, and employment outcomes of youth and adults with disabilities. DEI funds help refine and expand workforce strategies proven to be successful, and enhance inclusive service delivery through the public workforce system. Improvements include: increasing the accessibility of American Job Centers (AJC); training front-line AJC and partner staff; and increasing partnerships with businesses that are critical for assisting youth and adults with disabilities in securing meaningful employment.

Equal Opportunity Employer/Program
Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.
TDD/TTY Dial 711 then ask for (808) 586-8866

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Media Contact:
Bill Kunstman
Department of Labor and Industrial Relations
(808) 586-8845
[email protected]