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Celebrating Our Strides to Create a More Inclusive Federal Workforce

Under President Obama, the federal government has hired more than 154,000 permanent and temporary employees with disabilities.

Watch the White House National Disability Employment Awareness Month Event Opening Session and Closing Session.

Today, the White House will host its final National Disability Employment Awareness Month event and celebrate the strides we have made to create a more inclusive federal workforce. Ahead of this event, I'm proud to announce important progress toward that effort.

In 2010, President Obama challenged the federal government to hire 100,000 people with disabilities within five years. Not only did we reach the goal between 2011 and 2015, we surpassed it. Since then, the federal government has hired more than 154,000 permanent and temporary employees with disabilities, and more than 109,000 of whom are permanent hires.

Thanks to the dedicated efforts of leadership, managers, and staff in agencies big and small to commit to inclusive recruitment, hiring, and retention practices, there are now more people with disabilities in the federal workforce than at any time in the past 35 years. This shows what government can do when agencies come together to make sure that everyone in our country has a fair shot -- not only to achieve their dreams, but to serve the country we all love.

Everyone benefits when our government reflects the full talents and diversity of the American people, so the fulfillment of the President's goals marks an important step forward.

With that said, it is just one step toward creating a truly inclusive workforce that represents the American people.

We must all continue to work together -- the federal government, and state and local governments, together with the private and not for profit sectors -- to ensure that the only limits to people’s success are the limits they place on themselves -- not an inaccessible job posting, discriminatory hiring practices, or a lack of workplace accommodations. We have a lot more work to do, so I challenge you to take a fresh look at all of your workplace’s practices and procedures and make sure they are inclusive of working families, people with criminal records who have earned second chances, and others who experience barriers to employment.

The kind of progress we want to see starts with us.