Sweeney Bill would promote employment opportunities for the disabled in the public sector
Trenton – To encourage the inclusion of people with disabilities in the public sector workforce, Senate President Steve Sweeney introduced legislation that allows job seekers to receive exemptions from public service exams.
Bill S-3689 provides a process for people with disabilities to apply for an exemption from the normally required exam if they are qualified to serve in entry-level government roles.
“People with disabilities have proven to be an excellent workforce when given a fair opportunity,” said Senator Sweeney (D-Gloucester / Salem / Cumberland). “When they have a better job, they can live full and rewarding lives as they are fully engaged with others in daily life. The public service exam may be an unreasonable obstacle despite being able to fully carry out the work. “
Under current law, anyone striving for a position in the public service must pass a selection test for entry-level positions. Senator Sweeney’s bill would allow people with disabilities to apply for an exemption from the test. If the Public Service Commission determines that the applicant is able to perform the duties of the position, it may waive the requirement. They would have to check their disability according to the bill.
“Approximately 25 percent of adults in New Jersey have some type of disability, but there is a marked discrepancy in how many of them are actually employed,” said Senator Sweeney. “To enable a more inclusive society, we also need to ensure that people with disabilities have equal opportunities to participate in government jobs. The public sector should lead the way to promote disabled people’s rights. “
Senator Sweeney recently joined forces with other lawmakers to create the New Jersey Legislative Disability Caucus to serve as a bipartisan forum to promote inclusion in public policy-making by raising awareness of the complexities of the disability system and of the problems people are faced with Disabilities and their families.
Senator Sweeney is co-sponsoring law with Senator Fred Madden to create a task force to promote the employment of people with disabilities through government agencies.
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