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Barbara Otto
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Barbara Otto is principal of Think Beyond the Label, a private-public collaborative working to build the pipeline of qualified job candidates with disabilities. Think Beyond the Label is powered by Health & Disability Advocates, a national health, education and employment nonprofit based in Chicago.

Entries by Barbara Otto

Think Beyond the Mailroom for Disability Hiring

(0) Comments | Posted October 21, 2014 | 6:04 PM

I love the excitement and passion emanating from the new I'm In To Hire campaign led by Best Buddies. It makes perfect sense to ask businesses to take a pledge to hire people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) for jobs they need to fill, particularly during National...

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A Smarter Way to Hire Job Seekers With Disabilities

(0) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 4:43 PM

Here's a common scenario many in today's economy can relate to: You have a college degree, work experience and you're looking for a job. Here's the not-so-common part: you also happen to have a disability.

But wait: Having a disability may actually give you an edge in getting a...

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ACA: More Than Just Healthcare for People With Disabilities

(0) Comments | Posted October 1, 2013 | 5:44 PM

For people with disabilities finding a job has always been a one-two punch. It's not just the salary and financial independence they're looking for; they also are in greater need of health benefits than say, a nondisabled 30-year old.

October 1 marks the first day that people with disabilities can...

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Hey Employers: If You Build It, Job Seekers With Disabilities Will Come

(0) Comments | Posted September 13, 2013 | 5:45 PM

We've been holding virtual career fairs for professionals with disabilities for more than a year, and employers always ask how we are able to find and authenticate a job seeker's disability status. My response always is, "If you build it right, they will come."

This question is top of mind...

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Survey: Telecommuting Is More Than a Perk for Workers With Disabilities

(2) Comments | Posted May 8, 2013 | 7:42 PM

Since Yahoo! ended telecommuting for its employers months ago and ignited a debate around the value of telework, I've been thinking about workplace benefits and how people with disabilities utilize them.

Telecommuting can be an especially valuable benefit for many professionals with disabilities because there are times when...

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Walgreens Is Not Always the Answer

(0) Comments | Posted January 14, 2013 | 12:54 PM

Not too long ago I gave an interview to a reporter at Fast Company. She was writing an article about efforts to employ workers with disabilities and was featuring Walgreens as an innovative employer. Walgreens invited the reporter up to its Windsor, Conn., distribution center to meet with...

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A Modern Approach to Hiring

(2) Comments | Posted September 27, 2012 | 12:20 PM

There are 3.7 million unfilled jobs in the U.S. yet we keep hearing employers say they can't find good talent to fill their jobs. In 2007 five percent of the population that wanted a job couldn't find a job; in 2012 that figure has doubled. I'll leave the debate about...

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