Looking For Work? Help Is Here For Those Living With A Disability
"When you are asked if you can do a job, tell 'em, 'Certainly I can!' Then get busy and find out how to do it."~Theodore Roosevelt
At the time of my MS diagnosis I was like a budding flower just beginning to open. I finished college, entered the workforce four weeks after graduation, and loved my new dream job.
I was “on the road to find out”, as Cat Stevens said.
Working in Manhattan was everything I thought it would be: exciting, a lot of hard work and an entire new learning experience.
The large corporation I worked for not only provided a paycheck, but also limousine service if you worked extra hours, tickets to Broadway shows, and parties held at exclusive nightclubs.
It was thrilling for a twenty-something.
When my diagnosis came, my work life changed on a dime. I was tired, my legs were weak, and I was scared. How could I keep up the daily pace of work, bus schedules and socializing?
It was too much to handle.
I ended up quitting, giving up my apartment and moving home.
I was devastated.
Does my story resonate with you? Do you sometimes wonder how you can return to work while dealing with your MS?
There is plenty of help.
Here are a list of some ways to help you find a job while living with a disability:
The National Multiple Sclerosis Society offers advice on finding work, whether to disclose your disability, knowing your rights, and information on how to view various brochures, videos and online programming. There is also an in-person or self-guided program called Career Crossroads that is a coaching program.
The Ticket to Work program is a free, voluntary program run by the government to help Social Security beneficiaries find a job (that may lead to a career). The program tries to provide you with choices in finding a job that is right for you. Check out the website if you are currently on disability to see how you can find this program in your state.
This Wikihow article is helpful in assessing your abilities, learning about interview tactics, whether to declare your disability, and other tips and tricks in finding work as a disabled person.
The National Organization on Disability offers resources and information on where to look for work, including GettingHired.com, Job Accommodations Network and National Business and Disability Council.
Disability.gov – check them out once THE GOVERNMENT IS NO LONGER SHUT DOWN!
Disability Discrimination – know your rights that are covered under The Americans with Disabilities Act, including harassment, reasonable accommodations, undue hardship and other resources to learn more.
This is a small sampling of resources available for people living with a disability who want to find a job. There are also many websites specific to your location that may be valuable in your search.
Do your research, talk to others and let MultipleSclerosis.net know if you have any questions, further information or concerns.
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