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Success Stories From Abilities, Inc., New York

by Leonor Coello, New York City, NY

The following are summaries about disabled Latinos who got jobs through the employment program at Abilities, Inc. in New York State.

Juanita is hearing impaired. When helping her look for a job, developers worked to emphasize her proficiency in Spanish Sign Language and English. She is a talented, intelligent young woman. When the job developer was looking for a position for Juanita, she identified a company called LPD Group that does marketing research. LPD Group works in countries such as Spain, Puerto Rico and Mexico. The job developer thought Juanita's excellent composition skills would be a great fit at that company. She didn't have to use the phone because the job called for a research assistant. Nike hired the LPD Group to find out how many sneakers were sold in countries where Spanish is spoken. Juanita was hired to work on the Nike account. She has been at the LDP Group for nearly four years and she's been promoted and is doing great.

Jose is fluent in Spanish and American Sign Language. He recently completed a Microsoft Office training program. Job developers identified an engineering company that was looking to hire someone into an entry-level position. Jose submitted his resume, got an interview and was hired on the spot. The company even paid for him to receive training on specialized software at their expense (including an interpreter).

Jorge had been out of work for almost four years due to his disability. He was returning to the workforce in his mid-40s. Job developers found a position at Astoria Federal Bank. They were looking for someone to work in the mailroom. Jorge completed a job-training program and was hired as a mailroom clerk. He loves his job and is doing very well.

Antonio is working at Chase Bank. He is hearing impaired. He was hired into the automobile finances department where he pulls files and he's been promoted numerous times. Because Chase had such a positive experience with Antonio, they hired three more people with disabilities.

Charlene is a great writer. A job developer helped her get typing jobs because she had no work experience. Charlene wanted to work in Mexico. The job developer helped her land a job with the Commission for the Deaf in Mexico. She is able to travel a lot in her current position.