Gov. Scott Walker visited three hospitals to highlight the success of workforce development initiatives, such as Project SEARCH that work to employ people with disabilities. Walker visited HSHS St. Vincent Hospital in Green Bay, Aspirus Riverview Hospital in Wisconsin Rapids, and Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire. Project SEARCH teaches students marketable, transferable and competitive skills to help them transition into Wisconsin’s workforce. Several Wisconsin hospitals and health systems in the state support Project SEARCH.
"A top priority for us as we continue to move Wisconsin forward is rewarding work," Governor Walker said. "This means removing barriers to work so that anyone who wants a job can find a job—and a good-paying career. We know a strong Wisconsin workforce is one that celebrates and promotes the unique abilities and talents of all employees, including those with disabilities. Workforce development programs like Project SEARCH help make this a reality by providing students with disabilities with the practical skills and experience they need to thrive in the career of their choice."
During the most recent federal fiscal year, 4,615 people with disabilities entered Wisconsin’s workforce, helping to drive the state’s disability employment rate up to 41.2 percent. According to the 2016 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium, Wisconsin ranks among the top ten states in the nation for employing people with disabilities.