The National Association for the Employment of People who are Blind has a mission, to represent and protect the collective interest of it's member organizations to enable them to strengthen and maximize opportunities for people who are Blind.
The AbilityOne Program
In 1938, the Wagner-O'Day Act was passed under President Franklin D. Roosevelt in order to provide employment opportunities for people who are blind by authorizing them to manufacture mops and brooms to sell to the Federal Government.
In 1971, under the leadership of Senator Jacob Javits, Congress amended this Act (41 U.S.C. 46-48c) to include people with severe disabilities and allow the program to also provide services to the Federal Government. Over 70 years later, this extraordinary socioeconomic program provides Federal customers with a wide array of quality products and services, while providing employment for thousands of people with significant disabilities.
The AbilityOne Program Today
To leverage collective efforts and project a unified program with broad capabilities and a clear purpose, the AbilityOne® brand was adopted in 2007.
The AbilityOne Program is the largest source of employment for people who are blind or have significant disabilities in the United States. More than 550 nonprofit organizations employ these individuals and provide quality products and services to the Federal Government at a fair market price.
The Program is administered by the Commission, an independent federal agency, with assistance from National Industries for the Blind (NIB), and SourceAmerica®.
The purchase of AbilityOne products and services by Federal customers provides employment opportunities for people who face the greatest barriers to employment- Americans who are blind or have significant disabilities.
RLCB works with the following agencies to achieve our mission
The North Carolina Division of Services for the Blind provides services to people who are visually impaired, blind and deaf-blind to help them reach their goals of independence and employment.
National Industries for the Blind
For more than 75 years, National Industries for the Blind (NIB) has focused on enhancing the opportunities for economic and personal independence of people who are blind, primarily through creating, sustaining and improving employment. NIB and its network of 94 associated nonprofit agencies nationwide serve as the largest employer of people who are blind through the sale of SKILCRAFT® and other products and services provided by the AbilityOne® Program, established by the Javits-Wagner-O'Day Act.
Despite continued gains in employment, people who are blind remain one of the nation’s greatest untapped labor resources. In fact, 70 percent of working-age Americans who are blind are not employed. This statistic fuels NIB’s mission to create, sustain and improve employment opportunities for people who are blind.
Today, NIB is not only focused on creating jobs – but on developing careers through challenging, knowledge-based positions in high-energy, quality work environments. NIB works with 94 associated nonprofit agencies based in 37 states at more than 250 locations across the United States and in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, offering a wide range of career opportunities with no boundaries. NIB mentors and supports its agencies through business development, program management, and marketing and sales.
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