Capitol Correspondence - 02.10.20

President’s Passing Mention of Disability Employment in State of the Union Address Raises Skepticism

Share this page

President Trump’s State of the Union address on February 4 focused in large part on the economy. As evidence of the strong economy, President Trump pointed to unemployment among workers with disabilities, stating, “The unemployment rate for disabled Americans has reached an all-time low.”

Although President Trump did not evidence this claim, it stands in contrast to what many in the ANCOR community already know: that employment opportunities for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities remain elusive. According to new data from the recently released Case for Inclusion 2020, nationally, only 20 percent of people with I/DD leveraging employment supports were actually working in integrated settings. Moreover, we know that those who do work often don’t earn minimum wages—let alone livable wages—and many work fewer hours than they would prefer.

To get an initial sense of the President’s approach to issues relevant to the disability community in the coming year, we encourage readers to see our article on his 2021 budget request, which signals his priorities for the coming year.