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Congresswoman Joyce Beatty

Representing the 3rd District of Ohio

Beatty Bill Supports Survivors of Serious Health Occurrences in Returning to Work

Feb 12, 2016
Announcements

Beatty Bill Supports Survivors of Serious Health Occurrences in Returning to Work

Legislation promotes value and talents of all workers

Today, in recognition of American Heart Month, U.S. Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (OH-03) introduced the Return to Work Awareness Act of 2016, a bill to improve the employability of individuals affected by heart attack, stroke or other serious health issues.

This legislation will increase the distribution of information, improve coordination between federal agencies and increase employment outreach efforts among individuals recovering from stroke, heart attack, traumatic brain injury and other health occurrences. In addition, the Return to Work Awareness Act will provide resources to employers on best practices and strategies to support more people in returning to work.

First introduced in the 113th Congress, and originally backed by eight Members of Congress, this year’s bill already has the support of 24 Members of Congress.

The bill’s release could not come at a more poignant time. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the nation’s unemployment rate is 4.9 percent, whereas the unemployment rate for people with disabilities is 10.8 percent. Moreover, the labor force participation rate for people with disabilities is 19.2 percent, as compared to 68.1 percent for people without disabilities.   

Serious health occurrences often have a major impact on a survivor’s ability to return to work. As the U.S. population ages, and we see an increase in survival rates among people affected by serious health issues, this inability to return to work will have a huge impact on our nation’s future workforce. The Return to Work Awareness Act is an important first step in remedying the problem.