Photo of Senator Kennedy.

State Senator

Ted Kennedy, Jr.

Representing Branford, Durham, Guilford, Killingworth, Madison & North Branford

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Kennedy, Osten and Arc of New London County Landscapers Highlight Disability Employment in Norwich

Arc NLC microbusinesses provide training and job experience for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities

NORWICH, CT—Senator Ted Kennedy, Jr. (D-Branford) and Senator Cathy Osten (D-Sprague) celebrated National Disability Employment Awareness Month with the Arc of New London County’s (NLC) Lawn and Landscaping Business, which is staffed by local residents with disabilities. Disability Employment Awareness Month is observed every October as an occasion to acknowledge the important contributions that people with disabilities make to the economy, as well as the progress that still needs to be made in order to ensure equal access to employment for all people.

“As the Arc NLC’s landscaping crew showed us today, people with disabilities are dedicated employees who love going to work every day. I want to thank the Norwich Fish and Game Club for employing these talented landscapers,” said Senator Kennedy, a lifelong advocate for people with disabilities and Board Chair of the American Association of People with Disabilities. “I also applaud the Arc NLC for the great work they do securing employment for people with disabilities. It is my hope that more Connecticut companies will see the good work being done here and take steps to expand employment opportunities for people with disabilities in their own organization.”

“The Arc NLC provides an incredible service to the disability community and our state by helping its clients gain job skills and experience,” said Senator Osten. “Working a job provides not only skills and income, but also confidence in oneself. More businesses should follow the example of the Norwich Fish and Game Club and find opportunities to employ the hard-working members of our state’s disability community”

“We very much appreciate Senator Kennedy’s support for people with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, and we especially enjoyed celebrating our micro-business success with him today. He sincerely listened to people’s stories about the very real challenges we face in seeking meaningful career opportunities. Like the Senator, The Arc New London County is committed to ensuring that people with I/DD earn minimum wage or higher, and we value him as a really strong ally in this uphill fight,” said Kathleen Stauffer, CEO of the Arc of New London County.

Alexis Laffey, Secretary at Norwich Fish and Game, explained that they were in need of a new landscaping service when someone approached them and recommended the Arc’s Lawn & Landscape Crew. After looking into the microbusiness, Norwich Fish and Game decided to give them a try and could not be happier with the results.

At the Arc NLC’s Employment Transition Center, people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are given employment training and services. The range of services offered includes computer training and assistance with the job application process. The Arc NLC also works to place clients in jobs with partner businesses or with tone of their own microbusinesses, like the Lawn & Landscape Crew. Another microbusiness is the Arc NLC’s baking company, which sells cookies at Ace Hardware and ShopRite in Norwich and New London, as well as multiple other locations.

If you are interested in hiring the Arc NLC’s Lawn & Landscape Crew, call 860-608-0270 for a quote. For more information about The Arc NLC’s employment programs, visit www.thearcnlc.org or call 860-449-1529.

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