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Tribute to the Benchmark of Persistence and Innovation- Awarding and Commendation for Outstanding Institutions and Persons in Employment Promotion Business for the Disabled
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Employment Services for People with Disabilities and Disadvantages Division

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      The Ministry of Labor (MOL) held the annual award ceremony for “Outstanding Institutions and Persons in Employment Promotion Business for the Physically and Mentally Disabled” on 1 December 2021, in which 13 local governments and 16 outstanding professionals in vocational rehabilitation services were commended, and an experience sharing session was included to provide opportunities for exchange and communication, to encourage local governments and related persons to provide more consummate employment services for the physically and mentally disabled. 
    Every year, the Ministry of Labor (MOL) handles the assessment of employment promotion business for the disabled, which is implemented by the local governments. The aspects range from the overall planning of the employment promotion business for the disabled, custody and use of income and expenditure of Employment Fund for Persons with Disabilities, employment promotion business, employer services, and employment quota in disability are assessed in multiple aspects. Under the circumstances of COVID-19 this year, the Workforce Development Agency (WDA), Ministry of Labor, overcame various difficulties and conducted cooperation with local governments. A total of 10 video conferences and 2 assessment meetings were held, 13 outstanding local governments were selected. Taipei City Government, New Taipei City Government, and Changhua County Government won the “Excellent Performance Award.” 
    The Taipei City Government incorporated exercise prescriptions into vocational rehabilitation services, that were implemented in the pre-employment preparation and training phase of disabled persons; New Taipei City Government has set up a vocational rehabilitation VR career exploration device to advance employment preparation. Changhua County Government promotes a diversified employment plan, cooperates with Special Schools to provide supportive employment services. Taoyuan City Government won the first prize in the Innovation Award by using public bases and social housing to set up sheltered workshops, to expand massage service bases in department stores to create employment opportunities for the disabled. Penghu County Government uses resources within its jurisdiction on the overall business planning, employer services, and employment quota in disability, which shows great progress.
     Employment promotion for the physically and mentally disabled relies on those who are working at the front line vigorously. The Ministry of Labor publicly commended 16 outstanding vocational rehabilitation professionals at this award ceremony. Awards include "Senior Dedication Award", "Service Performance Award", "Best Newcomer Award,” recognizing long-term commitment to the employment of persons with disabilities and outstanding performance, with enthusiasm for service and professional knowledge, and with the courage to face work challenges, relevant personnel who use innovative working methods to provide services. Mr. Huang, the supervisor of Syin-Lu Social Welfare Foundation,  who has been engaged in this field for 38 years, promotes vocational rehabilitation and advanced the skills for career for the disabled. An employment service worker, Ms. Tong, from Children Are Us Foundation won the Excellent Service Award, and her contribution includes the creation of an easy-to-read version of the service manual and employment-related videos to enhance the ability of service personnel and the disabled to communicate with each other. Ms. Chou, an employment service worker from Bali Psychiatric Center won the Most Promising Newcomer Award. Her contribution includes transform the sheltered shop into a cultural creation industry stall, in which marketing shelter products, increasing the salaries of shelter employees, and this  successful experience is valuable to employment promotion. 
    The Director- General, Meng-Liang Tsai, said people with disabilities face more difficulties and obstacles in the job search process than ordinary workers. The government should devote more resources to help disabled people find employment. Thanks to the local governments for promoting various vocational rehabilitation services in a down-to-earth manner, as well as the dedication of professionals, assist the physically and mentally disabled with employment difficulties to enter the general workplace and stabilize employment. 
    After the ceremony, the award-winning institutions and persons shared their work experiences, which also aimed to promote  exchange and communication between local governments, Director- General Tsai pointed out that The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) emphasizes the value of people with disabilities have the right to freely choose and accept opportunities to earn a living, encourage participants to continuously improve their knowledge and abilities, to create a suitable and appropriate work and employment environment for the physically and mentally disabled.