Proclamation 4965 -- National Employ the Handicapped Week, 1982

September 13, 1982

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

People throughout our country are working to increase education, training, employment, accessible housing, and recreational opportunities for our disabled citizens.

Of these objectives, employment is one of the most important. To lead more successful lives, disabled Americans must be part of the work force. Progress has been made; many more employers are hiring these quality workers. These employers are part of the growing number who realize they are not ``giving'' someone a job, but increasing the value of their company or business by hiring a dedicated, skilled employee.

Despite these advances, employment of disabled men and women lags behind that of the general working-age population. There is an urgent need for the private sector to take the lead in offering jobs that provide individual dignity and enable disabled men and women to support their families. There is also a need for state and local governments to employ fresh approaches and renewed energy in cooperation with the private sector to expand handicapped employment opportunities, and for the Federal government to streamline regulations in order to afford maximum benefit for handicapped persons with a minimum of administrative burden.

We need to affirm the dignity and worth of all people in our society, whether or not they suffer from physical or mental disabilities, and we must firmly reject attitudes that deny the worth of handicapped individuals.

Congress has called for the designation of the first full week in October each year as National Employ the Handicapped Week (36 U.S.C. 155). This special week is a time for all Americans to renew our dedication to meeting the goal of increased opportunities for disabled citizens.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate the week beginning October 3, 1982, as National Employ the Handicapped Week.

I urge all governors, mayors, other public officials, leaders in business and labor, and private citizens to help meet the challenge of the future by ensuring that disabled people have the opportunity to participate fully in the economic life of the Nation.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 13th. day of Sept., in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 4:25 p.m., September 13, 1982]