Each year, many workers lose their jobs or leave the workforce after their ability to work is disrupted by a medical condition. Keeping these workers in the labor force could help them stay productive, maintain their standard of living, and avoid dependency on government programs.
To address this growing issue, the US Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), funded The SAW/RTW (stay-at-work/return-to-work) Policy Collaborative to (1) establish and assist three policy work groups, each assigned to identify, develop, and share actionable policy steps on an SAW/RTW-related topic; (2) develop new SAW/RTW resources for stakeholders, such as federal and state agencies and policymakers, workforce and disability associations, and employers; and (3) create and execute a plan to distribute SAW/RTW information and products to these stakeholders and other target audiences.
Each of the expert-led policy work groups have developed actionable policy recommendations to help workers keep their jobs if they experience a potentially career-ending medical condition. During this forum hosted by Mathematica on October 22, 2015, the leaders of each work group presented their findings and addressed the central question: How can we reduce the number of workers who eventually lose their jobs due to a medical condition?
Although this presentation is targeted at an American audience, the video recording of the in-person and online forum will be of interest to practitioners, employers and policy makers in British Columbia who are looking for insights into how to help workers in keeping their jobs or return to work after an injury or illness.