– Springboard Consulting and Work Life Matters
magazine announced the winners of the First Annual ‘Disability Matters Awards.’ General Motors was one of six companies selected for its ‘pioneering dedication to the Special Needs community by providing innovative practices and programs addressing their employees’ special needs,” said Lori Sokol, founder and publisher of Work Life Matters
magazine. Nadine Vogel, president of Springboard Consulting and mother of two children with special needs said the six firms know firsthand that supporting employees who have a disability or family member with special needs and marketing to consumers in the special needs community means increased productivity, retention and revenue. GM was recognized for its GM Mobility program, which makes automotive transportation more accessible for the millions of persons with disabilities and their caregivers. The GM Mobility Program was launched in 1991 to assist people with disabilities with their transportation needs. Under the terms of the program, GM reimburses customers up to $1,000 plus two extra years of OnStar service at no cost when they buy or lease a new GM vehicle and adapt it with one or more of the 35 eligible aftermarket mobility equipment modifications such as hand controls, scooter hoists, or wheelchair lifts. GM brands in the program include Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC HUMMER, Pontiac, and Saturn. GM also offers the Sit-N-Lift power seat – a fully motorized, rotating lift-and-lower passenger seat that makes getting into and out of a vehicle easier. Other Disability Matters winners include Ernst & Young, Ford Motor Company, IBM, and the Walt Disney World Resort. A special Spring ’07 issue of Work Life Matters
magazine will also feature the winning companies’ special needs programs. Honorees received their awards April 4 at an event hosted by Lehman Brothers at its headquarters in Manhattan. The event included three morning seminars focusing on Marketing, Diversity, and Work Life issues affecting both consumers and employees who either have a disability or have a child or other dependent with special needs. Representatives of the winning companies, as well as experts from the non-profit and academic arenas served as panelists.