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Massachusetts Regional Employment Collaboratives Partner with Sodexo

Breaking barriers to employment for individuals with disabilities across the state.

The Riverside Employment Collaboratives and Sodexo have partnered to create a statewide hiring program for individuals with disabilities.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for us to work with a world-class employer on behalf of individuals with disabilities,” said Stephanie Marks, Director of the Riverside Employment Collaboratives. “It is very important for all individuals, disabled or not, to have the opportunity for meaningful work and greater fulfillment in life.” Pam Mendes, Employer Liaison from the Western MA Employment Collaborative made numerous inroads to creating this partnership with Sodexo.

“Individuals with disabilities often face greater challenges in getting that first opportunity for employment,” said Marylou Sudders, Secretary of Health and Human Services. “The Employment Collaboratives and participating businesses, like Sodexo, help provide opportunities to prepare individuals for work readiness and to embark on their professional journey.”

This program will greatly increase the access for individuals with disabilities to meaningful employment throughout Massachusetts. In turn, it will also enrich the many environments in which Sodexo serves. “Sodexo’s engagement with the Employment Collaboratives is in direct alignment with our global disabilities priorities in leveraging valued partnerships to enhance the recruitment of and access to people with disabilities with the goal of enriching our workforce and workplace,” said Sandy Harris, Sodexo’s Vice President of Global Diversity & Inclusion. Sodexo offers more than 110 worksites and many different professions for the individuals in the Collaborative’s service area to select from.

About the Riverside Employment Collaboratives:

The Employment Collaboratives are a network of state agencies and human service providers, employers, workforce development organizations, and employment service providers. The Collaboratives work across these groups with the goal of expanding employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. The Employment Collaboratives have been in operation for eight years.  In 2017 alone, more than 700 individuals found employment through these services. There are six Regional Employment Collaboratives in Massachusetts. Five are led by Riverside Community Care and one is overseen by the Institute of Community Inclusion. The Employment Collaboratives are funded by Department of Developmental Services and partially funded by the Department of Mental Health.

About Riverside Community Care:

Each year Riverside Community Care provides more than 40,000 children, adolescents, and adults with a broad range of behavioral healthcare and human services.  We offer mental healthcare, developmental and brain injury services, youth and early childhood programs, addiction treatment, trauma response, and more.  And our work includes partnerships with local hospitals, physicians, and schools. We make a difference – locally, every day.


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