Employment rate for the intellectually disabled is low

The unemployment rate for January was 6.6 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The job outlook for the intellectually disabled is less optimistic than the general population.

Only 44 percent of intellectually disabled adults are employed or looking for jobs. Only 34 percent are actually working, according to a study conducted by Gallup.

The Panhandle Independent Living Center works with individuals to help them prepare for the workforce. They help with everything from resume building to social media. They even offer City transportation training, so the individuals are able to utilize them to get from one place to another.

"People who hire these people with disabilities they find that these people are more loyalâ?¦ As far as what you're doing for that person, you're contributing to their lives," said D.J. Stubbens who is on the Panhandle Independent Living Center board.

Bart Hill, employment director at the center, said many factors play a part in finding the right job. Hill said education levels, personal interests, and prior experience are all considered.

He said self-confidence and that little extra are ways they can stay competitive.

He said he acts as their cheerleader and reminds them, "yes, you do have a lot to offer and you can do these jobs."