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AAPD urges Senate to immediately confirm Tom Perez as Labor Secretary

May 9, 2013  |  AAPD Press Team

AAPD released the following statement from AAPD President and CEO Mark Perriello regarding the Senate’s delay on the Tom Perez nomination and the increasingly negative rhetoric surrounding the confirmation.

People with disabilities, along with millions of out-of-work Americans, do not have time for the Senate to play politics as usual around the confirmation of Tom Perez as U.S. Secretary of Labor.

The opportunity cost of keeping people with disabilities on the sidelines of the American workforce is staggering and unnecessary. According to a GAO study, the federal government spent over $4 billion through 45 programs focused on improving employment for people with disabilities in 2010.  That same year the jobless rate for people with disabilities jumped from 14.5 to 14.8 percent according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

Perez is a results-oriented leader who understands the complex dynamics that keep Americans with disabilities on the sidelines of the American workforce, as well as what it will take to help the millions who are ready, willing, and able to work find meaningful employment.  As a dedicated public servant who is mindful of taxpayer dollars he will also expect results from the programs designed to change employment outcomes for people with disabilities. 

Unfortunately, Perez has come under fire for nothing more than achieving results and enforcing the law. A leader who gets results in Washington is exactly the type of leader worthy of a Cabinet Post. 

The Senate must move swiftly and confirm Tom Perez.

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The American Association of People with Disabilities is the nation's largest disability rights organization. We promote equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation for people with disabilities. Our members, including people with disabilities and our family, friends, and supporters, represent a powerful force for change. To learn more, visit the AAPD Web site: www.aapd.com.

The American Association of People with Disabilities:

Promoting equal opportunity, economic power, independent living and political participation for people with disabilities.

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