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Voters Will Choose to Give County More Flexibility to Hire People with Disabilities

The ballot measure would make it possible for people with significant disabilities to hold certain county positions from which they are currently barred.

An amendment to Montgomery County law that would give the government more flexibility to hire people with significant cognitive and physical disabilities will be decided by voters this November. The County Council unanimously voted Tuesday to send a proposed charter amendment to the ballot for county voters. 

(D-Dist 3), with the support of County Executive Isiah Leggett, the change would create a program within the county's internal employment system to recruit, select and hire people with certain disabilities for some county jobs.

Currently, the language of the county's charter prevents people with significant disabilities from holding some positions within county government, according to a release from the council's legislative office. 

“The unemployment rate for people with disabilities far exceeds the general unemployment rate,” Andrews said.

“If employed, many people with severe disabilities could help support themselves financially. This would help them directly, and would help taxpayers too by reducing dependence on government services."

This is how the proposed amendment would appear on the ballot:

Question A Charter amendment by act of County Council Merit System – Hiring Individuals with Disabilities

Amend Section 401 of the County Charter to allow the County to operate a program within the merit system to recruit and select qualified individuals with severe physical or mental disabilities on a noncompetitive basis.

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