A professor of health informatics and rehabilitation at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, Frieden is one of the architects of the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act. The ADA prohibits discrimination in employment against those with disabilities. Frieden says there’s still a large gap between the law and what’s practiced in the workplace.
“Eighty percent of the population of folks with disabilities who are job ready, trained and eager to go to work are unemployed at this point in time. And I know there’s a high unemployment rate in the country, but it’s exceptionally high for this population. There are still employers who have failed to meet the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act by providing accommodations in the workplace, and for the public for that matter.”
Winners of this year’s Lex Frieden Employment Awards include PSCI Inc. of Killeen, Johnson Controls of San Antonio, Taco Cabana of Austin, and the Laredo Independent School District.