About Us

Meet the Hosts of the Careers in the Arts Online Dialogue

The U.S Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) is the only non-regulatory federal agency that promotes policies and coordinates with employers and all levels of government to increase workplace success for people with disabilities ODEP's mission is to develop and influence policies and practices that increase the number and quality of employment opportunities for people with disabilities. As part of the Department of Labor, ODEP promotes the adoption and implementation of policy strategies and effective practices that will impact the employment of people with disabilities. ODEP's approach is to drive systems and practice changes by disseminating ODEP policy strategies and effective practices, sharing information, and providing technical assistance to government agencies, service providers and non-governmental entities, as well as public and private employers.

The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) was established by Congress in 1965. The NEA is the independent federal agency whose funding and support gives Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts, exercise their imaginations, and develop their creative capacities. Through partnerships with state arts agencies, local leaders, other federal agencies, and the philanthropic sector, the NEA supports arts learning, affirms and celebrates America’s rich and diverse cultural heritage, and extends its work to promote equal access to the arts in every community across America.

Art Beyond Sight (ABS) is the leading voice and clearinghouse for best practices on accessibility and multisensory learning through the arts. ABS inspires and provides resources across the cultural sector for the full integration of people with disabilities through direct service, thought leadership, knowledge sharing, product development, and dissemination special projects. ABS empowers disabled people to be active, creative, and powerful participants and contributors in all areas of the arts and culture arena as well as society at large. As a catalyst for equitable change, the organization fosters collaboration and exploration of innovative, effective, and impactful solutions to realize full inclusion.

ePolicyWorks, launched by ODEP, is a Web-based approach to policymaking that engages citizens and stakeholders in new and innovative ways. The initiative leverages the latest technology to address barriers to employment for people with disabilities and fosters real-time collaboration and communication around key issues.

Participants in the ePolicyWorks initiative benefit from a variety of online tools and features to help them stay informed, build relationships and partner on important policy developments. One of these key features is the ePolicyWorks online dialogues. Brought to you through the use of leading-edge crowdsourcing tools, these online dialogues are interactive platforms of collaboration. They enable ODEP to work with their partners to enlist the public’s input on key policy issues related to the employment of people with disabilities by channeling the brainpower of our federal partners, nonprofits, NGOs and other stakeholders. To learn more about past ePolicyWorks dialogues, visit http://www.epolicyworks.org/national_dialogues.html.