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Celebrating Progressive Employers and Capable Employees

These stories are about Manitoba employers who have benefited from hiring someone with a disability. They were originally published in the Winnipeg Free Press and collected through an initiative called “Perspectives in Change”.

Photo of Jeff Jeff - Bison Transport
“It just makes sense. Everyone with a disability has the potential and desire to contribute to society. You need to have an open mind... You get an employee who wants to be at work, who is willing and able.”
~ Simon Vandersteen, maintenance manager

Photo of JoAnn JoAnn - Thompson Crisis Centre
“We all are surrounded by labels of what people can and cannot do. If we think about who can be included, really it is just about everybody.”
~ Leslie Tucker, former director of TCC

Photo of Dolores Delores - Serta
“She uses good judgment to ask which fabrics are useable and which are not,” he remarks.  “Her work in this position helps everyone be more efficient.” 
~ Benjamin Kay, President & COO

Photo of Damon Nickel Damon - Precision
“People just need to be in the right situation. Training with Damon is not an issue.  He understands the reason for health and safety issues, and he wants to do a good job. He is one of the most reliable employees on staff.”
~ Graham Moore, vice-president of operations

Photo of Mark Mark - Howland Hotel
“Before we hired Mark I used to do a lot of that work!” says Bill Duff, general manager of the Howland. Working with a supported employment agency, Duff initially hired Rogocki on a temporary contract, “but he worked so well that we decided we had to continue.”
~ Bill Duff, general manager

Photo of Kevin Kevin - Perimeter Airlines
“He is consistent, and he is a really hard worker. Everything and anything we expect from his position, he accomplishes.”
~ Jonathan Belanger, a lead receiver

Photo of Debbie Baziniak Debbie - Boston Pizza
“She is helpful, friendly, upbeat and she loves her job. It is reassuring to know that Debbie is here. She helps the business succeed.”
~ Gerri McCaughan, general manager

Photo of Hazel Carganilla Hazel - Greystone Managed Investments
“Our experience with Hazel has opened our eyes and our hearts to see that people with disabilities can be independent and productive.”
~ Donna Kramer, supervisor

Photo of Elin Anderson and Melanie Janis Elin and Melanie - Pitblado LLP
“They inspire others by showing consistency, loyalty and dedication to the job.”
~ Bruce King, Managing partner

Photo of Curtis Doerksen Curtis - Steinbach Sobeys
“Doerksen is one of the longest serving courtesy clerks at the Steinbach Sobeys: he has worked there since 2004. “Curtis is one of those long term employees who form the core of our staff.”
~ Michelle Klippenstein, supervisor

Photo of Trevor Trevor - Accurate Lawn & Garden
“New people need to learn quickly, and fit in well. Trevor did that—every day he was learning more, and within a week he was fitting in.”
~ John Neufeld, owner

Photo of Catherine Catherine - Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
“She has opened all our eyes to what people with disabilities can do.”
~ Kevin Feely, Manager

Photo of Shirley Shirley - Holiday Inn South
“If you can hire someone who will give 150%, who will never be late, who works hard and is always happy, why would you refuse that person?”
~ Chef Eldon Brink read more..

Photo of Pat Pat - McRae Food Processing Equipment
“There’s a multitude of jobs that Pat can do,” says owner Doug McRae. Doug points out that Pat’s “awesome” memory, his technical and mechanical aptitude, and his personable manner make him invaluable in the business.
~ Doug McRae, owner

Photo of Russ Hilsher Russ - Manitoba First Nations Educational Resource Centre
“When I am at work, I feel as though my disability disappears.” ~ Russ read more...

Photo of Darryl Scott Darrell - Montana’s Cookhouse on Empress Street
“He’s one of the unsung heroes. The whole restaurant revolves around Darrell and his work.”
~ Andrew Hooper, colleague

Photo of Craig Craig - MTS Allstream, Inc.
“His work has freed other staff to be more effective in their own work. That helps us respond to customers more quickly.”
~ Nickie McKim, Mgr of Facilities Assignment

Photo of Darryl Darryl - Safeway
“It’s good business for the people in our stores to represent the communities we serve... Darryl is our senior Courtesy Clerk. He is reliable, respectful to all, and he enjoys helping people. What more could I ask for?”
~ Peter Darowski, Safeway’s HR Director

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