Contact: Colleen Roche/Brenda Perez (212) 788-2958
The Mayor was joined by Fountain House Executive Director Ken Dudek, Department of Health and Mental Health Commissioner Neal L. Cohen, and corporate participants in the Transitional Employment (TE) Program at Fountain House.
"I want to thank Fountain House for upholding and advancing the fundamental notion that hard work -- not stereotypes -- determines what an individual can contribute to society," Mayor Giuliani said. "You and your companies reach out with true compassion to people with mental disabilities and in doing so make their lives more fulfilling, productive and independent. You've shown leadership and compassion in your willingness to look beyond stereotypes. I know you have also gained from your association with Fountain House."
As a direct result of corporate participation in the Fountain House TE Program, more than 400 people with mental illness will be holding jobs in 1998 with annualized taxable earnings of more then $700,000.
The Mayor also announced that next month, the City's Health Department will launch an anti-stigma campaign, which will demonstrate that persons with disabilities are capable and reliable employees.
"Inspired by the success of Fountain House that could only be accomplished through the efforts of the employers who are here today, I want to announce a City-wide effort administered by the Department of Health and Mental Health to help people with mental disabilities find and keep jobs through a City-wide employment initiative," the Mayor said.
"The campaign's goal is to find at least 100 jobs for New Yorkers with mental disabilities over the next year and to continue to build on this number in the years to come," the Mayor added. "And we will continue to rely on the support of the corporate community to make it happen."