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CIGNA OFFERS POTENTIAL STORY/PHOTO OPPORTUNITY

 CIGNA OFFERS POTENTIAL STORY/PHOTO OPPORTUNITY
 Topic: A unique program that can be valuable to other
 companies in accommodating the mentally disabled as
 they look at complying with the Americans with
 Disabilities Act (ADA) in future years.
 Background: In 1986, the Philadelphia Developmental Disabilities
 Corporation/Association For Retired Citizens
 (PDDC/ARC) approached CIGNA about utilizing
 developmentally disabled citizens in jobs that go
 beyond menial labor occupations. That meeting was
 highly productive. Not only did CIGNA's Mail
 Services Department agree to work with PDDC/ARC,
 but CIGNA and PDDC/ARC developed a step-by-step
 program that not only trains the employee for his
 or her tasks, but also concentrates on building
 self-sufficiency, confidence and self-esteem.
 Results: Six years later, the results have been tremendously
 positive. CIGNA now has four developmentally
 disabled citizens working in the Mail Services
 Department; two of which have since been hired as
 full-time CIGNA employees because of their
 outstanding work.
 Happy Ending: For Evelyn Powell, one of the two permanent CIGNA
 employees, no one could have anticipated another
 added benefit of her employment. Evelyn met the
 man she would later marry at CIGNA, John James, the
 Mail Service Department's lead messenger who came
 to CIGNA through the Baker Industries Program that
 places homeless citizens into the workforce. Now
 happily married, Evelyn and John are looking to
 purchase their first home.
 CIGNA Tour: The program's success has prompted the executive
 director of PDDC/ARC to promote the program as a
 model for other Pennsylvania organizations to
 consider. This Wednesday, Jan. 15, at 12:30 p.m.,
 PDDC will be giving a tour of CIGNA facilities
 (Two Liberty Place, 16th and Chestnut streets,
 Philadelphia) to the PDDC Harrisburg executive
 director. Evelyn, as well as her four co-workers
 from the program, will be on hand to tell their
 stories and spokespeople from PDDC/ARC and CIGNA
 will be available for interviews at this time, or
 at a later date.
 CONTACT: Diane Russell of CIGNA, 215-761-4751.
 /delval/
 -0- 1/13/92


CO: Philadelphia Developmental Disabilities Corporation/Association For
 Retired Citizens; CIGNA ST: Pennsylvania IN: INS SU:


MK-JS -- PH021 -- 9218 01/13/92 16:30 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 13, 1992
Words:353
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