• Christinne Rudd

Harris-Gowdie says Believing in Yourself and Supports are Key to Employment Success


FSACentral is proud to celebrate Disability Employment Awareness month by featuring some people with disabilities who are out in the workforce.

Name: Malcolm Harris-Gowdie

Hometown: Port St. Lucie, Florida

Employer: Saint Lucie Medical Center

Position: Housekeeping

Length of time at current job: 5 years

What is the best advice or encouragement you’d give to a fellow self-advocate about accessing or keeping employment?

The best piece of advice I would give is to believe in yourself and surround yourself with positive people that will support you 100%. At the end of the day, if you don't have support you are going to struggle getting employment as a person with special needs.

What’s the most important employment-related challenge you face as a person with a disability?

The biggest challenge I face is overcoming the limitations my cerebral palsy places on me while doing my job to the best of my ability.

How should we be advocating for better employment opportunities and practices in Florida?

Allowing employers to have one-on-one training with employees with special needs so that maybe they can be a bit more welcoming to the idea of hiring people with special needs into various positions of their workforce.

Which agency was the most helpful to you in accessing and maintaining employment?

Vocational Rehabilitation was the most helpful agency to me when finding employment.

FSACentral would like to thank Malcolm Harris-Gowdie for his time and thoughtful answers to our Employment Spotlight Q & A.

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Florida Self-Advocacy Central is the news and information arm of Florida Self-Advocates Network'D or FL SAND

FL SAND and Florida Self-Advocacy Central are projects provided by the Florida Developmental Disabilities Council, Inc., supported in part by grant numbers 1801FLBSDD, 1901FLSCDD-01, and 2001FLSCDD-01 from the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects with government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official ACL policy.