Safeway earns Easter Seals’ All-Time Top Corporate Partner designation

Easter Seals recently designated Safeway Inc. its All-Time Top Corporate Partner. Man oh man, do they deserve that honor!

In their fundraising campaign during April (Autism Awareness Month), Safeway invited customers to support Easter Seals services for people with autism and other disabilities at checkout. In just one month, Safeway raised $8,824,141! Safeway employees also raised an additional $1.4 million through local market events, golf tournaments, galas and fundraisers—bringing the company’s 2009 grand total for Easter Seals services to $10.2 million.

And here’s the cool thing –Safeway puts its money where its mouth is. Safeway employs more than 10,000 adults with disabilities. You read that right. They hire more than 10,000 adults with disabilities. There are over 1,700 Safeway stores across the United States and Canada, operating under various brand names including Safeway (East Coast, Seattle, Portland, Northern California, Phoenix and Denver), Vons and Pavilions (Southern California and Nevada), Dominick’s (Chicago), Randalls and Tom Thumb (Texas), Genuardi’s (Philadelphia) and Carrs stores (Alaska). Look around the next time you are shopping at one of these stores – it’s likely you’ll find an employee there with a disability. What a welcome sight!

I can tell you firsthand — when you have a disability, it is extremely difficult to convince employers to hire you. Safeway’s commitment gives many adults with autism and other disabilities a career and a means to live independently. Larree Renda, Safeway Executive Vice President and Chair of the Safeway Foundation, says it best: “Most important, is the message that people with autism and other disabilities are valuable members of the workforce—even in these tough economic times. Too many businesses don’t take the risk in hiring people with disabilities. At Safeway we’ve embraced it, and have had great success.”

THANK YOU Safeway!


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  1. Mike Says:

    It’s clear that many employers do see hiring people with disabilities as a risk. But all hiring is a risk. It may seem riskier when it’s something new to the business. Let’s hope more businesses take Safeway’s experience to heart and realize–it’s really not a risk at all.

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