October is Disability Employment Awareness Month and we are celebrating inclusion in the workplace by hearing from Special Olympics Nova Scotia athlete, Erin Magee. Erin has been an athlete for more than 16 years and just celebrated her 10-year anniversary working for Sobeys, a proud partner of Special Olympics since 2016.
Meet Erin Magee:
What sport do you participate in with Special Olympics?
The sports I participate in through Special Olympics are: Soccer, Swimming, Track and Field and Curling.
Where are you employed?
I work at Sobeys in Bedford, Nova Scotia. I work in the Produce department, mainly producing cut fruit and vegetable platters and other packaged products.
How long have you worked there?
I have been with Sobeys for 10 great years.
What is your favourite part about your job?
My favourite part about my job is talking about my experiences and sharing my love for my Special Olympics sports with my co-workers.
Have any skills or values you’ve learned at Special Olympics helped you succeed at your job?
My determination from wanting to do well in my sports is something that I've taken off the field with me, and has helped me succeed in my job at Sobeys.
What is a something you’ve accomplished through your job that you are proud of?
I have accomplished quite a bit since I first started with Sobeys. I originally started in the Natural Source department, facing product on the shelves and then got moved to the Pharmacy/Grocery department, facing product on the shelves. Then I moved into the Produce department where I have been for the majority of my years with Sobeys. Originally when I started with Sobeys I only worked for 1-2 days a week for 4 hours a shift. Now I am working 3-4 days a week working 8 hours a shift!
Why is inclusion in the workplace important?
To me being inclusive in the workplace is so important because it can help others who may not know much about people with intellectual disabilities. Working with someone who has an intellectual disability will let you get to know them better. Once you know someone with an intellectual disability, it could change a person's perspective entirely on the skills and capabilities of someone like me.