Louisiana Job Fairs 2006 will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 11 from 9 a.m. until noon at Mainstreet Community Center at 708 Main Street in Pineville. For the third year in a row, this event is being held in conjunction with similar events across the state to help people with disabilities find employment. Job Fairs are also scheduled in Baton Rouge on Oct. 4, Mandeville and Shreveport on Oct. 10, Monroe on Oct. 11, Lake Charles and New Orleans on Oct. 12, Lafayette on Oct. 24 and Houma on Oct. 31.

The effort is sponsored across Louisiana by the Medicaid Purchase Plan for workers with disabilities through its federal Medicaid Infrastructure Grant and is coordinated by Louisiana Business Leadership Network. The Alexandria event is co-sponsored by the Central Louisiana Chamber of Commerce.

People with disabilities are both the largest minority in the United States and also the largest population of unemployed Americans. The American Community Survey shows that Louisiana is home to almost 400,000 people with disabilities who are of working age. Studies indicate that 275,000 of these adults with disabilities are unemployed but want to work.

Louisiana Job Fairs are designed to give people with disabilities who want to work full access to employers in one location. In 2004 and 2005, more than 3,000 job seekers were connected with 327 businesses statewide. Organizers hope to connect more job seekers and businesses in 2006.

For more information about the Alexandria Job Fair, contact Steve Alexander at (318) 487-5368. To find out more about the statewide effort, visit Louisiana Business Leadership Network online at www.lbln.org or Medicaid Purchase Plan at www.LaMPP.org.