Voya Financial donates $50,000, each, to Disability:IN and National Down Syndrome Society to advance the employment of people with disabilities

February 15, 2023

$100,000 total donation aligns with launch of new ad campaign reflecting Voya’s longstanding commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion – including disability inclusion

Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA) announced today two $50,000 donations — one to Disability:IN and one to National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) — to help advance the employment of people with disabilities. Voya’s Chief Executive Officer Heather Lavallee shared the news at Voya's annual Workplace Solutions sales and client engagement training conference held in Boston.

“At Voya, we are committed to disability inclusion and hiring in the workplace, which we demonstrate through our actions each day, including in the casting of our TV commercials,” said Lavallee. “Understanding that people with disabilities are more likely to be unemployed, and underemployed, we are proud to collaborate with Disability:IN and NDSS on two unique programs that will advance employment — and financial opportunity — for valuable and talented members of our society.”

The $50,000 donation to Disability:IN is earmarked for the nonprofit’s NextGen Matchmaking program — a virtual, one-on-one speed-networking event where corporate representatives are matched with college students and recent graduates with disabilities.

“Voya Financial is a valuable partner in our mission to build inclusive and equitable businesses for all,” said Jill Houghton, president and CEO, Disability:IN. “Voya’s commitment to our NextGen Leaders’ matchmaking program will help young people with disabilities find meaningful work at places where they feel welcomed — where diversity of thought is celebrated, and disability is viewed as a strength."

NDSS will use their $50,000 funding toward the development of cross-sector collaboratives to include providers of disability services and support, business partners in employer roles as well as disability-focused staffing agencies. The collaboratives will address common barriers to employment such as transition education, accessibility, transportation, system navigation and benefits counseling.

“We are excited to partner with Voya Financial on this important initiative that will serve as a model for future collaboratives across the country,” said Kandi Pickard, president and CEO, NDSS. “Connecting with other companies, business leaders, and HR professionals helps us learn more, reduce barriers for individuals with disabilities, and, ultimately, close the gap on this critical social equity issue.”

The donations to the nonprofit organizations coincide with the launch of Voya’s new TV and digital advertising campaign, “Better Together,” which encourages people to consider workplace benefits and savings choices together — and actively take steps to be prepared for their financial future.

As with previous campaigns that have featured individuals with disabilities as well as various ethnicities, Voya’s new spots continue to promote diversity, equity and inclusion. The casting in the spot "Diner" includes an actor with Down syndrome, as well as ethnicity and gender diversity.

“From the launch of the Voya brand in 2014 through today, our commitment to inclusivity has been reflected in the talent that we feature in our TV commercials and advertising — and that certainly includes people with disabilities,” said Paul Gennaro, chief brand and communications officer, Voya Financial.

“Through our Voya Cares program, which serves people with disabilities and caregivers, we are aware of the challenges that members of the disabilities community encounter when seeking employment,” Gennaro added. “Collaborating with Disability:IN and NDSS to help more members of the disabilities community join the workforce — and participate in workplace savings and benefits programs — aligns quite naturally with our purpose and the character of our brand.”

Voya’s commitment to the disabilities community is also demonstrated through its People with Disabilities and Caregivers Council, an employee-led group that supports employees who are part of the disabilities community and their allies. Additionally, Voya collaborated with The Harkin Institute for Public Policy & Citizen Engagement at Drake University on a research paper demonstrating that competitive, integrated employment provides lasting benefits to the brand, reputation, and bottom line of companies across every sector of the economy.

About Voya Financial®

Voya Financial, Inc. (NYSE: VOYA), is a leading health, wealth and investment company with 7,200 employees. Through products, solutions and technologies, Voya helps its 14.3 million individual, workplace and institutional clients become well planned, well invested and well protected. Benefitfocus, a newly joined Voya company, extends Voya’s workplace benefits and savings reach and capabilities by providing benefits administration capabilities to 16.5 million individual subscription employees across employer and health plan clients. Certified as a “Great Place to Work” by the Great Place to Work® Institute, Voya is purpose-driven and equally committed to conducting business in a way that is socially, environmentally, economically and ethically responsible. Voya has earned recognition as: one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies® by the Ethisphere Institute; a member of the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index; and a “Best Place to Work for Disability Inclusion” on the Disability Equality Index. For more information, visit voya.com. Follow Voya Financial on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter @Voya.

About Disability:IN®

Disability:IN is a global organization driving disability inclusion and equality in business. More than 400 corporations partner with Disability:IN to create long-term business and social impact through the world’s most comprehensive disability inclusion benchmarking and reporting tool, the Disability Equality Index; best-in-class conferences and programs; expert counsel and engagement; and public policy leadership. Join us at Disabilityin.org/AreYouIN #AreYouIN.

About NDSS

The National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS) is the leading human rights organization for all individuals with Down syndrome. NDSS envisions a world in which all people with Down syndrome have the opportunity to enhance their quality of life, realize their life aspirations, and become valued members of welcoming communities. Founded in 1979, NDSS supports and advocates for the Down syndrome community by focusing on three key areas of programming: Resources & Support, Policy & Advocacy, and Community Engagement. Within these focus areas NDSS engages in various activities, events, and programs on topics that are critical to our community such as federal and state advocacy and public policy, health and wellness, education, and employment. NDSS creates resources to support individuals with Down syndrome, their families, and caregivers across the lifespan and hosts awareness and engagement events throughout the country including the National Buddy Walk® Program, the Times Square Video presentation and New York City Buddy Walk®, Racing for 3.21 on World Down Syndrome Day, Run for 3.21, DC Golf Outing, the annual NDSS Gala & Auction, and various other events. Visit www.ndss.org for more information about NDSS.



Media Contact:
Mary Beth Conklin
Voya Financial

Source: Voya Financial, Inc.