Through a partnership with Community Intersections, Colorado Springs Utilities is opening up job opportunities for workers with developmental disabilities while reducing costs passed along to its customers.
CSU employs about sixteen workers through Community Intersections. Their jobs include stripping the copper out of old, damaged and unusable cable, and extracting brass from water meters.
The salvaged metal is sold, with the money going toward paying the workers salaries and offsetting CSU's costs.
According to Greg Mitchell, manager of CSU's engineering, construction, operations and support services group, CSU is able to make 50 percent more money off of the metal through this program than if it were to take the non-stripped materials to a metal recycler.
Community Intersections said this program is also highly beneficial to the workers, who generally struggle to find opportunities.
"As people with disabilities, it gives them a sense of being. They're earning a living wage and being useful. Instead of the community helping to support them, they in turn help to support the community by being productive and being a tax-paying citizen," said Alan Freier, supervisor for Community Intersections.
More information can be found on involvement with Community Intersections by clicker here.