RRTC on Advancing Employment

This project is home to research, training, and outreach activities that promote employment for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Browse all our publications below, or click on the activities links under numbers 1–4.

We are funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research in the Administration for Community Living in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The RRTC is a project of the Institute for Community Inclusion at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Activities supported by the RRTC include:

(1) Choosing Work: Effective Knowledge Translation and Support for Individuals and Families

The goal of this line of research is to create a comprehensive information, outreach, and support framework for individuals and families that enables ready and timely access to information about employment throughout the lifespan. Research activities include a scoping literature review, online and in-person focus groups with individuals with IDD and their family members, and the development and testing of an intervention that promotes individual and family engagement in employment planning.

Contact: John Kramer (john.kramer@umb.edu)

Find presentations and publications from this project here...

(2) Increasing the Effectiveness of Employment Consultants

This work will define a model for employment support that incorporates research, practice, job seeker support needs, organizational culture, and personal resources. Project partners and staff will implement an intervention to improve the quality of services provided by employment consultants through online training, data-based performance feedback, and facilitated peer-to-peer support.

Contact: Alberto Migliore (alberto.migliore@umb.edu)

Find presentations and publications from this project here...

(3) Building Capacity and Supporting Organizational Transformation for Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPs)

Project staff will develop a model framework and toolkit to support community rehabilitation providers in implementing an Employment First focus. The demonstration of an efficient, scalable strategy that enables CRPs to create change within their own organizations is a key feature of this research.

Contact: Jaimie Timmons (jaimie.timmons@umb.edu)

Find presentations and publications from this project here...

(4) Policies and Practices of High-Performing State Employment Systems

This research strand will define the characteristics of a high-performing state system that promotes cross-agency and resource integration. The strand will also identify effective state practices and policies that lead to employment outcomes, and will and describe Employment First policy implementation and outcomes at both the national and state level.

Contact: Allison Hall (allison.hall@umb.edu)

Find presentations and publications from this project here...

Project Team

Resources

Webinars

 

Publications

 

Project Partners

44 Series - Transformation to What? Getting Past the "Messy in the Middle" Stage

Watch the archive event here. Download the slides here. "All change is hard at first, messy in the middle, and so gorgeous at the end." -Robin Sharma

Have you and the individuals and families you support experienced this "messy" phase as your organization moves away from facility-based services to community employment? 

44 Series - Organizational Transformation: From Workshops to Community Employment II

Download the slides here. Watch the webinar here. This webinar was so popular, we decided to run it again! Provider agencies across the country are transitioning from segregated “sheltered” workshop options to supporting integrated community careers for people with disabilities. This process of organizational transformation can be both exciting and challenging for provider staff and the people they serve.

44 Series - Does All Mean All? Culturally Diverse Families and Access to Services

Watch the archived webinar here...Researchers Judith Gross (University of Kansas) and Grace Francis (George Mason University) work intensively with Hispanic families in rural Kansas. They talked about the importance of engaging culturally and linguistically diverse families in services for their children with IDD. Judith and Grace discussed the barriers these families face, and offered strategies for professionals to help ensure full access to services.

44 Series - Financial Well-Being: Reframing the Conversation

Watch the archived webinar here. When looking for a new job, it’s logical to “do the math.” We consider what we need (food, housing, healthcare) and what we want (gym membership, car, vacation). We balance potential income against expenses. Finally, we evaluate whether a particular job will help us achieve our goals. Benefits can be a lifeline, but continuous reliance on them can limit people to a life in poverty.