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

Essential Elements in Organizational Transformation: Findings From a Delphi Panel of Experts

The findings from Institute for Community Inclusion’s (ICI’s) Delphi Process on Organizational Transformation can guide providers as they work to transform their services. These findings support the prioritization of goals and the development of key action areas that have proven successful.
In this brief, we will:
1. share ten essential elements in organizational transformation ranked in their order of importance according to ICI’s Delphi process, and
2. offer a set of considerations to providers as they move their organizational transformation efforts forward.

Provider Transformation and Integrated Employment

The current emphasis on integrated employment for people with IDD is accelerating the organizational transformation from sheltered workshops to community-based supports, creating both opportunities and challenges for local service providers. These providers need guidance on how to transform to community-based supports while maintaining high standards. This presentation shared findings from the Institute for Community Inclusion’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Advancing Employment for Individuals with IDD.

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Who are Employment Consultants? Characteristics of the workforce that connects jobseekers with intellectual and developmental disabilities to employment

In 1987, the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at the University of Massachusetts Boston began a series of surveys aimed at providing a longitudinal description of the characteristics and service delivery provided by Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPs)(Domin & Butterworth, 2012). Despite direct support staff comprising one of the nation’s largest labor market segments, there has been very little research into the wages and stability of that workforce (Bogenschutz, Hewitt, Nord, & Hepperlen, 2014).

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Knowledge Translation and Support for Individuals and Families

With the persistently low competitive employment rate for working-age people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), a main focus area for the field of disability research has been on the interaction between the individual and the service system. Yet we know much less about the interaction between systems and families around employment.