Washington stakeholders report that the state’s focus on employment started in the late 1970s with values-based training based on the Program Analysis of Social Services (PASS-3) model.These workshops were widely attended over several years, and many of today’s key players in state and county services participated as leaders.
Beginning in 2006, the Shoreline Public School District in King County, Washington partnered with Shoreline Community College to offer an off-campus transition program for young adults with intellectual disabilities and developmental disabilities (ID/DD) residing in the Shoreline School District.
In the mid-1980s, the state of Washington was awarded a five-year federal systems change grant to kick-start their supported employment efforts via the Washington State Employment Initiative. Funding from this grant was used to develop training on best practices and to generate high-quality integrated employment supports among agencies.
King County's program to employ people with disabilities in county jobs is an example of Washington's commitment to the use of innovative approaches to increase integrated employment. In 1989, a training resource funded by Washington State and the county Division of Developmental Disabilities, O'Neill and Associates, submitted a grant application to the Rehabilitation Services Administration to develop public sector jobs for people with developmental disabilities within the state.
Washington's Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) has recently issued a new policy which went into full effect on July 1, 2006.
Able Opportunities is a certified vendor for the state of Washington’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, Developmental Disabilities Administration, Division of Developmental Disability, and Department of Labor and Industry. The Work Independence Network (WIN) began in 2005 as a partnership between Able Opportunities, Harrison Medical Center, and Kitsap County Developmental Disabilities to help people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) find jobs.
As evidence of the positive outcomes associated with integrated employment develops it is important to identify policy and practices at the state level that expand access to employment opportunity. This brief presents findings from Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) case study research focused on state agencies that support individuals with developmental disabilities.