Employment is a critical need for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD). The recognition of the pivotal role that work can play in the lives of people with IDD is driving many state developmental disabilities agencies to adopt "Employment First" policies that prioritize employment in integrated settings as the preferred day service alternative. The need for this policy shift is clear. While few policymakers, providers, families or advocates fail to recognize the benefits of employment for people with ID/DD, the outcomes have been difficult to achieve.
Performance measurement and data
A popular saying in our field is, "If it gets measured, it gets done." Measuring performance--whether of staff members or of employment outcomes--is crucial for understanding what we're doing well, where we're lacking, and how we can improve. Explore this topic in the resources below.
The state of Florida's Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD) has implemented a five-year employment initiative for people with ID/DD. One goal is to enable at least 50 percent of adults (ages 18 to 55) receiving APD-funded day services (including adult day training, supported employment, and non-residential supports and services), as of July 1, 2004, to achieve community employment by July 1, 2009.
Between the years of 1985 and 1996 Colorado experienced significant growth in integrated employment for people with mental retardation and developmental disabilities (MR/DD). Several factors were consistently highlighted as contributing to Colorado's employment outcomes during this period. These included:
This brief presents findings on people with all disabilities and people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are served in employment and non-work settings by community rehabilitation providers (CRPs).
The past thirty years have seen considerable growth in community-based services and supports for adults with developmental disabilities. One category of community-based day supports, integrated employment, has been clearly defined and widely implemented for years. However, another emerging model, community-based non-work (CBNW), is used in a number of states but is less clearly defined and understood.
The data for this fact sheet have been compiled from the Rehabilitation Services Administration national data collection system, the RSA-911 database. This database contains demographic and employment information on each individual whose case was closed by VR each year, across the nation.
The following report represents an expansion of the data collection activities mandated by a 2012 Administration of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). Prior to 2012, the AIDD funded data projects, Access to Integrated Employment, Family and Individual Information Systems project (FISP), Residential Information Systems Project (RISP) and the State of the States in Developmental Disabilities only collected data from the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Originally published 6/2008
Originally published 4/2008
In FY2004, the average expenditure per person for integrated employment as reported by state Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities (MR/DD) agencies was $6,251 (Table 1). This figure has increased steadily since the mid-1990s indicating that states have slowly begun allocating additional resources towards integrated employment. However, growth in expenditures is likely a result of changes in federal law as opposed to changes in the amount of state dollars available to fund integrated employment.
Originally published 2/2008
The Wagner-Peyser Act of 1933 established a nationwide system of public employment services, known as the Employment Service. Via the Workforce Investment Act of 1998, the Employment Service was made part of the One-Stop service delivery system. Wagner-Peyser funds are a primary source of funding for the core and other services of One–Stop Career Centers that provide employment services available to all people, including people with disabilities.