State policy

Enacting changes to state policies is a slow and complex process. But this kind of systems change can be transformative when it creates opportunities for people with disabilities to engage with and contribute to their communities. Learn more about state policy and systems change in these resources.

Reaching Target Employment Goals: The Five-year Initiative from Florida’s Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD)

Originally published: 1/2009

The state of Florida has implemented a five-year employment initiative for people with ID/DD. The goal is to enable at least 50% of adults (ages 18 to 55) receiving APD-funded day services as of July 1, 2004, to achieve community employment by July 1, 2009. APD- funded services include adult day training, supported employment, and non-residential supports and services. Florida is specifically targeting a total of 25% of individuals who were in Adult Day Training (ADT) on July 1, 2004, to be employed by July 1, 2009.

Promoting Public Sector Jobs for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in Washington State

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.

Employment First! Making Integrated Employment the Preferred Outcome in Tennessee

The Tennessee Division of Mental Retardation Services (DMRS) implemented the Employment First! initiative in 2002. The goal of Employment First was to make employment the first day service option for adults receiving supports funded by DMRS, Medicaid, or the state. Employment First set the standard that employment was the preferred service option for adults with mental retardation and developmental disabilities (MR/DD).

State Employment Practices: Funding for Employment Services

As state developmental disability service systems strive to balance myriad challenges, the inevitable question of funding must be addressed. Through State Employment Leadership Network (SELN) events, member states have regularly expressed the need for additional analysis and insights related to rates, reimbursement, and funding issues. This series of Funding Summaries is intended to shed light on the complexities as well as successes experienced by state systems across the country.

Employment Data Systems: Florida's Agency for Persons with Disabilities

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.

Innovations in Employment Supports: Colorado's State Division for Developmental Disabilities

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:

Community-Based Non-Work Services: Findings from the National Survey of Day and Employment Programs for People with Developmental Disabilities

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.