Customized Employment Grants
Geographic Area: Rio Grande, Texas (West Texas Counties of Brewster, Culberson, El Paso, Hudspeth, Jeff Davis, and Presidio)
Upper Rio Grande Workforce Development Board
221 N. Kansas
El Paso TX 79901
Goal: To enhance the capability of One-Stop Career Centers to deliver services to people with disabilities, bridging education and job development with customized employment services.
Partners: Upper Rio Grandee Workforce Development Board (URGWDB), El Paso Community College, Texas Rehabilitation Agency, Texas Assistive Technology Center, University of El Paso, Goodwill Industries of El Paso, Community Options, Workforce Commission, Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities, Texas Commission for Health and Human Services, Texas Department of Human Services, Mental Health and Mental Retardation Services, Volar Center for Independent Living, Salvation Army's Transitional Living Center, US/Mexico Border Health Association, Region XIX Educational Services.
- To integrate customized employment services with existing services in URGWB's Rio Grande @ Work Career Center.
- To create customized employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
- To increase the capacity of the URGWDB and its partners to provide high-quality customized employment services through intensive staff training (e.g., developing a capacity building curriculum).
- Provide customized employment services to 130 persons with disabilities over 5 years.
- Give annual training sessions for employers.
- Enroll a minimum of 25 employers per year.
- Expand the project to 2 additional One-Stops.
- Provide training on customized employment for 40 persons with disabilities and their families annually.
Geographic Area: Most of Alaska (Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, Wasilla, Kenai)
Goal: To build the capacity of statewide One-Stop Job Centers to effectively serve people with disabilities through the provision of customized employment services.
Partners: Alaska Workforce Investment Board, Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, Division of Employment Security, Division of Public Assistance, State Department of Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, Department of Health and Human Services, Governor's Council on Disabilities and Special Education, Alaska Consumer Leadership Network.
- To conduct a statewide strategic planning process (via focus groups comprised of all stakeholders in five communities throughout the state) to develop and implement state/local policies and procedures to enhance employment opportunities for people with disabilities through customized employment services at One-Stop Job Centers.
- To develop the capacity of One-Stop Job Centers, workforce system partners, and providers through staff training using a curriculum developed by national experts and a Business Development Specialist to provide the training.
- To conduct intensive training sessions on customized employment for people with disabilities and their families.
- To increase successful employment outcomes for people with disabilities using customized employment services at the One-Stop Job Centers.
- To fund 5 demonstration sites in local One-Stop Job Centers to facilitate collaborative case management for people with disabilities. An individual employment plan will be developed for each person who is served.
- Over 5 years, 150 people with disabilities will be employed in competitive jobs.
- Expand the project to the other 17 statewide One-Stop Job Centers.
- Train 2,000 One-Stop and community agency staff.
- Develop a Business Leadership Network (BLN).
Geographic Area: 14 counties in eastern Washington State (Benton-Franklin, Tri-Valley WDC, Yakama, Kliskitat, and Kittitas Counties)
Goal: To build the capacity of WorkSource staff to provide customized employment services to people with disabilities, focusing on people with cognitive disabilities currently in sheltered workshops and other segregated settings.
Partners: the 3 Workforce Boards, Institute for Community Inclusion, Washington Workforce Association, and the mandated partners.
- To develop and implement a strategic planning process, including focus groups of all stakeholders.
- To develop and implement a training curriculum to build the capacity of the workforce staff to provide customized employment services to people with disabilities.
- To fund 6 demonstration projects within the 3 workforce development areas. At least one project will involve transition-age students with emotional/behavioral or cognitive disabilities; at least one will use an employer-directed and coworker support design, providing funds directly to a local employer; and at least one will pilot service brokerage and consumer individual support funds.
- Over 5 years, at least 150 persons with disabilities will become competitively employed through WorkSource customized employment services.
- WorkSource staff and community rehabilitation providers will be trained on customized employment.
- Customized employment strategies will be incorporated into the services provided to people with disabilities on TANF.
Geographic Area: All Alabama except Jefferson and Mobile counties
Dept. of Economic and Community Affairs
401 Adams Avenue, Room 390
Montgomery AL 36103
Goal: To demonstrate successful strategies for customized employment services for people with disabilities by the One-Stop Career Centers, resulting in increased employment and wages.
Partners: Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs, Gorman & Associates, LLC, Alabama WIB, Janice Capilouto Center for the Deaf, Central Alabama Easter Seals, East Alabama Easter Seals, Department of Rehabilitation Services, Department of Medicaid, Governor's Office on Disabilities, Small Business Development Centers, STAR Program.
- To develop and implement statewide/local policy initiatives to ensure that customized employment and other innovative strategies are part of the menu of services available to people with disabilities through One-Stop Career Centers.
- To investigate alternative methods of performance for people with disabilities.
- To demonstrate the success of work conditioning and micro-enterprise.
- To develop and document the capacity of the One-Stop system to increase the wages of people with disabilities, including people who are in sheltered workshops or earning less than minimum wage.
- To increase One-Stop Career Center staff awareness of benefits planning, the Ticket to Work, health care, work incentives, etc., and to increase use of these resources to secure employment for people with disabilities.
- To organize educational activities to promote the use of customized employment and personal supports in local initiatives, including activities necessary to secure the state's adoption of the Medicaid Buy-In.
- Over 5 years, a minimum of 100 people with disabilities will be competitively employed, earning at least $7.00 per hour (after 3 months of work conditioning).
- At least 50 people with disabilities will be self-employed after receiving intensive training and technical assistance on the use of micro-enterprise, micro-boards, supported entrepreneurship, cooperatives and small businesses, and Individual Training Accounts (ITAs).
Geographic Area: City of Detroit, Michigan
Goal: To improve the capacity of Detroit's One-Stop Career Centers to provide customized employment services to people with disabilities, targeting youth transitioning out of special education.
Goodwill of Greater Detroit
3111 Grand River Ave
Detroit, MI 48208-2962
Partners: City of Detroit, Michigan Department of Career Development Rehabilitation Services, Employment Central (Wagner-Peyser Employment Service), Detroit Public Schools, Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit, American Society of Employees, Detroit's Work Place, United Cerebral Palsy Association of Metropolitan Detroit.
- To conduct bi-annual employer forums on hiring people with disabilities.
- To establish a relationship with the Detroit public school system and area private/charter schools to ensure that graduates of special education programs are aware of the resources available at One-Stop Career Centers.
- To develop collaboration among organization/agencies serving the target population.
- To provide bi-annual training on customized employment to staff of One-Stop Career Centers and other relevant public agencies.
- To establish "navigator" positions responsible for recruiting potential applicants and managing and coordinating activities.
- A website that serves as an employment-related resource for people with disabilities and all stakeholders in the disability community.
- Over 5 years, a minimum of 100 people with disabilities will receive customized employment services, with a minimum of 75 people becoming employed in competitive employment. (Target population: youth who are between 18 and 26 and graduating from the Detroit public school system.)
- At the end of 5 years, "navigators" will be present in each of the comprehensive and satellite One-Stop Career Centers.
Geographic Area: Town of Hempstead/City of Long Beach, New York
Department of Occupational Resources
Hempstead Executive Plaza
50 Clinton Street, Suite 400
Hempstead NY 11550
Hempstead project website
Goal: To enhance the capacity of One-Stop Career Centers to provide customized employment services to people with disabilities.
Partners: Hempstead Workforce Investment Board, Department of Occupational Resources, NYS Office of Vocational and Educational Services for Individuals with Disabilities, Abilities, Inc. of the National Center for Disability Services, Nassau County Board of Cooperative Education Services, Education Assistance Corporation, Drake Beam Morin, Inc., Goodwill Industries, Economic Opportunity Commission, National Council on the Aging, and other mandated partners.
- To plan and create a comprehensive service delivery model that exemplifies consumer choice and the basic right to work, regardless of type or severity of disability.
- To assess employer needs and increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities.
- To document increased use of new programs (e.g., Ticket to Work, benefits planning).
- To establish and maintain a Customer-Friendly Cooperative for support services and guidance.
- To design and implement a targeted outreach and marketing campaign.
- To conduct ongoing training and provide technical assistance to facilitate customized employment within the One-Stop Career Center.
- To use personal budgets ($1,000 in the customer's Transportation Fund/$2,000 in his/her Employment Support Fund) and personal agents to assist people with disabilities to find and maintain employment.
- Over 5 years, 135 people with disabilities will be competitively employed.
- Develop and disseminate a guidebook of exemplary strategies and promising practices.
Geographic Area: Richmond, Virginia
Aida Pacheco Rivadeneira
Richmond Career Advancement Center
201 West Broad Street
Richmond VA 23220
Goal: To strengthen the linkages of the One-Stop system with schools, existing services in for individuals with disabilities, and the Virginia Business Leadership Network (BLN) to build durable capacity in the One-Stop system to support individuals with disabilities to prepare for, obtain, and advance in good jobs.
Partners: Richmond WIB, Training and Development Corporation, Virginia BLN, Virginia Commonwealth University's Rehabilitation Research and Training Center, Department of Rehabilitative Services, Central Virginia Center for Independent Living, Richmond Career Advancement Center, Richmond Goodwill Industries, and Richmond City Public Schools.
- To make the One-Stop Career Center a valued asset for individuals with disabilities and their families and meet their needs for access to mainstream workforce services.
- To make the One-Stop Centers a valued asset for employers and meet their needs for high-quality employees.
- To enhance the employment opportunities and earnings potential of individuals with disabilities through state-of the-art employability development techniques (i.e, customized employment strategies).
- To ensure that all Richmond City public schools' special education students successfully transition into post-secondary activities that provide quality employment and increased independence.
- Develop and implement an Individual Service Strategy Employability Plan for each customer with a disability.
- Develop and implement an intensive curriculum for One-Stop Career Center staff (including WorkWorld training).
- Fund customized employment demonstrations designed, administered, and evaluated by the Virginia BLN; hire staff to support the BLN.
Geographic Area: Indianapolis, Marion County, Indiana
Indianapolis Private Industry Council
151 North Delaware Street, Suite 1600
Indianapolis IN 46204
Goal: To expand the capacity of the One-Stop Career Centers to provide customized employment services to people with disabilities.
Partners: Indianapolis Private Industry Council, Inc., Department of Workforce Development, Marion County Workforce Investment Board, Easter Seals Crossroads, Goodwill Industries of Central Indiana, Vocational Rehabilitation, and other mandated partners.
- To involve stakeholders to identify barriers, resources, and strategies and to create a project plan.
- To influence policies and change systems to remove barriers to employment for people with disabilities.
- To build the capacity of One-Stop Career Centers to support people with significant disabilities through a customized employment approach.
- To provide outreach to people with disabilities, families, employers, and provider agencies.
- To provide each individual served by the project with an Individual Funding Plan that includes the use of Individual Training Accounts.
- Over 5 years, 125 people with disabilities will become competitively employed through using customized employment strategies.
- Three Indianapolis One-Stop Career Centers will build the capacity to serve people with significant disabilities.
- The project will be replicated in at least two other One-Stop Career Centers in the state.
- The area will establish a Business Leadership Network.
- The following publications will be produced: a transition guide on using One-Stops; a teacher preparation curriculum; a job carving training manual; a customized employment training manual; and an implementation guide for One-Stops.