October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). According to the U.S Department of Labor, NDEAM celebrates the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities past and present and showcases supportive, inclusive employment policies and practices. To support the employment of people with disabilities, there are multiple government programs, two of those include but are not limited to: vocational rehabilitation and the Ticket to Work program. Read on to learn more about these important employment services for disabled adults.
Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a state funded program and is authorized by the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. To be eligible for VR services, individuals must have a physical or mental impairment that results in a substantial impediment to employment and who require and can benefit from VR services to achieve employment and maximize career goals. When working with VR, someone can have goal of working part-time or full-time.
Where to Find VR Employment Services for Disabled Adults
Vocational rehabilitation services can include assessments for diagnosis, benefits counseling, funding for school/training, counseling and guidance, work readiness training, job placement, purchase specialized equipment that support employment, and services to support job retention. Vocational Rehabilitation can also offer pre-employment transition services to students, starting at the age of 14. Locate your local vocational rehabilitation office at: https://rsa.ed.gov/about/states
Ticket To Work Program
The Ticket to Work Program is funded by the Social Security Administration (SSA) and supports career development for people who receive Social Security benefits, ages 18 through 64 who want to work through Employment Networks. This program is authorized by the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999. To be eligible for Ticket to Work, one must be receiving some or all their SSA cash benefit when their ticket is assigned and wanting to work their way off their cash benefit within three to five years.
Ticket To Work services can include benefits counseling, work readiness training, job placement and services to support job retention. Find out more about the Ticket to Program at: https://yourtickettowork.ssa.gov
It is important to note that people receiving Social Security benefits can work with vocational rehabilitation or the Ticket to Work Program based on their needs. Those with disabilities who are not receiving SSA cash benefits should contact their local vocational rehabilitation office.
About Isabella Bullock: Isabella, or Izzie for short, is an employment specialist for the Center of Independent Living. She is an iced coffee enthusiast who enjoys getting lost in a good book. Click here to learn more about Isabella.
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