Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation - Volume 40, issue 2
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Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation will provide a forum for discussion and dissemination of information about the major areas that constitute vocational rehabilitation.
Periodically, there will be topics that are directed either to specific themes such as long-term care or different disability groups such as those with psychiatric impairment. Often a guest editor who is an expert in the given area will provide leadership on a specific topic issue. However, all articles received directly or submitted for a special issue are welcome for peer review. The emphasis will be on publishing rehabilitation articles that have immediate application for helping rehabilitation counselors, psychologists and other professionals in providing direct services to people with disabilities.
Original research articles, review articles, program descriptions, and case studies will be considered for publication. Ideas for special topical issues are welcomed as well.
Abstract: In the past, when the vast majority of individuals with significant intellectual disabilities exited school, they were restricted to segregated workshops and activity centers or were confined to their homes. Each year increasing numbers receive the instruction and extra supports needed to perform real work in the real world for extended periods of time. Why do some have real jobs and the vast majority does not? Little is due to intellectual capabilities. Much is due to poorly trained professionals, inadequate and irrelevant instruction, low expectations, the lack or paucity of opportunities and the absence of long term extra supports. We…know how to produce integrated employment realities for some. It is time to change our ways and produce them for the many thousands of others who so desperately need them. A logical, cost efficient and empirically validated 8 step sequence that has been used to arrange for individuals with significant intellectual disabilities to produce real work in integrated environments when they exit schools and segregated post school settings or when confinement to homes is ended is presented. Step # 1. Generate a Comprehensive Integrated Work Site Inventory Step # 2. Generate a Comprehensive Work Task Inventory Step # 3. Generate Integrated Work Sites Step # 4. Conduct a Work Skill Analysis Step # 5. Make a Personalized Worker to Work Site Match Step # 6. Provide Authentic Assessment and Instruction Step # 7. Maximize Natural Supervision Step # 8. Arrange For Long Term Supports As the individuals of concern are not able to arrange their own access to integrated work sites, others must do so. Seven of many possible strategies that have been used to generate such access are exemplified (Step 3). Rudimentary information pertaining to the other 7 steps will be afforded to provide context.
Keywords: Integrated work sites, significant intellectual disabilities, postschool employment
Abstract: This article describes a recent certification initiative to build an international network of professionals who have the knowledge and skills to provide quality integrated employment services to individuals with a variety of disabilities. An overview of the history and conceptual framework guiding the development of the Employment Support Professional Certification Program will be followed by a presentation of findings from a preliminary survey study of 93 professionals who have been certified. Survey respondents identified both personal and professional motivations for pursuing the Certified Employment Support Professional (CESP) designation, including the desire to (a) achieve a sense of accomplishment and personal…satisfaction, (b) demonstrate a professional standard of competence and commitment to the profession, and (c) garner professional credibility and enhanced opportunities for career advancement. The authors describe ongoing efforts and recommendations for validating the credentialing program and for increasing the number of certified professionals equipped to establish and expand equitable employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.
Keywords: Certification, certified employment support professional, disability, employment
Abstract: Exemplary transition services for students with intellectual disabilities aged 18–21 should be anchored in community based rather than school based settings. A growing number of community-based transition programs are now located on college and university campuses throughout the United States, spurred by the national Think College initiative (http://www.thinkcollege.net/). This article describes the SITE (Skills for Independence, Transition and Employment) program located at Indiana University-Purdue University, Indianapolis (IUPUI), an urban campus setting. The program, a partnership between IUPUI and the Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS), focuses on transition from school to adult life and offers a 1–2 year post-secondary education opportunity. The…article begins with a brief discussion of college-based transition programs for young adults with intellectual disabilities. The SITE program and how it was developed is then described. Finally, we discuss the development of the Indiana Partnership for Post-secondary Education and Careers. The article concludes with future directions for program development and systems change.
Abstract: This paper presents the case studies of successful employment support for two young adults with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Contrary to reported employment outcomes for young adults with ASD, these two young people experienced success in their transition to employment as a result of intensive job coaching. Their supports included consultation with a positive behavior support facilitator, the implementation of a multi-component behavior intervention plan, and the implementation of supervisor and co-worker training in the implementation of the plan. Both young adults achieved independence at work and maintained successful employment for two years or more with fading supports as a…result of this intervention.
Abstract: As support for Employment First and the demand for integrated employment grows, the shortcomings of our current service system are becoming more apparent. This article discusses an innovative approach to braiding funding resources and services that addresses programmatic barriers and utilizes the Developmental Disabilities Service (DDS) system to augment Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) services to facilitate direct hire, integrated jobs for people with more significant intellectual disabilities. It describes TransCen, Inc.'s approach to braiding services to promote employment and support customized job placement. Ideas for improving program services and recommendations for system-change are presented.
Abstract: Job development requires a wide variety of skills to be effective. Utilizing a business-based approach, job developers can improve outcomes. This article explores several aspects of business-based development including the use of business language, striking the right tone, developing an elevator pitch, active listening strategies, understanding features versus benefits, doing research, under promising, and closing the sale. By utilizing these business-based sales strategies, job developers can improve their outcomes and increase job placement for people with significant disabilities
Keywords: Supported employment, job development, business language, business mindset, sales
Abstract: Over the last ten years, there has been tremendous growth in social enterprise businesses, defined as nonprofit or for-profit business ventures that strive to achieve a quantifiable double bottom line of financial and social returns. In many cases, these are revenue-generating businesses run by nonprofit organizations that understand and already provide services to the individuals they would employ through the business. Social enterprise businesses are self-sustaining and adopt commercial strategies to increase their effectiveness. This approach has been particularly promising in creating new opportunities for individuals with disabilities in emerging industries and increasing employment of people with disabilities. The purpose…of this article is to describe and profile two different models of social enterprise businesses funded by Kessler Foundation that employ people with disabilities in integrated settings earning market-driven pay rates.
Keywords: Social enterprise, social ventures, mission-driven business, employment
Abstract: Working on Purpose: 6 Steps to Employment and a Framework for Planning is a unique blend of integrated employment and person-centered planning theories packaged in one practical resource. It provides a value-based step-by-step process for supporting individuals with disabilities explore, discover and experience meaningful community inclusion and productive civic engagement and contribution. This paper is a synthesis of material that was presented at the 2013 National APSE conference in Indianapolis, Indiana in June. In addition to learning the content that is represented here conference participants received a hard copy version of the Working on Purpose workbook and planning templates.
Keywords: Employment, person-centered planning, civic engagement, disability, community inclusion
Abstract: There is a deep research base in the employment and mental health (MH) field that has supported the development of effective strategies for people with significant psychiatric disabilities. However, overall employment outcomes for people with serious mental illness have not increased significantly. This is true even with the recent emphases on recovery and system change or transformation. While employment continues to be stated as one of the cornerstones of recovery within mental health, vocational rehabilitation (VR) remains a crucial resource through interagency partnerships, funding, training, and policy development. The Institute for Community Inclusion's Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Vocational…Rehabilitation (ICI VR-RRTC) did case studies with state VR agencies examining innovations in these areas. This article describes three VR agencies in particular (Delaware, Maryland, Oregon) that served in many ways as excellent exemplars of using the multiple resources, skills, and services models that produced better employment results. It describes each state's specific partnership strategies, then concludes with findings from each as well as an overall analysis of key issues that should be applicable more generally vis-á-vis VR-MH collaboration on employment interventions.
Abstract: Social skills deficits are common to many individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and can be cause for much anxiety. Because these deficits include interactions with strangers and people in authority, many individuals with ASD have difficulty successfully managing job interviews. When given very specific examples of how to better present themselves and interact with others in an interviewing situation, individuals with ASD become more competent in positively altering their social interactions in employment situations. The keys to improving skills for interviews include understanding disclosure under the Americans with Disabilities Act, being aware of specific accommodations that can be helpful…in the interviewing process, having a thorough self-knowledge, being as completely prepared as possible, and possessing verbal restraint. The increased confidence that comes from being prepared allows individuals to relax before and during the interview, transforming a nervous exchange of information into a confident and dynamic presentation of their qualifications.
Abstract: The percentage of people with disabilities who are employed continues to be critically low. The existing services and supports infrastructure faces many constraints, including its limited capacity to reach and serve all people needing assistance. There is a present day need to find new ways to support job seekers with disabilities. Putting Faith to Work has emerged as a promising approach to build the capacity of faith-based communities to serve people with disabilities to find and keep work. This paper describes the background of the Putting Faith to Work model, as well as an overview of key features.
Abstract: Human-animal interaction (HAI) studies are on the rise to test the hypothesis that assistive dogs provide positive support to persons with disabilities. We review findings from our pilot study, which approached significance in demonstrating HAI as a promising means of helping those with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) to acquire adaptive social behaviors. We discuss elements drawn from multiple disciplines to highlight the value that assistive dogs deliver when considering employment supports for individuals with ASD. These elements include the neurological functions that influence social behavior, HAI, and ASD, adaptations emerging from an HAI integrated employment setting, and considerations for designing,…implementing, and evaluating quality HAI supports. We contribute this information as points of consideration for individuals with autism as they pursue employment in integrated settings. We provide implications for rehabilitation practice and research.
Keywords: Intellectual disabilities, human-animal interaction (HAI), autism spectrum disorders (ASD), assistive dogs, employment, quality of life (QoL)
Abstract: Déjà vu – It's like watching a movie I've seen a hundred times before and knowing what will happen next. It unfolds exactly as my mind remembers; only this time it is playing in fast forward. Sign Language Interpreting and Supported Employment were both born out of a need that was filled by volunteers who cared, only Sign Language preceded supported employment. Do parallels exist between these two professions, particularly pertaining to certifications impact upon a profession?
Keywords: Sign language profession, supported employment profession, certification impact