October 30, 2015
Celebrating National Disability Employment Awareness Month: "It's our time to shine"
Throughout the month of October, ACL has joined the Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy in recognizing National Disability Employment Awareness Month. As October comes to a close, the ACL Blog is featuring a series of posts on the importance of employment and efforts to support youth with disabilities as they transition to adulthood:
- A Pathway to Employment for Youth with Disabilities: This fall a group of college students with disabilities sat down with ACL leaders to talk about issues that will impact their futures including college, employment, and advocacy.
- Five Years of PIE: In 2010, AIDD began awarding Partnerships in Employment Systems Change (PIE) grants to help states promote competitive, integrated employment outcomes for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Cindy Gruman, who has led an evaluation of the grants, discusses their impact over the last five years. The grants support people like Kevin Burke, a self-advocate who is successfully employed at Holiday Inn. Burke sums up why employment is so important, "because it's our time to shine."
- Increasing Opportunities for Integrated Employment: In 2012, the ARC of Washington County began working to divert youth from sheltered workshop placements to supported employment. The effort is an example of a promising practice designed to meet the needs of individuals, promote integrated employment, and comply with requirements of the CMS Home and Community-Based Services settings rule.