Pennsylvania

States - Big Screen

In the State of Independence, Pennsylvania is working steadfast to support workers with disabilities who want to pursue careers and optimal self-sufficiency. 

State VR Rates and Services

A list of services offered by this state’s Vocational Rehabilitation agency, along with the standard rates paid for the performance of those services.

PDF icon Pennsylvania’s VR Rates and Services

2015 State Population.
0.12%
Change from
2014 to 2015
12,802,503
2015 Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
0.95%
Change from
2014 to 2015
885,256
2015 Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
4.35%
Change from
2014 to 2015
316,361
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities).
3.44%
Change from
2014 to 2015
35.74%
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities).
0.98%
Change from
2014 to 2015
77.29%

General

2013 2014 2015
Population. 12,773,801 12,787,209 12,802,503
Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 858,463 876,854 885,256
Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 291,420 302,598 316,361
Number of people without disabilities who are employed (ages 18-64). 5,288,214 5,324,239 5,353,723
Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities). 33.95% 34.51% 35.74%
Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities). 75.64% 76.53% 77.29%
Overall unemployment rate. 7.40% 5.80% 5.30%
Poverty Rate (all disabilities). 22.10% 21.80% 21.20%
Poverty Rate (NO disabilities). 12.40% 12.30% 11.90%
Number of males with disabilities (all ages). 798,130 831,217 823,712
Number of females with disabilities (all ages). 890,993 902,295 923,052
Number of Caucasians with disabilities (all ages). 1,386,520 1,416,551 1,418,340
Number of African Americans with disabilities (all ages). 204,327 209,004 224,188
Number of Hispanic/Latinos with disabilities (all ages). 105,973 117,047 119,610
Number of American Indians/Alaska Natives with disabilities (all ages). 4,811 6,163 5,949
Number of Asians with disabilities (all ages). 21,126 25,025 29,755
Number of Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders with disabilities (all ages). N/A N/A 1,179
Number of with multiple races disabilities (all ages). 35,001 38,429 34,500
Number of others with disabilities (all ages). 37,073 37,781 32,853

 

SSA OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of SSI recipients with disabilities who work. 14,427 14,958 15,533
Percentage of SSI recipients with disabilities who work relative to total SSI recipients with disabilities. 4.00% 4.20% 4.50%
Old Age Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) recipients/workers with disabilities. 409,657 409,608 407,320

 

MENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of mental health services consumers who are employed. 16,346 11,834 112,787
Number of mental health services consumers who are part of the labor force (employed or actively looking for employment). 17,200 12,301 131,902
Number of adults served who have a known employment status. 119,508 66,751 132,100
Percentage of all state mental health agency consumers served in the community who are employed. 13.70% 17.70% 85.40%
Percentage of supported employment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.10% 0.20% 0.00%
Percentage of supported housing services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.30% 1.00% 0.10%
Percentage of assertive community treatment services evidence based practices (EBP). 1.50% 1.70% 0.20%
Percentage of medications management evidence based practices (EBP). 14.70% 14.50% 12.60%
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported employment services. 118 471 184
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported housing services. 716 2,618 325
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) assertive community treatment services. 3,540 4,635 954
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) medications management. 34,494 39,421 52,568

 

WAGNER PEYSER OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of registered job seekers with a disability. 6,999 5,160 4,930
Proportion of registered job seekers with a disability. 0.01 0.01 0.01

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT OUTCOMES (ADULTS)

2012 2013 2014
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work served by Job Training and Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act programs. 309 312 289
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment. 156 172 167
Percentage of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment relative to total the number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work. 50.00% 55.00% 58.00%
Incidence rate of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 1.22 1.35 1.30

 

VR OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Total Number of people served under VR.
17,949
N/A
15,057
Number of people with visual impairments served under VR. 659 N/A 655
Number of people with communicative (hearing loss, deafness) impairments served under VR. 2,312 N/A 1,930
Number of people with physical impairments served under VR. 4,299 N/A 3,236
Number of people cognitive impairments served under VR. 5,191 N/A 4,459
Number of people psychosocial impairments served under VR. 4,391 N/A 3,923
Number of people with mental impairments served under VR. 1,097 N/A 854
Percentage of overall closures into employment under VR. 38.70% 39.40% N/A
Number of employment network (EN) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) tickets assigned. N/A 16,622 17,207
Number of eligible ticket to work beneficiaries. N/A 643,854 641,889
Total number of ID closures using supported employment services with or without Title VI-B funds expended (VI-C prior to 2002). 668 N/A N/A
Total number of ID competitive labor market closures. 636 559 N/A

 

IDD OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Dollars spent on day/employment services for integrated employment funding. $17,214,000 $29,203,000 $35,867,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based work funding. $88,883,000 $89,749,000 $89,514,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based non-work funding. $131,739,000 $146,565,000 $157,200,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for community based non-work funding. $11,108,000 $191,837,000 $219,066,000
Percentage of people served in integrated employment. 15.00% 18.00% 18.00%
Number of people served in community based non-work. 1,493 11,876 13,569
Number of people served in facility based work. 9,460 9,458 9,399
Number of people served in facility based non-work. 8,757 8,768 9,884
Number supported in integrated employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 27.80 27.80 41.00

 

EDUCATION OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class 80% or more of the day (Indicator 5a). 62.10% 62.43% 61.96%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class less than 40% of the day (Indicator 5b). 8.90% 8.93% 9.49%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served in separate schools, residential facilities, or homebound/hospital placements (Indicator 5c). 5.00% 4.80% 4.84%
Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals (Indicator 13). 83.20% 78.16% 81.19%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14a). 25.00% 24.36% 25.76%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14b). 60.00% 59.89% 60.60%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14c). 66.70% 64.62% 69.23%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Subset of Indicator 14). 35.00% 35.52% 34.84%

 

ABILITYONE/JWOD PROGRAM

2014
Number of overall agency blind and SD hours. 3,942,448
Number of overall total blind and SD workers. 5,593
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (products). 195,760
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (services). 822,857
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (combined). 1,018,617
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (products). 391
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (services). 729
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (combined). 1,120
AbilityOne wages (products). $1,231,861
AbilityOne wages (services). $12,545,301

 

WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION: 14(c) CERTIFICATE-HOLDING ENTITIES OUTCOMES

2014 2015 2016
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 4 1 1
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 1 0 0
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 110 105 90
Number of 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 3 3
Total Number of 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 109 94
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. N/A 5 4
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14 (c) certificate holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). N/A 0 0
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). N/A 12,101 10,303
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 274 306
Total reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 12,380 10,613

 

WIOA Profile

 

The material cited below is taken directly from each state’s plan for WIOA implementation. These sections of the state plan were selected because of their relevance to youth and adults with disabilities. However, all programs and services under WIOA must be physically and programmatically accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program (EFSLMP)

“Employment First” will be the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the governor in serving persons with disabilities. This policy reflects the Governor’s goal of making the commonwealth a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with disabilities. (Page 33)

The Secretaries of PDE, DHS and L&I will, working with other commonwealth agencies and executive office officials, create a written plan that implements Employment First as the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies; aligns funding, policy, and practice toward an emphasis on competitive integrated employment; prioritizes competitive integrated employment as the first consideration and preferred outcome of all publicly–funded services for all Pennsylvanians with a disability; and creates the conditions that lead to a material increase in the number of Pennsylvanians with a disability who are employed in a competitive integrated job. (Page 49)

OVR Response: OVR is represented on the PA Developmental Disabilities Council, the Governor’s Special Education Advisory Panel and the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project, all of which are comprised of representatives from partnering agencies. (Pages 163)

As a key member of the PA Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project currently sponsored by a grant administered by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, OVR will partner with agencies within the Department of Human Services to ensure that the employment needs of individuals with disabilities are met, that cost services are comprehensive, effective, innovative and not duplicative, and that every individual with a disability who wants to work to achieve self–support will be given the opportunity to do so. (Page 190)

OVR representatives regularly attend the Special Education Advisory Panel, Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council, and the Pennsylvania Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project with members of other agencies in order to collaborate with agency partners in order to coordinate services to mutual customers. (Page 225)

With the Employment First Initiative, it is more apparent now than ever to have as many resources in place to help those with disabilities seeking competitive and integrated employment. (Page 389)

It is positive that Employment First is noted up front in the goals… especially as there are a lot of mentions of training programs in this plan. (Page 392)

The establishment of Employment First when developing individual plans for service for persons with an intellectual disability. (Page 397)

Joanna Greco from Beaver County Rehabilitation Center offered the following comment: I am writing concerning the “Employment First” initiative.

The “Employment First” initiative is commendable in supporting competitive employment as a choice for individuals with disabilities. BCRC has promoted and placed individuals in competitive community employment for over 50 years.   (Page 400)

This section highlights the policy that the Commonwealth be an “Employment First” state. (Page 432)

Therefore, we support the current state WIOA plan draft’s strong emphasis on offering OVR consumers informed choice in employment options, although we strongly recommend more clarifying language around this topic. As an competitive IT and Contact Center enterprise with a mission to advance employment for persons with disabilities, we both applaud and support both the policy and priority of “Employment First” as expressed in the State Plan. (Page 451)

Customized Employment

Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 170)

Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177, 184 and 188)

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. The following improvements listed are intended to be considered OVR goals for title VI funds. (Page 215)

Developing innovative and collaborative programs and services such as Discovery and Customized Employment as well as funding for Comprehensive Transition Programs that will help divert individuals away from subminimum wage employment. (Page 221)

OVR reviews the performance standards and indicators monthly. As an agency we constantly strive to meet or exceed the standards and indicators through training, policy development, and the addition or creation of new and innovative programs that will benefit our customers. We are also going through an extensive CSNA that will help guide us regarding service provision and to address system gaps to ensure that as many positive outcomes are achieved as possible. We are also exploring services such as customized employment and implementing interagency agreements that will assist with federal match generation to serve additional customers. OVR will continue to monitor the standards and indicators and incorporate stakeholder input into our program to ensure a cycle of constant reflection and program improvement. (Page 222)

The inclusion of customized employment services as a tool used alongside SE services can allow more intensive services to be offered for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive, community–integrated employment and historically may not have been able to benefit from VR services disabilities.  (Page 228)

Also, SE services have been provided on a broader basis since the late 1990’s to persons who are deaf via contracting with SE CRPs fluent in American Sign Language. The use of SE for customized employment (CE) cases is being piloted in 2015 to expand the breadth of SE services OVR offers. The use of CE in addition to SE will allow OVR to assist individuals who require very intensive services but are interested in and working towards competitive community integrated employment. (Page 235)

There are other forms of training, including Discovery and Customized Employment trainings, that would be more current to promote Employment First principles, and do not necessarily require the credentials called for in the Plan. Again, flexibility is key to promoting the innovation that is the hallmark of WIOA. 

Braiding/Blending Resources

Service coordination, resource leveraging and braiding of funding; and 4. quality assurance and improvement resulting in the collective accountability and performance measurement needed to substantially increase the numbers of Pennsylvanians in competitive integrated employment. (Page 190)

The braiding of WIOA Title I–B funded programs with other youth–directed state and local entities allows comprehensive services to be offered to all eligible low–income populations under WIOA. Available TANF funding will continue to support WIOA year–round services and summer employment activities. (Page 49)

Additionally, we applaud OVR for its shift towards blending customized employment and supported employment services – helping providers become certified to provide customized employment services is key to ensuring the quality of customized employment services for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 144)

We remain concerned that despite efforts to anticipate staffing needs of OVR in the coming years (Page 123)

Overall the agency needs a greater staff contingency to take on the increased responsibilities under WIOA. (Page579)

Section 188/Section 188 Guide

WIOA Section 188 Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity NPRM, 29 CFR Part 38 proposes to revise federal regulations to ensure access to the workforce system by people with disabilities by bringing the regulations in line with updated disabilities civil rights law and ADA compliance recertification guidelines for the one–stop centers. (Page 528)

Response: We appreciate the comment and support the requirement under Section 188 for all PA CareerLink® centers to be physically and programmatically accessible for all job seekers, including individuals with disabilities.

  • L&I OVR and Community Health Choices (CHC) – Most consumers who currently and would receive physical disabilities services through PA Department of Human Service (DHS) Office of Long Term Living (OLTL) –with the exception of Act 150 consumers and a few other target populations (Page 533)

Describe how the one-stop delivery system (including one-stop center operators and the one-stop delivery system partners), will comply with section 188 of WIOA.  (Page 86)

DEI/Disability Resource Coordinators

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Other State Programs/Pilots that Support Competitive Integrated Employment

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. (Page 215)

We appreciate the comment. OVR continues to identify and develop innovative strategies and supports for individuals with disabilities such as expansion of Customized Employment and Discovery pilots while we await the release of final regulations, guidance, and technical assistance on Section 511 Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage. (Page 579)

Financial Literacy /Economic Advancement

WIOA added five new program elements to ones originally outlined under WIA, including: financial literacy education; entrepreneurial skills training; the provision of labor market and employment information about in–demand industry sectors or occupations available in a local area; activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post–secondary education and training; and education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a special occupation or occupational cluster.(Page 119)

Benefits

BSTs also have access to a plethora of labor market information that can be helpful to employers in setting wages and benefits that will attract high-quality candidates. BSTs will communicate and collaborate with other agencies of state government which may have direct liaison activities with employers and regional economic development partners to avoid business fatigue from multiple contacts and ensure coordination of services. (Page 362)

 CILs can also help those who do not qualify for OVR services. Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. (Page 389)

With over 725,000 working aged adults and 75,000 youth with disabilities, PA has an ever growing caseload of residents receiving disability related benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since 2001, SSA has operated two distinct programs in every state to promote and facilitate employment and increased earnings among individuals with disabilities who are otherwise dependent on government benefits. We appreciate the comment. The commonwealth will continue to focus efforts on those with barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities as defined in WIOA. Additionally, the Department of Human Services (DHS) agrees that people with a disability receiving DHS–funded Medicaid waiver home and community–based supports often cite as a barrier to seeking employment the concern that earning wages will make them ineligible for basic supports that enable them to live independently in the community rather than a more costly institutional setting. DHS is exploring adding benefits counseling (Work Incentives Planning Assistance) as a service that would be paid under its Medicaid HCBS waivers. (Page 391)

Those that participate in our work force has many concerns if they are forced into competitive employment, such as, the fear of losing medical benefits, loss of SSI checks, inability to work a 40 hour week or even part time, transportation issues to and from work or shift work that does not coincide with public transportation. And the fear of the world of work: failure, being unaccepted, taken advantage of, pressure of the job itself. (Page 400)

Particularly impacted by these changes are people with disabilities who face difficulty finding employment, yet do not qualify for SSI or other benefits programs. (Page 422)

Build the capacity of PA’s employment professionals to support people with the most significant disabilities and to address barriers to employment which are related to misunderstandings about the relationship between SSA benefits and working.

  • The Combined Plan should lay out specific training strategies to build the capacity of employment specialists to successfully obtain and maintain employment for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 456)

In fact, Maryland’s WIOA Plan analyzes by region the correlation between people with disabilities and those who had Individualized Education Plans (IEPs). Regionally, the data showed that areas with a strong IEP system and more people who had IEPs in school, later had less dependence on entitlement benefits.  (Page 471)

School to Work Transition

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives,  and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 174)

 Understanding pertaining to transition from school to work and adult services. Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177)

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives, and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 81)   

Data Collection

Data collection, sharing and reporting;   (Page 190)

The current data collection system is under revision and by the end of Perkins IV, the system will reflect required data elements. The data elements will include data that allows for analysis that evidences continuous improvement at the postsecondary level. (Pages 259)

New to the data collection is 1P1 Technical Skill Attainment. The current data collection system needs to change in order to collect relevant data. Until the change occurs, the State will use grade point average. (Page 260)

In regards to graduation rate–4S1*, multiyear identification of CTE students will begin in 2007–2008 utilizing PDE‘s unified data collection system which uses a unique student identifier, entitled Pennsylvania Information Management System, (PIMS) to establish graduation rates by the 2012 school year. PDE is still ascertaining a valid collection vehicle to obtain 4S1 data. (Page 280)

 Student Graduation Rates (4S1)* – Individual student data collection will begin with the 2007–2008 school year, high school graduation rates will not be available using PASecureID information until February 2012 for the Class of 2011. (Page 284)

Any data collection or reporting that is conducted will be vetted and reviewed to ensure FERPA compliance. Under FERPA, there are exceptions to data collection when the data is to be used for program evaluation, which these data collections would fall under. Therefore the commonwealth believes that the programs will be able to function without violating the provisions of FERPA. (Page 417)

Goal 2 focuses on developing a pipeline of workers to meet industry needs and Goal 4 speaks to engaging employers and being responsive to their needs.

  • Data Collection ROI & Market Penetration (p. 32 table): While we recognize the importance to protecting data, as a local partner the WDB will need to utilize the information to make local decisions that are not necessarily interesting to the commonwealth.  (Page 424)
Small business/Entrepreneurship

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Career Pathways

Career pathways must be diverse with multiple entry and exit points allowing individuals of varying abilities, including low–skilled adults and youth with multiple barriers to employment, to have realistic access to pathways.

Comment: The application of multiple entry points within career pathways is a very positive approach that we can operationalize for varying individual employment plans. Response: We appreciate the comment in support of our approach.

  • The commonwealth will mainstream job seekers with barriers to employment to the maximum extent possible by offering realistic entry points into career pathways and by ensuring necessary supportive services are in place and coordinated across agencies, so that those individuals with the most significant barriers to employment are successful in accessing and navigating career pathways. (Page 460)

The commonwealth recognizes the need to have a variety of service providers working together to ensure that individuals with barriers to employment receive the services they need to benefit from career pathways opportunities. (Page 460)

We strongly support this. We urge the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to retain the above provisions in the final state plan, with the clarifying edits suggested by CLS and CJP in their more detailed comments.

Response: We appreciate the comments in support of the State Plan, including: your recognition of the important role our adult basic education services provide in career pathways for low income adults; your comment in support of ensuring that career pathways are accessible to individuals with basic skills needs; your comments in support of the Priority of Service and Career Pathways provisions in the State Plan; and your comment in support of the transitional jobs requirements in the State Plan. Dr. Madeline Seltzer, Manor College, offered the following comment: I am against this combined plan at this time. Parts of the plan are not clear. I would like the Perkins Career and Technical Education parts to be reworked. In addition, I would like implementation to be postponed until Perkins 5 comes up for approval. (Page 489)

Employment Networks

This new plan continues with the same concept when Careerlinks and other partners are missing two valuable resources that can help a person with a disability: Centers for Independent Living (CIL), and also Employment Networks. CILs offer a plethora of learning opportunities for people with disabilities. They offer core services (information and referral, advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living skills training). Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. Many Employment Networks assist individuals who don’t qualify for OVR services. There are many individuals with disabilities who do not meet the specifications for Order of Selection. (Page 389)

Response: We appreciate the comment in support of the plan and acknowledge the valuable resources available for individuals with a disability from partners such as Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and Employment Networks. (Page 389)

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Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 271 - 01/20/2015

“An Act relating to the delivery of services and programs to persons with disabilities; conferring powers and duties on the Office of the Governor; establishing the Office for People with Disabilities and Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities; and providing for the powers and duties of the office and advisory committee and for funding of the office.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities (§ 6.301)

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:     (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.       (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.       (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.       (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:

   (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.

   (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.

   (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.

   (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 10 of 17

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Competitive Employment for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability - 05/22/2015

“The Department of Human Services (DHS)’ proposed FY 2015-2016 budget includes $500,000 to provide additional supports to promote competitive employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. This initiative is a collaborative effort between DHS’ Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), and various disability advocacy groups…   Pending the approved budget, this joint ODP-OVR initiative will enable OVR to build staff capacity with intellectual disability expertise, and allow existing vocational rehabilitation counselors to carry smaller, more specialized caseloads for this population. This initiative will also allow for the possibility of expanded training and job-readiness programs, paid work experience for high school students with an intellectual disability, person-centered and customized employment demonstration projects, and increased outreach to parents and families.”  
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Governor Announces: Pennsylvania Accepted as an Employment First State - 12/18/2014

“The Corbett administration announced that Pennsylvania has been selected to participate in the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Employment First is a concept to facilitate the full inclusion of people with the most significant disabilities in the workplace and community in typical workplace settings where the majority of workers are not people with disabilities.  The mentoring program will help the departments of Human Services (DHS), Education and Labor & Industry (L&I) collaborate to align policies and develop a plan to increase school-to-work opportunities for students with disabilities.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation

PA State Integrated Workforce Plan for WIA and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs (July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2017) - 07/01/2012

“As a PA CareerLink® partner, OVR helps identify and serve eligible persons with disability-related barriers to employment. Services are determined on a case-by-case basis. OVR services are provided at no cost to the individual. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors provide a vocational evaluation to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) outlining vocational objectives, services, providers and responsibilities of the participant.”

“To support its long-term strategy of improving services, OVR fosters interagency collaboration with all federal and state disability employment agencies and organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. In addition, OVR works with stakeholder groups such as the Pennsylvania Rehabilitation Council, the Statewide Independent Living Council and the Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology to supplement services…”

“Promoting the Hiring of Persons with Disabilities: OVR engages in a strategic public outreach campaign to make employers aware of the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and offers interested employers no-cost business solutions…”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Other
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

“DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”    “DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”  
Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

 “DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”

“DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR Policy on Employment (2005) - 12/20/2005

“Statement of Policy as per 55 Pa Code §6000.171 states that persons with [Mental Retardation] MR who are of legal working age should have access to employment and the training necessary to sustain employment.

Access to employment applies regardless of a person’s living arrangement or type of service funding. [Office of Mental Retardation] OMR’s policy includes persons receiving base funded services and those enrolled in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers. This also applies to people in State and Non-State ICFs/MR.”

“OMR defines employment as a job in the community that pays at least minimum wage, where the worker has the opportunity to interact with individuals without a disability and has access to employee benefits when available. Employment can be part or full-time and includes self-employment.”

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Via of the Lehigh Valley (PA): Partnership with Local Schools to Provide Customized Employment - 08/15/2014

This story details a partnership between Via of the Lehigh Valley (a CRP) and the local school system to support a Customized Employment success.

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania AHEDD

“At AHEDD, we frequently collaborate with various organizations to carry out our mission. Our partners consist of organizations and individuals that can help with: agency funding; referrals of program participants; training for our staff; guidance for AHEDD’s operational needs; job opportunities; and/or much more.  Our services to people with disabilities are often sponsored by public resources at the federal, state, and local levels. 

Currently, these funders include:            

Pennsylvania Offices of Vocational Rehabilitation The United States Social Security Administration (SSA) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services  Pennsylvania  Department of Public Welfare (DPW) Office of Developmental Programs (ODP)  Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Division of Developmental Disabilities Service (DDDS) in Delaware”
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA ASERT

“ASERT is a statewide initiative funded by the Bureau of Autism Services, PA Department of Public Welfare. The ASERT (Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training) Collaborative is a key component of the Bureau of Autism’s strategy for supporting individuals with autism and their families throughout the Commonwealth. It is our vision that ASERT will connect existing resources and pockets of expertise, and address the regional gaps in effective services and supports.”

This site has notices of workshops for customized employment and Employment First.

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Citations

Temple University Institute on Disabilities (College of Education)

“The Institute on Disabilities at Temple University is one of the sixty-seven University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Established in 1974, the Institute has mirrored the changes in the field of developmental disabilities, evolving into a model of self-determination and individualized supports in the community…

During its early history the Institute provided extensive technical assistance and training to professionals in the field and later became nationally recognized for advocacy and research efforts centered on the closure of the Pennhurst Center. In the 1980's, the Institute began developing and evaluating support models for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and their families.”

Systems
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program

“The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program (BEP) assists persons operate food service businesses in commercial, industrial or governmental locations. Food services can range from a vending machine route to the management of a large cafeteria. BEP can also assist interested persons with entrepreneurial business ventures other than food service. These businesses might include: specialty product sales; franchise operations; gift shops; and, kiosks. Business sites and equipment are provided through the program, as well as ongoing assistance from BEP agents. Eligible persons enter this program through being served as customers in the BBVS Vocational Rehabilitation program.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Autism Speaks Community Grants: Customized Employment

“Via of the Lehigh Valley is a community employment program that works with individuals with significant disabilities to become employed in their home communities. the applicant recently completed a successful NISH-sponsored Customized Employment grant which increased their skills, produced many successful Customized Employment outcomes and helped increase their general community employment success rate over the past year by over 38%. in addition, Via of Lehigh Valley is a mentor agency for the Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)'s Employment Start initiative. One of the challenges with Customized Employment implementation is the needed focus on getting better at supporting the individuals with autism in the workplace and the staff time necessary to research and cultivate greater numbers of partnering resources. Via is proposing to work with six customers and their "people" to create additional positive outcomes and further increased systems change. the proposal is seeking funding to cover one half of the salary for one dedicated Customized Employment coordinator to facilitate even greater success for one year. Through the use of the discovery process, creating creative employment scenarios and increasing partnerships, Via will advance the employment of people with autism.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania Blind Work Expense

“Work incentives are special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities to work who already receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The worker/beneficiary would still receive monthly benefits and cash payments and would still be eligible for Medicare or Medicaid health care coverage. The Social Security Administration calls these special rules “work incentives.” The work incentives that are available are specially designed to help lessen the barriers to employment that many people with disabilities face. These work incentives help ease people back into the workforce by allowing a person to try to work and, if possible, gradually become self-supporting.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”

Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and]really want to join the workforce."

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

Pennsylvania MAWD - Medical Assistance Benefits for Workers with Disabilities

 “For people with disabilities, finding a job or returning to work can be a challenge. For a long time one of the biggest obstacles to working was health care coverage. Earning too much money meant risking losing health care benefits. However, there is an option: Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (MAWD).”

“MAWD lets Pennsylvanians with disabilities take a fulfilling job, earn more money and still keep their full medical coverage. With MAWD you can keep Medical Assistance while you work, even if your earnings increase above the limits for other Medical Assistance programs. Now you do not have to choose between a job and your health.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

OVR Transition Guide for Professionals - 06/01/2014

“The purpose of this guide is to provide professionals with an overview of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation’s role in the School-to-Work process. It is intended to provide basic knowledge of what students with disabilities and their families can expect when becoming involved with OVR.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

The Pennsylvania Disability Employment and Empowerment Summit (PADES) - 10/23/2013

 “The goal of the event is to bring together business leaders, service providers, government agencies, and people with disabilities to discuss the current programs and services available for people with disabilities, as well as ways we can assist the business community as they work to advance their diversity efforts to include people with disabilities as part of the workforce. Session topics [included] information on model programs, job development, public policy & funding, benefits & government incentives, accommodations & technology, as well as briefings on both federal & state initiatives to increase the rate of employment for people with disabilities.”

 
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Resource Leveraging

The Pennsylvania Employment Reform Resource Project - 09/20/2013

This website contains a collection of resources and case studies on Customized Employment Self-Employment.

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health

Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network

“PaTTAN provides a full array of professional development and technical assistance targeted to improving student results. PaTTAN provides support to schools, parents, educators, students, and administrators on a variety of topics” including School-to-work transition and Special Education Policy.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

ADEPT: ARC Discovery Employment Transitions

“Arc Discovery Employment Transitions (ADEPT) is a customized employment program developed by The Arc of Pennsylvania in partnership with Marc Gold and Associates. The Arc of PA recognizes the need for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities to be able to find customized employment within the community. As a result The Arc of PA partnered with Marc Gold & Associates, a national leader in customized employment, to bring Discovery, Customized Employment and Job Development, and Systematic Instruction to the Commonwealth. These 3 programs will be facilitated by our nationally certified consultants to help job seekers find customized employment that matches their strengths and conditions for success.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health

No Enforcement have been entered for this state.

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA 1915(c) Home and Community-Based Services Waiver - 01/16/2014

”On January 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule for Home and Community-Based Settings (HCBS).  The final rule, which became effective on March 17, 2014, amends the Medicaid regulations to provide requirements regarding person-centered plans of care, characteristics of settings that are home and community-based as well as settings that may not be home and community-based. These requirements reflect CMS’ intent that individuals receiving services and supports through Medicaid Waivers receive services in settings which are integrated in and support full access to the greater community. The final rule applies to section 1915(c) Medicaid waivers, section 1915(i) State Plan home and community-based services and section 1915(k) Community First Choice attendant care services (1915(k)).  Pennsylvania has ten Medicaid home and community based services waivers. All Medicaid Waivers must comply with these requirements. The final rule includes a provision requiring states offering HCBS under existing state plans or waivers to develop transition plans to ensure that HCBS settings will meet the final rule’s requirements.” 

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA Independence Medicaid Waiver (0319.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, personal assistance services, respite, service coordination, supported employment, home health, assistive technology, community integration, community transition services, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for physically disabled individuals ages 18 – 59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA OBRA Medicaid Waiver (0235.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, education services, personal assistance, prevocational, residential habilitation, respite, service coordination, structured day habilitation, supported employment, home health, FMS, accessibility adaptations/equipment/technology and medical supplies, assisted technology, community integration, community transition, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for individuals w/DD ages 18-59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania State Medicaid Plan

Thank you for your interest in the Pennsylvania Medicaid State Plan.   The plan is not available online and the files are too large to email.  However, text searchable PDF files are available on a CD Rom.  A copy of the CD costs $7.00.  The CD contains all CMS approved amendments as of the day the CD is created.   If you would like a copy of the CD, send a check or money order payable to "Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" to:   OMAP - Bureau of Policy, Analysis, and Planning PO Box 2675 Harrisburg, PA 17120  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”   “Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and] really want to join the workforce."
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

States - Large Tablet

Snapshot

In the State of Independence, Pennsylvania is working steadfast to support workers with disabilities who want to pursue careers and optimal self-sufficiency. 

State VR Rates and Services

A list of services offered by this state’s Vocational Rehabilitation agency, along with the standard rates paid for the performance of those services.

PDF icon Pennsylvania’s VR Rates and Services

2015 State Population.
0.12%
Change from
2014 to 2015
12,802,503
2015 Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
0.95%
Change from
2014 to 2015
885,256
2015 Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
4.35%
Change from
2014 to 2015
316,361
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities).
3.44%
Change from
2014 to 2015
35.74%
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities).
0.98%
Change from
2014 to 2015
77.29%

State Data

General

2013 2014 2015
Population. 12,773,801 12,787,209 12,802,503
Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 858,463 876,854 885,256
Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 291,420 302,598 316,361
Number of people without disabilities who are employed (ages 18-64). 5,288,214 5,324,239 5,353,723
Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities). 33.95% 34.51% 35.74%
Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities). 75.64% 76.53% 77.29%
Overall unemployment rate. 7.40% 5.80% 5.30%
Poverty Rate (all disabilities). 22.10% 21.80% 21.20%
Poverty Rate (NO disabilities). 12.40% 12.30% 11.90%
Number of males with disabilities (all ages). 798,130 831,217 823,712
Number of females with disabilities (all ages). 890,993 902,295 923,052
Number of Caucasians with disabilities (all ages). 1,386,520 1,416,551 1,418,340
Number of African Americans with disabilities (all ages). 204,327 209,004 224,188
Number of Hispanic/Latinos with disabilities (all ages). 105,973 117,047 119,610
Number of American Indians/Alaska Natives with disabilities (all ages). 4,811 6,163 5,949
Number of Asians with disabilities (all ages). 21,126 25,025 29,755
Number of Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders with disabilities (all ages). N/A N/A 1,179
Number of with multiple races disabilities (all ages). 35,001 38,429 34,500
Number of others with disabilities (all ages). 37,073 37,781 32,853

 

SSA OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of SSI recipients with disabilities who work. 14,427 14,958 15,533
Percentage of SSI recipients with disabilities who work relative to total SSI recipients with disabilities. 4.00% 4.20% 4.50%
Old Age Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) recipients/workers with disabilities. 409,657 409,608 407,320

 

MENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of mental health services consumers who are employed. 16,346 11,834 112,787
Number of mental health services consumers who are part of the labor force (employed or actively looking for employment). 17,200 12,301 131,902
Number of adults served who have a known employment status. 119,508 66,751 132,100
Percentage of all state mental health agency consumers served in the community who are employed. 13.70% 17.70% 85.40%
Percentage of supported employment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.10% 0.20% 0.00%
Percentage of supported housing services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.30% 1.00% 0.10%
Percentage of assertive community treatment services evidence based practices (EBP). 1.50% 1.70% 0.20%
Percentage of medications management evidence based practices (EBP). 14.70% 14.50% 12.60%
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported employment services. 118 471 184
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported housing services. 716 2,618 325
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) assertive community treatment services. 3,540 4,635 954
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) medications management. 34,494 39,421 52,568

 

WAGNER PEYSER OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of registered job seekers with a disability. 6,999 5,160 4,930
Proportion of registered job seekers with a disability. 0.01 0.01 0.01

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT OUTCOMES (ADULTS)

2012 2013 2014
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work served by Job Training and Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act programs. 309 312 289
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment. 156 172 167
Percentage of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment relative to total the number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work. 50.00% 55.00% 58.00%
Incidence rate of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 1.22 1.35 1.30

 

VR OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Total Number of people served under VR.
17,949
N/A
15,057
Number of people with visual impairments served under VR. 659 N/A 655
Number of people with communicative (hearing loss, deafness) impairments served under VR. 2,312 N/A 1,930
Number of people with physical impairments served under VR. 4,299 N/A 3,236
Number of people cognitive impairments served under VR. 5,191 N/A 4,459
Number of people psychosocial impairments served under VR. 4,391 N/A 3,923
Number of people with mental impairments served under VR. 1,097 N/A 854
Percentage of overall closures into employment under VR. 38.70% 39.40% N/A
Number of employment network (EN) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) tickets assigned. N/A 16,622 17,207
Number of eligible ticket to work beneficiaries. N/A 643,854 641,889
Total number of ID closures using supported employment services with or without Title VI-B funds expended (VI-C prior to 2002). 668 N/A N/A
Total number of ID competitive labor market closures. 636 559 N/A

 

IDD OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Dollars spent on day/employment services for integrated employment funding. $17,214,000 $29,203,000 $35,867,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based work funding. $88,883,000 $89,749,000 $89,514,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based non-work funding. $131,739,000 $146,565,000 $157,200,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for community based non-work funding. $11,108,000 $191,837,000 $219,066,000
Percentage of people served in integrated employment. 15.00% 18.00% 18.00%
Number of people served in community based non-work. 1,493 11,876 13,569
Number of people served in facility based work. 9,460 9,458 9,399
Number of people served in facility based non-work. 8,757 8,768 9,884
Number supported in integrated employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 27.80 27.80 41.00

 

EDUCATION OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class 80% or more of the day (Indicator 5a). 62.10% 62.43% 61.96%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class less than 40% of the day (Indicator 5b). 8.90% 8.93% 9.49%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served in separate schools, residential facilities, or homebound/hospital placements (Indicator 5c). 5.00% 4.80% 4.84%
Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals (Indicator 13). 83.20% 78.16% 81.19%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14a). 25.00% 24.36% 25.76%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14b). 60.00% 59.89% 60.60%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14c). 66.70% 64.62% 69.23%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Subset of Indicator 14). 35.00% 35.52% 34.84%

 

ABILITYONE/JWOD PROGRAM

2014
Number of overall agency blind and SD hours. 3,942,448
Number of overall total blind and SD workers. 5,593
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (products). 195,760
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (services). 822,857
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (combined). 1,018,617
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (products). 391
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (services). 729
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (combined). 1,120
AbilityOne wages (products). $1,231,861
AbilityOne wages (services). $12,545,301

 

WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION: 14(c) CERTIFICATE-HOLDING ENTITIES OUTCOMES

2014 2015 2016
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 4 1 1
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 1 0 0
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 110 105 90
Number of 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 3 3
Total Number of 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 109 94
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. N/A 5 4
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14 (c) certificate holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). N/A 0 0
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). N/A 12,101 10,303
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 274 306
Total reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 12,380 10,613

 

WIOA Proflie

WIOA Profile

 

The material cited below is taken directly from each state’s plan for WIOA implementation. These sections of the state plan were selected because of their relevance to youth and adults with disabilities. However, all programs and services under WIOA must be physically and programmatically accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program (EFSLMP)

“Employment First” will be the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the governor in serving persons with disabilities. This policy reflects the Governor’s goal of making the commonwealth a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with disabilities. (Page 33)

The Secretaries of PDE, DHS and L&I will, working with other commonwealth agencies and executive office officials, create a written plan that implements Employment First as the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies; aligns funding, policy, and practice toward an emphasis on competitive integrated employment; prioritizes competitive integrated employment as the first consideration and preferred outcome of all publicly–funded services for all Pennsylvanians with a disability; and creates the conditions that lead to a material increase in the number of Pennsylvanians with a disability who are employed in a competitive integrated job. (Page 49)

OVR Response: OVR is represented on the PA Developmental Disabilities Council, the Governor’s Special Education Advisory Panel and the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project, all of which are comprised of representatives from partnering agencies. (Pages 163)

As a key member of the PA Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project currently sponsored by a grant administered by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, OVR will partner with agencies within the Department of Human Services to ensure that the employment needs of individuals with disabilities are met, that cost services are comprehensive, effective, innovative and not duplicative, and that every individual with a disability who wants to work to achieve self–support will be given the opportunity to do so. (Page 190)

OVR representatives regularly attend the Special Education Advisory Panel, Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council, and the Pennsylvania Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project with members of other agencies in order to collaborate with agency partners in order to coordinate services to mutual customers. (Page 225)

With the Employment First Initiative, it is more apparent now than ever to have as many resources in place to help those with disabilities seeking competitive and integrated employment. (Page 389)

It is positive that Employment First is noted up front in the goals… especially as there are a lot of mentions of training programs in this plan. (Page 392)

The establishment of Employment First when developing individual plans for service for persons with an intellectual disability. (Page 397)

Joanna Greco from Beaver County Rehabilitation Center offered the following comment: I am writing concerning the “Employment First” initiative.

The “Employment First” initiative is commendable in supporting competitive employment as a choice for individuals with disabilities. BCRC has promoted and placed individuals in competitive community employment for over 50 years.   (Page 400)

This section highlights the policy that the Commonwealth be an “Employment First” state. (Page 432)

Therefore, we support the current state WIOA plan draft’s strong emphasis on offering OVR consumers informed choice in employment options, although we strongly recommend more clarifying language around this topic. As an competitive IT and Contact Center enterprise with a mission to advance employment for persons with disabilities, we both applaud and support both the policy and priority of “Employment First” as expressed in the State Plan. (Page 451)

Customized Employment

Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 170)

Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177, 184 and 188)

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. The following improvements listed are intended to be considered OVR goals for title VI funds. (Page 215)

Developing innovative and collaborative programs and services such as Discovery and Customized Employment as well as funding for Comprehensive Transition Programs that will help divert individuals away from subminimum wage employment. (Page 221)

OVR reviews the performance standards and indicators monthly. As an agency we constantly strive to meet or exceed the standards and indicators through training, policy development, and the addition or creation of new and innovative programs that will benefit our customers. We are also going through an extensive CSNA that will help guide us regarding service provision and to address system gaps to ensure that as many positive outcomes are achieved as possible. We are also exploring services such as customized employment and implementing interagency agreements that will assist with federal match generation to serve additional customers. OVR will continue to monitor the standards and indicators and incorporate stakeholder input into our program to ensure a cycle of constant reflection and program improvement. (Page 222)

The inclusion of customized employment services as a tool used alongside SE services can allow more intensive services to be offered for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive, community–integrated employment and historically may not have been able to benefit from VR services disabilities.  (Page 228)

Also, SE services have been provided on a broader basis since the late 1990’s to persons who are deaf via contracting with SE CRPs fluent in American Sign Language. The use of SE for customized employment (CE) cases is being piloted in 2015 to expand the breadth of SE services OVR offers. The use of CE in addition to SE will allow OVR to assist individuals who require very intensive services but are interested in and working towards competitive community integrated employment. (Page 235)

There are other forms of training, including Discovery and Customized Employment trainings, that would be more current to promote Employment First principles, and do not necessarily require the credentials called for in the Plan. Again, flexibility is key to promoting the innovation that is the hallmark of WIOA. 

Braiding/Blending Resources

Service coordination, resource leveraging and braiding of funding; and 4. quality assurance and improvement resulting in the collective accountability and performance measurement needed to substantially increase the numbers of Pennsylvanians in competitive integrated employment. (Page 190)

The braiding of WIOA Title I–B funded programs with other youth–directed state and local entities allows comprehensive services to be offered to all eligible low–income populations under WIOA. Available TANF funding will continue to support WIOA year–round services and summer employment activities. (Page 49)

Additionally, we applaud OVR for its shift towards blending customized employment and supported employment services – helping providers become certified to provide customized employment services is key to ensuring the quality of customized employment services for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 144)

We remain concerned that despite efforts to anticipate staffing needs of OVR in the coming years (Page 123)

Overall the agency needs a greater staff contingency to take on the increased responsibilities under WIOA. (Page579)

Section 188/Section 188 Guide

WIOA Section 188 Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity NPRM, 29 CFR Part 38 proposes to revise federal regulations to ensure access to the workforce system by people with disabilities by bringing the regulations in line with updated disabilities civil rights law and ADA compliance recertification guidelines for the one–stop centers. (Page 528)

Response: We appreciate the comment and support the requirement under Section 188 for all PA CareerLink® centers to be physically and programmatically accessible for all job seekers, including individuals with disabilities.

  • L&I OVR and Community Health Choices (CHC) – Most consumers who currently and would receive physical disabilities services through PA Department of Human Service (DHS) Office of Long Term Living (OLTL) –with the exception of Act 150 consumers and a few other target populations (Page 533)

Describe how the one-stop delivery system (including one-stop center operators and the one-stop delivery system partners), will comply with section 188 of WIOA.  (Page 86)

DEI/Disability Resource Coordinators

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Other State Programs/Pilots that Support Competitive Integrated Employment

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. (Page 215)

We appreciate the comment. OVR continues to identify and develop innovative strategies and supports for individuals with disabilities such as expansion of Customized Employment and Discovery pilots while we await the release of final regulations, guidance, and technical assistance on Section 511 Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage. (Page 579)

Financial Literacy /Economic Advancement

WIOA added five new program elements to ones originally outlined under WIA, including: financial literacy education; entrepreneurial skills training; the provision of labor market and employment information about in–demand industry sectors or occupations available in a local area; activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post–secondary education and training; and education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a special occupation or occupational cluster.(Page 119)

Benefits

BSTs also have access to a plethora of labor market information that can be helpful to employers in setting wages and benefits that will attract high-quality candidates. BSTs will communicate and collaborate with other agencies of state government which may have direct liaison activities with employers and regional economic development partners to avoid business fatigue from multiple contacts and ensure coordination of services. (Page 362)

 CILs can also help those who do not qualify for OVR services. Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. (Page 389)

With over 725,000 working aged adults and 75,000 youth with disabilities, PA has an ever growing caseload of residents receiving disability related benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since 2001, SSA has operated two distinct programs in every state to promote and facilitate employment and increased earnings among individuals with disabilities who are otherwise dependent on government benefits. We appreciate the comment. The commonwealth will continue to focus efforts on those with barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities as defined in WIOA. Additionally, the Department of Human Services (DHS) agrees that people with a disability receiving DHS–funded Medicaid waiver home and community–based supports often cite as a barrier to seeking employment the concern that earning wages will make them ineligible for basic supports that enable them to live independently in the community rather than a more costly institutional setting. DHS is exploring adding benefits counseling (Work Incentives Planning Assistance) as a service that would be paid under its Medicaid HCBS waivers. (Page 391)

Those that participate in our work force has many concerns if they are forced into competitive employment, such as, the fear of losing medical benefits, loss of SSI checks, inability to work a 40 hour week or even part time, transportation issues to and from work or shift work that does not coincide with public transportation. And the fear of the world of work: failure, being unaccepted, taken advantage of, pressure of the job itself. (Page 400)

Particularly impacted by these changes are people with disabilities who face difficulty finding employment, yet do not qualify for SSI or other benefits programs. (Page 422)

Build the capacity of PA’s employment professionals to support people with the most significant disabilities and to address barriers to employment which are related to misunderstandings about the relationship between SSA benefits and working.

  • The Combined Plan should lay out specific training strategies to build the capacity of employment specialists to successfully obtain and maintain employment for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 456)

In fact, Maryland’s WIOA Plan analyzes by region the correlation between people with disabilities and those who had Individualized Education Plans (IEPs). Regionally, the data showed that areas with a strong IEP system and more people who had IEPs in school, later had less dependence on entitlement benefits.  (Page 471)

School to Work Transition

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives,  and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 174)

 Understanding pertaining to transition from school to work and adult services. Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177)

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives, and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 81)   

Data Collection

Data collection, sharing and reporting;   (Page 190)

The current data collection system is under revision and by the end of Perkins IV, the system will reflect required data elements. The data elements will include data that allows for analysis that evidences continuous improvement at the postsecondary level. (Pages 259)

New to the data collection is 1P1 Technical Skill Attainment. The current data collection system needs to change in order to collect relevant data. Until the change occurs, the State will use grade point average. (Page 260)

In regards to graduation rate–4S1*, multiyear identification of CTE students will begin in 2007–2008 utilizing PDE‘s unified data collection system which uses a unique student identifier, entitled Pennsylvania Information Management System, (PIMS) to establish graduation rates by the 2012 school year. PDE is still ascertaining a valid collection vehicle to obtain 4S1 data. (Page 280)

 Student Graduation Rates (4S1)* – Individual student data collection will begin with the 2007–2008 school year, high school graduation rates will not be available using PASecureID information until February 2012 for the Class of 2011. (Page 284)

Any data collection or reporting that is conducted will be vetted and reviewed to ensure FERPA compliance. Under FERPA, there are exceptions to data collection when the data is to be used for program evaluation, which these data collections would fall under. Therefore the commonwealth believes that the programs will be able to function without violating the provisions of FERPA. (Page 417)

Goal 2 focuses on developing a pipeline of workers to meet industry needs and Goal 4 speaks to engaging employers and being responsive to their needs.

  • Data Collection ROI & Market Penetration (p. 32 table): While we recognize the importance to protecting data, as a local partner the WDB will need to utilize the information to make local decisions that are not necessarily interesting to the commonwealth.  (Page 424)
Small business/Entrepreneurship

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Career Pathways

Career pathways must be diverse with multiple entry and exit points allowing individuals of varying abilities, including low–skilled adults and youth with multiple barriers to employment, to have realistic access to pathways.

Comment: The application of multiple entry points within career pathways is a very positive approach that we can operationalize for varying individual employment plans. Response: We appreciate the comment in support of our approach.

  • The commonwealth will mainstream job seekers with barriers to employment to the maximum extent possible by offering realistic entry points into career pathways and by ensuring necessary supportive services are in place and coordinated across agencies, so that those individuals with the most significant barriers to employment are successful in accessing and navigating career pathways. (Page 460)

The commonwealth recognizes the need to have a variety of service providers working together to ensure that individuals with barriers to employment receive the services they need to benefit from career pathways opportunities. (Page 460)

We strongly support this. We urge the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to retain the above provisions in the final state plan, with the clarifying edits suggested by CLS and CJP in their more detailed comments.

Response: We appreciate the comments in support of the State Plan, including: your recognition of the important role our adult basic education services provide in career pathways for low income adults; your comment in support of ensuring that career pathways are accessible to individuals with basic skills needs; your comments in support of the Priority of Service and Career Pathways provisions in the State Plan; and your comment in support of the transitional jobs requirements in the State Plan. Dr. Madeline Seltzer, Manor College, offered the following comment: I am against this combined plan at this time. Parts of the plan are not clear. I would like the Perkins Career and Technical Education parts to be reworked. In addition, I would like implementation to be postponed until Perkins 5 comes up for approval. (Page 489)

Employment Networks

This new plan continues with the same concept when Careerlinks and other partners are missing two valuable resources that can help a person with a disability: Centers for Independent Living (CIL), and also Employment Networks. CILs offer a plethora of learning opportunities for people with disabilities. They offer core services (information and referral, advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living skills training). Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. Many Employment Networks assist individuals who don’t qualify for OVR services. There are many individuals with disabilities who do not meet the specifications for Order of Selection. (Page 389)

Response: We appreciate the comment in support of the plan and acknowledge the valuable resources available for individuals with a disability from partners such as Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and Employment Networks. (Page 389)

Policies and Initiatives

Displaying 1 - 10 of 47

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 271 - 01/20/2015

“An Act relating to the delivery of services and programs to persons with disabilities; conferring powers and duties on the Office of the Governor; establishing the Office for People with Disabilities and Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities; and providing for the powers and duties of the office and advisory committee and for funding of the office.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities (§ 6.301)

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:     (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.       (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.       (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.       (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:

   (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.

   (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.

   (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.

   (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 10 of 17

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Competitive Employment for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability - 05/22/2015

“The Department of Human Services (DHS)’ proposed FY 2015-2016 budget includes $500,000 to provide additional supports to promote competitive employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. This initiative is a collaborative effort between DHS’ Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), and various disability advocacy groups…   Pending the approved budget, this joint ODP-OVR initiative will enable OVR to build staff capacity with intellectual disability expertise, and allow existing vocational rehabilitation counselors to carry smaller, more specialized caseloads for this population. This initiative will also allow for the possibility of expanded training and job-readiness programs, paid work experience for high school students with an intellectual disability, person-centered and customized employment demonstration projects, and increased outreach to parents and families.”  
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Governor Announces: Pennsylvania Accepted as an Employment First State - 12/18/2014

“The Corbett administration announced that Pennsylvania has been selected to participate in the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Employment First is a concept to facilitate the full inclusion of people with the most significant disabilities in the workplace and community in typical workplace settings where the majority of workers are not people with disabilities.  The mentoring program will help the departments of Human Services (DHS), Education and Labor & Industry (L&I) collaborate to align policies and develop a plan to increase school-to-work opportunities for students with disabilities.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation

PA State Integrated Workforce Plan for WIA and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs (July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2017) - 07/01/2012

“As a PA CareerLink® partner, OVR helps identify and serve eligible persons with disability-related barriers to employment. Services are determined on a case-by-case basis. OVR services are provided at no cost to the individual. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors provide a vocational evaluation to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) outlining vocational objectives, services, providers and responsibilities of the participant.”

“To support its long-term strategy of improving services, OVR fosters interagency collaboration with all federal and state disability employment agencies and organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. In addition, OVR works with stakeholder groups such as the Pennsylvania Rehabilitation Council, the Statewide Independent Living Council and the Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology to supplement services…”

“Promoting the Hiring of Persons with Disabilities: OVR engages in a strategic public outreach campaign to make employers aware of the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and offers interested employers no-cost business solutions…”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Other
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

“DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”    “DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”  
Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

 “DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”

“DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR Policy on Employment (2005) - 12/20/2005

“Statement of Policy as per 55 Pa Code §6000.171 states that persons with [Mental Retardation] MR who are of legal working age should have access to employment and the training necessary to sustain employment.

Access to employment applies regardless of a person’s living arrangement or type of service funding. [Office of Mental Retardation] OMR’s policy includes persons receiving base funded services and those enrolled in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers. This also applies to people in State and Non-State ICFs/MR.”

“OMR defines employment as a job in the community that pays at least minimum wage, where the worker has the opportunity to interact with individuals without a disability and has access to employee benefits when available. Employment can be part or full-time and includes self-employment.”

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Via of the Lehigh Valley (PA): Partnership with Local Schools to Provide Customized Employment - 08/15/2014

This story details a partnership between Via of the Lehigh Valley (a CRP) and the local school system to support a Customized Employment success.

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania AHEDD

“At AHEDD, we frequently collaborate with various organizations to carry out our mission. Our partners consist of organizations and individuals that can help with: agency funding; referrals of program participants; training for our staff; guidance for AHEDD’s operational needs; job opportunities; and/or much more.  Our services to people with disabilities are often sponsored by public resources at the federal, state, and local levels. 

Currently, these funders include:            

Pennsylvania Offices of Vocational Rehabilitation The United States Social Security Administration (SSA) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services  Pennsylvania  Department of Public Welfare (DPW) Office of Developmental Programs (ODP)  Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Division of Developmental Disabilities Service (DDDS) in Delaware”
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA ASERT

“ASERT is a statewide initiative funded by the Bureau of Autism Services, PA Department of Public Welfare. The ASERT (Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training) Collaborative is a key component of the Bureau of Autism’s strategy for supporting individuals with autism and their families throughout the Commonwealth. It is our vision that ASERT will connect existing resources and pockets of expertise, and address the regional gaps in effective services and supports.”

This site has notices of workshops for customized employment and Employment First.

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Citations

Temple University Institute on Disabilities (College of Education)

“The Institute on Disabilities at Temple University is one of the sixty-seven University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Established in 1974, the Institute has mirrored the changes in the field of developmental disabilities, evolving into a model of self-determination and individualized supports in the community…

During its early history the Institute provided extensive technical assistance and training to professionals in the field and later became nationally recognized for advocacy and research efforts centered on the closure of the Pennhurst Center. In the 1980's, the Institute began developing and evaluating support models for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and their families.”

Systems
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program

“The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program (BEP) assists persons operate food service businesses in commercial, industrial or governmental locations. Food services can range from a vending machine route to the management of a large cafeteria. BEP can also assist interested persons with entrepreneurial business ventures other than food service. These businesses might include: specialty product sales; franchise operations; gift shops; and, kiosks. Business sites and equipment are provided through the program, as well as ongoing assistance from BEP agents. Eligible persons enter this program through being served as customers in the BBVS Vocational Rehabilitation program.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Autism Speaks Community Grants: Customized Employment

“Via of the Lehigh Valley is a community employment program that works with individuals with significant disabilities to become employed in their home communities. the applicant recently completed a successful NISH-sponsored Customized Employment grant which increased their skills, produced many successful Customized Employment outcomes and helped increase their general community employment success rate over the past year by over 38%. in addition, Via of Lehigh Valley is a mentor agency for the Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)'s Employment Start initiative. One of the challenges with Customized Employment implementation is the needed focus on getting better at supporting the individuals with autism in the workplace and the staff time necessary to research and cultivate greater numbers of partnering resources. Via is proposing to work with six customers and their "people" to create additional positive outcomes and further increased systems change. the proposal is seeking funding to cover one half of the salary for one dedicated Customized Employment coordinator to facilitate even greater success for one year. Through the use of the discovery process, creating creative employment scenarios and increasing partnerships, Via will advance the employment of people with autism.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania Blind Work Expense

“Work incentives are special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities to work who already receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The worker/beneficiary would still receive monthly benefits and cash payments and would still be eligible for Medicare or Medicaid health care coverage. The Social Security Administration calls these special rules “work incentives.” The work incentives that are available are specially designed to help lessen the barriers to employment that many people with disabilities face. These work incentives help ease people back into the workforce by allowing a person to try to work and, if possible, gradually become self-supporting.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”

Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and]really want to join the workforce."

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

Pennsylvania MAWD - Medical Assistance Benefits for Workers with Disabilities

 “For people with disabilities, finding a job or returning to work can be a challenge. For a long time one of the biggest obstacles to working was health care coverage. Earning too much money meant risking losing health care benefits. However, there is an option: Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (MAWD).”

“MAWD lets Pennsylvanians with disabilities take a fulfilling job, earn more money and still keep their full medical coverage. With MAWD you can keep Medical Assistance while you work, even if your earnings increase above the limits for other Medical Assistance programs. Now you do not have to choose between a job and your health.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

OVR Transition Guide for Professionals - 06/01/2014

“The purpose of this guide is to provide professionals with an overview of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation’s role in the School-to-Work process. It is intended to provide basic knowledge of what students with disabilities and their families can expect when becoming involved with OVR.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

The Pennsylvania Disability Employment and Empowerment Summit (PADES) - 10/23/2013

 “The goal of the event is to bring together business leaders, service providers, government agencies, and people with disabilities to discuss the current programs and services available for people with disabilities, as well as ways we can assist the business community as they work to advance their diversity efforts to include people with disabilities as part of the workforce. Session topics [included] information on model programs, job development, public policy & funding, benefits & government incentives, accommodations & technology, as well as briefings on both federal & state initiatives to increase the rate of employment for people with disabilities.”

 
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Resource Leveraging

The Pennsylvania Employment Reform Resource Project - 09/20/2013

This website contains a collection of resources and case studies on Customized Employment Self-Employment.

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health

Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network

“PaTTAN provides a full array of professional development and technical assistance targeted to improving student results. PaTTAN provides support to schools, parents, educators, students, and administrators on a variety of topics” including School-to-work transition and Special Education Policy.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

ADEPT: ARC Discovery Employment Transitions

“Arc Discovery Employment Transitions (ADEPT) is a customized employment program developed by The Arc of Pennsylvania in partnership with Marc Gold and Associates. The Arc of PA recognizes the need for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities to be able to find customized employment within the community. As a result The Arc of PA partnered with Marc Gold & Associates, a national leader in customized employment, to bring Discovery, Customized Employment and Job Development, and Systematic Instruction to the Commonwealth. These 3 programs will be facilitated by our nationally certified consultants to help job seekers find customized employment that matches their strengths and conditions for success.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health

No Enforcement have been entered for this state.

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA 1915(c) Home and Community-Based Services Waiver - 01/16/2014

”On January 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule for Home and Community-Based Settings (HCBS).  The final rule, which became effective on March 17, 2014, amends the Medicaid regulations to provide requirements regarding person-centered plans of care, characteristics of settings that are home and community-based as well as settings that may not be home and community-based. These requirements reflect CMS’ intent that individuals receiving services and supports through Medicaid Waivers receive services in settings which are integrated in and support full access to the greater community. The final rule applies to section 1915(c) Medicaid waivers, section 1915(i) State Plan home and community-based services and section 1915(k) Community First Choice attendant care services (1915(k)).  Pennsylvania has ten Medicaid home and community based services waivers. All Medicaid Waivers must comply with these requirements. The final rule includes a provision requiring states offering HCBS under existing state plans or waivers to develop transition plans to ensure that HCBS settings will meet the final rule’s requirements.” 

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA Independence Medicaid Waiver (0319.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, personal assistance services, respite, service coordination, supported employment, home health, assistive technology, community integration, community transition services, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for physically disabled individuals ages 18 – 59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA OBRA Medicaid Waiver (0235.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, education services, personal assistance, prevocational, residential habilitation, respite, service coordination, structured day habilitation, supported employment, home health, FMS, accessibility adaptations/equipment/technology and medical supplies, assisted technology, community integration, community transition, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for individuals w/DD ages 18-59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania State Medicaid Plan

Thank you for your interest in the Pennsylvania Medicaid State Plan.   The plan is not available online and the files are too large to email.  However, text searchable PDF files are available on a CD Rom.  A copy of the CD costs $7.00.  The CD contains all CMS approved amendments as of the day the CD is created.   If you would like a copy of the CD, send a check or money order payable to "Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" to:   OMAP - Bureau of Policy, Analysis, and Planning PO Box 2675 Harrisburg, PA 17120  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”   “Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and] really want to join the workforce."
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

States - Small Tablet

Snapshot

In the State of Independence, Pennsylvania is working steadfast to support workers with disabilities who want to pursue careers and optimal self-sufficiency. 

State VR Rates and Services

A list of services offered by this state’s Vocational Rehabilitation agency, along with the standard rates paid for the performance of those services.

PDF icon Pennsylvania’s VR Rates and Services

2015 State Population.
0.12%
Change from
2014 to 2015
12,802,503
2015 Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
0.95%
Change from
2014 to 2015
885,256
2015 Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
4.35%
Change from
2014 to 2015
316,361
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities).
3.44%
Change from
2014 to 2015
35.74%
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities).
0.98%
Change from
2014 to 2015
77.29%

State Data

General

2013 2014 2015
Population. 12,773,801 12,787,209 12,802,503
Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 858,463 876,854 885,256
Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 291,420 302,598 316,361
Number of people without disabilities who are employed (ages 18-64). 5,288,214 5,324,239 5,353,723
Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities). 33.95% 34.51% 35.74%
Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities). 75.64% 76.53% 77.29%
Overall unemployment rate. 7.40% 5.80% 5.30%
Poverty Rate (all disabilities). 22.10% 21.80% 21.20%
Poverty Rate (NO disabilities). 12.40% 12.30% 11.90%
Number of males with disabilities (all ages). 798,130 831,217 823,712
Number of females with disabilities (all ages). 890,993 902,295 923,052
Number of Caucasians with disabilities (all ages). 1,386,520 1,416,551 1,418,340
Number of African Americans with disabilities (all ages). 204,327 209,004 224,188
Number of Hispanic/Latinos with disabilities (all ages). 105,973 117,047 119,610
Number of American Indians/Alaska Natives with disabilities (all ages). 4,811 6,163 5,949
Number of Asians with disabilities (all ages). 21,126 25,025 29,755
Number of Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders with disabilities (all ages). N/A N/A 1,179
Number of with multiple races disabilities (all ages). 35,001 38,429 34,500
Number of others with disabilities (all ages). 37,073 37,781 32,853

 

SSA OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of SSI recipients with disabilities who work. 14,427 14,958 15,533
Percentage of SSI recipients with disabilities who work relative to total SSI recipients with disabilities. 4.00% 4.20% 4.50%
Old Age Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) recipients/workers with disabilities. 409,657 409,608 407,320

 

MENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of mental health services consumers who are employed. 16,346 11,834 112,787
Number of mental health services consumers who are part of the labor force (employed or actively looking for employment). 17,200 12,301 131,902
Number of adults served who have a known employment status. 119,508 66,751 132,100
Percentage of all state mental health agency consumers served in the community who are employed. 13.70% 17.70% 85.40%
Percentage of supported employment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.10% 0.20% 0.00%
Percentage of supported housing services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.30% 1.00% 0.10%
Percentage of assertive community treatment services evidence based practices (EBP). 1.50% 1.70% 0.20%
Percentage of medications management evidence based practices (EBP). 14.70% 14.50% 12.60%
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported employment services. 118 471 184
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported housing services. 716 2,618 325
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) assertive community treatment services. 3,540 4,635 954
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) medications management. 34,494 39,421 52,568

 

WAGNER PEYSER OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Number of registered job seekers with a disability. 6,999 5,160 4,930
Proportion of registered job seekers with a disability. 0.01 0.01 0.01

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT OUTCOMES (ADULTS)

2012 2013 2014
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work served by Job Training and Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act programs. 309 312 289
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment. 156 172 167
Percentage of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment relative to total the number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work. 50.00% 55.00% 58.00%
Incidence rate of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 1.22 1.35 1.30

 

VR OUTCOMES

2013 2014 2015
Total Number of people served under VR.
17,949
N/A
15,057
Number of people with visual impairments served under VR. 659 N/A 655
Number of people with communicative (hearing loss, deafness) impairments served under VR. 2,312 N/A 1,930
Number of people with physical impairments served under VR. 4,299 N/A 3,236
Number of people cognitive impairments served under VR. 5,191 N/A 4,459
Number of people psychosocial impairments served under VR. 4,391 N/A 3,923
Number of people with mental impairments served under VR. 1,097 N/A 854
Percentage of overall closures into employment under VR. 38.70% 39.40% N/A
Number of employment network (EN) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) tickets assigned. N/A 16,622 17,207
Number of eligible ticket to work beneficiaries. N/A 643,854 641,889
Total number of ID closures using supported employment services with or without Title VI-B funds expended (VI-C prior to 2002). 668 N/A N/A
Total number of ID competitive labor market closures. 636 559 N/A

 

IDD OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Dollars spent on day/employment services for integrated employment funding. $17,214,000 $29,203,000 $35,867,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based work funding. $88,883,000 $89,749,000 $89,514,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based non-work funding. $131,739,000 $146,565,000 $157,200,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for community based non-work funding. $11,108,000 $191,837,000 $219,066,000
Percentage of people served in integrated employment. 15.00% 18.00% 18.00%
Number of people served in community based non-work. 1,493 11,876 13,569
Number of people served in facility based work. 9,460 9,458 9,399
Number of people served in facility based non-work. 8,757 8,768 9,884
Number supported in integrated employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 27.80 27.80 41.00

 

EDUCATION OUTCOMES

2012 2013 2014
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class 80% or more of the day (Indicator 5a). 62.10% 62.43% 61.96%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class less than 40% of the day (Indicator 5b). 8.90% 8.93% 9.49%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served in separate schools, residential facilities, or homebound/hospital placements (Indicator 5c). 5.00% 4.80% 4.84%
Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals (Indicator 13). 83.20% 78.16% 81.19%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14a). 25.00% 24.36% 25.76%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14b). 60.00% 59.89% 60.60%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14c). 66.70% 64.62% 69.23%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Subset of Indicator 14). 35.00% 35.52% 34.84%

 

ABILITYONE/JWOD PROGRAM

2014
Number of overall agency blind and SD hours. 3,942,448
Number of overall total blind and SD workers. 5,593
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (products). 195,760
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (services). 822,857
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (combined). 1,018,617
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (products). 391
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (services). 729
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (combined). 1,120
AbilityOne wages (products). $1,231,861
AbilityOne wages (services). $12,545,301

 

WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION: 14(c) CERTIFICATE-HOLDING ENTITIES OUTCOMES

2014 2015 2016
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 4 1 1
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 1 0 0
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 110 105 90
Number of 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 3 3
Total Number of 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 109 94
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. N/A 5 4
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14 (c) certificate holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). N/A 0 0
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). N/A 12,101 10,303
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. N/A 274 306
Total reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding entities. N/A 12,380 10,613

 

WIOA Profile

WIOA Profile

 

The material cited below is taken directly from each state’s plan for WIOA implementation. These sections of the state plan were selected because of their relevance to youth and adults with disabilities. However, all programs and services under WIOA must be physically and programmatically accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program (EFSLMP)

“Employment First” will be the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the governor in serving persons with disabilities. This policy reflects the Governor’s goal of making the commonwealth a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with disabilities. (Page 33)

The Secretaries of PDE, DHS and L&I will, working with other commonwealth agencies and executive office officials, create a written plan that implements Employment First as the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies; aligns funding, policy, and practice toward an emphasis on competitive integrated employment; prioritizes competitive integrated employment as the first consideration and preferred outcome of all publicly–funded services for all Pennsylvanians with a disability; and creates the conditions that lead to a material increase in the number of Pennsylvanians with a disability who are employed in a competitive integrated job. (Page 49)

OVR Response: OVR is represented on the PA Developmental Disabilities Council, the Governor’s Special Education Advisory Panel and the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project, all of which are comprised of representatives from partnering agencies. (Pages 163)

As a key member of the PA Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project currently sponsored by a grant administered by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, OVR will partner with agencies within the Department of Human Services to ensure that the employment needs of individuals with disabilities are met, that cost services are comprehensive, effective, innovative and not duplicative, and that every individual with a disability who wants to work to achieve self–support will be given the opportunity to do so. (Page 190)

OVR representatives regularly attend the Special Education Advisory Panel, Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council, and the Pennsylvania Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project with members of other agencies in order to collaborate with agency partners in order to coordinate services to mutual customers. (Page 225)

With the Employment First Initiative, it is more apparent now than ever to have as many resources in place to help those with disabilities seeking competitive and integrated employment. (Page 389)

It is positive that Employment First is noted up front in the goals… especially as there are a lot of mentions of training programs in this plan. (Page 392)

The establishment of Employment First when developing individual plans for service for persons with an intellectual disability. (Page 397)

Joanna Greco from Beaver County Rehabilitation Center offered the following comment: I am writing concerning the “Employment First” initiative.

The “Employment First” initiative is commendable in supporting competitive employment as a choice for individuals with disabilities. BCRC has promoted and placed individuals in competitive community employment for over 50 years.   (Page 400)

This section highlights the policy that the Commonwealth be an “Employment First” state. (Page 432)

Therefore, we support the current state WIOA plan draft’s strong emphasis on offering OVR consumers informed choice in employment options, although we strongly recommend more clarifying language around this topic. As an competitive IT and Contact Center enterprise with a mission to advance employment for persons with disabilities, we both applaud and support both the policy and priority of “Employment First” as expressed in the State Plan. (Page 451)

Customized Employment

Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 170)

Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177, 184 and 188)

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. The following improvements listed are intended to be considered OVR goals for title VI funds. (Page 215)

Developing innovative and collaborative programs and services such as Discovery and Customized Employment as well as funding for Comprehensive Transition Programs that will help divert individuals away from subminimum wage employment. (Page 221)

OVR reviews the performance standards and indicators monthly. As an agency we constantly strive to meet or exceed the standards and indicators through training, policy development, and the addition or creation of new and innovative programs that will benefit our customers. We are also going through an extensive CSNA that will help guide us regarding service provision and to address system gaps to ensure that as many positive outcomes are achieved as possible. We are also exploring services such as customized employment and implementing interagency agreements that will assist with federal match generation to serve additional customers. OVR will continue to monitor the standards and indicators and incorporate stakeholder input into our program to ensure a cycle of constant reflection and program improvement. (Page 222)

The inclusion of customized employment services as a tool used alongside SE services can allow more intensive services to be offered for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive, community–integrated employment and historically may not have been able to benefit from VR services disabilities.  (Page 228)

Also, SE services have been provided on a broader basis since the late 1990’s to persons who are deaf via contracting with SE CRPs fluent in American Sign Language. The use of SE for customized employment (CE) cases is being piloted in 2015 to expand the breadth of SE services OVR offers. The use of CE in addition to SE will allow OVR to assist individuals who require very intensive services but are interested in and working towards competitive community integrated employment. (Page 235)

There are other forms of training, including Discovery and Customized Employment trainings, that would be more current to promote Employment First principles, and do not necessarily require the credentials called for in the Plan. Again, flexibility is key to promoting the innovation that is the hallmark of WIOA. 

Braiding/Blending Resources

Service coordination, resource leveraging and braiding of funding; and 4. quality assurance and improvement resulting in the collective accountability and performance measurement needed to substantially increase the numbers of Pennsylvanians in competitive integrated employment. (Page 190)

The braiding of WIOA Title I–B funded programs with other youth–directed state and local entities allows comprehensive services to be offered to all eligible low–income populations under WIOA. Available TANF funding will continue to support WIOA year–round services and summer employment activities. (Page 49)

Additionally, we applaud OVR for its shift towards blending customized employment and supported employment services – helping providers become certified to provide customized employment services is key to ensuring the quality of customized employment services for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 144)

We remain concerned that despite efforts to anticipate staffing needs of OVR in the coming years (Page 123)

Overall the agency needs a greater staff contingency to take on the increased responsibilities under WIOA. (Page579)

Section 188/Section 188 Guide

WIOA Section 188 Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity NPRM, 29 CFR Part 38 proposes to revise federal regulations to ensure access to the workforce system by people with disabilities by bringing the regulations in line with updated disabilities civil rights law and ADA compliance recertification guidelines for the one–stop centers. (Page 528)

Response: We appreciate the comment and support the requirement under Section 188 for all PA CareerLink® centers to be physically and programmatically accessible for all job seekers, including individuals with disabilities.

  • L&I OVR and Community Health Choices (CHC) – Most consumers who currently and would receive physical disabilities services through PA Department of Human Service (DHS) Office of Long Term Living (OLTL) –with the exception of Act 150 consumers and a few other target populations (Page 533)

Describe how the one-stop delivery system (including one-stop center operators and the one-stop delivery system partners), will comply with section 188 of WIOA.  (Page 86)

DEI/Disability Resource Coordinators

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Other State Programs/Pilots that Support Competitive Integrated Employment

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. (Page 215)

We appreciate the comment. OVR continues to identify and develop innovative strategies and supports for individuals with disabilities such as expansion of Customized Employment and Discovery pilots while we await the release of final regulations, guidance, and technical assistance on Section 511 Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage. (Page 579)

Financial Literacy /Economic Advancement

WIOA added five new program elements to ones originally outlined under WIA, including: financial literacy education; entrepreneurial skills training; the provision of labor market and employment information about in–demand industry sectors or occupations available in a local area; activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post–secondary education and training; and education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a special occupation or occupational cluster.(Page 119)

Benefits

BSTs also have access to a plethora of labor market information that can be helpful to employers in setting wages and benefits that will attract high-quality candidates. BSTs will communicate and collaborate with other agencies of state government which may have direct liaison activities with employers and regional economic development partners to avoid business fatigue from multiple contacts and ensure coordination of services. (Page 362)

 CILs can also help those who do not qualify for OVR services. Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. (Page 389)

With over 725,000 working aged adults and 75,000 youth with disabilities, PA has an ever growing caseload of residents receiving disability related benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since 2001, SSA has operated two distinct programs in every state to promote and facilitate employment and increased earnings among individuals with disabilities who are otherwise dependent on government benefits. We appreciate the comment. The commonwealth will continue to focus efforts on those with barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities as defined in WIOA. Additionally, the Department of Human Services (DHS) agrees that people with a disability receiving DHS–funded Medicaid waiver home and community–based supports often cite as a barrier to seeking employment the concern that earning wages will make them ineligible for basic supports that enable them to live independently in the community rather than a more costly institutional setting. DHS is exploring adding benefits counseling (Work Incentives Planning Assistance) as a service that would be paid under its Medicaid HCBS waivers. (Page 391)

Those that participate in our work force has many concerns if they are forced into competitive employment, such as, the fear of losing medical benefits, loss of SSI checks, inability to work a 40 hour week or even part time, transportation issues to and from work or shift work that does not coincide with public transportation. And the fear of the world of work: failure, being unaccepted, taken advantage of, pressure of the job itself. (Page 400)

Particularly impacted by these changes are people with disabilities who face difficulty finding employment, yet do not qualify for SSI or other benefits programs. (Page 422)

Build the capacity of PA’s employment professionals to support people with the most significant disabilities and to address barriers to employment which are related to misunderstandings about the relationship between SSA benefits and working.

  • The Combined Plan should lay out specific training strategies to build the capacity of employment specialists to successfully obtain and maintain employment for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 456)

In fact, Maryland’s WIOA Plan analyzes by region the correlation between people with disabilities and those who had Individualized Education Plans (IEPs). Regionally, the data showed that areas with a strong IEP system and more people who had IEPs in school, later had less dependence on entitlement benefits.  (Page 471)

School to Work Transition

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives,  and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 174)

 Understanding pertaining to transition from school to work and adult services. Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177)

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives, and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 81)   

Data Collection

Data collection, sharing and reporting;   (Page 190)

The current data collection system is under revision and by the end of Perkins IV, the system will reflect required data elements. The data elements will include data that allows for analysis that evidences continuous improvement at the postsecondary level. (Pages 259)

New to the data collection is 1P1 Technical Skill Attainment. The current data collection system needs to change in order to collect relevant data. Until the change occurs, the State will use grade point average. (Page 260)

In regards to graduation rate–4S1*, multiyear identification of CTE students will begin in 2007–2008 utilizing PDE‘s unified data collection system which uses a unique student identifier, entitled Pennsylvania Information Management System, (PIMS) to establish graduation rates by the 2012 school year. PDE is still ascertaining a valid collection vehicle to obtain 4S1 data. (Page 280)

 Student Graduation Rates (4S1)* – Individual student data collection will begin with the 2007–2008 school year, high school graduation rates will not be available using PASecureID information until February 2012 for the Class of 2011. (Page 284)

Any data collection or reporting that is conducted will be vetted and reviewed to ensure FERPA compliance. Under FERPA, there are exceptions to data collection when the data is to be used for program evaluation, which these data collections would fall under. Therefore the commonwealth believes that the programs will be able to function without violating the provisions of FERPA. (Page 417)

Goal 2 focuses on developing a pipeline of workers to meet industry needs and Goal 4 speaks to engaging employers and being responsive to their needs.

  • Data Collection ROI & Market Penetration (p. 32 table): While we recognize the importance to protecting data, as a local partner the WDB will need to utilize the information to make local decisions that are not necessarily interesting to the commonwealth.  (Page 424)
Small business/Entrepreneurship

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Career Pathways

Career pathways must be diverse with multiple entry and exit points allowing individuals of varying abilities, including low–skilled adults and youth with multiple barriers to employment, to have realistic access to pathways.

Comment: The application of multiple entry points within career pathways is a very positive approach that we can operationalize for varying individual employment plans. Response: We appreciate the comment in support of our approach.

  • The commonwealth will mainstream job seekers with barriers to employment to the maximum extent possible by offering realistic entry points into career pathways and by ensuring necessary supportive services are in place and coordinated across agencies, so that those individuals with the most significant barriers to employment are successful in accessing and navigating career pathways. (Page 460)

The commonwealth recognizes the need to have a variety of service providers working together to ensure that individuals with barriers to employment receive the services they need to benefit from career pathways opportunities. (Page 460)

We strongly support this. We urge the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to retain the above provisions in the final state plan, with the clarifying edits suggested by CLS and CJP in their more detailed comments.

Response: We appreciate the comments in support of the State Plan, including: your recognition of the important role our adult basic education services provide in career pathways for low income adults; your comment in support of ensuring that career pathways are accessible to individuals with basic skills needs; your comments in support of the Priority of Service and Career Pathways provisions in the State Plan; and your comment in support of the transitional jobs requirements in the State Plan. Dr. Madeline Seltzer, Manor College, offered the following comment: I am against this combined plan at this time. Parts of the plan are not clear. I would like the Perkins Career and Technical Education parts to be reworked. In addition, I would like implementation to be postponed until Perkins 5 comes up for approval. (Page 489)

Employment Networks

This new plan continues with the same concept when Careerlinks and other partners are missing two valuable resources that can help a person with a disability: Centers for Independent Living (CIL), and also Employment Networks. CILs offer a plethora of learning opportunities for people with disabilities. They offer core services (information and referral, advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living skills training). Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. Many Employment Networks assist individuals who don’t qualify for OVR services. There are many individuals with disabilities who do not meet the specifications for Order of Selection. (Page 389)

Response: We appreciate the comment in support of the plan and acknowledge the valuable resources available for individuals with a disability from partners such as Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and Employment Networks. (Page 389)

Policies and Initiatives

Displaying 1 - 10 of 47

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 271 - 01/20/2015

“An Act relating to the delivery of services and programs to persons with disabilities; conferring powers and duties on the Office of the Governor; establishing the Office for People with Disabilities and Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities; and providing for the powers and duties of the office and advisory committee and for funding of the office.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities (§ 6.301)

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:     (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.       (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.       (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.       (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:

   (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.

   (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.

   (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.

   (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 10 of 17

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Competitive Employment for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability - 05/22/2015

“The Department of Human Services (DHS)’ proposed FY 2015-2016 budget includes $500,000 to provide additional supports to promote competitive employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. This initiative is a collaborative effort between DHS’ Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), and various disability advocacy groups…   Pending the approved budget, this joint ODP-OVR initiative will enable OVR to build staff capacity with intellectual disability expertise, and allow existing vocational rehabilitation counselors to carry smaller, more specialized caseloads for this population. This initiative will also allow for the possibility of expanded training and job-readiness programs, paid work experience for high school students with an intellectual disability, person-centered and customized employment demonstration projects, and increased outreach to parents and families.”  
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Governor Announces: Pennsylvania Accepted as an Employment First State - 12/18/2014

“The Corbett administration announced that Pennsylvania has been selected to participate in the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Employment First is a concept to facilitate the full inclusion of people with the most significant disabilities in the workplace and community in typical workplace settings where the majority of workers are not people with disabilities.  The mentoring program will help the departments of Human Services (DHS), Education and Labor & Industry (L&I) collaborate to align policies and develop a plan to increase school-to-work opportunities for students with disabilities.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation

PA State Integrated Workforce Plan for WIA and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs (July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2017) - 07/01/2012

“As a PA CareerLink® partner, OVR helps identify and serve eligible persons with disability-related barriers to employment. Services are determined on a case-by-case basis. OVR services are provided at no cost to the individual. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors provide a vocational evaluation to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) outlining vocational objectives, services, providers and responsibilities of the participant.”

“To support its long-term strategy of improving services, OVR fosters interagency collaboration with all federal and state disability employment agencies and organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. In addition, OVR works with stakeholder groups such as the Pennsylvania Rehabilitation Council, the Statewide Independent Living Council and the Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology to supplement services…”

“Promoting the Hiring of Persons with Disabilities: OVR engages in a strategic public outreach campaign to make employers aware of the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and offers interested employers no-cost business solutions…”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Other
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

“DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”    “DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”  
Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

 “DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”

“DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR Policy on Employment (2005) - 12/20/2005

“Statement of Policy as per 55 Pa Code §6000.171 states that persons with [Mental Retardation] MR who are of legal working age should have access to employment and the training necessary to sustain employment.

Access to employment applies regardless of a person’s living arrangement or type of service funding. [Office of Mental Retardation] OMR’s policy includes persons receiving base funded services and those enrolled in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers. This also applies to people in State and Non-State ICFs/MR.”

“OMR defines employment as a job in the community that pays at least minimum wage, where the worker has the opportunity to interact with individuals without a disability and has access to employee benefits when available. Employment can be part or full-time and includes self-employment.”

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Via of the Lehigh Valley (PA): Partnership with Local Schools to Provide Customized Employment - 08/15/2014

This story details a partnership between Via of the Lehigh Valley (a CRP) and the local school system to support a Customized Employment success.

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania AHEDD

“At AHEDD, we frequently collaborate with various organizations to carry out our mission. Our partners consist of organizations and individuals that can help with: agency funding; referrals of program participants; training for our staff; guidance for AHEDD’s operational needs; job opportunities; and/or much more.  Our services to people with disabilities are often sponsored by public resources at the federal, state, and local levels. 

Currently, these funders include:            

Pennsylvania Offices of Vocational Rehabilitation The United States Social Security Administration (SSA) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services  Pennsylvania  Department of Public Welfare (DPW) Office of Developmental Programs (ODP)  Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Division of Developmental Disabilities Service (DDDS) in Delaware”
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA ASERT

“ASERT is a statewide initiative funded by the Bureau of Autism Services, PA Department of Public Welfare. The ASERT (Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training) Collaborative is a key component of the Bureau of Autism’s strategy for supporting individuals with autism and their families throughout the Commonwealth. It is our vision that ASERT will connect existing resources and pockets of expertise, and address the regional gaps in effective services and supports.”

This site has notices of workshops for customized employment and Employment First.

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Citations

Temple University Institute on Disabilities (College of Education)

“The Institute on Disabilities at Temple University is one of the sixty-seven University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Established in 1974, the Institute has mirrored the changes in the field of developmental disabilities, evolving into a model of self-determination and individualized supports in the community…

During its early history the Institute provided extensive technical assistance and training to professionals in the field and later became nationally recognized for advocacy and research efforts centered on the closure of the Pennhurst Center. In the 1980's, the Institute began developing and evaluating support models for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and their families.”

Systems
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program

“The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program (BEP) assists persons operate food service businesses in commercial, industrial or governmental locations. Food services can range from a vending machine route to the management of a large cafeteria. BEP can also assist interested persons with entrepreneurial business ventures other than food service. These businesses might include: specialty product sales; franchise operations; gift shops; and, kiosks. Business sites and equipment are provided through the program, as well as ongoing assistance from BEP agents. Eligible persons enter this program through being served as customers in the BBVS Vocational Rehabilitation program.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Autism Speaks Community Grants: Customized Employment

“Via of the Lehigh Valley is a community employment program that works with individuals with significant disabilities to become employed in their home communities. the applicant recently completed a successful NISH-sponsored Customized Employment grant which increased their skills, produced many successful Customized Employment outcomes and helped increase their general community employment success rate over the past year by over 38%. in addition, Via of Lehigh Valley is a mentor agency for the Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)'s Employment Start initiative. One of the challenges with Customized Employment implementation is the needed focus on getting better at supporting the individuals with autism in the workplace and the staff time necessary to research and cultivate greater numbers of partnering resources. Via is proposing to work with six customers and their "people" to create additional positive outcomes and further increased systems change. the proposal is seeking funding to cover one half of the salary for one dedicated Customized Employment coordinator to facilitate even greater success for one year. Through the use of the discovery process, creating creative employment scenarios and increasing partnerships, Via will advance the employment of people with autism.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania Blind Work Expense

“Work incentives are special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities to work who already receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The worker/beneficiary would still receive monthly benefits and cash payments and would still be eligible for Medicare or Medicaid health care coverage. The Social Security Administration calls these special rules “work incentives.” The work incentives that are available are specially designed to help lessen the barriers to employment that many people with disabilities face. These work incentives help ease people back into the workforce by allowing a person to try to work and, if possible, gradually become self-supporting.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”

Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and]really want to join the workforce."

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

Pennsylvania MAWD - Medical Assistance Benefits for Workers with Disabilities

 “For people with disabilities, finding a job or returning to work can be a challenge. For a long time one of the biggest obstacles to working was health care coverage. Earning too much money meant risking losing health care benefits. However, there is an option: Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (MAWD).”

“MAWD lets Pennsylvanians with disabilities take a fulfilling job, earn more money and still keep their full medical coverage. With MAWD you can keep Medical Assistance while you work, even if your earnings increase above the limits for other Medical Assistance programs. Now you do not have to choose between a job and your health.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

OVR Transition Guide for Professionals - 06/01/2014

“The purpose of this guide is to provide professionals with an overview of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation’s role in the School-to-Work process. It is intended to provide basic knowledge of what students with disabilities and their families can expect when becoming involved with OVR.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

The Pennsylvania Disability Employment and Empowerment Summit (PADES) - 10/23/2013

 “The goal of the event is to bring together business leaders, service providers, government agencies, and people with disabilities to discuss the current programs and services available for people with disabilities, as well as ways we can assist the business community as they work to advance their diversity efforts to include people with disabilities as part of the workforce. Session topics [included] information on model programs, job development, public policy & funding, benefits & government incentives, accommodations & technology, as well as briefings on both federal & state initiatives to increase the rate of employment for people with disabilities.”

 
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Resource Leveraging

The Pennsylvania Employment Reform Resource Project - 09/20/2013

This website contains a collection of resources and case studies on Customized Employment Self-Employment.

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health

Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network

“PaTTAN provides a full array of professional development and technical assistance targeted to improving student results. PaTTAN provides support to schools, parents, educators, students, and administrators on a variety of topics” including School-to-work transition and Special Education Policy.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

ADEPT: ARC Discovery Employment Transitions

“Arc Discovery Employment Transitions (ADEPT) is a customized employment program developed by The Arc of Pennsylvania in partnership with Marc Gold and Associates. The Arc of PA recognizes the need for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities to be able to find customized employment within the community. As a result The Arc of PA partnered with Marc Gold & Associates, a national leader in customized employment, to bring Discovery, Customized Employment and Job Development, and Systematic Instruction to the Commonwealth. These 3 programs will be facilitated by our nationally certified consultants to help job seekers find customized employment that matches their strengths and conditions for success.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health

No Enforcement have been entered for this state.

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA 1915(c) Home and Community-Based Services Waiver - 01/16/2014

”On January 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule for Home and Community-Based Settings (HCBS).  The final rule, which became effective on March 17, 2014, amends the Medicaid regulations to provide requirements regarding person-centered plans of care, characteristics of settings that are home and community-based as well as settings that may not be home and community-based. These requirements reflect CMS’ intent that individuals receiving services and supports through Medicaid Waivers receive services in settings which are integrated in and support full access to the greater community. The final rule applies to section 1915(c) Medicaid waivers, section 1915(i) State Plan home and community-based services and section 1915(k) Community First Choice attendant care services (1915(k)).  Pennsylvania has ten Medicaid home and community based services waivers. All Medicaid Waivers must comply with these requirements. The final rule includes a provision requiring states offering HCBS under existing state plans or waivers to develop transition plans to ensure that HCBS settings will meet the final rule’s requirements.” 

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA Independence Medicaid Waiver (0319.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, personal assistance services, respite, service coordination, supported employment, home health, assistive technology, community integration, community transition services, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for physically disabled individuals ages 18 – 59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA OBRA Medicaid Waiver (0235.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, education services, personal assistance, prevocational, residential habilitation, respite, service coordination, structured day habilitation, supported employment, home health, FMS, accessibility adaptations/equipment/technology and medical supplies, assisted technology, community integration, community transition, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for individuals w/DD ages 18-59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania State Medicaid Plan

Thank you for your interest in the Pennsylvania Medicaid State Plan.   The plan is not available online and the files are too large to email.  However, text searchable PDF files are available on a CD Rom.  A copy of the CD costs $7.00.  The CD contains all CMS approved amendments as of the day the CD is created.   If you would like a copy of the CD, send a check or money order payable to "Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" to:   OMAP - Bureau of Policy, Analysis, and Planning PO Box 2675 Harrisburg, PA 17120  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”   “Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and] really want to join the workforce."
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

States - Phablet

Snapshot

In the State of Independence, Pennsylvania is working steadfast to support workers with disabilities who want to pursue careers and optimal self-sufficiency. 

State VR Rates and Services

A list of services offered by this state’s Vocational Rehabilitation agency, along with the standard rates paid for the performance of those services.

PDF icon Pennsylvania’s VR Rates and Services

2015 State Population.
0.12%
Change from
2014 to 2015
12,802,503
2015 Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
0.95%
Change from
2014 to 2015
885,256
2015 Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
4.35%
Change from
2014 to 2015
316,361
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities).
3.44%
Change from
2014 to 2015
35.74%
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities).
0.98%
Change from
2014 to 2015
77.29%

State Data

General

2015
Population. 12,802,503
Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 885,256
Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 316,361
Number of people without disabilities who are employed (ages 18-64). 5,353,723
Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities). 35.74%
Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities). 77.29%
Overall unemployment rate. 5.30%
Poverty Rate (all disabilities). 21.20%
Poverty Rate (NO disabilities). 11.90%
Number of males with disabilities (all ages). 823,712
Number of females with disabilities (all ages). 923,052
Number of Caucasians with disabilities (all ages). 1,418,340
Number of African Americans with disabilities (all ages). 224,188
Number of Hispanic/Latinos with disabilities (all ages). 119,610
Number of American Indians/Alaska Natives with disabilities (all ages). 5,949
Number of Asians with disabilities (all ages). 29,755
Number of Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders with disabilities (all ages). 1,179
Number of with multiple races disabilities (all ages). 34,500
Number of others with disabilities (all ages). 32,853

 

SSA OUTCOMES

2015
Number of SSI recipients with disabilities who work. 15,533
Percentage of SSI recipients with disabilities who work relative to total SSI recipients with disabilities. 4.50%
Old Age Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) recipients/workers with disabilities. 407,320

 

MENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES

2015
Number of mental health services consumers who are employed. 112,787
Number of mental health services consumers who are part of the labor force (employed or actively looking for employment). 131,902
Number of adults served who have a known employment status. 132,100
Percentage of all state mental health agency consumers served in the community who are employed. 85.40%
Percentage of supported employment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.00%
Percentage of supported housing services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.10%
Percentage of assertive community treatment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.20%
Percentage of medications management evidence based practices (EBP). 12.60%
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported employment services. 184
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported housing services. 325
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) assertive community treatment services. 954
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) medications management. 52,568

 

WAGNER PEYSER OUTCOMES

2015
Number of registered job seekers with a disability. 4,930
Proportion of registered job seekers with a disability. 0.01

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT OUTCOMES (ADULTS)

2014
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work served by Job Training and Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act programs. 289
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment. 167
Percentage of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment relative to total the number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work. 58.00%
Incidence rate of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 1.30

 

VR OUTCOMES

2015
Total Number of people served under VR.
15,057
Number of people with visual impairments served under VR. 655
Number of people with communicative (hearing loss, deafness) impairments served under VR. 1,930
Number of people with physical impairments served under VR. 3,236
Number of people cognitive impairments served under VR. 4,459
Number of people psychosocial impairments served under VR. 3,923
Number of people with mental impairments served under VR. 854
Percentage of overall closures into employment under VR. N/A
Number of employment network (EN) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) tickets assigned. 17,207
Number of eligible ticket to work beneficiaries. 641,889
Total number of ID closures using supported employment services with or without Title VI-B funds expended (VI-C prior to 2002). N/A
Total number of ID competitive labor market closures. N/A

 

IDD OUTCOMES

2014
Dollars spent on day/employment services for integrated employment funding. $35,867,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based work funding. $89,514,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based non-work funding. $157,200,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for community based non-work funding. $219,066,000
Percentage of people served in integrated employment. 18.00%
Number of people served in community based non-work. 13,569
Number of people served in facility based work. 9,399
Number of people served in facility based non-work. 9,884
Number supported in integrated employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 41.00

 

EDUCATION OUTCOMES

2014
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class 80% or more of the day (Indicator 5a). 61.96%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class less than 40% of the day (Indicator 5b). 9.49%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served in separate schools, residential facilities, or homebound/hospital placements (Indicator 5c). 4.84%
Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals (Indicator 13). 81.19%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14a). 25.76%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14b). 60.60%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14c). 69.23%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Subset of Indicator 14). 34.84%

 

ABILITYONE/JWOD PROGRAM

2014
Number of overall agency blind and SD hours. 3,942,448
Number of overall total blind and SD workers. 5,593
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (products). 195,760
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (services). 822,857
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (combined). 1,018,617
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (products). 391
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (services). 729
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (combined). 1,120
AbilityOne wages (products). $1,231,861
AbilityOne wages (services). $12,545,301

 

WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION: 14(c) CERTIFICATE-HOLDING ENTITIES OUTCOMES

2016
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 1
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 0
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 90
Number of 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. 3
Total Number of 14(c) certificate holding entities. 94
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 4
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14 (c) certificate holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 0
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 10,303
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. 306
Total reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding entities. 10,613

 

WIOA Proflie

WIOA Profile

 

The material cited below is taken directly from each state’s plan for WIOA implementation. These sections of the state plan were selected because of their relevance to youth and adults with disabilities. However, all programs and services under WIOA must be physically and programmatically accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program (EFSLMP)

“Employment First” will be the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the governor in serving persons with disabilities. This policy reflects the Governor’s goal of making the commonwealth a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with disabilities. (Page 33)

The Secretaries of PDE, DHS and L&I will, working with other commonwealth agencies and executive office officials, create a written plan that implements Employment First as the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies; aligns funding, policy, and practice toward an emphasis on competitive integrated employment; prioritizes competitive integrated employment as the first consideration and preferred outcome of all publicly–funded services for all Pennsylvanians with a disability; and creates the conditions that lead to a material increase in the number of Pennsylvanians with a disability who are employed in a competitive integrated job. (Page 49)

OVR Response: OVR is represented on the PA Developmental Disabilities Council, the Governor’s Special Education Advisory Panel and the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project, all of which are comprised of representatives from partnering agencies. (Pages 163)

As a key member of the PA Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project currently sponsored by a grant administered by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, OVR will partner with agencies within the Department of Human Services to ensure that the employment needs of individuals with disabilities are met, that cost services are comprehensive, effective, innovative and not duplicative, and that every individual with a disability who wants to work to achieve self–support will be given the opportunity to do so. (Page 190)

OVR representatives regularly attend the Special Education Advisory Panel, Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council, and the Pennsylvania Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project with members of other agencies in order to collaborate with agency partners in order to coordinate services to mutual customers. (Page 225)

With the Employment First Initiative, it is more apparent now than ever to have as many resources in place to help those with disabilities seeking competitive and integrated employment. (Page 389)

It is positive that Employment First is noted up front in the goals… especially as there are a lot of mentions of training programs in this plan. (Page 392)

The establishment of Employment First when developing individual plans for service for persons with an intellectual disability. (Page 397)

Joanna Greco from Beaver County Rehabilitation Center offered the following comment: I am writing concerning the “Employment First” initiative.

The “Employment First” initiative is commendable in supporting competitive employment as a choice for individuals with disabilities. BCRC has promoted and placed individuals in competitive community employment for over 50 years.   (Page 400)

This section highlights the policy that the Commonwealth be an “Employment First” state. (Page 432)

Therefore, we support the current state WIOA plan draft’s strong emphasis on offering OVR consumers informed choice in employment options, although we strongly recommend more clarifying language around this topic. As an competitive IT and Contact Center enterprise with a mission to advance employment for persons with disabilities, we both applaud and support both the policy and priority of “Employment First” as expressed in the State Plan. (Page 451)

Customized Employment

Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 170)

Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177, 184 and 188)

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. The following improvements listed are intended to be considered OVR goals for title VI funds. (Page 215)

Developing innovative and collaborative programs and services such as Discovery and Customized Employment as well as funding for Comprehensive Transition Programs that will help divert individuals away from subminimum wage employment. (Page 221)

OVR reviews the performance standards and indicators monthly. As an agency we constantly strive to meet or exceed the standards and indicators through training, policy development, and the addition or creation of new and innovative programs that will benefit our customers. We are also going through an extensive CSNA that will help guide us regarding service provision and to address system gaps to ensure that as many positive outcomes are achieved as possible. We are also exploring services such as customized employment and implementing interagency agreements that will assist with federal match generation to serve additional customers. OVR will continue to monitor the standards and indicators and incorporate stakeholder input into our program to ensure a cycle of constant reflection and program improvement. (Page 222)

The inclusion of customized employment services as a tool used alongside SE services can allow more intensive services to be offered for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive, community–integrated employment and historically may not have been able to benefit from VR services disabilities.  (Page 228)

Also, SE services have been provided on a broader basis since the late 1990’s to persons who are deaf via contracting with SE CRPs fluent in American Sign Language. The use of SE for customized employment (CE) cases is being piloted in 2015 to expand the breadth of SE services OVR offers. The use of CE in addition to SE will allow OVR to assist individuals who require very intensive services but are interested in and working towards competitive community integrated employment. (Page 235)

There are other forms of training, including Discovery and Customized Employment trainings, that would be more current to promote Employment First principles, and do not necessarily require the credentials called for in the Plan. Again, flexibility is key to promoting the innovation that is the hallmark of WIOA. 

Braiding/Blending Resources

Service coordination, resource leveraging and braiding of funding; and 4. quality assurance and improvement resulting in the collective accountability and performance measurement needed to substantially increase the numbers of Pennsylvanians in competitive integrated employment. (Page 190)

The braiding of WIOA Title I–B funded programs with other youth–directed state and local entities allows comprehensive services to be offered to all eligible low–income populations under WIOA. Available TANF funding will continue to support WIOA year–round services and summer employment activities. (Page 49)

Additionally, we applaud OVR for its shift towards blending customized employment and supported employment services – helping providers become certified to provide customized employment services is key to ensuring the quality of customized employment services for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 144)

We remain concerned that despite efforts to anticipate staffing needs of OVR in the coming years (Page 123)

Overall the agency needs a greater staff contingency to take on the increased responsibilities under WIOA. (Page579)

Section 188/Section 188 Guide

WIOA Section 188 Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity NPRM, 29 CFR Part 38 proposes to revise federal regulations to ensure access to the workforce system by people with disabilities by bringing the regulations in line with updated disabilities civil rights law and ADA compliance recertification guidelines for the one–stop centers. (Page 528)

Response: We appreciate the comment and support the requirement under Section 188 for all PA CareerLink® centers to be physically and programmatically accessible for all job seekers, including individuals with disabilities.

  • L&I OVR and Community Health Choices (CHC) – Most consumers who currently and would receive physical disabilities services through PA Department of Human Service (DHS) Office of Long Term Living (OLTL) –with the exception of Act 150 consumers and a few other target populations (Page 533)

Describe how the one-stop delivery system (including one-stop center operators and the one-stop delivery system partners), will comply with section 188 of WIOA.  (Page 86)

DEI/Disability Resource Coordinators

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Other State Programs/Pilots that Support Competitive Integrated Employment

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. (Page 215)

We appreciate the comment. OVR continues to identify and develop innovative strategies and supports for individuals with disabilities such as expansion of Customized Employment and Discovery pilots while we await the release of final regulations, guidance, and technical assistance on Section 511 Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage. (Page 579)

Financial Literacy /Economic Advancement

WIOA added five new program elements to ones originally outlined under WIA, including: financial literacy education; entrepreneurial skills training; the provision of labor market and employment information about in–demand industry sectors or occupations available in a local area; activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post–secondary education and training; and education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a special occupation or occupational cluster.(Page 119)

Benefits

BSTs also have access to a plethora of labor market information that can be helpful to employers in setting wages and benefits that will attract high-quality candidates. BSTs will communicate and collaborate with other agencies of state government which may have direct liaison activities with employers and regional economic development partners to avoid business fatigue from multiple contacts and ensure coordination of services. (Page 362)

 CILs can also help those who do not qualify for OVR services. Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. (Page 389)

With over 725,000 working aged adults and 75,000 youth with disabilities, PA has an ever growing caseload of residents receiving disability related benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since 2001, SSA has operated two distinct programs in every state to promote and facilitate employment and increased earnings among individuals with disabilities who are otherwise dependent on government benefits. We appreciate the comment. The commonwealth will continue to focus efforts on those with barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities as defined in WIOA. Additionally, the Department of Human Services (DHS) agrees that people with a disability receiving DHS–funded Medicaid waiver home and community–based supports often cite as a barrier to seeking employment the concern that earning wages will make them ineligible for basic supports that enable them to live independently in the community rather than a more costly institutional setting. DHS is exploring adding benefits counseling (Work Incentives Planning Assistance) as a service that would be paid under its Medicaid HCBS waivers. (Page 391)

Those that participate in our work force has many concerns if they are forced into competitive employment, such as, the fear of losing medical benefits, loss of SSI checks, inability to work a 40 hour week or even part time, transportation issues to and from work or shift work that does not coincide with public transportation. And the fear of the world of work: failure, being unaccepted, taken advantage of, pressure of the job itself. (Page 400)

Particularly impacted by these changes are people with disabilities who face difficulty finding employment, yet do not qualify for SSI or other benefits programs. (Page 422)

Build the capacity of PA’s employment professionals to support people with the most significant disabilities and to address barriers to employment which are related to misunderstandings about the relationship between SSA benefits and working.

  • The Combined Plan should lay out specific training strategies to build the capacity of employment specialists to successfully obtain and maintain employment for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 456)

In fact, Maryland’s WIOA Plan analyzes by region the correlation between people with disabilities and those who had Individualized Education Plans (IEPs). Regionally, the data showed that areas with a strong IEP system and more people who had IEPs in school, later had less dependence on entitlement benefits.  (Page 471)

School to Work Transition

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives,  and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 174)

 Understanding pertaining to transition from school to work and adult services. Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177)

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives, and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 81)   

Data Collection

Data collection, sharing and reporting;   (Page 190)

The current data collection system is under revision and by the end of Perkins IV, the system will reflect required data elements. The data elements will include data that allows for analysis that evidences continuous improvement at the postsecondary level. (Pages 259)

New to the data collection is 1P1 Technical Skill Attainment. The current data collection system needs to change in order to collect relevant data. Until the change occurs, the State will use grade point average. (Page 260)

In regards to graduation rate–4S1*, multiyear identification of CTE students will begin in 2007–2008 utilizing PDE‘s unified data collection system which uses a unique student identifier, entitled Pennsylvania Information Management System, (PIMS) to establish graduation rates by the 2012 school year. PDE is still ascertaining a valid collection vehicle to obtain 4S1 data. (Page 280)

 Student Graduation Rates (4S1)* – Individual student data collection will begin with the 2007–2008 school year, high school graduation rates will not be available using PASecureID information until February 2012 for the Class of 2011. (Page 284)

Any data collection or reporting that is conducted will be vetted and reviewed to ensure FERPA compliance. Under FERPA, there are exceptions to data collection when the data is to be used for program evaluation, which these data collections would fall under. Therefore the commonwealth believes that the programs will be able to function without violating the provisions of FERPA. (Page 417)

Goal 2 focuses on developing a pipeline of workers to meet industry needs and Goal 4 speaks to engaging employers and being responsive to their needs.

  • Data Collection ROI & Market Penetration (p. 32 table): While we recognize the importance to protecting data, as a local partner the WDB will need to utilize the information to make local decisions that are not necessarily interesting to the commonwealth.  (Page 424)
Small business/Entrepreneurship

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Career Pathways

Career pathways must be diverse with multiple entry and exit points allowing individuals of varying abilities, including low–skilled adults and youth with multiple barriers to employment, to have realistic access to pathways.

Comment: The application of multiple entry points within career pathways is a very positive approach that we can operationalize for varying individual employment plans. Response: We appreciate the comment in support of our approach.

  • The commonwealth will mainstream job seekers with barriers to employment to the maximum extent possible by offering realistic entry points into career pathways and by ensuring necessary supportive services are in place and coordinated across agencies, so that those individuals with the most significant barriers to employment are successful in accessing and navigating career pathways. (Page 460)

The commonwealth recognizes the need to have a variety of service providers working together to ensure that individuals with barriers to employment receive the services they need to benefit from career pathways opportunities. (Page 460)

We strongly support this. We urge the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to retain the above provisions in the final state plan, with the clarifying edits suggested by CLS and CJP in their more detailed comments.

Response: We appreciate the comments in support of the State Plan, including: your recognition of the important role our adult basic education services provide in career pathways for low income adults; your comment in support of ensuring that career pathways are accessible to individuals with basic skills needs; your comments in support of the Priority of Service and Career Pathways provisions in the State Plan; and your comment in support of the transitional jobs requirements in the State Plan. Dr. Madeline Seltzer, Manor College, offered the following comment: I am against this combined plan at this time. Parts of the plan are not clear. I would like the Perkins Career and Technical Education parts to be reworked. In addition, I would like implementation to be postponed until Perkins 5 comes up for approval. (Page 489)

Employment Networks

This new plan continues with the same concept when Careerlinks and other partners are missing two valuable resources that can help a person with a disability: Centers for Independent Living (CIL), and also Employment Networks. CILs offer a plethora of learning opportunities for people with disabilities. They offer core services (information and referral, advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living skills training). Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. Many Employment Networks assist individuals who don’t qualify for OVR services. There are many individuals with disabilities who do not meet the specifications for Order of Selection. (Page 389)

Response: We appreciate the comment in support of the plan and acknowledge the valuable resources available for individuals with a disability from partners such as Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and Employment Networks. (Page 389)

Policies and Initiatives

Displaying 1 - 10 of 47

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 271 - 01/20/2015

“An Act relating to the delivery of services and programs to persons with disabilities; conferring powers and duties on the Office of the Governor; establishing the Office for People with Disabilities and Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities; and providing for the powers and duties of the office and advisory committee and for funding of the office.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities (§ 6.301)

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:     (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.       (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.       (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.       (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:

   (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.

   (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.

   (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.

   (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 10 of 17

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Competitive Employment for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability - 05/22/2015

“The Department of Human Services (DHS)’ proposed FY 2015-2016 budget includes $500,000 to provide additional supports to promote competitive employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. This initiative is a collaborative effort between DHS’ Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), and various disability advocacy groups…   Pending the approved budget, this joint ODP-OVR initiative will enable OVR to build staff capacity with intellectual disability expertise, and allow existing vocational rehabilitation counselors to carry smaller, more specialized caseloads for this population. This initiative will also allow for the possibility of expanded training and job-readiness programs, paid work experience for high school students with an intellectual disability, person-centered and customized employment demonstration projects, and increased outreach to parents and families.”  
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Governor Announces: Pennsylvania Accepted as an Employment First State - 12/18/2014

“The Corbett administration announced that Pennsylvania has been selected to participate in the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Employment First is a concept to facilitate the full inclusion of people with the most significant disabilities in the workplace and community in typical workplace settings where the majority of workers are not people with disabilities.  The mentoring program will help the departments of Human Services (DHS), Education and Labor & Industry (L&I) collaborate to align policies and develop a plan to increase school-to-work opportunities for students with disabilities.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation

PA State Integrated Workforce Plan for WIA and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs (July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2017) - 07/01/2012

“As a PA CareerLink® partner, OVR helps identify and serve eligible persons with disability-related barriers to employment. Services are determined on a case-by-case basis. OVR services are provided at no cost to the individual. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors provide a vocational evaluation to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) outlining vocational objectives, services, providers and responsibilities of the participant.”

“To support its long-term strategy of improving services, OVR fosters interagency collaboration with all federal and state disability employment agencies and organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. In addition, OVR works with stakeholder groups such as the Pennsylvania Rehabilitation Council, the Statewide Independent Living Council and the Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology to supplement services…”

“Promoting the Hiring of Persons with Disabilities: OVR engages in a strategic public outreach campaign to make employers aware of the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and offers interested employers no-cost business solutions…”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Other
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

“DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”    “DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”  
Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

 “DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”

“DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR Policy on Employment (2005) - 12/20/2005

“Statement of Policy as per 55 Pa Code §6000.171 states that persons with [Mental Retardation] MR who are of legal working age should have access to employment and the training necessary to sustain employment.

Access to employment applies regardless of a person’s living arrangement or type of service funding. [Office of Mental Retardation] OMR’s policy includes persons receiving base funded services and those enrolled in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers. This also applies to people in State and Non-State ICFs/MR.”

“OMR defines employment as a job in the community that pays at least minimum wage, where the worker has the opportunity to interact with individuals without a disability and has access to employee benefits when available. Employment can be part or full-time and includes self-employment.”

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Via of the Lehigh Valley (PA): Partnership with Local Schools to Provide Customized Employment - 08/15/2014

This story details a partnership between Via of the Lehigh Valley (a CRP) and the local school system to support a Customized Employment success.

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania AHEDD

“At AHEDD, we frequently collaborate with various organizations to carry out our mission. Our partners consist of organizations and individuals that can help with: agency funding; referrals of program participants; training for our staff; guidance for AHEDD’s operational needs; job opportunities; and/or much more.  Our services to people with disabilities are often sponsored by public resources at the federal, state, and local levels. 

Currently, these funders include:            

Pennsylvania Offices of Vocational Rehabilitation The United States Social Security Administration (SSA) Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services  Pennsylvania  Department of Public Welfare (DPW) Office of Developmental Programs (ODP)  Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) Division of Developmental Disabilities Service (DDDS) in Delaware”
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA ASERT

“ASERT is a statewide initiative funded by the Bureau of Autism Services, PA Department of Public Welfare. The ASERT (Autism Services, Education, Resources, and Training) Collaborative is a key component of the Bureau of Autism’s strategy for supporting individuals with autism and their families throughout the Commonwealth. It is our vision that ASERT will connect existing resources and pockets of expertise, and address the regional gaps in effective services and supports.”

This site has notices of workshops for customized employment and Employment First.

 
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Citations

Temple University Institute on Disabilities (College of Education)

“The Institute on Disabilities at Temple University is one of the sixty-seven University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

“Established in 1974, the Institute has mirrored the changes in the field of developmental disabilities, evolving into a model of self-determination and individualized supports in the community…

During its early history the Institute provided extensive technical assistance and training to professionals in the field and later became nationally recognized for advocacy and research efforts centered on the closure of the Pennhurst Center. In the 1980's, the Institute began developing and evaluating support models for Pennsylvanians with disabilities and their families.”

Systems
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program

“The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program (BEP) assists persons operate food service businesses in commercial, industrial or governmental locations. Food services can range from a vending machine route to the management of a large cafeteria. BEP can also assist interested persons with entrepreneurial business ventures other than food service. These businesses might include: specialty product sales; franchise operations; gift shops; and, kiosks. Business sites and equipment are provided through the program, as well as ongoing assistance from BEP agents. Eligible persons enter this program through being served as customers in the BBVS Vocational Rehabilitation program.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Autism Speaks Community Grants: Customized Employment

“Via of the Lehigh Valley is a community employment program that works with individuals with significant disabilities to become employed in their home communities. the applicant recently completed a successful NISH-sponsored Customized Employment grant which increased their skills, produced many successful Customized Employment outcomes and helped increase their general community employment success rate over the past year by over 38%. in addition, Via of Lehigh Valley is a mentor agency for the Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)'s Employment Start initiative. One of the challenges with Customized Employment implementation is the needed focus on getting better at supporting the individuals with autism in the workplace and the staff time necessary to research and cultivate greater numbers of partnering resources. Via is proposing to work with six customers and their "people" to create additional positive outcomes and further increased systems change. the proposal is seeking funding to cover one half of the salary for one dedicated Customized Employment coordinator to facilitate even greater success for one year. Through the use of the discovery process, creating creative employment scenarios and increasing partnerships, Via will advance the employment of people with autism.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania Blind Work Expense

“Work incentives are special rules that make it possible for people with disabilities to work who already receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI). The worker/beneficiary would still receive monthly benefits and cash payments and would still be eligible for Medicare or Medicaid health care coverage. The Social Security Administration calls these special rules “work incentives.” The work incentives that are available are specially designed to help lessen the barriers to employment that many people with disabilities face. These work incentives help ease people back into the workforce by allowing a person to try to work and, if possible, gradually become self-supporting.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”

Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and]really want to join the workforce."

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

Pennsylvania MAWD - Medical Assistance Benefits for Workers with Disabilities

 “For people with disabilities, finding a job or returning to work can be a challenge. For a long time one of the biggest obstacles to working was health care coverage. Earning too much money meant risking losing health care benefits. However, there is an option: Medical Assistance for Workers with Disabilities (MAWD).”

“MAWD lets Pennsylvanians with disabilities take a fulfilling job, earn more money and still keep their full medical coverage. With MAWD you can keep Medical Assistance while you work, even if your earnings increase above the limits for other Medical Assistance programs. Now you do not have to choose between a job and your health.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
Displaying 1 - 5 of 5

OVR Transition Guide for Professionals - 06/01/2014

“The purpose of this guide is to provide professionals with an overview of the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation’s role in the School-to-Work process. It is intended to provide basic knowledge of what students with disabilities and their families can expect when becoming involved with OVR.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

The Pennsylvania Disability Employment and Empowerment Summit (PADES) - 10/23/2013

 “The goal of the event is to bring together business leaders, service providers, government agencies, and people with disabilities to discuss the current programs and services available for people with disabilities, as well as ways we can assist the business community as they work to advance their diversity efforts to include people with disabilities as part of the workforce. Session topics [included] information on model programs, job development, public policy & funding, benefits & government incentives, accommodations & technology, as well as briefings on both federal & state initiatives to increase the rate of employment for people with disabilities.”

 
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Resource Leveraging

The Pennsylvania Employment Reform Resource Project - 09/20/2013

This website contains a collection of resources and case studies on Customized Employment Self-Employment.

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Self-Employment
  • Mental Health

Pennsylvania Training and Technical Assistance Network

“PaTTAN provides a full array of professional development and technical assistance targeted to improving student results. PaTTAN provides support to schools, parents, educators, students, and administrators on a variety of topics” including School-to-work transition and Special Education Policy.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

ADEPT: ARC Discovery Employment Transitions

“Arc Discovery Employment Transitions (ADEPT) is a customized employment program developed by The Arc of Pennsylvania in partnership with Marc Gold and Associates. The Arc of PA recognizes the need for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities to be able to find customized employment within the community. As a result The Arc of PA partnered with Marc Gold & Associates, a national leader in customized employment, to bring Discovery, Customized Employment and Job Development, and Systematic Instruction to the Commonwealth. These 3 programs will be facilitated by our nationally certified consultants to help job seekers find customized employment that matches their strengths and conditions for success.”

Systems
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Mental Health

No Enforcement have been entered for this state.

Displaying 1 - 8 of 8

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

PA 1915(c) Home and Community-Based Services Waiver - 01/16/2014

”On January 16, 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule for Home and Community-Based Settings (HCBS).  The final rule, which became effective on March 17, 2014, amends the Medicaid regulations to provide requirements regarding person-centered plans of care, characteristics of settings that are home and community-based as well as settings that may not be home and community-based. These requirements reflect CMS’ intent that individuals receiving services and supports through Medicaid Waivers receive services in settings which are integrated in and support full access to the greater community. The final rule applies to section 1915(c) Medicaid waivers, section 1915(i) State Plan home and community-based services and section 1915(k) Community First Choice attendant care services (1915(k)).  Pennsylvania has ten Medicaid home and community based services waivers. All Medicaid Waivers must comply with these requirements. The final rule includes a provision requiring states offering HCBS under existing state plans or waivers to develop transition plans to ensure that HCBS settings will meet the final rule’s requirements.” 

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA Independence Medicaid Waiver (0319.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, personal assistance services, respite, service coordination, supported employment, home health, assistive technology, community integration, community transition services, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for physically disabled individuals ages 18 – 59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

PA OBRA Medicaid Waiver (0235.R04.00)

“Provides adult daily living, education services, personal assistance, prevocational, residential habilitation, respite, service coordination, structured day habilitation, supported employment, home health, FMS, accessibility adaptations/equipment/technology and medical supplies, assisted technology, community integration, community transition, home adaptations, non-medical transportation, PERS, specialized medical equipment and supplies, therapeutic and counseling, vehicle mods for individuals w/DD ages 18-59.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania State Medicaid Plan

Thank you for your interest in the Pennsylvania Medicaid State Plan.   The plan is not available online and the files are too large to email.  However, text searchable PDF files are available on a CD Rom.  A copy of the CD costs $7.00.  The CD contains all CMS approved amendments as of the day the CD is created.   If you would like a copy of the CD, send a check or money order payable to "Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" to:   OMAP - Bureau of Policy, Analysis, and Planning PO Box 2675 Harrisburg, PA 17120  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Medicaid Infrastructure Grant

“Works for me is a free resource that can guide you to agencies and programs that will help you get a job.  These resources can help you: find a job, obtain job training, keep health insurance, get assistive technology, find other support you may need, [and] discover how you may even be able to increase your income!”   “Works for me is designed for Pennsylvania residents who: have a disability, receive Social Security and/or Medicaid benefits, [and] really want to join the workforce."
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Provider Transformation

States - Phone

Snapshot

In the State of Independence, Pennsylvania is working steadfast to support workers with disabilities who want to pursue careers and optimal self-sufficiency. 

State VR Rates and Services

A list of services offered by this state’s Vocational Rehabilitation agency, along with the standard rates paid for the performance of those services.

PDF icon Pennsylvania’s VR Rates and Services

2015 State Population.
0.12%
Change from
2014 to 2015
12,802,503
2015 Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
0.95%
Change from
2014 to 2015
885,256
2015 Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64).
4.35%
Change from
2014 to 2015
316,361
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities).
3.44%
Change from
2014 to 2015
35.74%
2015 Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities).
0.98%
Change from
2014 to 2015
77.29%

State Data

General

2015
Population. 12,802,503
Number of people with disabilities (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 885,256
Number of people with disabilities who are employed (all disabilities, ages 18-64). 316,361
Number of people without disabilities who are employed (ages 18-64). 5,353,723
Percentage of working age people who are employed (all disabilities). 35.74%
Percentage of working age people who are employed (NO disabilities). 77.29%
Overall unemployment rate. 5.30%
Poverty Rate (all disabilities). 21.20%
Poverty Rate (NO disabilities). 11.90%
Number of males with disabilities (all ages). 823,712
Number of females with disabilities (all ages). 923,052
Number of Caucasians with disabilities (all ages). 1,418,340
Number of African Americans with disabilities (all ages). 224,188
Number of Hispanic/Latinos with disabilities (all ages). 119,610
Number of American Indians/Alaska Natives with disabilities (all ages). 5,949
Number of Asians with disabilities (all ages). 29,755
Number of Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders with disabilities (all ages). 1,179
Number of with multiple races disabilities (all ages). 34,500
Number of others with disabilities (all ages). 32,853

 

SSA OUTCOMES

2015
Number of SSI recipients with disabilities who work. 15,533
Percentage of SSI recipients with disabilities who work relative to total SSI recipients with disabilities. 4.50%
Old Age Survivor and Disability Insurance (OASDI) recipients/workers with disabilities. 407,320

 

MENTAL HEALTH OUTCOMES

2015
Number of mental health services consumers who are employed. 112,787
Number of mental health services consumers who are part of the labor force (employed or actively looking for employment). 131,902
Number of adults served who have a known employment status. 132,100
Percentage of all state mental health agency consumers served in the community who are employed. 85.40%
Percentage of supported employment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.00%
Percentage of supported housing services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.10%
Percentage of assertive community treatment services evidence based practices (EBP). 0.20%
Percentage of medications management evidence based practices (EBP). 12.60%
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported employment services. 184
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) supported housing services. 325
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) assertive community treatment services. 954
Number of evidence based practices (EBP) medications management. 52,568

 

WAGNER PEYSER OUTCOMES

2015
Number of registered job seekers with a disability. 4,930
Proportion of registered job seekers with a disability. 0.01

 

WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT OUTCOMES (ADULTS)

2014
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work served by Job Training and Partnership Act/Workforce Investment Act programs. 289
Total number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment. 167
Percentage of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment relative to total the number of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work. 58.00%
Incidence rate of people with a disability that is a substantial barrier to work who entered unsubsidized employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 1.30

 

VR OUTCOMES

2015
Total Number of people served under VR.
15,057
Number of people with visual impairments served under VR. 655
Number of people with communicative (hearing loss, deafness) impairments served under VR. 1,930
Number of people with physical impairments served under VR. 3,236
Number of people cognitive impairments served under VR. 4,459
Number of people psychosocial impairments served under VR. 3,923
Number of people with mental impairments served under VR. 854
Percentage of overall closures into employment under VR. N/A
Number of employment network (EN) and vocational rehabilitation (VR) tickets assigned. 17,207
Number of eligible ticket to work beneficiaries. 641,889
Total number of ID closures using supported employment services with or without Title VI-B funds expended (VI-C prior to 2002). N/A
Total number of ID competitive labor market closures. N/A

 

IDD OUTCOMES

2014
Dollars spent on day/employment services for integrated employment funding. $35,867,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based work funding. $89,514,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for facility-based non-work funding. $157,200,000
Dollars spent on day/employment services for community based non-work funding. $219,066,000
Percentage of people served in integrated employment. 18.00%
Number of people served in community based non-work. 13,569
Number of people served in facility based work. 9,399
Number of people served in facility based non-work. 9,884
Number supported in integrated employment per 100,000 individuals in the general state population. 41.00

 

EDUCATION OUTCOMES

2014
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class 80% or more of the day (Indicator 5a). 61.96%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served inside the regular class less than 40% of the day (Indicator 5b). 9.49%
Percent of children with IEPs aged 6 through 21 served in separate schools, residential facilities, or homebound/hospital placements (Indicator 5c). 4.84%
Percent of youth with IEPs aged 16 and above with an IEP that includes appropriate measurable postsecondary goals (Indicator 13). 81.19%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14a). 25.76%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14b). 60.60%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were enrolled in higher education or in some other postsecondary education or training program; or competitively employed or in some other employment within one year of leaving high school (Indicator 14c). 69.23%
Percentage of youth who are no longer in secondary school, had IEPs in effect at the time they left school, and were competitively employed within one year of leaving high school (Subset of Indicator 14). 34.84%

 

ABILITYONE/JWOD PROGRAM

2014
Number of overall agency blind and SD hours. 3,942,448
Number of overall total blind and SD workers. 5,593
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (products). 195,760
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (services). 822,857
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD hours (combined). 1,018,617
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (products). 391
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (services). 729
Number of AbilityOne blind and SD workers (combined). 1,120
AbilityOne wages (products). $1,231,861
AbilityOne wages (services). $12,545,301

 

WAGE AND HOUR DIVISION: 14(c) CERTIFICATE-HOLDING ENTITIES OUTCOMES

2016
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 1
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 0
Number of 14(c) certificate-holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 90
Number of 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. 3
Total Number of 14(c) certificate holding entities. 94
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate-holding businesses. 4
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14 (c) certificate holding school work experience programs (SWEPs). 0
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding community rehabilitation programs (CRPs). 10,303
Reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding patient workers. 306
Total reported number of people with disabilities working under 14(c) certificate holding entities. 10,613

 

WIOA Profile

WIOA Profile

 

The material cited below is taken directly from each state’s plan for WIOA implementation. These sections of the state plan were selected because of their relevance to youth and adults with disabilities. However, all programs and services under WIOA must be physically and programmatically accessible to individuals with disabilities.

Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program (EFSLMP)

“Employment First” will be the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the governor in serving persons with disabilities. This policy reflects the Governor’s goal of making the commonwealth a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with disabilities. (Page 33)

The Secretaries of PDE, DHS and L&I will, working with other commonwealth agencies and executive office officials, create a written plan that implements Employment First as the policy of all commonwealth executive branch agencies; aligns funding, policy, and practice toward an emphasis on competitive integrated employment; prioritizes competitive integrated employment as the first consideration and preferred outcome of all publicly–funded services for all Pennsylvanians with a disability; and creates the conditions that lead to a material increase in the number of Pennsylvanians with a disability who are employed in a competitive integrated job. (Page 49)

OVR Response: OVR is represented on the PA Developmental Disabilities Council, the Governor’s Special Education Advisory Panel and the Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project, all of which are comprised of representatives from partnering agencies. (Pages 163)

As a key member of the PA Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project currently sponsored by a grant administered by the Office of Disability Employment Policy, OVR will partner with agencies within the Department of Human Services to ensure that the employment needs of individuals with disabilities are met, that cost services are comprehensive, effective, innovative and not duplicative, and that every individual with a disability who wants to work to achieve self–support will be given the opportunity to do so. (Page 190)

OVR representatives regularly attend the Special Education Advisory Panel, Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council, and the Pennsylvania Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Project with members of other agencies in order to collaborate with agency partners in order to coordinate services to mutual customers. (Page 225)

With the Employment First Initiative, it is more apparent now than ever to have as many resources in place to help those with disabilities seeking competitive and integrated employment. (Page 389)

It is positive that Employment First is noted up front in the goals… especially as there are a lot of mentions of training programs in this plan. (Page 392)

The establishment of Employment First when developing individual plans for service for persons with an intellectual disability. (Page 397)

Joanna Greco from Beaver County Rehabilitation Center offered the following comment: I am writing concerning the “Employment First” initiative.

The “Employment First” initiative is commendable in supporting competitive employment as a choice for individuals with disabilities. BCRC has promoted and placed individuals in competitive community employment for over 50 years.   (Page 400)

This section highlights the policy that the Commonwealth be an “Employment First” state. (Page 432)

Therefore, we support the current state WIOA plan draft’s strong emphasis on offering OVR consumers informed choice in employment options, although we strongly recommend more clarifying language around this topic. As an competitive IT and Contact Center enterprise with a mission to advance employment for persons with disabilities, we both applaud and support both the policy and priority of “Employment First” as expressed in the State Plan. (Page 451)

Customized Employment

Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 170)

Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177, 184 and 188)

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. The following improvements listed are intended to be considered OVR goals for title VI funds. (Page 215)

Developing innovative and collaborative programs and services such as Discovery and Customized Employment as well as funding for Comprehensive Transition Programs that will help divert individuals away from subminimum wage employment. (Page 221)

OVR reviews the performance standards and indicators monthly. As an agency we constantly strive to meet or exceed the standards and indicators through training, policy development, and the addition or creation of new and innovative programs that will benefit our customers. We are also going through an extensive CSNA that will help guide us regarding service provision and to address system gaps to ensure that as many positive outcomes are achieved as possible. We are also exploring services such as customized employment and implementing interagency agreements that will assist with federal match generation to serve additional customers. OVR will continue to monitor the standards and indicators and incorporate stakeholder input into our program to ensure a cycle of constant reflection and program improvement. (Page 222)

The inclusion of customized employment services as a tool used alongside SE services can allow more intensive services to be offered for individuals with disabilities who are seeking competitive, community–integrated employment and historically may not have been able to benefit from VR services disabilities.  (Page 228)

Also, SE services have been provided on a broader basis since the late 1990’s to persons who are deaf via contracting with SE CRPs fluent in American Sign Language. The use of SE for customized employment (CE) cases is being piloted in 2015 to expand the breadth of SE services OVR offers. The use of CE in addition to SE will allow OVR to assist individuals who require very intensive services but are interested in and working towards competitive community integrated employment. (Page 235)

There are other forms of training, including Discovery and Customized Employment trainings, that would be more current to promote Employment First principles, and do not necessarily require the credentials called for in the Plan. Again, flexibility is key to promoting the innovation that is the hallmark of WIOA. 

Braiding/Blending Resources

Service coordination, resource leveraging and braiding of funding; and 4. quality assurance and improvement resulting in the collective accountability and performance measurement needed to substantially increase the numbers of Pennsylvanians in competitive integrated employment. (Page 190)

The braiding of WIOA Title I–B funded programs with other youth–directed state and local entities allows comprehensive services to be offered to all eligible low–income populations under WIOA. Available TANF funding will continue to support WIOA year–round services and summer employment activities. (Page 49)

Additionally, we applaud OVR for its shift towards blending customized employment and supported employment services – helping providers become certified to provide customized employment services is key to ensuring the quality of customized employment services for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 144)

We remain concerned that despite efforts to anticipate staffing needs of OVR in the coming years (Page 123)

Overall the agency needs a greater staff contingency to take on the increased responsibilities under WIOA. (Page579)

Section 188/Section 188 Guide

WIOA Section 188 Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity NPRM, 29 CFR Part 38 proposes to revise federal regulations to ensure access to the workforce system by people with disabilities by bringing the regulations in line with updated disabilities civil rights law and ADA compliance recertification guidelines for the one–stop centers. (Page 528)

Response: We appreciate the comment and support the requirement under Section 188 for all PA CareerLink® centers to be physically and programmatically accessible for all job seekers, including individuals with disabilities.

  • L&I OVR and Community Health Choices (CHC) – Most consumers who currently and would receive physical disabilities services through PA Department of Human Service (DHS) Office of Long Term Living (OLTL) –with the exception of Act 150 consumers and a few other target populations (Page 533)

Describe how the one-stop delivery system (including one-stop center operators and the one-stop delivery system partners), will comply with section 188 of WIOA.  (Page 86)

DEI/Disability Resource Coordinators

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Other State Programs/Pilots that Support Competitive Integrated Employment

SE services secure employment for individuals with the most significant disabilities who would not experience an employment outcome from less intensive job placement methods. OVR has a number of changes planned for individuals receiving SE services, such as expanding Discovery and Customized Employment pilots. (Page 215)

We appreciate the comment. OVR continues to identify and develop innovative strategies and supports for individuals with disabilities such as expansion of Customized Employment and Discovery pilots while we await the release of final regulations, guidance, and technical assistance on Section 511 Limitations on Use of Subminimum Wage. (Page 579)

Financial Literacy /Economic Advancement

WIOA added five new program elements to ones originally outlined under WIA, including: financial literacy education; entrepreneurial skills training; the provision of labor market and employment information about in–demand industry sectors or occupations available in a local area; activities that help youth prepare for and transition to post–secondary education and training; and education offered concurrently with and in the same context as workforce preparation activities and training for a special occupation or occupational cluster.(Page 119)

Benefits

BSTs also have access to a plethora of labor market information that can be helpful to employers in setting wages and benefits that will attract high-quality candidates. BSTs will communicate and collaborate with other agencies of state government which may have direct liaison activities with employers and regional economic development partners to avoid business fatigue from multiple contacts and ensure coordination of services. (Page 362)

 CILs can also help those who do not qualify for OVR services. Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. (Page 389)

With over 725,000 working aged adults and 75,000 youth with disabilities, PA has an ever growing caseload of residents receiving disability related benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA). Since 2001, SSA has operated two distinct programs in every state to promote and facilitate employment and increased earnings among individuals with disabilities who are otherwise dependent on government benefits. We appreciate the comment. The commonwealth will continue to focus efforts on those with barriers to employment, including individuals with disabilities as defined in WIOA. Additionally, the Department of Human Services (DHS) agrees that people with a disability receiving DHS–funded Medicaid waiver home and community–based supports often cite as a barrier to seeking employment the concern that earning wages will make them ineligible for basic supports that enable them to live independently in the community rather than a more costly institutional setting. DHS is exploring adding benefits counseling (Work Incentives Planning Assistance) as a service that would be paid under its Medicaid HCBS waivers. (Page 391)

Those that participate in our work force has many concerns if they are forced into competitive employment, such as, the fear of losing medical benefits, loss of SSI checks, inability to work a 40 hour week or even part time, transportation issues to and from work or shift work that does not coincide with public transportation. And the fear of the world of work: failure, being unaccepted, taken advantage of, pressure of the job itself. (Page 400)

Particularly impacted by these changes are people with disabilities who face difficulty finding employment, yet do not qualify for SSI or other benefits programs. (Page 422)

Build the capacity of PA’s employment professionals to support people with the most significant disabilities and to address barriers to employment which are related to misunderstandings about the relationship between SSA benefits and working.

  • The Combined Plan should lay out specific training strategies to build the capacity of employment specialists to successfully obtain and maintain employment for people with the most significant disabilities. (Page 456)

In fact, Maryland’s WIOA Plan analyzes by region the correlation between people with disabilities and those who had Individualized Education Plans (IEPs). Regionally, the data showed that areas with a strong IEP system and more people who had IEPs in school, later had less dependence on entitlement benefits.  (Page 471)

School to Work Transition

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives,  and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 174)

 Understanding pertaining to transition from school to work and adult services. Technical assistance, agency cross–training and resource sharing will be required to assist LEAs to end utilization of sub–minimum wage employment as a model for transition planning. Discovery and customized employment as well as other innovative approaches will be utilized to assist the students with the most significant disabilities to exit secondary school with the goal of achieving competitive, integrated employment. (Page 177)

The PA SLT has recommended that the IDEA Memorandum of Understanding be revised to incorporate changes in Transition Services regulated by WIOA and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 as amended. OVR representatives meet regularly with representatives from the Pennsylvania Department of Education’s Bureau of Special Education and Bureau of Career & Technology Education to review policies, procedures, initiatives, and projects to ensure that eligible students with disabilities who are still enrolled in secondary education and youth with disabilities who are no longer engaged in secondary education are receiving the vocational rehabilitation services that they need to successfully transition from school to work and independence. (Page 81)   

Data Collection

Data collection, sharing and reporting;   (Page 190)

The current data collection system is under revision and by the end of Perkins IV, the system will reflect required data elements. The data elements will include data that allows for analysis that evidences continuous improvement at the postsecondary level. (Pages 259)

New to the data collection is 1P1 Technical Skill Attainment. The current data collection system needs to change in order to collect relevant data. Until the change occurs, the State will use grade point average. (Page 260)

In regards to graduation rate–4S1*, multiyear identification of CTE students will begin in 2007–2008 utilizing PDE‘s unified data collection system which uses a unique student identifier, entitled Pennsylvania Information Management System, (PIMS) to establish graduation rates by the 2012 school year. PDE is still ascertaining a valid collection vehicle to obtain 4S1 data. (Page 280)

 Student Graduation Rates (4S1)* – Individual student data collection will begin with the 2007–2008 school year, high school graduation rates will not be available using PASecureID information until February 2012 for the Class of 2011. (Page 284)

Any data collection or reporting that is conducted will be vetted and reviewed to ensure FERPA compliance. Under FERPA, there are exceptions to data collection when the data is to be used for program evaluation, which these data collections would fall under. Therefore the commonwealth believes that the programs will be able to function without violating the provisions of FERPA. (Page 417)

Goal 2 focuses on developing a pipeline of workers to meet industry needs and Goal 4 speaks to engaging employers and being responsive to their needs.

  • Data Collection ROI & Market Penetration (p. 32 table): While we recognize the importance to protecting data, as a local partner the WDB will need to utilize the information to make local decisions that are not necessarily interesting to the commonwealth.  (Page 424)
Small business/Entrepreneurship

No disability specific information found regarding this element.

Career Pathways

Career pathways must be diverse with multiple entry and exit points allowing individuals of varying abilities, including low–skilled adults and youth with multiple barriers to employment, to have realistic access to pathways.

Comment: The application of multiple entry points within career pathways is a very positive approach that we can operationalize for varying individual employment plans. Response: We appreciate the comment in support of our approach.

  • The commonwealth will mainstream job seekers with barriers to employment to the maximum extent possible by offering realistic entry points into career pathways and by ensuring necessary supportive services are in place and coordinated across agencies, so that those individuals with the most significant barriers to employment are successful in accessing and navigating career pathways. (Page 460)

The commonwealth recognizes the need to have a variety of service providers working together to ensure that individuals with barriers to employment receive the services they need to benefit from career pathways opportunities. (Page 460)

We strongly support this. We urge the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to retain the above provisions in the final state plan, with the clarifying edits suggested by CLS and CJP in their more detailed comments.

Response: We appreciate the comments in support of the State Plan, including: your recognition of the important role our adult basic education services provide in career pathways for low income adults; your comment in support of ensuring that career pathways are accessible to individuals with basic skills needs; your comments in support of the Priority of Service and Career Pathways provisions in the State Plan; and your comment in support of the transitional jobs requirements in the State Plan. Dr. Madeline Seltzer, Manor College, offered the following comment: I am against this combined plan at this time. Parts of the plan are not clear. I would like the Perkins Career and Technical Education parts to be reworked. In addition, I would like implementation to be postponed until Perkins 5 comes up for approval. (Page 489)

Employment Networks

This new plan continues with the same concept when Careerlinks and other partners are missing two valuable resources that can help a person with a disability: Centers for Independent Living (CIL), and also Employment Networks. CILs offer a plethora of learning opportunities for people with disabilities. They offer core services (information and referral, advocacy, peer counseling, and independent living skills training). Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work Program can also help. Employment Networks were created to give people with disabilities on Social Security benefits more options. Many Employment Networks assist individuals who don’t qualify for OVR services. There are many individuals with disabilities who do not meet the specifications for Order of Selection. (Page 389)

Response: We appreciate the comment in support of the plan and acknowledge the valuable resources available for individuals with a disability from partners such as Centers for Independent Living (CILs) and Employment Networks. (Page 389)

Policies and Initiatives

Displaying 1 - 10 of 47

Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver - 07/01/2017

“The Pennsylvania Consolidated Waiver is designed to help individuals with an intellectual disability, autism or developmental disability to live more independently in their homes and communities and to provide a variety of services that promote community living, including self-directed service models and traditional, agency-based service models.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Pennsylvania’s Home and Community-Based Settings CMS Final Rule Statewide Transition Plan (Spring 2016) - 03/31/2016

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a new rule (CMS rule) that states must follow to review and evaluate settings in which home and community-based services (HCBS) are provided, which include residential and nonresidential settings. The CMS rule became effective on March 17, 2014 and requires states to demonstrate compliance. To show compliance, states must submit a statewide transition plan (STP) and waiver specific transition plans.   CMS is moving away from defining home and community-based settings by “what they are not,” and toward defining them by the nature and quality of participants’ experiences. The home and community-based setting provisions in this final rule established a more outcome-oriented definition of home and community-based settings, as opposed to one based solely on a setting’s location, geography, or physical characteristics.    Pennsylvania submitted a statewide transition plan to CMS on April 1, 2015, following input from a public comment process. The Department received a letter from CMS on September 16, 2015, outlining questions and suggested changes for the statewide transition plan. The Department will submit a revised STP to CMS in March 2016.  
Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania's Labor & Industry Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Transition Services Contracts - 02/26/2016

"The Department of Labor & Industry's Office of Vocational Rehabilitation today announced eight recipients of Transition Services contracts totaling $1.2 million.   Contracts are awarded to develop new and expanded innovative strategies and programs to provide transition services, including pre-employment transition services, for high school students with disabilities."    "Labor & Industry is proud to facilitate the transition from education to job-readiness with this additional funding that will go a long way in ensuring that students with disabilities receive services at the appropriate time in their lives," L&I Secretary Kathy Manderino said. "This money will help young people with disabilities transition from high school to secondary education or meaningful employment smoothly and with greater success."   "The recipients will receive funding in one of two service types: The first, Transition Planning and Services for Students with Disabilities, will serve 15 high school students with disabilities per each awarded contract during the 2016 school year and additional months of post-graduation services. The ultimate goal of the project is to place a minimum of seven OVR customers who have the most significant disabilities in competitive integrated employment.”   
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
Displaying 1 - 4 of 4

Pennsylvania SB 879 (ABLE legislation) - 09/16/2015

“AN ACT Providing for the establishment of a savings program by the Treasury Department to encourage savings accounts for individuals with disabilities; establishing the Pennsylvania ABLE Savings Program and the ABLE Savings Program Fund; and imposing duties on the Treasury Department.”

Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Asset Development / Financial Capability

House Bill 400: Work Experience for High School Student disability act - 05/29/2015

The HB400 emphasizes on competitive integrated employment. It requires the office of vocational rehabilitation to facilitate the process of job and career development for the purpose of successful transition of high-school students with disability into workforce. In collaboration with local education agencies and other relevant public agencies, OVR shall: • Provide information for the development of individual education plans for high school students with disabilities and ensure that job skill training is included in such plans when appropriate. • When possible, attend individual education plan meetings in person or by alternative means (i.e. video conference, conference calls) when invited by local education agencies. • An OVR representative must attend at least one meeting in each of the last two years prior to the anticipated graduation of a disabled high school student. • Arrange for, monitor, and support the placement of high school students with disabilities in lawful internships, on-the-job training, and full-time or part-time work at competitive wages in integrated settings with public/private sector employers. Provide professional guidance relative to job coaching services. • Provide counseling on opportunities for enrollment in comprehensive transition or postsecondary educational programs. • Publish the following information within 45 days after each calendar quarter: o The number of individualized education meetings attended by OVR staff. o The number of individual education plans that include new or significantly modified goals and specific steps toward the attainment of competitive integrated employment. o The number of job referrals made to employers on behalf of students with disabilities while still in high school. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time and summer jobs as a result of referrals made by OVR staff. o The number of high school students with disabilities working in part-time or summer jobs who are receiving job coaching services. o The number of high school students with disabilities who enter competitive integrated employment within 3 months of their graduation

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition

Pennsylvania Senate Bill 271 - 01/20/2015

“An Act relating to the delivery of services and programs to persons with disabilities; conferring powers and duties on the Office of the Governor; establishing the Office for People with Disabilities and Advisory Committee for People with Disabilities; and providing for the powers and duties of the office and advisory committee and for funding of the office.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities (§ 6.301)

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:     (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.       (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.       (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.       (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 3 of 3

Executive order 2016-04: Equal employment opportunity - 04/07/2016

WHEREAS, this Administration is committed to strengthening and developing equal employment opportunity programs in the Commonwealth. NOW, THEREFORE, I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do hereby order and direct as follows: 1. Prohibition of Discrimination and Affirmation of Equal Employment Opportunity. a. No agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall discriminate against any employee or applicant for employment on the basis of race, color, religious creed, ancestry, union membership, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability. b. Each agency under the Governor’s jurisdiction shall ensure fair and equal employment opportunities exist at every level of government…

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Employer Engagement

Establishing "Employment First” Policy and Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability - 03/10/2016

“….I, Tom Wolf, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and other laws, do hereby order and direct as follows:   1.  “Employment First” is the policy of all Commonwealth executive branch agencies under the jurisdiction of the Governor.  This policy reflects the Commonwealth’s goal of making the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania a model state when it comes to creating a climate hospitable to workers with a disability. a.  The definition of Employment First is that competitive integrated employment is the first consideration and preferred outcome of publicly-funded education, training, employment and related services, and long-term supports and services for working-age Pennsylvanians with a disability, as “disability” is defined in each agency’s governing statutes and rules. b.  The definition of competitive integrated employment for purposes of this Executive Order is the definition contained in the WIOA, which is work performed on a full or part-time basis (including self-employment) for which a person is: (1)   Compensated at not less than federal minimum wage requirements or State or local minimum wage law (whichever is higher) and not less than the customary rate paid by the employer for the same or similar work performed by people without a disability;…”  
Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania Governor’s Cabinet for People with Disabilities

“The responsibilities of the Cabinet are as follows:

   (1)  Make recommendations to the Governor on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that aid people with disabilities in this Commonwealth.

   (2)  Serve as the Governor’s liaison to people with disabilities on policies, procedures, regulations and legislation that affect people with disabilities to ensure that State government is accessible, accountable and responsive to people with disabilities.

   (3)  Serve as a resource to all departments, commissions and agencies under the Governor’s jurisdiction to ensure that these government entities are cognizant of the needs of people with disabilities and that their respective services and programs are accessible to those individuals.

   (4)  Work with the Administration and agencies to monitor the hiring, retention and promotion practices of the Commonwealth relating to the employment of people with disabilities to ensure that there are no discriminatory practices within this Commonwealth.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
Displaying 1 - 10 of 17

Pennsylvania Employment First Executive Order Summary - 03/01/2017

“On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, “Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability.”…

Per the requirements of the executive order, a plan was developed and approved by the Governor in September 2016. Per Priority “Implement, monitor, and provide accountability” under the Executive Order Recommendations, this document serves as the progress report that is required to be delivered to the Governor’s Secretary for Policy and Planning within six months of Governor’s approval of the recommendations. This document lists accomplishments that have occurred, or are in the process of occurring, as a result of the goals and priorities set forth in the executive order.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Executive Order 2016-03 Recommendations: Establishing an ‘Employment First’ Policy - 09/15/2016

“Pennsylvanians with a disability are valued members of society and have demonstrated that they are productive, contributing members of the workforce. There is dignity in work, and when people with a disability hold jobs and earn competitive wages they can achieve greater independence and inclusion in the community. However, far too many Pennsylvanians with a disability are not working. Many programs supported with public dollars have a great opportunity to promote and support work in which people with disabilities earn competitive wages and are integrated with people without disabilities.

On March 10, 2016, Governor Tom Wolf signed Executive Order 2016-03, entitled ‘Establishing ‘Employment First’ Policy and Increasing Competitive-Integrated Employment for Pennsylvanians with a Disability…’ The executive order directed the departments of Labor and Industry, Human Services, and Education to obtain stakeholder and business input and work with other agencies as appropriate to develop a plan within 120 days to implement the executive order. The order defines standards against which progress will be measured.”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Employer Engagement
  • 14(c)/Income Security
  • Segregated Day & Employment Services
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships
  • Data Sharing

Pennsylvania WIOA State Plan July 1, 2016-June 30, 2020 (submitted 3/2016) - 12/28/2015

“An effective workforce development system will be built on a foundation of alignment, innovation, employer engagement, accountability structures and improved data. Pennsylvania will look beyond WIOA to set broad goals for a comprehensive workforce development system that increases the number of “jobs that pay,” expands the number of “schools that teach” the skills necessary to succeed in college and careers, and is a model of “government that works.” We will do this by designing and implementing a workforce development system that addresses three core challenges facing the workforce system..”

Systems
  • Department of Workforce Development
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Competitive Employment for Individuals with an Intellectual Disability - 05/22/2015

“The Department of Human Services (DHS)’ proposed FY 2015-2016 budget includes $500,000 to provide additional supports to promote competitive employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual disability. This initiative is a collaborative effort between DHS’ Office of Developmental Programs (ODP), the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), and various disability advocacy groups…   Pending the approved budget, this joint ODP-OVR initiative will enable OVR to build staff capacity with intellectual disability expertise, and allow existing vocational rehabilitation counselors to carry smaller, more specialized caseloads for this population. This initiative will also allow for the possibility of expanded training and job-readiness programs, paid work experience for high school students with an intellectual disability, person-centered and customized employment demonstration projects, and increased outreach to parents and families.”  
Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Other
Topics
  • Customized Employment
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Pennsylvania Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Settings Transition Plan - 04/02/2015

“Pennsylvania will use its statewide transition plan as a way to determine its compliance with CMS’s rule on HCBS. Pennsylvania will determine the current level of what state actions are needed for compliance. This will include a review of current licensing requirements, policies, regulations, rules, standards and statutes.”

Systems
  • Medicaid Agencies
  • Other
Topics
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

Governor Announces: Pennsylvania Accepted as an Employment First State - 12/18/2014

“The Corbett administration announced that Pennsylvania has been selected to participate in the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy's Employment First State Leadership Mentoring Program. Employment First is a concept to facilitate the full inclusion of people with the most significant disabilities in the workplace and community in typical workplace settings where the majority of workers are not people with disabilities.  The mentoring program will help the departments of Human Services (DHS), Education and Labor & Industry (L&I) collaborate to align policies and develop a plan to increase school-to-work opportunities for students with disabilities.”

Systems
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Department of Workforce Development
  • Department of Education
  • Other
Topics
  • School-to-Work Transition
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Provider Transformation

PA State Integrated Workforce Plan for WIA and Wagner-Peyser Act Programs (July 1, 2012 - June 30, 2017) - 07/01/2012

“As a PA CareerLink® partner, OVR helps identify and serve eligible persons with disability-related barriers to employment. Services are determined on a case-by-case basis. OVR services are provided at no cost to the individual. Vocational Rehabilitation Counselors provide a vocational evaluation to develop an Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) outlining vocational objectives, services, providers and responsibilities of the participant.”

“To support its long-term strategy of improving services, OVR fosters interagency collaboration with all federal and state disability employment agencies and organizations that serve individuals with disabilities. In addition, OVR works with stakeholder groups such as the Pennsylvania Rehabilitation Council, the Statewide Independent Living Council and the Pennsylvania Initiative on Assistive Technology to supplement services…”

“Promoting the Hiring of Persons with Disabilities: OVR engages in a strategic public outreach campaign to make employers aware of the benefits of hiring individuals with disabilities and offers interested employers no-cost business solutions…”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Mental Health
  • Other
Topics
  • Mental Health
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)
  • Employer Engagement
  • Cross-Agency Collaboration / Partnerships

OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

“DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”    “DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”  
Systems
  • Other
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR (ICFs/MR) and Employment Policy - 04/05/2006

 “DPW supports the right of individuals in State and Non-State ICFs/MR to choose to be employed and to receive habilitation services through the ICF/MR program as needed to promote employment outcomes. Employment is defined in this bulletin as a part or full-time job in the general community, including self-employment, that compensates the individual at the prevailing wage or salary, which is at least minimum wage. While not defined as employment, individuals in ICFs/MR may participate in vocational and job training services that prepare them for employment in the community.”

“DPW permits ICFs/MR to provide habilitation services to reach an employment outcome as part of active treatment in accordance with the individual’s plan of care. While not everyone in an ICF/MR may choose or be able to work in the community at this time, ICFs/MR are encouraged and authorized to support employment outcomes through habilitation as part of active treatment services, commensurate with each individual’s goals, abilities and needs.”

Systems
  • Department of Rehabilitation Services
  • Department of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
Topics
  • Self-Employment
  • Home and Community Based Services (HCBS)

Pennsylvania OMR Policy on Employment (2005) - 12/20/2005

“Statement of Policy as per 55 Pa Code §6000.171 states that persons with [Mental Retardation] MR who are of legal working age should have access to employment and the training necessary to sustain employment.

Access to employment applies regardless of a person’s living arrangement or type of service funding. [Office of Mental Retardation] OMR’s policy includes persons receiving base funded services and those enrolled in the Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waivers. This also applies to people in State and Non-State ICFs/MR.”

“OMR defines employment as a job in the community that pays at least minimum wage, where the worker has the opportunity to interact with individuals without a disability and has access to employee benefits when available. Employment can be part or fu