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  • Program-Specific Requirements for Vocational Rehabilitation (Combined or General)

    The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Services Portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan [13] must include the following descriptions and estimates, as required by section 101(a) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended by title IV of WIOA:


    [13] Sec. 102(b)(2)(D)(iii) of WIOA

    • o. State's Strategies

      Describe the required strategies and how the agency will use these strategies to achieve its goals and priorities, support innovation and expansion activities, and overcome any barriers to accessing the VR and the Supported Employment programs (See sections 101(a)(15)(D) and (18)(B) of the Rehabilitation Act and section 427 of the General Education Provisions Act (GEPA)):

o. 5. If applicable, plans for establishing, developing, or improving community rehabilitation programs within the State

Current Narrative:

BRS entered into Establishment Project contracts with community rehabilitation programs (CRPs) in April, 2017 to increase capacity to carry out increased expectations under the current employment services funding structure, which was implemented in 2015.  A key focus of these projects is improved provision of supported employment services to individuals with the most significant disabilities, and to further increase training and skills of direct services staff, with the overall goal of improving employment outcomes. These projects will continue through March, 2021. Additional metrics have been included in contracts with these providers, including one year employment retention.  Projects were initiated based on feedback on needed improvements to CRPs, to ensure capacity to serve VR participants under the new employment service model, particularly those with the most significant disabilities.

VR will also evaluate the need for establishment projects to enhance capacity to serve specific target populations, including individuals with mental health disabilities and individuals transitioning from sub-minimum wage employment to competitive, integrated employment, which were identified as underserved populations in the VR comprehensive statewide needs assessment completed in 2019. If VR determines that establishment projects are necessary and appropriate, VR will work closely with RSA to outline project requirements and ensure that establishment projects comply with federal requirements.