- III. Operational Planning Elements
The Unified or Combined State Plan must include an Operational Planning Elements section that supports the State’s strategy and the system-wide vision described in Section II(c) above. Unless otherwise noted, all Operational Planning Elements apply to Combined State Plan partner programs included in the plan as well as to core programs. This section must include—
- b. State Operating Systems and Policies
The Unified or Combined State Plan must include a description of the State operating systems and policies that will support the implementation of the State strategy described in section II Strategic Elements. This includes—
- b. State Operating Systems and Policies
III. b. 8. Addressing the Accessibility of the One-Stop Delivery System for Individuals with Disabilities
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 (if applicable) and applicable provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (42 U.S.C. 12101 et seq.) with regard to the physical and programmatic accessibility of facilities, programs, services, technology, and materials for individuals with disabilities. This also must include a description of compliance through providing staff training and support for addressing the needs of individuals with disabilities. Describe the State’s one-stop center certification policy, particularly the accessibility criteria.
In compliance with WIOA Section 188 and 29 CFR Part 38 [Nondiscrimination and Equal Opportunity Provisions of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act], it is the policy of the State of Alabama One-Stop Delivery System (Career Centers) that no person shall be excluded from participation in, denied the benefits of, subjected to discrimination under, or denied employment in the administration of or in connection with any WIOA Title I-funded program or activity based on that person’s race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions, sex stereotyping, transgender status, and gender identity), national origin (including limited English proficiency), age, disability, political affiliation or belief, and for beneficiaries, citizenship or participation in a WIOA Title I-funded program or activity.
WIOA recipients must not discriminate in deciding who will be admitted, or have access, to any WIOA Title I-financially assisted program or activity; providing opportunities in, or treating any person with regard to, such a program or activity; or making employment decisions in the administration of, or in connection with, such a program or activity.
WIOA recipients shall not discharge, intimidate, retaliate against, threaten, coerce or discriminate against any person who has filed a complaint alleging a violation of WIOA Section 188 or 29 CFR Part 38; opposed a discriminatory or prohibited practice; assisted or participated in any manner in an investigation, review, hearing or any other activity related to the administration of WIOA nondiscrimination and equal opportunity provisions, the exercise of authority or privilege under those provisions, or otherwise exercised any rights and privileges under the provisions.
Governor Kay Ivey has designated a State-level WIOA Equal Opportunity (EO) Officer and other WIOA recipients, except small recipients and service providers, have been instructed to designate Equal Opportunity (EO) Officers, as appropriate.
Notice and Communication
Registrants, applicants, eligible applicants/registrants, participants, applicants for employment, employees, unions and other professional organizations that hold collective bargaining or professional agreements with ADOL, WIOA sub-recipients, and members of the public, including those with impaired vision or hearing and those with limited English proficiency are provided a notice of nondiscrimination. The nondiscrimination policy/notice is provided through an Equal Opportunity is the Law Poster(English and Spanish versions)required to be displayed prominently in all career centers and WIOA recipients’ facilities, and includes the policy, complaint filing instructions, telephone numbers for the Alabama Relay Center and TTY, as well as contact information for EO Officers. An assurance of nondiscrimination is included in local workforce development area and subrecipient contract/agreement packages. The EO notice is posted on The Alabama Department of Labor (ADOL) website and the WIOA) websites.
Publications, broadcasts, and other one-stop system communications to staff, clients, or the public at large will continue to include the required taglines “equal opportunity employer/program” and “auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities” and Alabama Relay Center and/or TDD/TTY telephone numbers.
At the time of initial registration for Wagner-Peyser services and activities, all ES applicants, WIOA applicants, eligible applicants, and participants are given the notice of nondiscrimination. For those ES registrants who move on to WIOA or other services and activities, the EO notice is provided again, usually during orientation. A copy of the notice is maintained in participants’ files. Career center staff read or play a recorded version of the EO notice to those applicants, registrants and participants who are visually impaired and document the provision of the alternate format. The State is investigating and preparing to update methods of providing the EO notice in alternate formats (e.g., Braille, electronic reader, etc).
Accessibility and Communication with Individuals with Disabilities
In FY 2016, Alabama Career Centers (including affiliate centers) were reviewed for physical and programmatic accessibility of facilities, services, technology and materials by a team of individuals with disabilities and staff from the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services. The review team used a survey checklist developed under WIOA Section 188. The surveys measured compliance with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements. This re-survey was conducted by a team of persons with disabilities and others that includes assistive technology experts on deaf and blind needs. All of these surveys measure physical access from parking to entrances to where services are provided as well as accessibility of bathrooms, telephones, tables, and water fountains. Policies were evaluated to ensure that they do not exclude individuals with disabilities. Computers were evaluated to ensure access for those with disabilities affecting hearing, vision, and manual dexterity. The reviews and final report were completed in 2018.
Comprehensive and total staff training is yet to be developed and implemented, in all career centers, but has been done in seven (7) comprehensive centers that were equipped with Assistive technology from Disability Employment Initiative (DEI) funding. Plans for upgrading assistive technology and training in all the career centers is on-going and will be implemented as soon as possible to ensure that programs and activities are fully accessible to individuals with disabilities and that staff have the knowledge, sensitivity, and awareness to address the needs of individuals with disabilities. Career Centers below have received training on assistive technology:
|Jasper||Thursday, November 14, 2019|
|Anniston||Friday, December 6, 2019|
|Cullman||Wednesday, December 18, 2019|
|Gadsden||Wednesday, January 8, 2020|
|Alabaster||Wednesday, January 22, 2020|
|Opelika||Wednesday, February 5, 2020|
|Talladega||Wednesday, February 19, 2020|
Training covered the following:
- Kensington expert track ball
- Height adjustable work station
- Windows speech recognition software
- Noise cancelling headphones (if the center had them)
- NVDA screen reader
- Windows Magnifier
- EZ Eyes Large Print Keyboard
- DaVinci HD OCR Enhanced Vision
- UBI DUO
Alabama’s One-Stop Certification Process includes a review of programmatic and physical accessibility as required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the review/certification team includes partners from the Rehabilitation Act Title IV Agency – Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services.