- Program-Specific Requirements for Vocational Rehabilitation (Combined or General)
The Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Services Portion of the Unified or Combined State Plan  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:
 Sec. 102(b)(2)(D)(iii) of WIOA
j. 1. A. With the most significant disabilities, including their need for supported employment services;
Please see https://www.in.gov/fssa/ddrs/2636.htm for the entire Indiana Vocational Rehabilitation Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment, June 2019.
The Rehabilitation Act, as amended by the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) requires Vocational Rehabilitation state agencies to conduct a comprehensive statewide needs assessment every three years. The needs assessment includes review of data on the general population in Indiana as well as data on individuals being served in the Indiana VR program. A survey is also conducted to gather input from individuals with disabilities and their families, stakeholders, employers, VR staff and others regarding the needs of individuals with disabilities in Indiana, particularly as they pertain to employment and transition services. Feedback is also obtained on an ongoing basis through the Commission on Rehabilitation Services, regular VR staff meetings, and a variety of workgroups with stakeholders. The comprehensive statewide needs assessment established VR program priorities for the next three years, fiscal year 2020-2022.
Indiana’s 2020 comprehensive statewide needs assessment reflects a synthesis of quantitative and qualitative data addressing the state’s overall vocational rehabilitation needs.
|Priority Category 1: Most Significant Disability||8,052||42.6%||8,528||44.8%||9,695||61.6%|
|Priority Category 2: Significant Disability||9,185||48.6%||8,523||44.8%||5,233||33.2%|
|Priority Category 3: All Other VR Eligible Individuals||1,655||8.8%||1,974||10.4%||814||5.2%|
The percentage of individuals (most significant disability) served in priority category one has increased significantly, representing 61.6% of total individuals served in FFY2018 compared to 42.6% in FFY2016.
The survey presented a few questions about the needs of individuals with the most significant disabilities and who might need supported employment to keep a job:
- Do you know that VR can provide supported employment services for up to 24 months?
- Most individuals, 68%, indicated that they are aware of supported employment services.
- Do you know how to get supported employment services?
- Of those responding that they are aware of supported employment services, 87% were also aware of how to obtain those services.
- What barriers exist in serving individuals through supported employment?
- The primary response was the willingness of employers to hire individuals needing significant support (22%). Other high-ranking responses were transportation (14%), not enough employment specialists or job coaches (12%), expectations of employers about individuals with disabilities working (11%), and employment personnel being skilled to be able to address the employment needs (10%). Other responses were between 5% and 8%.
Establishment project Community Rehabilitation Program (CRP) contractors, in PY16, the reported number of individuals in supported employment was 774, a statewide average of 19 per Establishment project CRP This number significantly increased to 2,028 in PY17 for those same providers, resulting in a statewide average of 51 per Establishment project CRP, with a 162% increase. In PY18, the reported number of individuals in SE was 2,671, a statewide average of 67 per Establishment project provider, which resulted in an additional 32% increase. There were approximately 40 providers reporting data through the Establishment project in 2016-2018.
Also for Establishment project CRP contractors, in PY16, the reported number of average hours spent on supported employment services or on-the-job supports short term was 658, resulting in a statewide average of 16 hours for these providers. In PY17, this number increased to 710, a statewide average of 18 hours per Establishment project provider, resulting in an 8% increase. In PY18, the reported average number of hours spent on supported employment services or on-the-job supports short term was 923, a statewide average of 23 hours per Establishment project provider, resulting in a 30% increase.
As supported employment was underutilized by CRPs in prior years, the average number of hours reported for existing VR participants, as well as new VR participants with the most significant disabilities from when the state entered into an order of selection, is a significant accomplishment. Through the establishment project, it is clear that CRPs are devoting more time with supported employment services in order to assist VR participants with achieving stabilization and successful job retention.