Human RightsPublic Policy and Legislation
NOTE: The following information was received from other organizations and is shared here simply to promote awareness and discourse of issues,opportunities, and perspectives relevant to ARCA members. Posting of this information does not in itself imply ARCA’s support or endorsement of the content.
CONSORTIUM FOR CITIZENS WITH DISABILITIES
Per the February 12, 2015 letter to President Obama written by the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), the consortium is concerned about policy being drafted in regard to employer-based wellness programs covered under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The CCD are particularly concerned about language used by a Whitehouse Spokesperson that may appear to minimize ADA privacy protections for employees with disabilities in regard to their disclosure of medical information. Upholding ADA protections while the CCD for wellness programs recommends promoting health outcomes covered under the ACA. Policy development for this issue should be followed to ensure employees with disabilities maintain or increase their worker rights and full inclusion into the labor force.
BREAKING DOWN BARRIERS TO EMPLOYMENT
The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services will implement new strategies to break down barriers to employment for people with disabilities. Michael Yudin, Assistant Secretary of the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, and Johan Uvin, Acting Assistant Secretary of the Office of Career, Technical and Adult Education, recommend essential components of a career pathways approach should include the following:
- Alignment of secondary and post-secondary education with workforce development systems and human services.
- A rigorous, sequential, connected, and efficient curriculum that bridges courses to connect basic education and skills training while integrating education and training.
- Multiple entry and exit points.
- Comprehensive support services, including career counseling, childcare and transportation.
- Financial supports or flexibility to accommodate the demands of the labor market in order to allow individuals to meet their ongoing financial needs and obligations.
- Specific focus on local workforce needs aligned with the skill needs of targeted industry sectors important to local, regional or state economies, and reflective of the active engagement of employers.
The Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services expect to award $3.5 million to State VR agencies to develop and implement a collaborative model project demonstrating promising practices and strategies in the use of career pathways to improve the skills of individuals with disabilities, including youth with disabilities, and help them attain the credentials to succeed in modern economy.