Legislation sponsored by Senator Anthony M. Bucco that would help ensure state residents with disabilities have adequate access to employment opportunities as required by the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) passed the Senate today.
The bill, S-995, would establish a process for assessing the employment opportunities available to individuals with disabilities provided by community rehabilitation programs and businesses.
“The state has an obligation to ensure that those with disabilities can pursue jobs that meet their interests and abilities in the workplace,” said Bucco (R-25). “The intent here is to verify that these workers have options to select accommodations that suit their expectations and qualifications.”
The bill would require the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services in the Department of Labor and Workforce Development and the Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired in the Department of Human Services to conduct a case-by-case assessment of employment offered to individuals with disabilities to determine if the opportunity meets the criteria for “competitive integrated employment” under the federal WIOA.
“The state has a duty to confirm whether employers are acting responsibly and meeting the federal requirements for integrated employment,” said Bucco. “We don’t want vulnerable workers being pressured into unacceptable assignments, and this legislation establishes a process for making these critical evaluations.”
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