Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act

In July President Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), which will work training programs for individuals with and without disabilities. There are important changes to work training for individuals with disabilities, including: • Each state’s vocational rehabilitation agency (Department of Rehabilitation in California), will spend at least 15% of its budget on pre-employment transition services for individuals getting ready to leave the school system.
• VR agencies can help people to pursue customized employment “based on an individualized determination of the strengths, needs, and interests of the individual.” This provides a lot more flexibility.
• Group supported employment paying less than workers without disabilities receive will be available only on a short-term basis.
• As of July 22, 2016 the use of 14(c) subminimum wage certificates for individuals under the age of 24 will be limited (click the link for the specific legislative language on this).
• Community employment agencies known as “American Job Centers” must make sure that their sites and their programs are accessible for people with disabilities.
The Association for People Supporting Employment First (APSE) wrote a summary of the bill that can be accessed by clicking here. Also, more information and future updates can be found at http://www.doleta.gov/wioa/.

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