October 11, 2002
News Media Contact
DWD ANNOUNCES GRANT TO BETTER COORDINATE
SERVICES FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
MADISON – Department of
Workforce Development Secretary Jennifer Alexander announced today the state
will receive $103,300 to better coordinate employment and supportive
services for people with disabilities. The effort is designed to integrate
more people with disabilities into Wisconsin’s workforce and into their
communities, rather than in institutional settings. The project is being
called the "Wisconsin WorkFORCE Collaboration Initiative."
"Despite a national
economic downturn, employers are still seeking highly-skilled workers to
fill many job openings across the state. We have thousands of people with
disabilities who would like to go to work, but have not been able to access
the services they need to do so. This grant will help us strengthen the link
between critical supportive and employment services for people with
disabilities," said Secretary Alexander.
The funding will provide a
coordinator at the State Independent Living Council (SILC), who will conduct
intensive research in the area of employment for people with disabilities.
It will include supports available in the community, best practices and an
analysis on where the gaps exist. The research will be aimed at identifying
bureaucratic barriers blocking access to employment services, or lack of
employment services, for people with disabilities.
After the research is
completed and barriers are identified, the strategy will be three-tiered:
A plan for addressing the
barriers will be created
The current system will be
modified according to the plan, better coordinating and integrating all
services available for people with disabilities
The changes will be evaluated
to determine if they are making a difference in people’s lives
The project will build upon
collaboration efforts already underway between the DWD and Health and Family
Services. DWD will administer this grant.
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