PCPID Releases Report on Direct Support Workforce | Administration for Community Living

February 14, 2018 The President’s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities (PCPID) has released its 2017 report, America’s Direct Support Workforce Crisis: Effects on People with Intellectual Disabilities, Families, Communities and the U.S. Economy.

Source: PCPID Releases Report on Direct Support Workforce | ACL Administration for Community Living

Direct support professionals (DSPs) provide services and supports that empower people with intellectual disabilities to live in the community.

In the report, PCPID notes that DSPs promote participation in the U.S. economy “by helping people with an (intellectual disability) get jobs and by enabling family members to work.”  The report describes the current state of the DSP workforce as a “crisis,” noting that the average DSP wage is $10.72, most work two or three jobs, and the average annual DSP turnover rate is 45%.

The report also explores:

  • How these issues affect individuals, families, and human services systems.
  • The factors that contribute to these issues
  • Promising practices to strengthen the direct support workforce

PCPID serves in an advisory capacity to the President of the United States and the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) promoting policies and initiatives that support independence and lifelong inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities in their respective communities. The committee includes representatives from several federal agencies and 13 citizen members.

Read the full report (PDF) or a plain-language version (PDF).

Project SEARCH and HealthMatters Program 2017-2018 Employment, Health, and Wellness Webinar Series

  1. Better Health by Health Education & Sustained Employment September 28st, 2017
  2. Promoting Health and Leadership in Project SEARCH® Programs October, 12th, 2017
  3. Integrating Technology to Increase Student Interns’ Health, Fitness, and Personal Responsibilities October, 26th, 2017
  4. Using the Health Matters Curriculum with the Project SEARCH® Program Model January, 18st, 2018
  5. Mindfulness: Strategies for Building Success and Wellness in the 21st Century Workforce February, 15th, 2018



  • There is no cost for these webinars.
  • CEUs are not offered for these webinars.
  • For disability accommodations email Jasmina Sisirak ([email protected]) at least 10 days before the webinars.

The webinars are hosted by the HealthMatters ProgramTM in partnership with Project SEARCH® and funded by The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Developmental Disabilities and Health (RRTCDD). The RRTCDD is funded through United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living (ACL), National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), Grant # 90RT5020-01-00, and a grant from the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council.

Big Data and the Americans with Disabilities Act

Date Written: 2017


While big data offers society many potential benefits, it also comes with serious risks. This Essay focuses on the concern that big data will lead to increased employment discrimination. It develops the novel argument that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) should be amended in response to the big data phenomenon in order to protect individuals who are perceived as likely to develop physical or mental impairments in the future. Employers can obtain medical data about employees not only through the traditional means of medical examinations and inquiries, but also through the non-traditional mechanisms of social media, wellness programs, and data brokers. Information about workers’ habits, behaviors, or attributes that is derived from big data can be used to create profiles of undesirable employees. It can also be used to exclude healthy and qualified individuals whom employers regard as vulnerable to future medical problems. The ADA, which now protects only individuals with current or past disabilities and those who are perceived as having existing impairments, can no longer ignore the discrimination threats posed by predictive health data. The Essay analyzes these risks and propose a detailed statutory response to them.

Download Paper

Hoffman, Sharona, Big Data and the Americans with Disabilities Act (2017). 68 Hastings Law Journal 777 (2017); Case Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2016-33. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2841431

 [email protected] and Return2Work

[email protected]/R2W Research & State Demonstration Projects

Source: U.S. Department of Labor — ODEP – Office of Disability Employment Policy

Millions of American workers leave the workforce each year after experiencing an injury or illness.1 Hundreds of thousands of these workers go on to receive State or Federal disability benefits.2 Keeping even some of these workers in the workforce would help them stay productive while also reducing their dependence on disability programs.

  • Four million nonfatal work-related injuries and illnesses occur annually.3
  • Productivity losses linked to absenteeism cost employers $225.8 billion, or $1,685 per employee.4
  • Lost productivity from workplace injuries and illnesses costs companies $60 billion each year.5
  • Businesses spend $170 billion a year on costs associated with occupational illnesses and injuries.6
  • In 2013, off-the-job injuries resulted in about 240 million days of lost production time — a number that will grow to 525 million days of future lost production time.7

Many injured workers could remain in their jobs or the workforce if they received timely, effective help. Early return to work (RTW) programs succeed by returning injured workers to productivity as soon as medically possible during their recovery process. While disability cash and health benefits are an essential protection for workers with incapacitating long-term and permanent disabilities, they should not be the default path for those with disabilities if viable options for full and partial RTW exist. By keeping these workers engaged in gainful employment as tax-paying members of the community, fewer individuals will need to apply for or receive disability benefits.

Recognizing the importance of giving workers with disabilities economically sustainable alternatives to Federal disability benefits, the President’s 2018 proposed budget supports early intervention demonstrations to test promising Stay at Work/Return at Work (SAW/RTW) strategies. ODEP and the Social Security Administration, in partnership with other federal agencies, are currently developing the model and structure for the grant program and related evaluation and hope to launch the grant competition shortly after Fiscal Year 2018 funding is available.


1 Bardos, Maura, Hannah Burak, and Yonatan Ben-Shalom. “Assessing the Costs and Benefits of Return-to-Work Programs.” Final report submitted to the U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy. Washington, DC: Mathematica Policy Research, March 2015.
2 Social Security Administration, “Annual Statistical Report on the Social Security Disability Insurance Program, 2015.” SSA Publication No. 13-11826. Washington, DC: Social Security Administration, October 2016.
3 U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 2012, “Injury and Illness Prevention Programs White Paper.” Available online athttps://www.osha.gov/dsg/InjuryIllnessPreventionProgramsWhitePaper.html.
4 Stewart, W.F., Ricci, J.A., Chee, E., and Morganstein, D. 2003. “Lost Productive Work Time Costs from Health Conditions in the United States: Results from the American Productivity Audit.” Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 45(12): 1234-1246.
5 U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Office of Safety and Health Administration. Available online athttps://www.osha.gov/Publications/safety-health-addvalue.html.
6 Ibid.
7 National Safety Council. 2015, “National Safety Council Injury Facts 2015 Edition.” Available online athttp://www.nsc.org/Membership%20Site%20Document%20Library/2015%20Injury%20Facts/NSC_InjuryFacts2015Ed.pdf.

DSP Crisis is Profound: New Report on the Impact of Quality Services for People with IDD

ANCOR Announces the Release of Its Workforce Paper

Source: ANCOR Announces the Release of Its Workforce Paper | ANCOR | American Network of Community Options and Resources

Community-based services to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities are facing one of the most major and growing workforce crises in the United States labor market.  Which is why, the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) brought together national disability organizations and workforce experts last week to preview its new report entitled, Addressing the Disability Services Workforce Crisis of the 21st Century. Participants of ANCOR’s March 23rd Workforce Summit also discussed potential policy solutions moving forward.

ANCOR’s report compiles the latest data on the direct support professional (DSP) workforce, offers a historical overview of the workforce crisis, and offers solutions on how it can be addressed.

“For almost fifty years, ANCOR has represented providers of disability services in Washington, DC and watched the workforce crisis grow into a public health crisis,” said ANCOR CEO Barbara Merrill, “We are proud of the strides we have made in Congress and with previous Administrations, but this report marks the beginning of an even stronger movement to take measurable steps toward addressing the workforce crisis.”

ANCOR members and leaders of ANCOR’s National Advocacy Campaign, Daryn Demeritt and Chris Sparks, led ANCOR membership in ensuring the report was comprehensive and offered concrete solutions.

“The DSP crisis is profound and we see it in our daily operations across the country,” said Demeritt of ResCare based in Kentucky, “ANCOR’s report comes at a pivotal moment when we need to take action and cannot risk ignoring the impact it has on the quality of services provided to Americans with intellectual and developmental disabilities.“

“This is an instance where failure is not an option,” added Sparks of Exceptional Person, Inc. (EPI) in Iowa, “Millions of people with disabilities rely on DSPs so that they can access their communities, engage with their families and friends, and participate in the workforce themselves.  There are not enough DSPs to meet the need, and the waiting lists for these services are only growing. ANCOR’s report offers the solutions that need to be harnessed now to avoid decline of this successful program.”

Click here to read the Executive Summary of the ANCOR Workforce Report

Click here to access the full ANCOR Workforce Report

Click here to visit ANCOR’s Workforce Website


The American Network of Community Options and Resources is a national trade association representing more than 1,200 private providers of community living and employment supports and services to more than 800,000 individuals with disabilities with a workforce that’s over half a million strong. ANCOR advocates for the crucial role private providers play in enhancing and supporting the lives of people with disabilities and their families.

Through its National Advocacy Campaign, ANCOR seeks to obtain the resources to recruit, train and retain a sustainable direct support workforce. ANCOR provides organization, professional, leadership development and networking opportunities and services and is continually working toward partnerships and collaborations that support our mission, which is to advance the ability of our members in supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to fully participate in their communities.www.ancor.org

Events | Managing Work, Life, and Disability: Considerations for Individuals and Employers

Source: Events | Yang Tan Institute

Managing Work, Life, and Disability: Considerations for Individuals and Employers

Thursday, March 16, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 11:15 AM

This session will be jointly presented by LaWanda Cook of Cornell University’s Yang-Tan Institute on Employment and Disability (YTI), Michael Murray of the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), and Jill Houghton of the U.S. Business Leadership Network (USBLN). It will include an overview of findings from YTI’s Work-Life Balance and Disability Study and provide insights from the perspectives of employees with disabilities, as well as suggestions for what employers can do to contribute to employees’ effective work-life management.

A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?

A Strong Workforce is an Inclusive Workforce: What Can YOU Do?

Donna Martinez May 19, 2012

And apparently the US District Court in Oregon is in agreement!

From NDRN: Breaking News

Yesterday, the U.S. District Court in Oregon issued a 16-page Opinion and Order
in the case Lane v. Kiltzhaber, 3:12-cv-00138-ST. The Lane complaint claims that
failure to provide supported employment services violates Title II of the ADA
and the integration mandate. The Court granted the state defendants’ motion to
dismiss the complaint, but without prejudice and with leave to amend, while
directing the Plaintiffs how to correct the wording of the complaint. Most
importantly, the Court determined that the plaintiffs have valid cognizable
claims under Title II of the ADA and that the integration mandate applies to the
provision of employment-related services.

This case was filed by Disability Rights Oregon and co-counsels Center for
Public Representation, Perkins Coie LLP and Miller Nash LLP, on behalf of eight
individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities who are able and
would prefer to work in an integrated employment setting, but instead are
segregated in sheltered workshops.

Recognizing that this is a case of first impression, the Court noted “no other
case has applied the integration mandate in a context other than one in which
the state’s action places plaintiffs at risk of institutionalization. However,
the dearth of authority does not led inexorably to the conclusion that the
integration mandate is inapplicable to plaintiffs’ claims. To the contrary, the
broad language and remedial purposes of the ADA, the corresponding lack of any
limiting language in either the ADA or the integration mandate itself, and the
lack of any case law restricting the reach of the integration mandate suggests
just the opposition conclusion.” (Opinion at 10-11).

In reaching this conclusion, the Court carefully scrutinized the defendants’ arguments for dismissal, and gave deference to the U.S. Department of Justice’s interpretation
of the integration mandate which prohibits the unnecessary provision of services
in non-integrated settings, including segregated sheltered workshops. (Opinion
at 7-9).

The Court distinguished claims for a “discriminatory denial of services” versus
claims for “providing inadequate services,” holding that “a claim survives only
if it truly alleges a ‘discriminatory denial of services’ and must be dismissed
if it instead concerns the ‘adequacy’ of the services provided.” (Opinion at

Noting that the plaintiffs clarified at oral argument that they are
seeking the “provision of employment services that would allow them the
opportunity to work in an integrated setting,” and seek to have defendants
“reallocate their available resources in a way that does not unjustifiably favor
segregated employment,” the court determined that some of the allegations in the
complaint “go beyond the clarification offered” at the hearing” and identified
specific claims subject to amendment. (Opinion at 14-15).

Plaintiffs have been
given leave to amend their complaint by May 29, “to clarify that the defendants
are violating Title II of the ADA and the Rehabilitation Act by denying
employment services to plaintiffs for which they are eligible with the result of
unnecessarily segregating them in sheltered workshops.” (Opinion at 16).