Case Services appropriations for the basic Vocational Rehabilitation Program provide educational and vocational services to individuals whose disabilities impose barriers to employment. The Program provides a wide range of services to individuals with disabilities including evaluation, job training, equipment and technology, counseling and guidance, and placement. The primary goal of the Program is to enable individuals with disabilities to achieve gainful employment. When employment is achieved, the investment pays dividends to the State. The annual wages earned by those same individuals exceeded $200 million and will grow each year. These earnings form the base for their tax contributions and stimulation of the economy.
The savings to State agencies, the tax contributions and the economic stimulus of these workers' spending recur and grow every year that these people work. Therefore, the return on the initial investment continues over the individual's working life.
Professional vocational rehabilitation counselors across New York State in The Office of Adult Career and Continuing Education Services’ 15 District Offices and 10 outstations help individuals with disabilities choose careers that are consistent with their individual strengths, priorities, abilities, capabilities, interests, informed choices and that meet current and future job market opportunities.
Purchased case services make up the largest single area within this program. Examples of case services include evaluation; training and related supports at such places as community rehabilitation agencies, boards of cooperative educational services (BOCES), trade schools, colleges and universities; transportation; and vehicle modifications. The combination of federal funding (Title I Section 110 of the Rehabilitation Act) and State matching funds supports the entire ACCES-VR program, including vocational counseling, purchased case services, unified contract costs, related administrative costs and indirectly applied charges. Federal funding is formula driven. State case services funding is required in concert with the basic federal award to meet the costs of ACCES’ increasing demand for services.
The following are some of the highlights of ACCES’ FFY 2012-2013 accomplishments in meeting its goals:
- 11,284 received assistance obtaining employment including 4,549 youth (under 25 at app).
- 7,974 individuals were placed in integrated employment with no supports; 40 in self-employment.
- Individuals placed in supported employment or integrated employment with supports decreased from 3,085 in FFY 2013-2014 to 3,016 in FFY 2014-2015.
- Average hourly wage increased to $11.37
Federal Statute: Rehabilitation Act - Title I
Federal Regulation: 34 CFR 361 Et. Seq.
State Statute: Education Law Sections 1001-1008
State Regulation: 8NYCRR Parts 246 and 247
Total- $147.2 m
NUMBER OF INDIVIDUALS SERVED: 86,670 for FFY 2014-15