The Council believes people with developmental disabilities deserve the opportunity to contribute their productivity in their communities. The Council’s initiatives include programs which promote people with developmental disabilities acquiring and maintaining competitive integrated individualized employment consistent with their abilities and interests.
The Council supports changes in public policy and practice which result in an increase in the number people with developmental disabilities in integrated, individualized employment. Two major issues on which the Council is currently advocating are the implementation of Employment First policy and practice and for Louisiana's Vocational Rehabilitation program to receive its full federal allotment.
The Council's TV and radio media campaign educates employers, individuals with disabilities, family members and provider agencies about the benefits of having people with developmental disabilities as part of the community-based workforce.
Over four years, the Employment Consortium facilitated employment trainings to build the capacity of employment provider agencies to support individuals with developmental disabilities in finding community employment.
The Competitive Employment Educational Campaign provided information on employment to individuals and their family members to emphasize the benefits of competitive employment instead of congregate work settings and dispel fears and reduce barriers to employment for persons with disabilities.
The Buddies-At-Work project was a statewide public awareness campaign that promoted an understanding of the abilities of people with developmental disabilities in occupational, educational and recreational settings.
The Employment Mentoring project will develop, implement, and evaluate a training and mentoring approach that will result in Employment Support Professionals (ESPs) demonstrating competencies in skills which lead to employment outcomes for job seekers with developmental disabilities including those with the most intense support needs in acquiring and maintaining community-based competitive employment. The project will work with participating Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPs) to enhance their operations and participating Employment Support Professionals (ESPs) to improve their competencies in the area of supported employment and successful completion of the national Certified Employment Support Professional (CESP) exam.
An Employment Study researched services and policies to identify barriers for people with developmental disabilities accessing and maintaining integrated, competitive, community-based employment. Recommendations from the study helps guide the Council in developing its employment agenda for systems change.