Publication Date

8-19-2013

Abstract

Over the past two decades, New York State (NYS) has been actively and collaboratively engaged in systems change across three primary domains: 1) to develop a comprehensive employment system to reduce barriers to work and improve employment outcomes of individuals with disabilities; 2) to enhance the post-school adult outcomes of youth with disabilities, by collaboratively advancing evidence-based secondary transition practices at the regional, school district and individual student levels; and, 3) to support the return-to-work efforts of individuals with disabilities who receive Social Security Administration (SSA) disability benefits under the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). These domains have been supported by numerous federal and state initiatives including: the US Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS)-sponsored Transition Systems Change grant; the SSA-sponsored State Partnership Initiative (NYWORKS); two Youth Transition Demonstrations (YTD); the Benefits Offset National Demonstration (BOND); and, three cycles of funding for the National Work Incentives Support Center (WISC); the US Department of Labor (DOL)-sponsored Work Incentive Grant, Disability Program Navigator Initiative, and Disability Employment Initiative; three rounds of funding from the Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) for Medicaid Infrastructure Grants (MIG, NY Makes Work Pay); the NYS Education Department (NYSED) sponsored Model Transition Program (MTP); and three multi-year cycles of the statewide Transition Coordination Site network. Most recently, NYS has sponsored the Statewide Transition Services Professional Development Support Center (PDSC); the NYS Developmental Disability Planning Council (DDPC)-sponsored Transition Technical Assistance Support Program (T-TASP), NYS Work Incentives Support Center (NYS WISC), and NYS Partners in Policy Making (PIP); the NYS Office of Mental Health (OMH)-sponsored Career Development Initiative; and others. The growing statewide and gubernatorial emphasis on employment for New Yorkers with disabilities developed over the past two decades stemming from these initiatives, supported by service innovations and shared vision across state agencies and employment stakeholders, establishes a strong foundation for implementing and sustaining a research demonstration to “Promote the Readiness of Minors in Supplemental Security Income” (PROMISE). The NYS PROMISE will build upon NYS’ past successes and significantly support NYS in removing systems, policy and practice barriers for transition-age youth who receive SSI and their families. The NYS OMH through the Research Foundation for Mental Hygiene (RFMH), with their management partners the New York Employment Support System (NYESS) Statewide Coordinating Council (SCC) and Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute, along with the proposed research demonstration site community, join the NYS Governor’s Office in designing and implementing a series of statewide strategic service interventions to support the transition and employment preparation of youth ages 14-16 who receive SSI.

Comments

Proposal submitted for the ultimately funded NYS PROMISE project. See http://www.nyspromise.org/ for more information.

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