Below is the list of services that Avenues to Independent Living offers:
New Jersey Definitions Supported Employment, It's Models, and Support Methods.
Supported employment is an outcome. It is paid work within an integrated employment setting. All supported employees are paid commensurate wages in accordance with the "Fair Labor Standards Act." The benefit package provided to all eligible employees should be available to the supported employees.
The process used to achieve supported employment helps consumers, for whom competitive work would otherwise be unlikely due to the severity of their disability, to actively choose, secure and retain competitive full or part time jobs. Intensive interim and extended support phases, which include both job specific and individual/community support are the distinguishing characteristics of supported employment.
- Community Based Individual Support
- Community Inclusion Support
- Assistance with Job Search
- Supported Employment
- Job Exploration
- Art Classes
- Cooking Classes
- Support Coordination
New Jersey Definitions Explained
The following are five basic approaches to supported employment, but this is not a definitive list of models as creativity and flexibility are essential components of support employment.
The individual placement model refers to individually placing a person with severe disabilities into integrated competitive employment with one-to-one job coach support. Support is continued, as needed, for as long as the worker is employed.
The enclave model refers to the employment of a full-time supervisor and a small group of individuals, not to exceed eight, with severe disabilities at an industry or corporation where they work within an integrated setting. The supervisor and/or supported employees may be employed by the industry itself or by an employment service program (human service provider).
Mobile Work Crew
The mobile work crew model of supported employment refers to the employment of a full-time supervisor and a group of individuals, no more than eight of whom are supported employees, who travel together to multiple work sites in the community, where they engage in contracted work.
The entrepreneurial model is a private business operated on a sub-contracted basis or as a prime manufacturer. The business employs a group of individuals, no more than eight of who are supported employees. Integration must be provided by including people without disabilities as coworkers and/or through regular, ongoing contact with the general public.
Transitional Employment (TE)
Transitional employment is paid work performed by consumers within integrated business and industry settings. It is time limited in nature, and typically lasts between three and nine months for the individual consumer. Transitional employment jobs are usually, but not necessarily, part time; the consumer continues to participate in other services or support activities while working. The jobs belong to the agency which manages the positions and provides supervision and support to the consumers who fill them.
As a supported employment approach, transitional means a series of temporary job placements in competitive work in an integrated work setting with ongoing support services for individuals with chronic mental illness. In transitional employment, the provision of ongoing support services must include continuing sequential job placements until job primacy is achieved.
The following definitions describe the phases and types of support required for Supported Employment implementation in New Jersey. These phases and types of support are flexible to the needs of the individual supported employee and can occur in any sequence on an as needed basis.
Intensive Support Phase
It refers to the initial activity after placement, to help the supported employee acquire the physical, intellectual, and emotional and social skills needed, to perform the specific job tasks, work routine and personal life activities critical to employment success.
Interim Support Phase
Refers to the period of time during which the supported employee is assisted to utilize the physical, intellectual, emotional and social skills whenever and wherever needed for job success, as well as to identify and learn new strategies to overcome problems that have emerged. The intensity of job specific support typically decreases and the frequency of on site intervention is diminishing. Individual and community supports may continue at the same level or increase in intensity during this phase.
Extended Support Phase
Refers to the ongoing assistance the supported employee receives to strengthen and maintain their physical, intellectual, emotional and social skills and access resources needed to continue successful job tenure. Service must be proactive with individual support needs continually assessed. Job specific supports should be available on and off the job site and individual/community supports available as needed.
Job Specific Support
Skill or resource interventions occurring on or off the job site which are directly related to enabling individuals to perform job tasks and meet job responsibilities. These interventions can be provided by a variety of qualified individuals, including job coaches, co-workers, consumers, family members, etc.
Skill or resource interventions occurring off the job site that address the consumer's living, learning, and social spheres which impact upon the individual's ability to continue working (i.e. transportation, money management, time management, personal hygiene and health, communication, socialization, etc.). These interventions can be provided by a variety of qualified individuals, including job coaches, coworkers, consumers, family members, etc.
The following are important definitions for implementation of Supported Employment related services in New Jersey.
Career Exploration and Development
An individual uses this process to examine their interest and experience to identify their career values and match these values to their job or occupational characteristics. The career selection is incorporated into a comprehensive plan of action to assist the consumer in achieving the career or job objective.
Commensurate wage is based on the prevailing wage paid to non-disabled workers in the same industry or business. Commensurate means proportionate. Wages paid to a worker with a disability must be based on his or her productivity in proportion to the wages and productivity of non-disabled workers performing essentially the same work in the same geographic area. The expectation in Supported Employment is that he supported employees wages are equal to those earned by non-disabled workers in the same business.
Paid work performed on a full-time basis in an integrated setting for which an individual is compensated in compliance with the Fair Labor Standards Act.
Eligibility for Supported Employment
The eligibility component for New Jersey is addressed by adopting the Federal Regulations as stated in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Section 368.3 which reads:
Supported Employment Eligibility:
An individual with severe disabilities who:
1. Has not worked, or has worked only intermittently, in competitive employment;
2. Has been determined on the basis of an evaluation of rehabilitation potential, including a consideration of whether employment is a possible vocational rehabilitation service program; and
3. Has a need for ongoing support services in order to perform competitive work.
Integrated Work Setting
Are job sites where, either
- Most employees are not disabled; and
- An individual with a severe disability interacts on a regular basis, in the performance of job duties, with employees who are not disabled; and
- If an individual with a severe handicap is part of a distinct work group of only individuals with disabilities the work group consists of only individuals with disabilities the work group consists of no more then eight individuals, or
- If there are no other employees or the only other employees are individuals who are part of an eight person or less work group, an individual with a severe disability interacts on a regular basis in the performance of job duties, with individuals who are not disabled, including members of the general public.
NOTE: These interactions may not by satisfied by contact between an individual with a severe disability and individuals who provide ongoing support services at the job site.
The individual is responsible for providing employment training for the consumer with a severe disability. Job coach functions may include job development, task/position analysis, matching of job and consumer characteristics, job placement, advocacy including the fostering of worker/co-worker relationships, transportation training, family counseling, and monitoring of worker's progress and employer's satisfaction. The individual assists the worker to learn the job and to meet employer expectations. The individual may be responsible for the long term individual/community supports which follow the intensive phases.
Both generic and consumer specific activities directed at securing positions of competitive employment.
Securing a specific competitive employment position into which a consumer becomes employed.
The placement of a consumer into subsequent jobs, are needed at the intensive or interim phases.
Any activity that utilizes integrated competitive work settings to gauge the strengths, weaknesses, and support needs of persons being considered for supported employment and that produces an assessment of performance consistent with the environments for which projects are being made.
There are no disability specific, regular occurring interventions which enhance the acquisition and maintenance of successful long-term employment. Natural Supports are provided and/or occur both on and off the job site and can refer to things people do for the consumer or services used by the consumer (i.e. job specific and individual/community supports can both fall in the category of natural supports when these are provided by family, friends, co-workers, and generic providers as opposed to paid staff). Some examples of natural supports are car pooling with co-workers, family assistance with time management, friends helping with social interactions at the work place, job supervisors giving task cues, etc.
Those activities which assist the consumer in securing employment in a competitive work setting such as career development and exploration, transitional employment, job sampling/exploration, and situational assessment.
A service that utilizes competitive work settings, not facility-based settings, to gauge strengths, weaknesses, and support needs of persons being considered for supported employment, and that produces and assessment of performance consistent with the environment for which projections are made.
Transitional Employment (TE)
Transitional employment is paid work performed by consumers within integrated business and industry settings. It is time limited in nature, and typically lasts between three and nine months for the individual consumer. Transitional employment jobs are usually, but not necessarily, part time: the consumer continues to participate in other services or support activities while working. The jobs belong to the agency which manages the positions and provides supervision and support to the consumers who fill them.
The Division of Developmental Disabilities provides public funding for services and supports assist New Jersey adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities age 21 and older to live as independently as possible.Learn More