job opportunity

Workforce Innovation creates opportunity

by TONY SAMPSON

Happy New Year! Wow, has it been a month already since 2016 has started? Can’t believe people are talking about the NFL Super Bowl 50 and the Golden Globes.

Tony Sampson

Tony Sampson is a graduate of Leaders in Disability Policy and a former member of the Maryland Disabilities Council. He works at Home Depot.

Sadly, the deaths of David Bowie, Eagles Guitarist Glenn Fry and Alan Rickman are also in conversations.

More importantly, the world’s biggest Powerball lottery jackpot was over a billion dollars in January! Any of you try to cash in on that?

And don’t forget Winter Storm Jonas that hit the east coast January 24. I’m in the Baltimore area where it hit, you know.

In December, I attended the 2015 TASH Conference in Portland, Ore. I learned a lot while I was there, including information about the update by Congress and President Obama on the Workforce Innovation Act of 1998.

Now called the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, part of the act helps people with intellectual and developmental disabilities live better lives outside the group home. It gives them a chance to live independently in the community through jobs, travel and residential programs.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act brings together strategic coordination in skills development. The act helps eliminate workshops and day programs, so people with disabilities don’t have to work in places with contract work at sub minimum wages.

The act creates, smaller, nimbler and more strategic workforce development boards, statewide and locally, and applies a single set of outcome metrics to every federal workforce development board. It also eliminates the “sequence of services,” allowing areas to better meet the unique needs of individuals.

It was interesting to learn that the act created the a program that helps eligible youth to connect to the labor force by providing them with intensive social academics, career and technical training, and service learning centers. It’s like a one-stop job center. It also helps individuals obtain secondary school diplomas.

So long readers. See you around!

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