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WIOA Establishes Advisory Committee to Improve Employment Options and Outcomes for People with Disabilities

September 30, 2014

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) calls for the U.S. Department of Labor to create for the first time an Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities.

The Committee, which is expected to begin deliberations by the end of this year, has a mandate to focus on two major issues. They are:

·         Ways to increase employment opportunities for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities or other individuals with significant disabilities in competitive, integrated employment; and

·         The future of the certificate program under Section 14c of the Fair Labor Standards Act, which allows individuals with disabilities to be paid subminimum wage based upon productivity levels, and improving oversight of the certificate program.

The Committee will have representatives approved by the Secretary of Labor to include:

·         Assistant Secretary for the Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and Wage and Hour Division of Labor.

·         Representatives of the Administration on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (AIDD), Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), Social Security Administration and Rehabilitation Service Administration (RSA).

·         Private sector representatives on behalf of self-advocates, employment service providers, advocacy groups, researchers, national employer organizations, and employer community, and others with expertise on “increasing opportunities for competitive, integrated employment for individuals with disabilities.

The work of the Committee is to be completed with the development of a final report within two years. Updates on the Committee’s progress can be found at ODEP's Advisory Committee on Increasing Competitive Integrated Employment for Individuals with Disabilities page.

If you are interested in being nominated for the committee, please review the Federal Register Notice and submit the requested information by October 14, 2014.