Grassroots

Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA)

Thursday, September 29th, 2016

Challenge derives power from the people we serve, stakeholders and the community, seeking to engage people in the political process at the local and national level that impact people with disability.

The bipartisan WIOA, signed by President Obama on July 22, 2014, created a new vision for how America prepares an educated and skilled workforce that expands opportunity for workers and employers. The Administration laid out a vision for our job training system that “trains our workers first based on what employers are telling us they’re hiring for and helps business design the training programs so that we’re creating a pipeline into jobs that are actually out there. This collaborative system will deliver integrated, job-driven services to job seekers, including youth and those with barriers to employment, as well as to workers and employers.
Challenge has identified some areas of the Act that have resulted in unfavorable consequences for people with disability. The following action is needed:

  • Request removal of the Department of Education unnecessary sub-definition of “work unit” in favor of Congress’s definition of “competitive integrated employment.
  • Urge Department of Education and Department of Labor to delay implementation of the competitive integrated employment rules until there is a better understanding of outcomes in early adopter states and substantive, real-life recommendations can be made.
  • Urge the Department of Education to clarify that local and state education agencies may continue to contract with entities providing vocational rehabilitation services and to make clear what is permitted and prohibited for contracting purposes.

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