SourceAmerica Grassroots Conference 2018

Tuesday, March 26th, 2019

In June 2018, Challenge Unlimited participated in the Annual SourceAmerica Grassroots Advocacy Conference in Washington, D.C.

During this annual conference, individuals with disabilities participating in the AbilityOne Program, family members and nonprofit agencies from across the country converge on Capitol Hill to discuss with their Members of Congress how legislative changes impact the disability community and the importance of the program.  Last year, AbilityOne employee and CU client Shane, his father, CU President and CEO Charlotte Hammond, and other CU team members represented our organization on the Hill. During their visit, they met with 10 Members of Congress. 

We are very proud of Shane and the CU team for being that beacon for Shane to flourish as a worker and citizen in his community. 

Challenge Unlimited Participates in 25th Annual SourceAmerica Grassroots Advocacy Conference

Monday, June 18th, 2018

Challenge Unlimited proudly participated in the SourceAmerica 25th annual Grassroots Advocacy Conference, held during the week of June 11, 2018 at the nation’s capital.

Each year, SourceAmerica hosts member nonprofits for training sessions on how to present their case for better employment options for people with disabilities to lawmakers.   


Local Legislators

Monday, August 14th, 2017

Challenge Unlimited – Local Legislators

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.

Attaining competitive integrated employment is a goal for all individuals with disabilities receiving vocational rehabilitation (VR) services in WIOA. However, it appears the integrated location criterion in the final regulation is based on an overly simplistic and inaccurate understanding of the types of jobs that are provided through the AbilityOne Program. As a result Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) is no longer recognizing employment in the AbilityOne program as a viable employment opportunity for people with disabilities because RSA incorrectly views these jobs as “not typically found in the community”. AbilityOne jobs are real jobs with integrated settings and wages well above the federal minimum wage. Challenge is requesting the following action:

  • Rescind the guidance and clarify to state VR agencies that job opportunities are not to be automatically disqualified simply because of their affiliation with the AbilityOne program.
  • As required by law, determinations should be made on a case-by-case basis, not through blanket disqualification.

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    Source America, IARF, CARF, and Ability One
    Diverse Business Leaders