There are several programs and organizations available to assist individuals with disabilities in job training, résumé writing and employment searches. Some organizations also provide information about on-the-job accommodations for individuals with disabilities. The following resources can help you in identifying these employment programs.
Federal Programs and Resources
CareerOneStop is the career, training and job search Web site for the U.S. Department of Labor and is a partner with the American Job Center Network. The site serves job seekers, businesses, students, and career advisors with free online tools, information, and resources and offers resources specifically for the disability community.
Centers for Independent Living
Centers for Independent Living are consumer-controlled, community-based, cross-disability, nonresidential, private nonprofit agencies that provide independent living services. At a minimum, centers funded by the program are required to provide the following core services:
- Information and referral
- IL skills training
- Peer counseling
- Individual and systems advocacy
- Services that facilitate transition from nursing homes and other institutions to the community
Depending on funding levels, centers may also provide a variety of other services to assist the disability community to function independently in the family or community and/or to continue in employment. To locate the Center for Independent Living in your area, please use the Web page below.
U.S. Department of Labor – Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)
ODEP promotes policies and coordinates with employers and all levels of government to increase workplace success for people with disabilities.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Veteran Readiness and Employment (VR&E)
VR&E assists veterans and service members with job training, résumé development, employment accommodations, and job-seeking skills coaching. Other services may include helping veterans start their own business or independent living services for individuals who are severely disabled and unable to work in traditional employment.
U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA)
The Social Security Administration has several resources regarding employment. The SSA administers the Ticket to Work Program, which allows most people receiving Social Security benefits to obtain employment services, vocational rehabilitation services, or other work-related support from an employment network of their choice. Additionally, the SSA’s Plan for Achieving Self-Support (PASS) program allows disabled individuals to set aside money and/or things they own to pay for items or services needed to achieve a specific work goal.
U.S. Vocational Rehabilitation (VR)
Every state has a federally funded Vocational Rehabilitation program that provides specialized employment and education-related services and training to assist teens and adults with disabilities in becoming employed. VR services vary from state to state but may include:
- Medical, psychological, and vocational assessments
- Counseling and guidance
- Vocational and other types of training
- Interpreter and reader services
- Services to family members
- Rehabilitation technology
- Placement and post-employment services
- Other goods and services necessary to achieve rehab objectives
- Payment for transportation and vehicle modifications (in some cases)
To locate your state’s Department of Vocational Rehabilitation, you can access your state’s resources through the Amputee Coalition’s State Resource Map, through Community Connections, or you can contact the National Limb Loss Resource Center at 888-267-5669, option 1.
AgrAbility assists farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural workers with disabilities through education and assistance. AgrAbility helps with employment, access to appropriate assistive technology, information related to the treatment and rehabilitation of disabling conditions and support for family caregivers.
Easter Seals Job Training and Placement
Easter Seals provides a variety of services and supports to help people with disabilities and other needs obtain and maintain employment.
Goodwill Services for People with Disabilities
Services vary by location but may include job placement and career assistance for individuals with disabilities.
Job Accommodation Network (JAN)
Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is a free consulting service that provides information about job accommodations, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the employability of people with disabilities.
National Business & Disability Council (NBDC)
The NBDC’s Web site offers a national job board that features openings from member businesses and corporations.
ServiceSource is a nonprofit organization with regional offices and programs located in five states. Some of their varied services include job placement, vocational training, vocational rehabilitation services, vocational evaluation and placement, and assistive technology assessments. States with ServiceSource offices are Delaware, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia.
The contents of the following Web sites are solely the responsibility of their authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Amputee Coalition. The Amputee Coalition cannot and does not make specific recommendations for products or services. No Amputee Coalition endorsement is implied.
abilityJOBS offers résumé posting and job searches for individuals with disabilities. abilityJOBS also offers employers the ability to search résumés for individuals with disabilities.
disABLEDperson, Inc.’s mission is to reduce the high unemployment rate of individuals with disabilities. Their services include free résumé postings and job searching.
Getting Hired is a recruitment site that helps inclusive employers search for and hire professional individuals and veterans with disabilities.
Programs for College Students and Recent Graduates With Disabilities
National Collaboration on Workforce and Disability (NCWD) for Youth
NCWD/Youth works to ensure that transition age youth are provided full access to high quality services in integrated settings to gain education, employment, and independent living.
Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP)
The WRP is a recruitment and referral program that connects federal and private sector employers nationwide with college students and recent graduates with disabilities.
Employment Resources for Disabled Veterans
AMVETS Career Center
AMVETS Career Center offers career training and employment assistance free-of-charge for veterans and service members.
Building on the mission established by Hire Our Heroes, USO Pathfinder™ is honored to carry that torch and ensure that all transitioning service members and their spouses are positioned for success in their career journeys.
Career Guide for People with Disabilities
Career Resources for College Students with Disabilities from the National Clearinghouse and Resource Library
It is not the intention of the Amputee Coalition to provide specific medical or legal advice but rather to provide consumers with information to better understand their health and healthcare issues. The Amputee Coalition does not endorse any specific treatment, technology, company, service or device. Consumers are urged to consult with their healthcare providers for specific medical advice or before making any purchasing decisions involving their care.
This project was supported, in part, by grant number 90LLRC0001-01-00, from the Administration for Community Living, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Washington, D.C. 20201. Grantees undertaking projects under government sponsorship are encouraged to express freely their findings and conclusions. Points of view or opinions do not, therefore, necessarily represent official Administration for Community Living policy.
© Amputee Coalition. Local reproduction for use by Amputee Coalition constituents is permitted as long as this copyright information is included. Organizations or individuals wishing to reprint this article in other publications, including other World Wide Web sites must contact the Amputee Coalition for permission to do so.