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Cross-System Collaboration

The LEAD Center fosters cross-system collaboration by partnering with federal agency leaders, state and local agency policymakers, and practitioners and subject matter experts to build a progressive vision to improve the employment outcomes and economic advancement of youth and adults with disabilities. No single organization or resource is able to respond effectively to the diverse needs of each individual with a disability, and others who face multiple barriers to employment. The LEAD Center facilitates and highlights promising practices in resource coordination across systems by proactively engaging with agencies and organizations to spur systems change that translates into significant improvements in the employment and economic advancement of individuals with disabilities.

Competitive Integrated Employment as a Civil Right for People with Disabilities

November 8, 2016

View the archive of this webinar for a discussion with presenters from the Department of Justice, Administration for Community Living (ACL) and APSE on how supporting transformation to competitive integrated employment aligns with changing laws and...

Cooperation and Collaboration: The Role of Interagency Coordination in Securing Competitive Integrated Employment for Transition

March 22, 2017

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) makes clear that facilitating Transition from School to Work is not – and cannot be – the effort of a single agency or organization.

Implications of HCBS Final Rule on Non-Residential Settings – The Impact of New HCBS Guidance on Employment & Day Services

February 27, 2014

ODEP, in collaboration with the CMS Disability & Elderly Public Health Group will host two upcoming educational webinars for state policy-makers and disability policy stakeholders to discuss recent Federal policy guidance issued by CMS.

Innovative Strategies for Using Medicaid State Plan and Waiver Options to Promote Integrated Employment of People with Disabilities

February 20, 2014

ODEP, in collaboration with the CMS Disability & Elderly Public Health Group will host two upcoming educational webinars for state policy-makers and disability policy stakeholders to discuss recent Federal policy guidance issued by CMS.

Medicaid Managed Care and Its Implications on Employment Services

May 28, 2014

As states continue to transition their Medicaid systems into managed care models, numerous opportunities and risks to Medicaid-financed employment services have emerged.

National Employment First Website Launch

October 1, 2015

Are you interested in learning more about what is going on in other states relevant to Employment First but don’t know how to access the information?

New CMS Regulation on HCBS Settings: Implications for Employment Services

June 25, 2014

In the aftermath of CMS' recent regulation defining acceptable and unacceptable settings for Home and Community Based Services, states and stakeholders are now considering how to transition their service-provision systems into compliance with the

Promoting Leadership: Effective Strategies for Integrating Employment Outcomes and Services into Managed Care Models

September 25, 2013

During this webinar we will provide a brief overview on the emergence of managed care as the preferred model for delivering Medicaid-funded long-term supports to individuals with disabilities.

Redefining Home & Community Based Services: CMS Guidance on Non-Residential Services and its Implications for Employment

March 25, 2015

This webinar will include presenters from CMS and national subject matter experts, who will discuss the HCBS rule and its applications in supporting individuals with disabilities to seek and attain competitive integrated employment.

Rising to the Occasion: ADA, Olmstead and State Efforts to Promote Integrated Employment of Individuals with Significant Disabilities

July 16, 2014

One of the most historic legal decisions affecting the civil rights of people with disabilities celebrated its 15th anniversary on June 22nd. In 1999, the U.S.

CMS Issues Guidance on Non-Residential Settings for Home and Community-Based Services

December 22, 2015

On December 15, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued updated guidance on the effect of new home and community-based services (HCBS) regulations on non-residential settings.

HCBS Transition Plans: Additional Updates And Concerns

December 15, 2015

As the states continue to release home and community-based services (HCBS) transition plans, it has become clear that each state interprets the HCBS regulations in a different manner.

Kansas: Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Returns $15 Million to Federal Government

December 2, 2015

The Kansas Department of Children and Families (DCF), a state agency charged with helping people with disabilities find employment, has returned over $15 million dollars in unspent funds to the Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Adm

CMS Responds to Statewide HCBS Transition Plans

October 29, 2015

As of October 2015, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services has sent 42 states Clarifications and/or Modifications Required for Initial Approval (CMIA) letters in response to each state’s published Statewide Transition Plan.

Kansas: State Delays Changes to Medicare/Medicaid System Until January 2017

October 29, 2015

Kansas’ Department of Health and Environment and Department of Aging and Disability Services, after receiving feedback from stakeholders in the community (e.g., health care providers, people with disabilities, family members of people with disabil

Minnesota: New Olmstead Plan Addresses Barriers to Living in the Community Faced by People with Disabilities

October 29, 2015

On September 29, 2015, United States District Judge Donovan Frank, pursuant to an existing settlement agreement, approved a plan detailing Minnesota’s strategy to achieve compliance with Olmstead. Under the Supreme Court’s decision in Olmstead v.

ODEP and Administration for Community Living Sign Memorandum of Agreement to Expand Competitive Integrated Employment for People with Disabilities

October 29, 2015

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Administration for Community Living (ACL), building on a partnership between the two organizations that began in 2012, recently signed a memor

Wisconsin: Changes to Family Care and IRIS Programs

October 29, 2015

Witnesses at a recent public hearing in Wisconsin expressed concerns about changes made to the state’s bu

CMS Announces Performance-Based Payment Options for Employment Services

September 25, 2015

At the annual Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Conference, hosted by the National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced new performance-based option

LEAD Center Hosts First Annual Policy Roundtable on Blending and Braiding Resources

July 19, 2013

The LEAD Center, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), held its first national policy roundtable at the Bureau of Labor Statistics from July 17-18.

White House to Hold Conference Calls on Affordable Care Act Implementation in 8 States

July 10, 2013

Beginning this week, the White House will hold conference calls for briefings on the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in various states.

CIL Pilot Sites Selected

March 26, 2013

The LEAD Center will work with five Centers for Independent Living (CILs) across the country to implement an innovative demonstration to expand employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities while utilizing the services of American Job...

High Expectations

October 17, 2016

I have a deep appreciation for my mom because she always had the courage to stand up for me.

From Screen to Society: How Television Increases Disability Inclusion

October 11, 2016

We may watch television to relax, but watching that screen can also widen our world view.

In The Know: The Impact of Employment on the Health Status and Health Care Costs of Working-age People with Disabilities

April 4, 2016

In the Know is a bi-monthly feature on the LEAD Center blog that highlights important resources and information about the employment, policy and economic advancement of people with disabilities.

In The Know: I'm In To Hire

February 19, 2016

I’m In To Hire is an initiative founded by Best Buddies International that aims to create a more inclusive workplace by promoting the business benefits of hiring those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

CMS’ New HCBS Regulations Opens the Door to Competitive Employment for People with Disabilities

October 9, 2015

As we celebrate National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), it is important that we take account of the incredible progress that has been made in the fight to ensure all people, including people with disabilities, have access to gainful...

In the Know: HCBS Advocacy

July 2, 2015

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued final regulations on acceptable and unacceptable home and community based services (HCBS) settings.

In the Know - The Affordable Care Act and the I/DD Community: An Overview of the Law and Advocacy Priorities Going Forward

January 16, 2015

For people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), access to health care has been a long-standing challenge.

In the Know: I'm In To Hire

November 25, 2014

In the Know is a bi-monthly feature on the LEAD Center blog that will highlight important resources and information about the employment, policy and economic advancement of people with disabilities.

Reflections on Roosevelt

October 31, 2014

Roosevelt Island lies in the East River between midtown Manhattan and Queens. In the early 1980’s, it was a planned development that brought together diverse communities and income levels,housing international diplomats as well as residents of its...

In the Know: A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities

October 9, 2014

As countless individuals with disabilities, their family and friends, disability advocates, allies and like-minded businesses and organizations join together to celebrate National Disab

Categories - LG Tablet

Competitive Integrated Employment as a Civil Right for People with Disabilities

November 8, 2016

View the archive of this webinar for a discussion with presenters from the Department of Justice, Administration for Community Living (ACL) and APSE on how supporting transformation to competitive integrated employment aligns with changing laws and...

Cooperation and Collaboration: The Role of Interagency Coordination in Securing Competitive Integrated Employment for Transition

March 22, 2017

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) makes clear that facilitating Transition from School to Work is not – and cannot be – the effort of a single agency or organization.

Implications of HCBS Final Rule on Non-Residential Settings – The Impact of New HCBS Guidance on Employment & Day Services

February 27, 2014

ODEP, in collaboration with the CMS Disability & Elderly Public Health Group will host two upcoming educational webinars for state policy-makers and disability policy stakeholders to discuss recent Federal policy guidance issued by CMS.

Innovative Strategies for Using Medicaid State Plan and Waiver Options to Promote Integrated Employment of People with Disabilities

February 20, 2014

ODEP, in collaboration with the CMS Disability & Elderly Public Health Group will host two upcoming educational webinars for state policy-makers and disability policy stakeholders to discuss recent Federal policy guidance issued by CMS.

Medicaid Managed Care and Its Implications on Employment Services

May 28, 2014

As states continue to transition their Medicaid systems into managed care models, numerous opportunities and risks to Medicaid-financed employment services have emerged.

National Employment First Website Launch

October 1, 2015

Are you interested in learning more about what is going on in other states relevant to Employment First but don’t know how to access the information?

New CMS Regulation on HCBS Settings: Implications for Employment Services

June 25, 2014

In the aftermath of CMS' recent regulation defining acceptable and unacceptable settings for Home and Community Based Services, states and stakeholders are now considering how to transition their service-provision systems into compliance with the

Promoting Leadership: Effective Strategies for Integrating Employment Outcomes and Services into Managed Care Models

September 25, 2013

During this webinar we will provide a brief overview on the emergence of managed care as the preferred model for delivering Medicaid-funded long-term supports to individuals with disabilities.

Redefining Home & Community Based Services: CMS Guidance on Non-Residential Services and its Implications for Employment

March 25, 2015

This webinar will include presenters from CMS and national subject matter experts, who will discuss the HCBS rule and its applications in supporting individuals with disabilities to seek and attain competitive integrated employment.

Rising to the Occasion: ADA, Olmstead and State Efforts to Promote Integrated Employment of Individuals with Significant Disabilities

July 16, 2014

One of the most historic legal decisions affecting the civil rights of people with disabilities celebrated its 15th anniversary on June 22nd. In 1999, the U.S.

CMS Issues Guidance on Non-Residential Settings for Home and Community-Based Services

December 22, 2015

On December 15, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued updated guidance on the effect of new home and community-based services (HCBS) regulations on non-residential settings.

HCBS Transition Plans: Additional Updates And Concerns

December 15, 2015

As the states continue to release home and community-based services (HCBS) transition plans, it has become clear that each state interprets the HCBS regulations in a different manner.

Kansas: Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Returns $15 Million to Federal Government

December 2, 2015

The Kansas Department of Children and Families (DCF), a state agency charged with helping people with disabilities find employment, has returned over $15 million dollars in unspent funds to the Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Adm

CMS Responds to Statewide HCBS Transition Plans

October 29, 2015

As of October 2015, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services has sent 42 states Clarifications and/or Modifications Required for Initial Approval (CMIA) letters in response to each state’s published Statewide Transition Plan.

Kansas: State Delays Changes to Medicare/Medicaid System Until January 2017

October 29, 2015

Kansas’ Department of Health and Environment and Department of Aging and Disability Services, after receiving feedback from stakeholders in the community (e.g., health care providers, people with disabilities, family members of people with disabil

Minnesota: New Olmstead Plan Addresses Barriers to Living in the Community Faced by People with Disabilities

October 29, 2015

On September 29, 2015, United States District Judge Donovan Frank, pursuant to an existing settlement agreement, approved a plan detailing Minnesota’s strategy to achieve compliance with Olmstead. Under the Supreme Court’s decision in Olmstead v.

ODEP and Administration for Community Living Sign Memorandum of Agreement to Expand Competitive Integrated Employment for People with Disabilities

October 29, 2015

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and the Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Administration for Community Living (ACL), building on a partnership between the two organizations that began in 2012, recently signed a memor

Wisconsin: Changes to Family Care and IRIS Programs

October 29, 2015

Witnesses at a recent public hearing in Wisconsin expressed concerns about changes made to the state’s bu

CMS Announces Performance-Based Payment Options for Employment Services

September 25, 2015

At the annual Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Conference, hosted by the National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced new performance-based option

LEAD Center Hosts First Annual Policy Roundtable on Blending and Braiding Resources

July 19, 2013

The LEAD Center, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP), held its first national policy roundtable at the Bureau of Labor Statistics from July 17-18.

White House to Hold Conference Calls on Affordable Care Act Implementation in 8 States

July 10, 2013

Beginning this week, the White House will hold conference calls for briefings on the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in various states.

CIL Pilot Sites Selected

March 26, 2013

The LEAD Center will work with five Centers for Independent Living (CILs) across the country to implement an innovative demonstration to expand employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities while utilizing the services of American Job...

High Expectations

October 17, 2016

I have a deep appreciation for my mom because she always had the courage to stand up for me.

From Screen to Society: How Television Increases Disability Inclusion

October 11, 2016

We may watch television to relax, but watching that screen can also widen our world view.

In The Know: The Impact of Employment on the Health Status and Health Care Costs of Working-age People with Disabilities

April 4, 2016

In the Know is a bi-monthly feature on the LEAD Center blog that highlights important resources and information about the employment, policy and economic advancement of people with disabilities.

In The Know: I'm In To Hire

February 19, 2016

I’m In To Hire is an initiative founded by Best Buddies International that aims to create a more inclusive workplace by promoting the business benefits of hiring those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

CMS’ New HCBS Regulations Opens the Door to Competitive Employment for People with Disabilities

October 9, 2015

As we celebrate National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM), it is important that we take account of the incredible progress that has been made in the fight to ensure all people, including people with disabilities, have access to gainful...

In the Know: HCBS Advocacy

July 2, 2015

In January 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued final regulations on acceptable and unacceptable home and community based services (HCBS) settings.

In the Know - The Affordable Care Act and the I/DD Community: An Overview of the Law and Advocacy Priorities Going Forward

January 16, 2015

For people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), access to health care has been a long-standing challenge.

In the Know: I'm In To Hire

November 25, 2014

In the Know is a bi-monthly feature on the LEAD Center blog that will highlight important resources and information about the employment, policy and economic advancement of people with disabilities.

Reflections on Roosevelt

October 31, 2014

Roosevelt Island lies in the East River between midtown Manhattan and Queens. In the early 1980’s, it was a planned development that brought together diverse communities and income levels,housing international diplomats as well as residents of its...

In the Know: A Better Bottom Line: Employing People with Disabilities

October 9, 2014

As countless individuals with disabilities, their family and friends, disability advocates, allies and like-minded businesses and organizations join together to celebrate National Disab

Categories - SM Tablet

Policy Updates

EEOC Requests Public Comment on Its New Affirmative Action Employment Regulations

March 30, 2016

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), titled “

Iowa’s Medicaid Program Moves to Managed Care for Its Services

March 30, 2016

After more than a year of debate, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approved the state of Iowa’s plan to transition all of its Medicaid-funded services, including supported employment, to managed care, effective April 1, 2016.

National Quality Forum Hosts Second In-Person Meeting on Measuring Quality in Home and Community-Based Services, Including Supported Employment

March 30, 2016

On March 30-31, the National Quality Forum (NQF) will host its second in-person meeting of its Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Quality project in Washington, D.C.

Wisconsin: Update on Wisconsin’s Overhaul of Its Medicaid Program, IRIS, and Supported Employment Program

March 30, 2016

Following several months of public forums (See October 2015’s Employment, Health, and Disability Update for some of the LEAD Center’s earlier cover

Disability Advocates Create Comprehensive Toolkit Calling for Strong Implementation of the Home and Community-Based Settings Rule

February 29, 2016

The HCBS Advocacy Coalition has released a three-part toolkit that explains the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings rule and its potential to pro

EconSys and ODEP Release State Review of HCBS Reimbursement Rates and Employment First Brief on Federal Resources

February 29, 2016

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and Economic Systems, Inc.

Minnesota Waiting List for Services Ends for Many

February 29, 2016

Minnesotans with significant disabilities had much to celebrate as the state’s Department of Human Services (DHS) removed long-standing barriers preventing them from accessing critical services, including support for competitive integrated employm

NPR Explores Disparities in Workers’ Compensation Options

February 29, 2016

A recent episode of NPR’s Morning Edition highlighted disparities in access to workers’ compensation for work-related injuries.

President Obama’s 2017 Budget: Impact on Employment and Health Care for People with Disabilities

February 29, 2016

On February 9, 2016, President Obama and his administration released their proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2017.

StatsRRTC Releases Its 2015 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium and 2015 Annual Report

February 29, 2016

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability Statistics and Demographics (StatsRRTC), a project that compiles statistics on disability in the United States, has recently released its

Categories - Phablet

Policy Updates

EEOC Requests Public Comment on Its New Affirmative Action Employment Regulations

March 30, 2016

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), titled “

Iowa’s Medicaid Program Moves to Managed Care for Its Services

March 30, 2016

After more than a year of debate, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approved the state of Iowa’s plan to transition all of its Medicaid-funded services, including supported employment, to managed care, effective April 1, 2016.

National Quality Forum Hosts Second In-Person Meeting on Measuring Quality in Home and Community-Based Services, Including Supported Employment

March 30, 2016

On March 30-31, the National Quality Forum (NQF) will host its second in-person meeting of its Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Quality project in Washington, D.C.

Wisconsin: Update on Wisconsin’s Overhaul of Its Medicaid Program, IRIS, and Supported Employment Program

March 30, 2016

Following several months of public forums (See October 2015’s Employment, Health, and Disability Update for some of the LEAD Center’s earlier cover

Disability Advocates Create Comprehensive Toolkit Calling for Strong Implementation of the Home and Community-Based Settings Rule

February 29, 2016

The HCBS Advocacy Coalition has released a three-part toolkit that explains the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings rule and its potential to pro

EconSys and ODEP Release State Review of HCBS Reimbursement Rates and Employment First Brief on Federal Resources

February 29, 2016

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and Economic Systems, Inc.

Minnesota Waiting List for Services Ends for Many

February 29, 2016

Minnesotans with significant disabilities had much to celebrate as the state’s Department of Human Services (DHS) removed long-standing barriers preventing them from accessing critical services, including support for competitive integrated employm

NPR Explores Disparities in Workers’ Compensation Options

February 29, 2016

A recent episode of NPR’s Morning Edition highlighted disparities in access to workers’ compensation for work-related injuries.

President Obama’s 2017 Budget: Impact on Employment and Health Care for People with Disabilities

February 29, 2016

On February 9, 2016, President Obama and his administration released their proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2017.

StatsRRTC Releases Its 2015 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium and 2015 Annual Report

February 29, 2016

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability Statistics and Demographics (StatsRRTC), a project that compiles statistics on disability in the United States, has recently released its

Categories - Phone

Policy Updates

EEOC Requests Public Comment on Its New Affirmative Action Employment Regulations

March 30, 2016

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), titled “

Iowa’s Medicaid Program Moves to Managed Care for Its Services

March 30, 2016

After more than a year of debate, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) approved the state of Iowa’s plan to transition all of its Medicaid-funded services, including supported employment, to managed care, effective April 1, 2016.

National Quality Forum Hosts Second In-Person Meeting on Measuring Quality in Home and Community-Based Services, Including Supported Employment

March 30, 2016

On March 30-31, the National Quality Forum (NQF) will host its second in-person meeting of its Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Quality project in Washington, D.C.

Wisconsin: Update on Wisconsin’s Overhaul of Its Medicaid Program, IRIS, and Supported Employment Program

March 30, 2016

Following several months of public forums (See October 2015’s Employment, Health, and Disability Update for some of the LEAD Center’s earlier cover

Disability Advocates Create Comprehensive Toolkit Calling for Strong Implementation of the Home and Community-Based Settings Rule

February 29, 2016

The HCBS Advocacy Coalition has released a three-part toolkit that explains the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Settings rule and its potential to pro

EconSys and ODEP Release State Review of HCBS Reimbursement Rates and Employment First Brief on Federal Resources

February 29, 2016

The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) and Economic Systems, Inc.

Minnesota Waiting List for Services Ends for Many

February 29, 2016

Minnesotans with significant disabilities had much to celebrate as the state’s Department of Human Services (DHS) removed long-standing barriers preventing them from accessing critical services, including support for competitive integrated employm

NPR Explores Disparities in Workers’ Compensation Options

February 29, 2016

A recent episode of NPR’s Morning Edition highlighted disparities in access to workers’ compensation for work-related injuries.

President Obama’s 2017 Budget: Impact on Employment and Health Care for People with Disabilities

February 29, 2016

On February 9, 2016, President Obama and his administration released their proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2017.

StatsRRTC Releases Its 2015 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium and 2015 Annual Report

February 29, 2016

The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Disability Statistics and Demographics (StatsRRTC), a project that compiles statistics on disability in the United States, has recently released its