Direct Support Professional Careers for People with Disabilities
2:30pm - 4:00pm ET
Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) play a key role in supporting people with disabilities in attaining and retaining employment and fully integrating into their communities. They may serve as job coaches and provide ongoing training and support, as well as help with daily living activities. Despite the critical work of DSPs, the profession faces challenges including labor shortages, high turnover, and low wages. Yet, especially in states that have taken steps forward mitigating these barriers, the DSP profession can offer flexibility, progressive wages, benefits, and inclusive, accessible training to improve skills and care for clients.
In this webinar, experts from the field shared their experiences in creating opportunities for people with disabilities to work as DSPs using customized employment and reasonable accommodations. Learn about an innovative DSP Academy that trains people with disabilities to work as DSPs. RCM of Washington Chief Executive Officer Amy Brooks and Chief Innovation Officer Susan Brooks describes RCM’s approach to training and employment placement. Two DSP Academy graduates, Carlos Hilton Zacarias and Tinesha Gray, shared their experiences participating in the training, applying their skills as DSPs, and excelling in a job that is inclusive and tailored to their abilities.
Webinar participants learned about:
- The importance of customization and accommodation in training and employment for DSPs.
- Care economy career pathways for people with disabilities.
- Benefits of the DSP profession for people with disabilities.
- The need for a labor market culture shift to allow for more flexible and inclusive approaches to accommodate workers’ and clients’ needs.
- Findings from the LEAD Center report and listening session on the DSP workforce.