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Oklahoma ABLE Tech and Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) are thrilled to bring the Oklahoma Workforce System the first ever Workforce Access for All Academies.
Oklahoma ABLE Tech and the Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) have partnered to bring training to the Oklahoma Workforce System through the first ever regional Access for All Academies designed to help create a workforce for all Oklahomans including individuals with disabilities.
Unlike employment outcomes for women, African Americans, and Hispanics, which have been improving over time, the gap between employment rates of those with and without disabilities has expanded significantly.
The statistics are stark:
The Access for All Academy is a necessary training component to help staff close the gaps in workforce utilization, income, and poverty among people with disabilities. To best prepare all job seekers to gain employment, Workforce staff must be aware of the benefits and requirements for ensuring accessible Workforce services and environments.
The Academies will help the Workforce System Partners abide by a number of responsibilities including those that are part of the new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, or WIOA. According to the Department of Labor’s Fact Sheet on WIOA, the law “requires better employer engagement and promotes physical and programmatic accessibility to employment and training services for individuals with disabilities.”
The Access for All Academy will help staff learn how to best prepare and serve all individuals to have equal access to employment opportunities.
To help Oklahoma Works build a foundation for the Access for All initiative, Oklahoma ABLE Tech partnered with the DRS to provide 10 regional Access for All Academies across Oklahoma. The one-day seminar focused on accessibility in the built environment and in technology, as well as some of the legal drivers to create accessible points of contact between Oklahoma Works partners and job seekers in Oklahoma.
You can download both a PowerPoint and a PDF version of the slides used in the Regional Access for All Academies by following either of the links below:
ABLE Tech and DRS provided the following academies for Oklahoma Workforce System staff during the Fall of 2014. These training events took place over 2 days and went into more depth than the single day regional training events.
Day 1 covered topics such as ensuring accessible services for job seekers and/or employees with disabilities in the job market, laws that protect the rights of people with disabilities, and how the Workforce System can help to close gaps in employment, earning, and poverty. Participants represented the following categories:
Day 2 provided accessibility training for staff within the Workforce System that create digital material that job seekers and their own employees may use. Websites, software, and digital documents are three examples of tools and resources that we provide for job seekers and our own staff. It is vital that we make sure that we create more accessible digital material. Participants represented the following categories:
Other videos and transcripts can be found at the U.S. Department of Education website, OCTAE: Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.
The Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) expands opportunities for employment, independent life and economic self-sufficiency by helping Oklahomans with disabilities bridge barriers to success in the workplace, school and at home. DRS partners with numerous state groups, organizations and employers to provide Oklahomans with disabilities enhanced services. DRS is committed to Access for All in overcoming barriers to employment and services for consumers with disabilities statewide. Visit www.okdrs.gov.
ABLE Tech is a federally funded Assistive Technology Act Program serving Oklahoma. ABLE Tech provides training and technical assistance to Oklahoma state agencies, higher education, and CareerTech to help ensure that Oklahomans have full access to services, education, and employment opportunities. ABLE Tech’s role includes collaboration with the Office of Management and Enterprise Services to assist with the oversight and implementation of Oklahoma’s Electronic and Information Technology Accessibility law and standards. Learn more about the training and technical assistance on the Oklahoma ABLE Tech website.
Questions? Please call Oklahoma ABLE Tech at 800.257.1705 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
OK ABLE Tech and the Department of Rehabilitation Services wishes to thank our Career Technology Center partners for providing the locations for the academies. Thank you Tulsa Technology Center, Lemley Campus.