Why It Matters
People with I/DD can be employed in the community alongside people without disabilities and earn competitive wages. But too many barriers exist that lead to people with I/DD being unemployed or underemployed, hindering the opportunity for financial stability. Currently, people often leave school with little to no community-based vocational experience or planning for transitioning from school to work. Many have been placed in “prevocational” programs and “disability-only” workshops where they are paid below minimum wage and have little expectation of moving into competitive jobs where they can work alongside people without disabilities. These low expectations foster job discrimination.
When employed, few people have opportunities to advance, explore new possibilities, or, in their later years, retire. Unrealistically low limits on assets and earnings make people fear losing vital public benefits if they work too many hours or earn too much. Lack of other services — like transportation or of accommodations like assistive technology — can also hinder success.
What The Arc Is Doing
How You Can Help
There are many ways to advocate with and support The Arc’s grassroots movement.