Wonder if you are eligible for extra help with employment and training goals?
If you have a disability that makes employment hard for you, you may be eligible for services to help you prepare for, obtain, and maintain a job. Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a U.S. Department of Education funded program that provides these services in every state, territory, and many Indian Nations. Vocational Rehabilitation serves all disability groups, but some states have a separate program called State Services for the Blind that provides specialized services for individuals with legal blindness.
Who is eligible?
To qualify for VR services, an individual must:
- Have a physical or mental impairment that presents a substantial barrier to employment; and be able to benefit from VR services to achieve employment.
- Need VR services to prepare for a job, or to get, keep, or regain a job.
People who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits are considered eligible for VR, unless they are too disabled to benefit.
What services are available from Vocational Rehabilitation?
Vocational Rehabilitation is an individualized employment program. Participants may receive diagnosis, an individualized rehabilitation program, counseling and guidance, training, job placement, and services to support job retention. Many applicants are referred by schools, hospitals, welfare agencies, and other organizations, but you may apply directly for service.
How do I apply for services?
Contact your local office for the specific process to apply. You will be asked to submit a written application, and given instructions there. Eligibility decisions are made within 60 days of application.
Find your nearest local office by either contacting your state’s vocational rehabilitation office, or through the American Job Center network, where many Vocational Rehabilitation staff are located.
What other disability employment programs are available?
- The Ticket to Work Program(TTW) helps people who receive Social Security due to a disability find work and keep their health coverage.
- If you are a veteran with a disability, check out Veterans ReEmployment for help with employment, training, and financial assistance.
- Independent Living Centers (ILCs) provide job coaching, training, and information on disability in the workplace to help people with disabilities maintain their independence. Find your nearest ILC.