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APSE’s Public Policy Priorities

Below is a summary of APSE’s Public Policy Priorities.

Regulation and Implementation of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) (S. 1356)

President Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) into law on July 22, 2014. WIOA is designed to help job seekers access employment, education, training, and support services to succeed in the labor market and to match employers with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy. APSE is currently monitoring the implementation of WIOA and providing recommendations for regulations during open comment periods.

Transitioning to Integrated and Meaningful Employment Act (TIME) of 2013

APSE is asking members of Congress to this bi-partisan bill that would phase out the use of “special wage certificates” that allow the discriminatory practice of paying people less than minimum wage and transition them to integrated

employment positions paying competitive wages.

Support OFCCP Efforts to Strengthen Hiring by Federal Contractors

The Office of Federal Contract Compliance (OFCCP) at the US Department of Labor has issued strong draft regulations to strengthen the long-standing requirements in Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act for federal contractors regarding hiring and employment of people with disabilities. APSE is asking Congress to support these draft regulations, and oppose any efforts to stop their implementation.

Reduce Public Support for Facility-Based Services

The majority of public resources for people with disabilities, particularly those with intellectual and developmental disabilities, continue to be used for facility-based work and non-work programs – this despite clear evidence that even individuals with the most significant disabilities – can work successfully in the community. Through a number of recent actions, the US Department of Justice has recently indicated that the placement of individuals with disabilities in facility-based services such as sheltered workshops is in conflict with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the US Supreme Court’s Olmstead decision. APSE is asking Congress to support efforts to shift public funding from facility-based services into community supports that result in real jobs and real pay.

Protect Medicaid

People with disabilities are highly reliant on Medicaid not only health care, but a broad range of other supports, including services that help them find and maintain employment. While APSE recognizes the challenges of increasing Medicaid costs,cuts in Medicaid that will impact the employment supports for people with disabilities, will actually be counter-productive, reducing their ability to be taxpayers, and increasing their reliance on Social Security and other benefits.

Support CMS Efforts to Increase Support for Employment

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued guidance to states, encouraging them to use funds under 1915 (c) Medicaid waivers to increase employment in the community. APSE is asking members of Congress to support these efforts, and oppose any effort focused on stopping them, and/or efforts encouraging the increased use of Medicaid funding for facility-based employment and day services.