No sheltered workshops in Vermont

By Dr Bryan Dague

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Dr Bryan Dague is the program director at Think College Vermont, and Research Assistant Professor at Centre on Disability and Community inclusion, University of Vermont, United States of America. In this fabulous article he describes the inclusive employment program he helped implement in Vermont. The program aims to close sheltered workshops and put efforts into tertiary level training programs for people with intellectual disabilities as well as programs to support people in open employment. The program has been a tremendous success.

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‘Since the initial supported employment demonstration project, inclusive employment of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities has steadily increased. The sheltered workshops gradually closed as people found employment in the community or became involved in other community services. In 2002, Vermont closed its last sheltered workshop for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities making Vermont the first state with no sheltered work.’

Further reading

Dague, B. (2012). Sheltered Employment, Sheltered Lives: Family Perspectives of Conversion to Community-Based Employment. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 37 (1) (2012), 1-11.

Vermont State Annual Report on Developmental Disabilities Services for State Fiscal Year 2014. Disabilities Services Division, Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living, Agency of Human Services, State of Vermont

Vermont State System of Care Plan for Developmental Disabilities (2014). Developmental Disabilities Services Division, Department of Disabilities, Aging and Independent Living, Agency of Human Services, State of Vermont

Vogelsberg, R.T. (1986). Competitive employment in Vermont. In F.R. Rusch (Ed.), Competitive Employment Issues and Strategies. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes.

Wehman, P. (1986). Competitive employment in Virginia. In F.R. Rusch (Ed.), Competitive employment issues and strategies. Baltimore: Paul H. Brookes.

Zero Project (2017). World Future Council, Geneva, Switzerland
https://zeroproject.org