On December 6th – 7th, representatives from over 20 state vocational rehabilitation (VR) agencies and their community partners attended a targeted technical assistance forum on “VR-CRP Partnerships in Business Engagement and WIOA” in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The forum, co-sponsored by the Job-Driven VR Technical Assistance Center (JD-VRTAC) and the Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center (WINTAC), stimulated a rich discussion about developing strategic partnerships between VR and Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRPs) to better align agency business engagement efforts with the requirements of the recently enacted Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Participating state VR agencies shared their successes and challenges in partnering with CRPs to improve business relations’ efforts and customized employment outcomes for individuals with disabilities.
The interactive forum featured presentations highlighting models from Minnesota, Utah, Missouri, and Florida VR, and interactive roundtable discussions covering a range of related topics including CRP training, contracting, and capacity. Stay tuned for a follow-up white paper that will discuss more in-depth collaborative models, challenges, and approaches to developing effective VR-CRP partnerships for business engagement and employer supports.