Entities receiving the employment endorsement provide a variety of community-based employment services and supports offered in a range of settings to individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.

Oregon’s Employment First policy supports the employment of individuals with developmental disabilities in fully integrated work settings as the highest priority over unemployment, segregated employment, day-support activities, or other non-workday activities.

For those who successfully achieve the goal of integrated employment, future service planning focuses on maintaining employment or considering additional career or advancement opportunities.

Services allowed under this type

Job Development (Typically offered through Vocational Rehabilitation (VR))
Support to help an individual obtain competitive integrated employment through a variety of strategies.

Job Coaching
A job coach can support a person who is learning the new tasks of a job, and transitioning to a new environment. It might also include support to advance towards career goals.

As of July 1, 2015,, the individual’s job must pay minimum wage or better. ODDS has both initial and ongoing job coaching that may be available after the individual reaches a point of stabilization through VR.

Supported Small Group Employment Services
Support to work and further develop employment skills toward to help the person achieve competitive integrated employment. This service is provided in a regular business, industry, and community-integrated settings.

As of July 1, 2015, the individual’s job must pay minimum wage or better and be provided in a manner that promotes integration in the work place. This service may be provided in a group of two to eight people with disabilities.

Discovery
This is a comprehensive and person-centered employment planning service to inform and guide an individual seeking competitive integrated employment.

Discovery includes a series of work or volunteer-related activities to inform the individual and the job developer about the individual’s strengths, interests, abilities, skills, experiences, and support needs, as well as to identify the conditions or employment settings in which the individual will be successful. A discovery profile will also be developed as part of this process.

Employment Path Services (not in a sheltered workshop)
A time-limited service that supports an individual in gaining work experience and developing skills that can be transferred to competitive, integrated employment.

  • Certification Cycle: Five years

Certification Requirements - Initial

An application for endorsement to provide employment services is normally made at the same time as the application for Medicaid Agency Endorsement. Existing Medicaid-certified agencies may also elect to apply for the endorsement at a later date.

Along with the initial application, the employment endorsement requires the agency to provide additional supporting materials including, but not limited to, full agency policy and procedures specifically for the employment service as identified in OARs 411-345-0010 to 411-345-0270; business and financial documents to support the addition of the endorsement, personnel information, and criminal history checks/final fitness determinations.

  • FEE: No fee

Certification Requirements – Ongoing

Under the I/DD Licensing Unit, Office of Licensing and Regulatory Oversight, entities with the employment endorsement are required to undergo, at minimum, one quality assurance review during the five-year certification period. All geographic locations under the agency’s employment endorsement must have undergone required individual quality assurance reviews at their indicated intervals.

  • FEE: No fee

Entities are contacted several months prior to the indicated renewal date with a request for updated information and renewal application. Sites under review for this endorsement are given three days prior notice in order to assemble records at the required location.

Reviews are normally conducted within 30-120 days of certification expiration. Plans of improvement for any noted deficiencies are required. Entities holding the employment endorsement must demonstrate continued compliance with standards required by DHS, which are defined in Oregon Administrative Rules 411-345-0010 to 411-345-0270.​