Assisting TANF Recipients Living with Disabilities to Obtain and Maintain Employment: Creating TANF and Vocational Rehabilitation Agency Partnerships

Published: February 15, 2008
Topics:
Self-Sufficiency, Welfare & Employment
Projects:
Identifying Promising Practices for Helping TANF Recipients with Disabilities Enter and Sustain Employment, 2006-2008 | Learn more about this project
Types:
Reports

The transformation of the nation’s cash assistance system into a temporary assistance system that includes work requirements, sanctions for noncompliance, and time limits has increased the importance of providing services that will help all TANF recipients, including those living with a disability, quickly obtain and maintain competitive employment.  TANF employment programs typically offer job search assistance, case management to monitor participation in required program activities and, to varying degrees, opportunities to participate in work experience, community service, and vocational education programs.  Individuals living with disabilities, however, may have service needs that go beyond those that TANF programs typically provide.  Examples include intensive case management, rehabilitation services, assistive technologies, substance abuse and mental health treatment, counseling, and job matching and coaching.  While some TANF programs help recipients access mental health and substance abuse treatment and provide more intensive case management to help recipients address personal and family challenges, most don’t have the resources or expertise to provide the full array of services individuals living with disabilities might need to succeed in the workplace.  One way to make these services available is to link TANF recipients with agencies such as Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) that specialize in providing these services.