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Awardee:

North Carolina Department of Commerce

4327 Mall Service Center

Raleigh, North Carolina 27699-4327

Contact: Roger Shackleford, Executive Director

Phone: (919) 715-3300

Proposed Award Amount: $700,000

Community Served: North Carolina Statewide.

Project Emphasis: People with disabilities.

Summary Paragraph: In partnership with the North Carolina Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS), the North Carolina Commission on Workforce Development seeks to improve the employability, employment, and career advancement of persons with disabilities through enhanced services in all of the States 107 JobLink Career Centers and affiliates. First, three Regional Coordinators will design and coordinate a comprehensive training program for all staff. Second, under the direction of an Employment Coordinator, this grant would integrate the Model Employer Development program, currently used by DVRS, into the JobLink framework. In addition to implementing the array of services available to the employer, job retention needs of current employees will be addressed when a disability is interfering with job performance. The States Benefits, Planning, Assistance and Outreach projects will educate staff concerning SSA and concomitant public benefits and supports as well as Ticket to Work legislation.

Partnerships: Within the Department of Commerce the Commission of Workforce Development, Division of Employment and Training, and the Workforce Development Institute. Also, The Employment Security Commission and its Employment Services. The Programs section of the States Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services will partner with the Commission of Workforce Development and serve as subgrantee for the project. Other Divisions of the Department of Health and Human Services such as the Division of Social Services, Division of Services for the Blind, and the Division of Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Substance Abuse Services will also be active in this project. The North Carolina Community College System will work to improve basic education skills to JobLink Career Center participants with disabilities, while other service providers, advocacy groups, and employers will serve on the projects Advisory Council.