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Recovery funds help Vocational Rehabilitation Services provide full compensation for employers to train its clients

Release Date: March 15, 2010
Contact: Jim Jones, 919-733-9190

RALEIGH – The state Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS) is increasing the incentives for North Carolina businesses to provide job training to consumers of the agency’s services.

The division assists people with disabilities in obtaining and maintaining employment. It compensates employers for wages paid to agency-referred workers who the employers have agreed to train. Often, with training successfully completed, trainees are hired as regular employees.   

Federal recovery funds have made possible 100 percent reimbursement for the training.

“This makes a mutually beneficial arrangement an even bigger win for businesses,” said Linda Harrington, DVRS director. “The hundred-percent provision is time-limited so we urge employers looking to hire to take advantage of the new rate.”

Especially In a struggling economy, employers say the cost of recruiting, screening and training new employees is an obstacle to new hiring. Harrington says DVRS helps businesses reduce costs by hiring applicants who have received agency services like counseling, training, and education to get them ready for work.

“We’re able to match our consumer’s experience and skills with a business’s need,” says Harrington. “That saves the employer time and money.”

Besides pre-screening, Harrington says other factors give the division’s applicants an edge with prospective employers: agency professionals provide continuing, no-cost follow-up to make sure employee and job remain a good match; and tax incentives are available for hiring people with disabilities and for adapting the workplace to accommodate a specific disability. National data shows that often no accommodations are required in these situations.

According to Harrington, vocational rehabilitation services are among the most cost-effective of any offered by government. She pointed to statistics from a nationwide study: for every vocational rehabilitation dollar spent, $5 will be returned in taxes from the consumer’s  subsequent employment, and $14 to $18 will be returned to the local economy.

Moreover, says Harrington: “We serve every county in North Carolina so, for every employer,   we have a local office not very far away.”

For local office and other information: http://dvr.dhhs.state.nc.us or 1-800-689-9090