Addressing Barriers to EmploymentNovember 16, 2006
PanelistsJeanne Dent, Department of Mental Health, Southeast Region (email@example.com)Amy Lopes, Career Advancement Resources (firstname.lastname@example.org)Linda Curtis, Connecting Activities/WIA, Metro South/West Region (email@example.com)Debra Hart, Institute for Community Inclusion (firstname.lastname@example.org)Jennifer Leonard, The Skills Library, Moderator (SkillsLibr@aol.com)
GoalThe goal of today's workshop is to generate a lively and productive discussion among participants from many different youth-serving agencies and to explore: - Common ground among different youth-serving agencies- Specific strategies, tools and resources - Positive messages for youth (affirming language and approaches)- Next steps for cross-agency trainings and resource exchanges
Some Background ... According to the National Coalition on Workforce and Disability:30 to 40 % of youth in foster care attend special education classes (DiLorenzo & Richards, 2006) 36% of high school dropouts have learning disabilities and 59% have emotional or behavioral disorders (Blackorby & Wagner, 1996) 75% of youth in the juvenile justice system have some type of disability (DOJ, PACER, 2005)
Some Background ... In Massachusetts:DYS Cross-Agency Involvement:80 % report witnessing violence and met criteria for PTSD79 % self-reported substance abuse75 % of girls report DSS involvement55 % of boys report DSS involvement40 % were receiving DTA assistance40% received special education services45% previous out-of-home placement by another agency87% from non-traditional homes40% families on public assistance75% with prior probation 35% self report weekly alcohol use50% self report weekly marijuana use
Kimberly Case StudyKimberly is seventeen years old and enrolled in the 10th grade at a public school in suburban Massachusetts. Seven years ago Kimberly moved from Vietnam to the United States with her mother. Due to her limited English skills, she was held back in school when she first attended school in the U.S. and she is now overage for her class. However, Kimberly currently does well in school - she has an A average across her classes, and passed the grade 10 MCAS. She has expressed interest in going to college.Kimberly's mother has severe mental-health issues and was not capable of adequately caring for her, and Kimberly has been in foster care for the last five years. Kimberly is in good physical health overall, however, an injury from childhood left her with a minor physical disability affecting one of her hands.Kimberly's employment history is spotty and includes being fired for shoplifting on the job. She has history of juvenile court-involvement due to the shoplifting charges. Kimberly has regular sessions in-school psychologist per court orders. The psychologist describes her as shy, introverted, and dedicated to doing well in school. Kimberly has mentioned to the psychologist that she is interested in getting a job. She has also recently disclosed a concern that she may be pregnant.
Jason Case StudyJason is an eighteen-year-old male living on various friends' couches. He is in good physical health. He is not currently medicated or receiving mental health services for a previously diagnosed condition. He dropped out of school during the 11th grade and has a 5th grade reading level but excelled in math and computers. He played on the school basketball team while in high school.A youthful offense negates his chance to live with his mom who is on TANF. He, his mom, and younger siblings have a good relationship. His mental health diagnosis occurred when he was in DSS foster care. He reports to a CRC (Community Re-entry Center) because he is still committed to DYS. He has come to the local One Stop Career Center seeking employment. His sole employment history is one month bagging at Stop & Shop.
Discussion QuestionsWhen a youth worker interviews a young adult, what questions are important? What questions shouldn't be asked? What questions should be asked in order to learn about the person's strengths and goals?What career guidance, resume writing, job search or interviewing strategies might be helpful?What resources are available to support a person's job search?What policy changes would make it easier to support this person's job search?Where can youth workers learn about techniques for working with youth with disabilities, court involved youth or other topics?
Discussion Question #1When a youth worker interviews a young adult, what questions are important? What questions shouldn't be asked? What questions should be asked in order to learn about the person's strengths and goals?
Discussion Question #2What career guidance, resume writing, job search or interviewing strategies might be helpful?
Discussion Question #3What resources are available to support a person's job search?
Discussion Question #4What policy changes would make it easier to support this person's job search?
Discussion Question #5Where can youth workers learn about techniques for working with youth with disabilities, court involved youth or other topics?
Addressing Barriers to Employment Resources and Tools
Resources / Websites - ICIResources/Websites:www.communityinclusion.orghttp://www.ncset.orghttp://www.ncwd-youth.info/index.htmlhttp://www.nsttac.org/
Addressing Barriers to Employment Resources and Tools The Massachusetts Work-Based Learning PlanThe Work-Based Learning Plan opens up conversations about the foundation skills and specific workplace and career skills needed in a job, internship or co-op placement. These conversations help to: - Clearly communicate job expectations;- Help the participant to be productive and successful on the job;- Help the participant to recognize opportunities to build skills including foundation skills and more advanced workplace and career specific skills; - Make it clear how the participant can use this job or internship as a learning opportunity. The Work-Based Learning Plan can be downloaded from http://www.skillslibrary.com
Addressing Barriers to Employment Resources and Tools
Pre-Employment and Career Development ActivitiesPre-Employment Curriculum & WorkshopsCareer Fairs and Career DaysClassroom Guest SpeakersCareer Exploration and Career PlanningJob ShadowingLeadership and Community Service Programs Entrepreneurship ProgramsCareer-Related ClassesOther Activities Share information online at: http://www.p21.us
These experiences ... Provide a positive message Provide mentors and role models Provide experiences that build skills Provide experiences that build knowledge Provide experiences that open up career options Provide tools and strategies for working through barriers
Discussion Points / Workshop #2Navigator (at Career Centers)Employer Education ADA mythsEmployer campaign hire youthTax credits ?Postsecondary optionsWork-Based Learning PlanPortfoliosReferencesFive Bold StepsPERSONALITY / APTITUDE TESTSUsing online applications follow-up phone callsSELF ESTEEM PEER SUPPORT PROJECTSVolunteer WorkAuditing college courses
Pathways to Success by 21 Statewide Strategic PrioritiesStrategy #1Public AwarenessStrategy #3Early Intervention
Strategy #4Outreach & Support
Strategy #2EarlyIdentificationStrategy #8PersistentBarriersStrategy #9Share DataStrategy #5Increase Alt. Ed. & TrainingStrategy #6Work-ReadinessAssessmentStrategy #7UnifiedStaffDevelopment