Breaking job barriers for people with disabilities

KUSA - People who have a disability face many challenges, but one of the most difficult is finding a job.

Approximately 10 percent of Colorado residents have a disability, but they are more than twice as likely to be unemployed as someone without a disability, according the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Disability Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Options teamed up at 9NEWS to help disabled people who want to work.

If you want to join the workforce, but your disability is serving as a barrier, Colorado Disability Vocational Rehabilitation may be the right place for you. Colorado DVR has locations throughout the Denver metropolitan area and throughout the state.

If you are eligible for Colorado DVR, you may receive individualized services and goods to reach your selected employment goal - individuals receive training, equipment, health-related services, job placement assistance, guidance and counseling, to name a few of the services available.

Employment Options put over 400 people back to work in 2013 through the Ticket To Work program. The program is free and voluntary for SSDI/SSI beneficiaries who want to try to go back to work without automatically losing cash and medical benefits.

Work From Home is their specialty because jobs are abundant, and it helps so many who are housebound or who cannot work on-site for other reasons. These jobs require taking in-bound calls and range from helping make reservations to order taking to customer service to gaming and tech support and so much more.

Fall hiring is starting now so hundreds of jobs available. Applicants for work at home jobs must have landline phone, high-speed Internet connection, a computer with at least 1 GHZ Processor and 1 GHZ RAM.

Anyone can pre-qualify on our site at

Colorado DVR may be able to help job seekers obtain some of this equipment.

While there is a current wait time to receive Voc Rehab services, individuals with the most significant needs are prioritized to receive services before others with less significant barriers, and hundreds of individuals have been moved into an active status from the wait list this year. Individuals are taken off the wait list based on disability severity and date of application, so it is a good idea to participate in an intake and get a spot held.

Colorado DVR assistance also includes business plans for individuals who desire to be entrepreneurs, partners with Colorado employers recruiting qualified talent, help for individuals who have recently lost vision to re-learn daily living skills and collaborates with school districts around the state to help youth with disabilities consider post-high school career options.

To locate an office near you, call: 303-866-4150, Toll-free: 1-866-870-4595, or visit

Employment Assistance for Individuals on SSI and SSDI

Colorado DVR is an "Employment Network" (ENs) for beneficiaries of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). There are other ENs that may be able to assist individuals on SSI or SSDI who want to work, grow their earnings, and decrease dependence on SSA benefits. And, these organizations may be able to assist right now – without a wait period. Many have face-to-face services and supports and others, like Employment Options here today, can work with you through web and phone supports. Some ENs specialize in their job placement assistance. For instance, Employment Options specializes in work-at-home opportunities.

The website can help you locate an EN that is just right for you:

Benefits Counseling/Consultation for Individuals on SSI and SSDI

If you do receive SSI or SSDI and would like more information about how you can work and the impact of earnings on your cash assistance and health insurance, you can get in touch with a Community Work Incentive Coordinator (CWIC):

You can locate your local area CWIC by calling (303) 691-9339.

Employment Options may be able to help If you or someone you know is receiving SSDI or SSI and you want to work. Employment Options is a Social Security Certified Employment Network for the Ticket to Work program.

The great thing about the Social Security Ticket to Work program is that it is voluntary and free for individuals ages 18 through 64, who are currently receiving Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income.

It is a work-incentive program designed so that beneficiaries do not lose all their cash or medical benefits when they start working. This means that they can try working again without economic fear. And there is no penalty for trying.

Employment Options provides job and benefit counseling to ticket-holders to place them in suitable work. Having been in business for over 20 years, they have established long-term working relationships with reputable national and local employers. As Paula Vieillet, President of Employment Options says, "Our specialty is work at home because it enables so many people who are housebound or cannot handle on-site work the opportunity to get back into the workforce."

Typical work from home job openings involve some aspect of inbound customer service, for example order taking, provide information about products and services, reservations, tech support, gaming support, medical case management and many more. A full list of our most current job openings is at

As far as what job seekers need to work from home, it varies by employers and positions . However, these are the minimum basics.

  • High School Diploma/GED
  • Able to work a set schedule which often includes weekends & full-time training hours
  • PC (no Macs) with minimum 1 GHz to 1.5 GHz processor, 1 GB RAM, 40 GB free space
  • Strong computer navigation skills (move between multiple windows and programs)
  • Type at least 25 words or per minute (practice prior to applying)
  • Existing High Speed Internet service (no Wireless)
  • Quiet noise free home office space, free of distractions
  • Clear speaking voice

Anyone can quickly see if they are eligible for our free job placement services through the Ticket To Work program by applying directly on our website.

If you do not qualify for our program, we still try to help by sending you a resource letter with links to other organizations that can help. Interested job seekers can "Like' our Facebook page to stay updated on job openings, tips, and free events such as our virtual job fairs that are open to the general public.

Helpful Resources

(KUSA-TV © 2014 Multimedia Holdings Corporation)


To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the
Conversation Guidelines and FAQs

Leave a Comment