Expanding Employment Advocacy at DRM

Posted on April 15, 2021

by Julia Endicott

After several decades with a different agency, DRM began administering the Client Assistance Program or CAP in June 2020. As we approach the one-year mark of the CAP’s return to DRM, we celebrate the expansion of employment advocacy services that DRM is able to provide.

What is the CAP?

The CAP is a federally-funded program that provides information, assistance, and advocacy to people with disabilities who apply for or are receiving services under the Rehabilitation Act. In Maine, most individuals receiving services under the Rehabilitation Act are those who receive services through the Bureau of Rehabilitation Services, either through the Division for Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) or the Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired (DBVI). Individuals may also be receiving Independent Living Services. In Maine, these services are administered through AlphaOne. DVR and DBVI both provide services for people with disabilities who want to gain, maintain, or advance in their employment. Services are tailored to individual needs, and examples include funding and support for self-employment plans, attaining post-secondary education, and ongoing coaching and support to maintain competitive employment.

How can the CAP help me?

The CAP can provide advocacy, information, and if necessary, legal representation for an individual who may have a dispute regarding any services they are receiving under the Rehabilitation Act, which includes their Vocational Rehabilitation services. The CAP allows DRM to expand our employment advocacy work and continue to support all people who are interested in working to find meaningful employment.

Since the CAP returned to DRM, our advocates have been helping individuals resolve disputes with their providers as well as actively conducting outreach to ensure awareness of the services we now have available. We have had the pleasure of presenting to educators working with transition-aged youth, as well as self-advocates, and we look forward to continuing to expand our outreach across Maine. If you have questions about the CAP or DRM employment advocacy services in general, please reach out to us!

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