The Career Counseling and Information Referral Service (CCIRS) is a 4 hour course required of all persons participating in a subminimum wage (known as 14(c) entities) program, under reforms to the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The act states that individuals receiving a sub-minimum wage must have the opportunity to prepare for, obtain, maintain, advance in, or regain competitive integrated employment, including supported or customized employment. These participants must participate in these classes a minimum of 1 time per year and organizations with a 14(c) certificate are not permitted to perform the CCIRS class.
In response employU has comprised a team of specialists to present a CCIRS training program. The class includes information about opportunities with Vocational Rehabilitation, Agency for Persons with Disabilities and other local community organizations and resources that provide employment- related services and supports. The classes are generally 4 hours in length and are often divided into 2, 2-hour sessions. They are held at the day training center and the staff of the day program is encouraged to attend especially if APD ratios are required. At the end of the presentation, all attendees receive a certificate of participation that will document the completion of these required activities.
The training program hits upon the different options used to help someone become and stay employed in an integrated setting. Topics discussed include Discovery Services which involve an extended assessment intended to allow the evaluator to learn about the participant on a personal level in efforts to create a feasible job goal; Employment Training classes to develop skills to present themselves professionally; On the Job Trainings which are used to build confidence and to determine abilities and interest, Job Carving, as well as Supported Employment Job Placement and coaching which provides a customized job that fits their abilities. For those that do have the Medicaid Waiver Services available to them extended services such as long term Supported Job Coaching and life skills trainings are able to help maintain employment.