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DRS and Vocational Rehabilitation

Jason Price, VR Program Manager: After receiving VR services, I have gone
from a social security recipient to an independent tax-paying home-owning
citizen. So my life has improved tenfold.

Voice over (VO): Vocational Rehabilitation introduces or reinstates people with physical or mental disabilities into the workforce.

As a result, employed clients become taxpayers, reducing their need for disability benefits and social services.

Dale Oard, Owner, All Star Adverting and Promotions: It just makes you feel like you’re actually contributing to society. You’re actually go to be creating taxes and everything, paying taxes. Instead of feeling like you’re a burden.

VO: A person is eligible for vocational rehabilitation services if he or she has a physical or mental disability that is a substantial barrier to employment. The individual must be able to benefit from vocational rehabilitation services which are required to prepare for and find a job.

Kelly Criser, OSD Kindergarten Teacher: VR helped me with paying for my college tuition, VR helped pay for my certification test, VR also had a career placement program that was available to me.

VO: VR services primarily consist of career counseling, vocational education and training, medical services to improve employment opportunities, special technology and job placement.

Stacye Alfred, VR Specialist: We use informed choice to help that client determine what’s best for them and to try to find jobs that are in job market are realistic for that person.

Charles Kelley, Maintenance Sam's Club: When I was in a wheelchair I didn’t think that I would be able to walk again. I was down a lot but my counselor really helped me, kept pushing, helped me out a lot on that.

VO: Vocational Rehabilitation also offers a head start on work experience for high school students with disabilities employment assistance from Services for the Deaf and free recruitment, job-related training and information about tax credits for employers.

Greg Gattis, Manager Sam's Club: Our employees with disabilities are very eager, very focused. They want to prove themselves. They want to show that they are just as capable as anyone else.

Copyright 2008 Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services.