Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Roesslera, R.T., Rumrill, Jr, P.D., Li, J., Dalyb, K., & Anhaltb, K. (2016). High-priority employment concerns of Hispanics/Latinos with multiple sclerosis in the United States. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 45 (2), 121-131.
Title:  High-priority employment concerns of Hispanics/Latinos with multiple sclerosis in the United States
Authors:  Roesslera, R.T., Rumrill, Jr, P.D., Li, J., Dalyb, K., & Anhaltb, K.
Year:  2016
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Publisher:  IOS Press
DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3233/JVR-160817
Full text:  http://content.iospress.com/download/journal-of-vocational-rehabili...   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  No

Structured abstract:

Background:  Much of previous research on multiple sclerosis (MS) and employment has focused on people of European descent who acquire the disease, and very little is known about the experiences and concerns of people with MS from traditionally underrepresented racial and ethnic groups (e.g., African-Americans, Hispanics/Latinos), even though evidence indicates that the incidence of MS is increasing among non-Caucasians worldwide.
Purpose:  The objective of this study was to identify high-priority employment concerns from Hispanics/Latinos with MS, whose needs for services and supports must be better understood to increase rehabilitation success of people with MS.
Study sample:  This article presents descriptive findings from a national survey of the employment concerns of Hispanics/Latinos with multiple sclerosis (MS; N?=?206). Representing nine chapters of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, respondents were asked to evaluate 38 employment concerns items on two dimensions, importance and satisfaction, for the purpose of identifying strengths and weaknesses in the employment policies and practices affecting the labor force participation of people with MS.
Data collection and analysis:  Descriptive statistics such as frequencies and percentages were used to answer the three research questions. For each of the 38 employment concerns items, an Importance rating was calculated as the percentage of respondents who evaluated the item as important. Likewise, each item was also assigned a Satisfaction rating that was calculated as the percentage of respondents who were satisfied with the current status of that item. An employment strength was defined as an item with a high Importance rating (i.e., greater than 60 percent) and a high Satisfaction rating (i.e., greater than 60 percent). An employment weakness was defined as an item with a high Importance rating (i.e., greater than 60 percent) and a low Satisfaction rating (i.e., less than 60 percent).
Findings:  Results revealed a total of 29 employment strengths and nine employment weaknesses.
Conclusions:  The purpose of this article was to describe the highest priority strengths and weaknesses in existing employment policies and services as identified by a targeted sample of Hispanic/Latino adults with MS (N= 206). Of the 38 employment concerns in the survey, 29 met the criteria for employment strengths, and nine met the criteria for employment weaknesses. Still, only 43 percent of the respondent sample was employed at the time of the survey, which raises some question as to why respondents were satisfied with 29 of the 38 employment concerns items. Possibly, many of those who were not currently working attributed their unemployment more to MS symptoms (e.g., fatigue, weakness, and cognitive limitations) than to workplace factors such as employment discrimination.

Disabilities served:  Multiple sclerosis
Populations served:  Culturally diverse populations (e.g., African Americans, Native Americans, and non-English speaking populations)
Interventions:  Accommodations
Benefits counseling
Flexible or job-sharing work conditions
On-the-job training and support
Personal assistance services (PAS)
Outcomes:  Full-time employment
Employer-sponsored benefits