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Salient and subtle aspects of demand side approaches for employment retention: Lessons for public policymakers

by Rochelle Habeck,John Kregel,Colleen Head and Satoko Yasuda

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Public policies to stimulate demandside factors that affect the employment status of people with disabilities need to consider workplace efforts that support the continued employment of employees who develop work limitations from any cause (back door factors), as well as the hiring behaviors of employers (front door factors). Workplace participation rates are influenced by employment exits as well as placements.

Little focus has been given to preventing separation from employment, despite evidence of the progression to public disability benefits. Factors that place employees who develop impairments or work limitations at risk for early exit from employment are discussed. Preliminary findings from a qualitative study of successful firms are identified and illustrated with practice examples. Implications of these effective interventions are raised, including the provision of workplace based services, the need for accommodations overtime, and the role of employer incentives for retention.