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An analysis of self-employment outcomes within the Federal/State Vocational Rehabilitation System

by Grant Revell, Frank Smith, and Katherine Inge

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Revell, G., Smith, F. & Inge, K. (2009). An analysis of self-employment outcomes within the Federal/State Vocational Rehabilitation System. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 31(1), 11-18.

An objective of the START-UP/USA project, funded by U.S. Department of Labor, The Office of Disability Employment Policy, is to study the extent to which the Federal/State Vocational Rehabilitation Program supports self-employment vocational alternatives for individuals with disabilities. The purpose of this report is to provide an analysis of self-employment participation and outcomes by individuals with disabilities within the Federal/State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) System. This report focuses on outcomes in selfemployment through a longitudinal analysis of closure data contained in the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) 911 Closure Reports for the period covering Fiscal Years 2003–2007.

The data in this report provides a snapshot into the extent to which self-employment is occurring within the VR system as an employment outcome. First, it presents a longitudinal summary of the extent to which self-employment outcomes are occurring within the General and Combined VR agencies in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Second, it identifies the State VR agencies with the highest percentage of selfemployment outcomes among all individuals closed in employment. Third, this report compares the weekly and hourly earnings in self-employment to earnings for all VR closures in employment. Fourth, it compares self-employment outcomes in relation to the primary disability of the VR service recipient. Fifth, it identifies the level of participation in self-employment among Native Americans/American Indians.