Workers with Disabilities

“Your Dream, Your Team” Website - A Toolkit to Help Job Seekers with Disabilities 

The new website was created as a result of the Disability Employment Initiative grant. The goal is to improve career pathways outcomes for youth with disabilities through career training, employment, and supportive services. 

The Your Dream, Your Team website was developed as a resource to improve career exploration and employment for job seekers with disabilities, with an emphasis on outcomes for youth with disabilities (ages 14-24).

Your Dream, Your Team was developed by CDO Workforce, Hempstead Works, Tompkins County Workforce, and Change Impact with guidance from the DEI team at the New York State Department of Labor.

The website offers useful tools, guidance, forms, and other resources to support job seekers with disabilities and the individuals and organizations who support them, including community-based organizations, employment counselors, Disability Resource Coordinators, and parents who want to introduce their child to a career pathway and prepare them for a stable, long-term career.

The site also offers a variety of resources for businesses that are designed to help businesses learn how to be more inclusive and support employees with disabilities.

We invite you to explore the Your Dream, Your Team website!

We welcome your feedback to help us make improvements. Please share widely to help us get the word out about this valuable resource, and when possible please include a link to the Your Dream, Your Team on your website. We appreciate your help!

Your Dream Your Team presentation from NYS APSE Regional Meeting (2020-11-17)

Check out:


Disclosing Your Disability Workshop


Road Map to an Inclusive Workforce Conference - Addressing Youth with Disabilities, Career Pathways, and Employment A Disability Employment Initiative (DEI) Round 8 Virtual Conference

Recording available from this conference streamed live on August 13, 2020 

View/Download the Agenda

COVID-19 Resources

Presentation: Increasing ABLE Account Savings through Employment during COVID-19 

From the National Disability Institute and ABLE NRC, with a special presentation by CDO Workforce Disability Resource Coordinator (DRC) Kathy DeAngelo. 

Financial Resources from the National Disability Institute (NDI) Financial Resource Center: These resources contain program information and frequently asked questions about COVID-19 and can help people with disabilities and their families understand how to deal with the current pandemic financially.

View the Resources

Includes information for SSI & SSDI recipients. Shared From

"With ongoing impact of covid-19 still not fully understood by the community at large, individuals with disabilities who regularly access a series of public benefits are left with a variety of questions about the impact of the various federal and state legislative and administrative actions on these various benefits. Key language in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) serves as a guidepost from which the impact on benefits can be better understood.

See this Helpful Resource

Plain Language Guide

Looking for plain language resources on the Corona Virus? Green Mountain Self-Advocates has created a guide written by and for people with disabilities.

Go Here to See the Guide

In Demand Careers in Healthcare and manufacturing!

  • Do you want to obtain the skills and credentials necessary to achieve living wage employment?
  • Do you need assistance with paying for the training and credentials required to move up a career ladder?
  • Can you benefit from on-going support and disability services resources including job placement, job retention, benefits counseling (Ticket to Work) and career guidance?

Developing your career shouldn’t be an insurmountable hurdle. If you have a disability, you already face daily challenges.  But while the Americans with Disabilities Act protects you in many circumstances from workplace discrimination, protection doesn’t equal opportunity. And you may well be the first teacher an employer has in understanding how to accommodate a disability.









Download the Career Pathways Worksheet

CDO Workforce Career System can help you. We can:

  • Advise you on what questions a prospective employer can and cannot ask you about your disability.
  • Suggest ways you can help an employer make your work station or situation meet your needs at minimal cost and effort to both of you.
  • Suggest good interview techniques to help make sure your disability isn't an issue.

Please contact your nearest CDO Workforce Center for more information and assistance.

Disability Resource Coordinators (DRC) are available for benefit counseling and additional services.

To download our flyer, please click here

Services for Youth with Disabilities

Guideposts for Success

Guideposts for Success is a tool from the National Collaborative on Workforce & Disability for Youth that shows what youth with disabilities need to successfully transition to adulthood. It looks at: school preparation, youth development & leadership, career preparation, connecting activities and family involvement. To access the Guideposts for Success, GO HERE.

CDO Youth Program

CDO (Chenango-Delaware-Otsego) Youth program provides a comprehensive services that focus on assisting out-of-school youth with disabilities in the CDO area.

We provide services to help youth prepare for postsecondary education and employment opportunities, attain educational and/or skills training credentials, and secure employment with career/promotional opportunities.

To be eligible, out-of-school youth (OSY) must be between the ages of 16 to 24, not attending school, and have a disability OR have one or more barriers to employment.

Our Youth program has an emphasis on providing work experiences and career path exploration. Services include: alternative high school equivalency services; paid and unpaid work experiences, pre-apprenticeship programs, internships and job shadowing, and on-the-job training; occupational skill training; education offered concurrently with workforce preparation and training; leadership development opportunities; supportive services; mentoring; follow-up services; comprehensive guidance and counseling; financial literacy education; services that provide labor market and employment information; and postsecondary education and training preparation activities.

To learn more about our youth programs, please visit your nearest CDO Workforce Center or visit:

Equal Opportunity Employer/Program. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.

CDO Workforce Work Incentive Practitioner Services 

Work Incentive Practitioners provide confidential services to people with disabilities who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and/or Social Security Disability Income (SSDI). They educate beneficiaries on how employment will affect their public benefits such as SSI, SSDI, Medicare, Medicaid, subsidized housing and food stamps. Learn more about this program and how we can help.

Please Like our Facebook Page

We regularly post new resources, events, and job opportunities. Please like and share our CDO Workforce Disability Employment Initiative Facebook page. Thank you!


CDO Workforce ADA & Disclosure Workshop

Learn about your employment rights as protected under the Americans With Disabilities Act. Discussion will include your right to choose if you want to disclose your disability, when to disclose, how to disclose, and how to request an accommodation. Visit our calendar to see when the next class is available and how to register. 

Career Onestop

View the competencies and career pathways that are essential for workplace success.

The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and industry partners collaborate to develop career pathways and maintain dynamic models of the foundation and technical competencies that are necessary in vital industries of the American economy. The goal of the effort is to promote an understanding of the skill sets and competencies that are essential to educate and train a globally competitive workforce.

The models serve as a resource to:

  • Identify specific employer skill needs
  • Develop competency-based curricula and training models
  • Develop industry-defined performance indicators, skill standards, and certifications
  • Develop resources for career exploration and guidance

If You Need Transportation

A new transportation option is now available; a "Ride Sharing" website that matches drivers and riders with similar work destinations in the area. Now, for the first time ever, 511NYRideshare has information on three south central NY counties: Otsego, Delaware, and Chenango.

Whether you need a ride or are a driver in need of gas money the 511NY Rideshare website can help! Once you register you’ll have access to match with other users as well. Carpooling can be a convenient, money saving travel experience. Check out all that they have to offer for ride matching. Simply Google 511NYRideShare and log in (or register if you are not yet a member) and go to the "Find a Ridematch" page to see who your potential carpool partners are.

ABLE - Achieving a Better Life Experience Act

The ABLE Act recognizes the extra and significant costs of living with a disability. These include costs, related to raising a child with significant disabilities or a working age adult with disabilities, for accessible housing and transportation, personal assistance services, assistive technology and health care not covered by insurance, Medicaid or Medicare.

Eligible individuals and their families can establish ABLE savings accounts that will largely not affect their eligibility for SSI, Medicaid and other public benefits. The legislation explains further that an ABLE account will, with private savings, "secure funding for disability-related expenses on behalf of designated beneficiaries with disabilities that will supplement, but not supplant, benefits provided through private insurance, Medicaid, SSI, the beneficiary's employment and other sources."

Visit their website:  To Learn more, you can Watch the History of ABLE Accounts here.

Article: ABLE Accounts Shouldn't Impede Access to Housing, Feds say

HUD Guidance on ABLE accounts

What is the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)?

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law in 1990. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. The purpose of the law is to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. The ADA gives civil rights protections to individuals with disabilities similar to those provided to individuals on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, age, and religion. It guarantees equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities in public accommodations, employment, transportation, state and local government services, and telecommunications. The ADA is divided into five titles (or sections) that relate to different areas of public life.

In 2008, the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) was signed into law and became effective on January 1, 2009. The ADAAA made a number of significant changes to the definition of “disability.” The changes in the definition of disability in the ADAAA apply to all titles of the ADA, including Title I (employment practices of private employers with 15 or more employees, state and local governments, employment agencies, labor unions, agents of the employer and joint management labor committees); Title II (programs and activities of state and local government entities); and Title III (private entities that are considered places of public accommodation).

For more information visit:

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations for businesses and State and local governments

The ADA Home Page provides access to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations for businesses and State and local governments, technical assistance materials, ADA Standards for Accessible Design, links to Federal agencies with ADA responsibilities and information, updates on new ADA requirements, streaming video, and information about Department of Justice ADA settlements.

United Way 2-1-1 DDinfo

DDinfo is an online database of services for those with developmental or intellectual disabilities, for Broome, Chenango, Delaware, Otsego & Tioga counties in New York State.

US Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy Working Works Campaign

The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy has a new public service announcement on the benefits of work, and the roles different people play in helping individuals who become ill or injured stay in the workforce.

To watch the videos, please click here

Social Security and Supplemental Security Income Disability Programs

The Social Security and Supplemental Security Income disability programs are Federal programs that provide assistance to people with disabilities. While these two programs are different in many ways, both are administered by the Social Security Administration and only individuals who have a disability and meet medical criteria may qualify for benefits under either program. Social Security Disability Insurance pays benefits to you and certain members of your family if you are "insured," meaning that you worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes. Supplemental Security Income pays benefits based on financial need. To learn more, go to 

NYS Civil Service Seeks Workers with Disabilities Under 55b Program

The New York State's programs to Hire Persons/Veterans with Disabilities consist of two specialized programs. These programs are coordinated efforts to place individuals with disabilities in entry-level State jobs. No initial written or oral examinations are required for appointment. You must however, submit a formal application and a medical evaluation may be necessary for program certification.

Section 55-b of the New York State Civil Service Law authorizes the New York State Civil Service Commission to designate up to 1,200 positions normally filled through competitive examination to be filled through the appointment of qualified persons with disabilities. (Section 55-c authorizes the designation of up to 500 positions in the non-competitive class to be filled by qualified wartime veterans with disabilities.) In general, an entry-level position that is filled only through an open-competitive examination (one open to the public) may be used for a 55-b or 55-c appointment. Read more:

Discussing Disability with the Potential Employer

The ADA prohibits employers from asking questions that are likely to reveal the existence of a disability before making a job offer (i.e., the pre-offer period). This prohibition covers written questionnaires and inquiries made during interviews, as well as medical examinations. However, such questions and medical examinations are permitted after extending a job offer but before the individual begins work (i.e., the post-offer period). Learn more:

Tactful answers to illegal interview questions

Tips on protecting your right to privacy without jeopardizing a job offer:

NY Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) Front Door

The Front Door is the way OPWDD connects people to the services they need and want. Once you enter, a person-centered planning process begins which helps you learn about and access service options taking your needs and desires into consideration. It will also give you the chance to direct your own service plan or help your family member or loved one as they direct theirs.

Visit their website

Local Front Door Information Sessions

Job Accommodation Network (JAN)

JAN provides the following A to Z listings by disability, topic, and limitation. This information is designed to help employers and individuals determine effective accommodations and comply with Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). You will find ADA information, accommodation ideas, and resources for additional information.

JAN's A to Z is a starting point in the accommodation process and may not address every situation. Accommodations should be made on a case by case basis, considering each employee’s individual limitations and accommodation needs. Employers and individuals are encouraged to contact JAN to discuss specific situations in more detail.

Voters with a Disability Resources

Webinar: Wearables as Assistive Technology

Best Sites for Job Seekers with Disabilities from The Balance Careers

Self-Advocacy in the Workplace: Requesting Job Accommodations

Tools for Life

Tools for Life from Georgia Tech: Researching and locating new apps can be an overwhelming task. The Tools for Life AppFinder database helps make your app search much easier. The Tools for Life AppFinder has hundreds of apps for living, learning, working and playing.


The total cost of the Disability Employment Initiative Round 8 program is 2.5 million dollars. The 2.5 million dollars (100%) is funded through a U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration grant.

This workforce product was funded by a grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration. This product was created by the recipient and does not necessarily reflect the official position of the U.S. Department of Labor. The Department of Labor makes no guarantees, warranties, or assurances of any kind, express or implied, with respect to such information, including any information on linked sites and including, but not limited to, accuracy of the information or its completeness, timeliness, usefulness, adequacy, continued availability or ownership. This product is copyrighted by the institution that created it.

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