Worker Services

For people who have significant disabilities who want to work, we can arrange and pay for long-term job supports in collaboration with a statewide network of nationally accredited community rehabilitation programs.

These services are offered through our basic extended employment program, often referred to as EE-Basic. You're most likely to benefit from these services if you already have work skills and experience and are highly motivated to achieve success in your job.

Long-term job supports, also referred to as ongoing supports or extended services, typically provide assistance in training or retraining job tasks, dealing with schedule changes, adjusting to new supervisors, advancing to new job tasks or positions, and managing changes in non-work environments or life activities that affect work performance.

Services Categories

Supported Employment

Supported employment is an independent job in a competitive setting that offers people with disabilities the same wages and benefits as workers without disabilities. Supported employment may be a step in the vocational process to achieving successful independent employment without the ongoing support services of job retention staff.

Community Employment

Community employment might be a job as part of a work crew that includes a high percentage of people with disabilities and in which workers often are paid less than the customary wage for similar work performed by individuals without disabilities. Community employment provides intensive job supports and often is a step toward achieving supported employment.

Center-based Employment

Center-based employment is typically a job in an industrial production, food service, or janitorial operation in a community rehabilitation program. You will perform real work assignments while earning wages determined by your rate of production and developing work skills. The focus of the service is on disability-related issues that present real or perceived obstacles to independent employment.

Long-Term Supports

We provide statewide employment services for people with serious mental illness through several Coordinated Employability Projects.

These projects rely on local collaborative relationships between persons with mental illness, community mental health programs, community rehabilitation programs, employers, WorkForce Centers and county social services. Individual projects are targeted to certain counties and operate in collaboration with targeted local mental health services.

Because the need for ongoing employment support services usually extends well beyond the usual vocational rehabilitation program time limits, continuation funding is administered through the Extended Employment program and is referred to as Extended Employment for Persons with Serious Mental Illness (EE-SMI).

The projects are operated jointly with the Mental Health Division of the Department of Human Services. Access to the program is controlled by each individual grantee or agency.

Program funds have not been increased or expanded recently. The program is currently not open for new applications. If additional funds are made available, funding opportunities will be announced in the Minnesota State Register.

For More Information

Contact: Claire Courtney
Phone: 651-259-7346,  
Toll free: 800-328-9095 
TTY: 651-296-3900 
Fax: 651-297-5159 

Supported Employment

We can provide consultation and referrals for supported employment services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. These services typically are available from the Minnesota Employment Center for Persons Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing (MEC).

MEC is a specialized program that helps people who are deaf or hard of hearing with finding a job, job coaching, keeping a job, and training and technical assistance. It receives some grant funding through DEED.