Developmental Disabilities and Early Childhood Supports Division
Employment services are community based, and individuals are supported to earn minimum wage or better.
Services and supports are tailored to the individual with goal that all individuals can work and contribute in their community.
Services Available for:
- Clients receiving Home and Community Based Waivers (HCBS) with DDA and/or enrolled in a School-to-Work transition program
- Clients enrolled into services from a contracted provider
- Clients who want to work
For More Information
Consider These ProgramsThe School-to-Work Program helps students leave school with a job.
Roads to Community Living (RCL) is a project created to help people with developmental disabilities who are thinking of moving back into the community from an institution (Residential Habilitation Centers (RHCs), nursing homes or children’s mental health facilities). The project is federally funded through the Money Follows the Person grant and runs through 2020.
More About Employment Services
The Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI)
Special Education (external) is responsible for funding and delivering programs to students with disabilities from the age of three through high school.
The DSHS/Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)
Provides vocational guidance and counseling, and can help individuals develop an individual employment plan for obtaining competitive employment. An application for services may be requested through the individual's DSHS/DDA case manager or prior to graduation through the school.
To walk through the system:
Begin by confirming your eligibility for service with DSHS/DDA and request a referral to state DSHS/DVR. Funding options should be discussed with the DSHS/DDA case manager and the DSHS/DVR counselor. These might include funding from DSHS/DVR, KCDDECSD, and/or the Social Security Work Incentives (SSWI) (external).
The SSWI is a way of setting aside your own resources to purchase needed vocational services and still receive federal Social Security Administration (SSA) benefits. The SSWI may include a Plan for Achieving Self Support (PASS), Impairment Related Work Expense (IRWE), or other work incentives.
At any point during this process individuals are encouraged to research, interview, and select an appropriate employment service provider. Please refer to the Employment Service Providers tab.
For more information:
King County Developmental Disabilities and Early Childhood Supports Division: 206-263-9046
Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, Developmental Disabilities Administration: 206-568-5700
Washington State Department of Social and Health Services, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation: 206-721-7300
Social Security Administration: 1-800-772-1213
Checklist for Accessing Adult Services Prior to Seeking Employment
Apply for DSHS/DDA Services
Apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
Apply for DSHS/DVR Services
Identify/develop funding resources (i.e. SSWI, DSHS/DVR funding options, Transition funding, KCDDECSD, or parent/family contribution) with your DSHS/DDA case manager and DSHS/DVR Counselor
Research, interview and select an employment vendor
Types of Employment Services
- Individual Employment
Job placement, follow-up and maintenance services to help people obtain and continue employment in the community. Services are tailored to individual needs, interests, abilities, and promote career development.
- Group Supported Employment
Services are part of an individual's pathway to integrated jobs in typical community employment. Opportunities offer ongoing supervised employment for groups of no more than 8 workers with disabilities in the same setting. Examples include enclaves, mobile crews, and other business models employing small groups of workers with disabilities in integrated employment in community settings.
Take the time to learn about what support options are available to you.
Choosing your own provider is one of the first steps towards putting you in the driver’s seat.
Your support provider should be a bridge builder who helps you meet your goals and builds supportive relationships with employers, coworkers, neighbors and other community members. It is very important that you choose someone you can work with. The County provides a list of qualified providers and information about each agency or contractor. You should plan on visiting with two or three different agencies and asking as many questions as you need to feel informed. Ask a family member, friend or support person go with you.
In order to make your interview time the most valuable, think about what is most important to you and develop questions that will get you that information prior to your meeting. A list of interview questions has been included to assist you. You will also need to be prepared to state your expectations, goals and what you are willing to do to help. This is a partnership and the provider will be checking to see if you can work together.
Think about what kind of questions to ask
- What experience does he/she have working with people with disabilities?
What kind of services does he or she offer? (For example: job development, on-the-job training, follow-along, community connections)
Will I be updated weekly, bi-monthly, and monthly? (What is your preference?)
Can I call the job developer during the job search process?
Describe some “typical” jobs or volunteer situations that have been developed through your agency.
Explain your strategies behind developing jobs for people with disabilities.
Explain how you develop connections in the community.
Be clear about your needs
Explain your expectations as clearly as possible.
Ask the person whether he/she can meet those expectations.
Do you like this person?
Do you trust this person?
Does he/she treat you with respect?
How does this person present him/herself?
How does he or she present the people he/she serves?
INTERVIEWING EMPLOYMENT VENDORS
Examples of Questions to Ask When Interviewing Service Providers
The following questions are intended to prepare you to interview an employment vendor about their employment services and the quality of those services.
Would you be willing to interview with us at our home?
How does your agency develop job leads for people?
What companies have you placed people at and in what types of jobs?
What is your marketing approach with a new, prospective employer?
How many people does this agency serve in supported employment?
Do you provide training for employers, employees or family members?
What type of feedback on job development and training do you provide for the family? How often?
When you are doing job development will you provide transportation for the individual, if necessary?
Will the job developer also provide the on the job training or will another individual be hired to do so (i.e. job coach, natural supports set up, co-worker trainer, etc.)?
How long do you usually provide job coaching for a new worker and will you set up natural supports on the job site as part of the on the job training?
Describe some of the factors you consider when matching an employment site and the individual?
What kind of activities will you do with the individual to better acquaint yourself with them?
What/how do you charge for your services?
Do you help support or develop transportation services for the individual when a placement has been determined?
These questions are only a general guideline developed to assist you with preparing yourself for the interview process. As you prepare, you will begin to think of questions that may be more specifically related to your particular needs as a consumer. Don’t hesitate to ask any question you may have during the interview process!
Prior to meeting with the vendor, it is suggested that you have a firm understanding of what program you are affiliated with DDA, DVR, School-to-Work, etc. Providing the vendor with program information will save both of you time. This information will assist the vendor in understanding what type of services you may be inquiring about and funding available to assist you in your program development.
As you begin to interview vendors, the process will raise additional questions that you may have never thought of. This is okay! If you feel the need to do second interviews to complete a more specific comparison of services, take the extra time to re-interview. There is no timeline, but your own, for the selection of a service provider!
1935 152nd Place NE
Bellevue, WA 98007
Cares of Washington
1833 North 105th Street, Suite 202
Seattle, WA 98133
5204 Solberg Drive SW
Lakewood, WA 98499
16300 Christensen Rd. #340
Tukwila, WA 98188
Phone: 206-829-2001, Ext. 306
Highline College - Employment Services
P.O. Box 98000, MS 99-180
Des Moines, WA 98198
3805 108th Ave NE, Suite 204
Bellevue, WA 98004
Northwest Center - Employment
1119 SW 7th Street
Renton, WA 98057
13008 Beverly Park Road
Mukilteo, WA 98275
12550 Aurora Ave N
Seattle, WA 98133
Puget Sound Personnel, Inc.
PO Box 82774
Kenmore, WA 98028
19730 64th Ave W, Suite 215
Lynnwood, WA 98036
Phone: 425-333-4114 / 1-888-450-4112
Seattle Central College - Mainstay
1701 Broadway, BE3210
Seattle, WA 98122
Shoreline Community College - Community Employment Program
16101 Greenwood Avenue N.
Seattle, WA 98133
SKCAC Industries and Employment Services
19731 Russell Road
Kent, WA 98032
Sound Employment Services
709 NE Northlake Way
Seattle, WA 98105
SOUND (Formerly Sound Mental Health)
1600 E. Olive Street
Seattle, WA 98122
Sunrise Services, Inc. dba Community Trades and Careers
6505 218th Ave SW, Suite 7
Mountlake Terrace, WA 98043
Phone: 206-569-7040 EXT 710
6040 California Ave SW
Seattle, WA 98136
Tavon Learning Center
PO Box 1243
Issaquah, WA 98027
The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc.
2501 S. Plum Street
P.O. Box 14959
Seattle, WA 98144
Total Living Concept
1132 W. James Street
Kent, WA 98032
201 Auburn Way North, Suite B
Auburn, WA 98002
University of Washington - Employment Program
Seattle, WA 98195-7920
16000 Christensen Road, Suite 240
Tukwila, WA 98188
Washington Vocational Services
111 SE Everett Mall Way, Building C, Suite 100
Everett, WA 98208
6947 Coal Creek Pkwy SE #209
Newcastle, WA 98059
4232 198th Street SW
Lynnwood, WA 98036
What is the difference between the State Developmental Disabilities Administration and the King County Developmental Disabilities and Early Childhood Supports Division?
The DSHS/DDA is responsible for determining eligibility and authorizing paid services. The DSHS/DDA currently provides the following services and programs: case management, Medicaid Personal Care, residential services, residential habilitation centers, family support, dental, mental health, Voluntary Placement Foster Care program, and the Medically Intensive program. The DSHS/DDA administers services on a regional basis. Region 2 is the DSHS/DDA office that serves King County.
The KCDDECSD is responsible for providing employment and day program services. The KCDDECSD currently provides the following services: Early Intervention/Birth-to-Three, employment, community access, housing, in-home family counseling, social and recreational activities, information and assistance, advocacy, homelessness projects, and program development/technical assistance.
How can I get employment services from KCDDD?
You must be a client of DSHS/DDA. For information on steps to take to access KCDDECSD employment supports see the Navigating the Employment System tab.
How do I apply for DSHS/DDA services?
If you are, or will be, living in King County, contact DSHS/DDA at 206-568-5700 or 1-800-314-3296. For additional information, visit their website. (external)
How do I apply for Social Security benefits?
To receive benefits from the Social Security Administration, you must go through an application process. To begin this process, contact Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 or visit their website.
Will my job/wages affect my Social Security benefits?
There are situations where not all of your wages are counted against your Social Security benefit so contact a benefits planner to see how your income can be adjusted or how you may be able to work without impacting your SSI.
What is the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)?
The DSHS/DVR provides a wide variety of services that support eligible individuals to obtain employment, including vocational guidance, counseling, and development of an employment plan. For more information about their services, including how to apply, visit their website (external).
What is the Working Age Adult Policy?
The Working Age Adult Policy is a policy issued by DSHS/DDA that promotes gainful employment in integrated settings in the community for adults with developmental disabilities who are between the ages of 21 and 62. Find out more here.
What is an Employment Service Provider?
An Employment Service Provider is a KCDDECSD contracted agency that supports people with disabilities to prepare for, obtain, and maintain successful employment.
There are over 20 Employment Service Providers contract with King County, many with years of expertise in supporting individuals with disabilities to reach their work goals. Many of these Employment Service Providers are also contracted with DSHS/DVR. Employment Service Providers can also be referred to as Vendors, Employment Agencies, and Community Rehabilitation Programs. Please refer to the Employment Service Providers tab for information on our Employment Service partners.
How do I pay for services offered by an Employment Service Provider?
Employment Service Providers can be paid through a variety of resources, including DSHS/DVR, DSHS/DDA, KCDDECSD, DSHS/DDA Home and Community Based Services Waivers, Social Security Work Incentives, and private payment.
Do I need to utilize the support of an Employment Service Provider?
No. Employment Service Providers are just one option for having job support. For example, some people locate jobs on their own or with the support of family. Additionally, once employed, some people may solely utilize the natural support of coworkers and supervisors at their place of employment.