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Occasional Paper

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Agency Organization & Operation, Employment, Partnerships, Access to Integrated Employment, AIE, ThinkWork


Rehabilitation and Therapy | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Work | Vocational Rehabilitation Counseling | Work, Economy and Organizations


In 1998, five state agencies formed the Governance Group. Partner agencies included: Iowa Workforce Development, Department of Human Services, Department of Education, Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services and Department of Human Rights. The group was developed in response to a Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) request for proposals that included an advisory group for systems change efforts to expand employment opportunities to individuals with disabilities. By 2000, the five original partners had expanded their efforts by agreeing to provide oversight and consultation to a Department of Labor (DOL) Work Incentive Grant and brought on two additional partners, the Department for the Blind and the Iowa Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities. Through its work, the group discovered that many barriers were the result of a system of services under multiple funding streams, with different performance measures and, sometimes, different missions. The Governance Group also identified that success within the system was due to positive interactions and collaboration. This motivated the members to continue meeting even after the initial grant expired. Subsequently, the Governance Group partner agencies signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) in 2003, which continues to provide a framework for their ongoing collaborative efforts.


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