Inclusive Employment and Career for Boston Youth with Disabilities

Pathways to the Talent Pipeline

Young people with disabilities, like all youth, have dreams, interests and talents that can take them on a pathway to a successful and fulfilling adulthood. But the very low rates of employment for people with disabilities speaks to the many barriers they will face on that journey. With the right supports from family, schools, employers and others, they can not only avoid a life of poverty and dependence but can also achieve the satisfaction of feeling valued in their work while bringing value to their place of work.

In Boston, the community has come together to take the first step. Through the Workforce Development Task Force of the Boston Special Education Transition (B-SET) project (a project of Massachusetts Advocates for Children), 70 organizations joined forces to develop a comprehensive Action Plan to guide a strategic approach for change and a Resource Guide to help youth and families navigate the system of services. The Plan contains an executive summary, a goal area “dashboard” with the many action steps already underway or recommended, and a useful chart that shows the key pathways Boston youth take from school to employment.

On October 24, 2015, the Action Plan was publicly released at the State Street Channel Center in South Boston.

Task Force Organizational Members

  • Action for Boston Community Development
  • Asperger/Autism Network (AANE)
  • Autism Speaks
  • Bay Cove Academy
  • Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology
  • Best Buddies
  • BEST Corp. Hospitality Training Center
  • Boston Asian: Youth Essential Service
  • Boston Center for Independent Living, Inc.
  • Boston Metropolitan District Building Trades Council
  • Boston Private Industry Council
  • Boston Public Schools- Re-Engagement Center
  • Boston Public Schools- Special Education
  • Boston Public Schools Special Education
  • Parent Advisory Council
  • Boston Youth Services Network (BYSN)
  • Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester
  • Boys and Girls Club of Greater Boston
  • Bridge Over Troubled Waters
  • Butler Foundation
  • Bunker Hill Community College
  • City on a Hill Charter Public Schools
  • Commonwealth Corporation
  • Crittenton Women’s Union
  • CVS Health
  • Disability Task Force
  • East Boston Neighborhood Health Center
  • Easter Seals
  • EDCO Youth Alternative High School Program
  • El Centro de Cardenal - HiSET Program
  • Federation for Children with Special Needs
  • Freedom House
  • Goodwill Industries, Inc.
  • Greater Boston Employment Collaborative
  • Health Resources in Action
  • Hull Lifesaving Museum/Maritime Apprentice Program
  • J.E. & Z.B. Butler Foundation
  • Jewish Family & Children’s Service
  • Jewish Vocational Service
  • Justice Resource Institute
  • Massachusetts Advocates for Children
  • Massachusetts Community Action Network
  • Massachusetts Department of Career Services
  • Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services
  • Massachusetts Department of Elementary and
  • Secondary Education
  • Massachusetts Department of Mental Health
  • Massachusetts Department of Public Health
  • Massachusetts Executive Office of
  • Health and Human Services
  • Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission
  • Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development
  • MGH Aspire
  • MIRA Coalition/New American Integration Institute
  • More Than Words Bookstore
  • National Alliance on Mental Illness of Massachusetts
  • NESCA (Neuropsychology Education Services for
  • Children and Adolescents)
  • Notre Dame Education Center
  • Partners for Youth with Disabilities
  • Roxbury Community College
  • SkillWorks
  • Spaulding Rehabilitation Network/Partners HealthCare
  • State Street Corporation
  • The Boston Foundation
  • TJX Companies
  • Triangle, Inc.
  • UMass Boston Institute for Community Inclusion
  • United Way of Massachusetts Bay and
  • Merrimack Valley
  • Work Inc.
  • Work Without Limits
  • Year Up
  • Youth Options Unlimited
  • Youth Violence Prevention Funders Learning Collaborative
  • YouthBuild
  • Task Force Organizational Members