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Archive: April 2013 (X)

  • In January, a class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of 2,300 individuals with developmental disabilities. The suit charges that the state in which these individuals live is not providing supported employment services and is thus not complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act.  As a result, individuals with disabilities in the state are working in sheltered workshops (also known as facility-based settings) and earning far less than the minimum wage.

    This recent court case prompted us to take a look at the NCI data and what they show about individuals with ID/DD working in facility-based settings vs. those working in community-based settings nationally. The results described below were obtained through t-tests comparing adults (over age 18) working in community-based settings and those who are working in facility-based employment. For the purpose of this blog, only group differences that were significant at the p<.05 level are reported. The data in this blog post come from the 2011-2012 administration of the Adult Consumer Survey.

    Those working in community based settings were significantly younger than those working in facility based settings (40 years old vs. 44 years old, respectively). In addition, those working in community based settings were more racially diverse. Just over one-fourth (26.5%) of them were non-white, as compared to 22.3% of those in facility-based jobs. A somewhat higher proportion of those working in the community were male (61.9%) than of those in facility-based jobs (55.6%).

    Those working at a community-based job were more likely to have a mild disability and less likely to have moderate, severe or profound disabilities.

     

    Level of ID

    Mild ID

    Moderate ID

    Severe ID

    Profound ID

    Facility-Based Job

    47.5%

    34.4%

    11.5%

    4.2%

    Community-Based Job

    69.8%

    25.0%

    1.8%

    0.7%

    In addition, individuals in facility based employment were significantly more likely to be taking at least one psychotropic medication than those in community-based settings (52% vs. 43%, respectively).

    Individuals working in community based employment were significantly more likely to be self-mobile and move themselves around their environment without the help of aids (95% vs. 87%). In addition, significantly more individuals working in facility based settings expressed themselves primarily through gestures or body language, as opposed to speaking (90% of individuals in facility based employment expressed themselves using spoken language, while almost 97% of those working in community based employment did so).

    Of the individuals whose service plan states a goal of integrated employment (community-based employment), 37.9% are currently working in a facility based job. People need support to reach the goal of community-based employment.

    We are working on a data brief on outcomes and demographic characteristics of individuals in community based vs. facility based employment. The data brief will further address the data demonstrated in this blog, as well as fascinating comparisons of hours worked and pay.

    As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions.

    Please note: The 2011-12 data reports will be released and placed on the NCI website this spring. For more in depth analysis of previous years’ NCI Adult Consumer Survey data please see http://www.nationalcoreindicators.org.

  • On April 2, 2013, monuments and buildings across the world were lit up with blue light to raise awareness of Autism and related disorders. Since April is Autism Awareness Month, we decided to look at what NCI data show about individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). We looked at the 2011-2012 Adult Consumer Survey (ACS) results. The results described below were obtained through t-tests comparing adults (over age 18) diagnosed with ASD and those who have not been diagnosed with ASD. For the purpose of this blog, only group differences that were significant at the p<.05 level are reported.

    About 12% of the respondents to the ACS were diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).  The average age of those diagnosed with ASD is significantly lower than that of those not diagnosed with ASD (34 and 45, respectively). Of those diagnosed with ASD, 76.8% were male.

    In addition, there is a significant difference in the race/ethnicity of those diagnosed with ASD. Of all White, Non-Hispanic respondents, 10.7% were diagnosed with ASD, while 14.0% of African American, Non-Hispanic respondents and 16.5% of Hispanic respondents were diagnosed with ASD.

    Race/Ethnicity

    Diagnosed with   Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Not diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    Total

    White, Non-Hispanic

    10.7%

    89.3%

    100%

    African American, Non-Hispanic

    14.0%

    86.0%

    100%

    Hispanic

    16.5%

    83.5%

    100%

    Autism Spectrum Disorder is characterized by, among other things, social and behavioral challenges. We decided to explore the data on these particular difficulties.

    NCI data show that significantly more people with ASD say that they do not have friends (12.7%) than those without ASD (7.9%). Similarly, significantly more people with ASD said that they do not have a best friend (31.4%) than those without ASD (23.8%).

    Almost fifteen percent (14.8%) of people diagnosed with ASD need extensive support to manage self-injury behavior, compared to 4.3% of those not diagnosed with ASD. Similarly, 18.6% of those diagnosed with ASD need extensive support to manage disruptive behavior (compared with 7.6% of those not diagnosed with ASD). Almost 50% of individuals with ASD (47.9%) take medications for behavior problems, compared with 23.5% of individuals not diagnosed with ASD.

    The increasing prevalence of Autism Spectrum Disorders demands a deeper understanding of the population diagnosed with the disorders. NCI data can offer a snapshot of that population.

    As always, we would love to hear your thoughts on these data. Please contact me at dhiersteiner@hsri.org

    Please note: The 2011-12 data reports will be released and placed on the NCI website this spring. For more in depth analysis of previous years’ NCI Adult Consumer Survey data please see http://www.nationalcoreindicators.org.