Plan could help developmentally disabled get jobs

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MILWAUKEE (AP) — A federal ruling aims to help find jobs for people with developmental disabilities, but some Wisconsin families worry about how it will be implemented.

The decision says people with cognitive disabilities should be given every chance to work and live in integrated settings, where they're surrounded by non-disabled people as much as possible.

That could mean the end of "sheltered workshops," where they work away from nondisabled workers, often because they feel safer and less anxious.

Some parents say their adult children cope best in such safe surroundings, and they want the option retained. Critics say sheltered workshops don't do enough to build skills or help transition workers into mainstream employment.

The state is inviting public comment on the matter through Sept. 2, before submitting a transition plan Oct. 2.

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