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A Year After Restructuring, Rehabilitation Agency Hits Milestone

NH Vocational Rehabilitation no longer has a waitlist for individuals with the most significant disabilities.

CONCORD, NH – Officials from the state’s vocational rehabilitation bureau announced this week that all of its clients categorized as having most significant disabilities are now being served by the agency after moving into an Order of Selection process 11 months ago. New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation was restructured last year due to the discovery of overspending by the previous bureau’s leadership, dating back to 2012. Part of the restructuring included the consolidation of three offices, in order to preserve services for clients.

Since that time, employees in the bureau have been attentively moving Category 1 individuals into a career pathway and a brighter future. Future individuals with the most significant disabilities will also no longer have to be placed on a waitlist. Between September 2018 and March 2019, the bureau released more than 900 individuals from its waitlist.

“The changes that were made to restructure NH VR were not easy,” noted Frank Edelblut, the commissioner of the New Hampshire Department of Education, “but the restructuring has shown that the bureau is better serving its clients while also being put on sound financial footing. We are tremendously proud of the work of the team members at NH VR and we are immensely grateful to our clients and community partners who have – and continue – to patiently work with us during this time.”

“New Hampshire Vocational Rehab provides expanded opportunities to some of the Granite State’s most vulnerable citizens,” added Gov. Chris Sununu. “The team members of the bureau are to be commended for their continued efforts, dedication, and hard work, during this transition period. My administration will continue to value the importance of these programs, the impact that they have on kids and families and the return on investment that they generate.”

Only Category 2 and Category 3 individuals – those with significant and less significant disabilities – are still on the waitlist. Counselors at NH VR are continuing to assess service needs and complete plans for employment with customers daily.

“Counselors of the agency are hard at work assessing service needs and completing plans for employment with customers on a daily basis,” noted Lisa Hinson-Hatz, the state director of NH VR. “Our team has been working diligently and I’m pleased with their service to our clients during the last year.”

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