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Last modified: April 29, 2021

Agency Connections

East Bay ShirtsAgency connections are an integral part of transition planning. Preparing for future outcomes requires assistance from various agencies that can provide continued training and support that will promote development, increase independence and enhance the overall quality of life for an individual.

As individuals move from school services to adult services, a shift from “entitlement” to “eligibility” occurs. While in school, students have the right to receive a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). As students transition to adulthood, they must qualify, or be found eligible to receive services applied for. Getting connected to agencies early on is imperative in preparing for your son/daughter’s future.

Included below is information from a variety of agencies that can provide further assistance. Please click on the links below, read through the information provided and apply.

Guardianship is another important component in Transition Planning. When a student turns 18 years of age, they become their own legal guardian unless guardianship has been obtained and individuals involved have appeared in court. Adult agencies and all others will refer to and gain consent and permission from the adult student, unless a guardian is appointed. Please review Guardianship information below.

Please be proactive in getting connected and involved. If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us at 801-374-4874.

*Agency information below is from the Utah Parent Center website

Utah Parent Center

Guardianship Associates of Utah

At age 18 the individual with a disability reaches the age of majority and is considered the adult. Decision making is now the legal responsibility of the individual with a disability unless parents take out guardianship. If your child is unable to make decisions, guardianship should be considered. There are different levels of guardianship the judge can grant full guardianship or partial guardianship in any of the following areas: medical, habilitation, education, residential, and financial. Only a court can determine if a person is incapacitated. The petitioner has a choice regarding attorney representation. The petitioner can choose to have an attorney to represent them or choose to represent themselves. For more information call the Utah Parent Center at (801) 272-1051

Division of Services for People with Disabilities

The Division of Services for People with Disabilities (DSPD) promotes opportunities and provides supports for people with disabilities to lead self-determined lives by overseeing home and community-based services for more than 5,000 people who have disabilities.

Vocational Rehabilitation (VR), Utah State Office of Rehabilitation

Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is to assist eligible individuals in obtaining employment and increasing their independence. Don’t rule out some type of employment just because your child’s disability is more significant. VR can offer counseling and guidance, job development and placement, career evaluation, supported employment and job coaches. Contact VR to see what types of programs and assistance is available. The Utah State Office of Rehabilitation provides transition services to eligible students with disabilities as they transition from school to adult life. The school can invite a transition counselor to the IEP to discuss what possible assistance can be provided. The school will ask you to sign a permission form in order for them to invite outside agencies.

Department of Workforce Services

Provides accessible employment related and support services responsive to the needs of employers, job seekers, and the community.

Employment Personal Assistance Program (EPAS)

Medicaid personal care services provided to people with disabilities to support them in maintaining employment. The individual needs to receive Medicaid and work at least 10 hours a week. EPAS is designed to provide personal assistance for people who may have physical, mental, cognitive, and/or developmental disabilities that are working in integrated, competitive employment. The assistance provided is for tasks directly related to maintaining employment. Services include support with eating, bathing, dressing, transportation, mobility, meal preparation, shopping, money management, medication management and symptom management.

Utah Work Incentives Planning Services (UWIPS)

Many parents are concerned that if their child works social security benefits will be lost. Utah Work Incentives Planning Services (UWIPS) helps people on Social Security and their families understand how working impacts their Social Security and other benefits (including Medicaid, Medicare, housing and food stamps , etc. UWIPS also educates individuals about work incentives and community resources that might be helpful. UWIPS is a program through the Utah State Office of Rehabilitation. If your youth or young adult is a Vocational Rehabilitation client, ask your Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor to refer you to the UWIPS program.

Social Security

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) disability programs are the federal programs that provide assistance to people with disabilities. These two programs are different in many ways. Both are administered by the Social Security Administration. Only individuals who have a disability and meet medical criteria may qualify for benefits under either program.

The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program makes cash assistance payments to individuals who are aged, blind, or have a disability (including children under age 18). This program is based on a family’s need, considering both income and resources. The federal government funds SSI from general tax revenues.

Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) provides benefits to individuals with disabilities who are “insured” by workers’ contributions to the Social Security trust fund. These contributions are the “FICA” which is deducted from your paycheck or the earnings of your spouse or your parents. Title II of the Social Security Act authorizes SSDI benefits. Use Social Security’s Benefits Eligibility Screening Tool to find out which programs your youth may be eligible for at:

Ability 1st Utah

Promoting independence for people with disabilities. From learning critical skills to meeting new people, Ability 1st can help. At Ability First we come together to learn about independent living and how to live.

Recreation and Habilitation Services (RAH)

Recreation and Habilitation Services is committed to supporting individuals with developmental and physical disabilities in their pursuit of independence and self-enhancement through training, recreation, and involvement in the community. Our organization exists to provide education and recreation programs for individuals with developmental and physical disabilities. Our main goals in providing these services are to enhance the quality of life for these individuals and their families by helping them achieve maximum independence.

UTA Paratransit

UTA’s paratransit buses are designed for people whose functional abilities require individualized transportation service. Trips can be scheduled in advance and provides riders with curb-to-curb transportation between home, work, appointments and community destinations. UTA’s paratransit fleet includes wheelchair-accessible buses and vans. To utilize paratransit services, riders must be approved through an in-person interview and abilities assessment. Learn more about paratransit services and eligibility here.

In addition to UTA’s special curb-to-curb paratransit buses, all of UTA’s trains and buses in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and offer access ramps or level boarding platforms. UTA is also in the process of upgrading bus stops with concrete pads wherever possible, to facilitate boarding for passengers with limited mobility.