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DOL Awards Abt Team Equitable Transition Models Evaluation Contract

Rockville, Md.  –  The Department of Labor (DOL) awarded an Abt Global-led team a five-year contract to evaluate the Equitable Transition Models (ETM), designed to improve employment and related outcomes for low-income youth and young adults with disabilities.

Low-income youth and young adults with disabilities face unique and often difficult challenges in transitioning to the workforce. Along with their families, they must navigate complex benefit and educational systems to obtain financial, educational, and health-related supports. Compared with their peers without disabilities, they have poorer educational, employment, and independent living outcomes. Beyond their disability, they often face multiple barriers to improving their economic well-being, from  homelessness to involvement with the justice system.

To address these challenges, the ETM program will develop scalable strategies to enable low-income youth and young adults with disabilities to transition to employment. DOL’s Chief Evaluation Office (CEO) is partnering with its Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) to conduct an evaluation of the program.

Working with CEO and ODEP, under a $3.8 million contract, the Abt team will conduct knowledge development activities; design and carry out implementation, outcomes, and customer experience studies; conduct an evaluability assessment to develop future research; and provide broad dissemination to policymakers and practitioners.

“Improving outcomes for youth and young adults with disabilities remains a critical task for U.S. social policy,” notes Dr. Hassan Enayati, senior associate at Abt. “Evaluating these efforts supports DOL’s goals of developing evidence-based policies and practices to foster a more inclusive workforce and increase quality employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.”

Key Abt partners include Westat, Dr. Kelli Crane of the University of Maryland, Drs. Valerie Mazzotti and Karrie Shogren of the University of Kansas, Andrew Karhan of San Diego State University, and Transen, a service provider for transitioning youth.

About Abt Global
Abt Global is a global consulting and research firm that combines data and bold thinking to improve the quality of people's lives. We partner with clients and communities to advance equity and innovation—from creating scalable digital solutions and combatting infectious disease, to mitigating climate change and evaluating programs for measurable social impact.

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