COVID-19: The Economic Crisis and Employment for People with Disabilities

Season 4, Episode 3 — 27 August 2020

We talk with we talk with Julie Christensen, the Director of Policy and Advocacy at APSE. APSE has recently conducted a major survey of employment service providers about the impact of COVID-19 and its economic consequences for people with disabilities. We talk about the ways the COVID-19 crisis has affected the employment of people with disabilities, from those who can’t work owing to comorbidities associated with their disability, to people who have lost their jobs, to essential workers. Additionally, we discuss the effect on employment support personnel and services. But we also discuss ways that employment for people with disabilities might emerge stronger on the other side of this crisis.


Julie J. Christensen, MSW, PhD, is the Director of Policy and Advocacy at the Association of People Supporting Employment First (APSE). Prior to joining APSE, Dr. Christensen served as the Director of the Center for Disabilities and Development (CDD), the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) at the University of Iowa, where she was also research faculty in the Carver College of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry. Dr. Christensen’s previous experience includes her role as the Director of Employment Programs at the Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities at the University of Rochester (a New York UCEDD), where she served as the Principal Investigator and Project Director for the New York State Partnerships in Employment Systems Change project, Co-Director of the New York Employment First State Leadership Mentor Program, and as the New York State Coordinator for Project SEARCH. Dr. Christensen received her undergraduate degrees in advertising and music from Syracuse University, and a Masters in Social Work from Roberts Wesleyan College and her Ph.D. in Health Practice Research at the University of Rochester.

Donald Taylor is the Manager of Operations and Digital Presence at TASH and the producer of YES To Employment.
This interview was originally recorded 27 July 2020.

The audio of this interview and the transcript have been lightly edited for clarity.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. You are free to copy, redistribute or adapt it for any purpose, commercial or non-commercial, provided you adhere to the terms, including that you attribute the original source.

The post COVID-19: The Economic Crisis and Employment for People with Disabilities appeared first on YES! Center.

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