Employment & Community Inclusion

Employment First Success Stories

DSPD Employment First mission statement:

The Employment First mission for Division of Services for People with Disabilities (DSPD) is to ensure services offered by DSPD emphasize, promote, and support Competitive Integrated Employment for people with disabilities.

Employment success stories

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Feel free to submit your success story to DSPD by clicking on the button above and completing the form. If you need help in completing the form, reach out to the Employment Planning and Inclusion team by email at communityinclusionteam@utah.gov

Kyle is 34 years old and had worked multiple community based jobs leading up to him starting his own business,  KL Vending Services, LLC. He started the business in April of 2023 with support from his mother, Lisa, and his job coach Jory Cross. The team utilized a Weber State University's Wildcat MicroFund grant to purchase his first 5 machines which he placed at various locations around the Ogden area. These locations include, Yummies Candies, Tony's Pizza, Historic bar on 25th, Javiers Mexican Restaurant  and Waffle Love. Kyle and his team developed those locations by hitting the pavement and cold contacting businesses. His efforts are a result of his work ethic and the great support that he has from his team.
The team decided to pursue a vending machine business because of Kyle's desire to take ownership and his strong desire for independence. He also loves carrying keys and one of the aspects of his job that he loves the most is being able to use his keys to open and restock the vending machines. Self employment has been a great option for Kyle who has tried working at several jobs in the community, attended day programs, and looked at other community based outcome options. The team plans on expanding the company and adding more machines in more locations.
The work that Kyle is doing has not only helped provide an opportunity for him to make money, it has been an awesome opportunity for him to gain community access and work in a way that meets his needs, interests, and abilities. Kyle is a great example of how using multiple supports available, being creative, and focusing on a person's strengths can lead to success!

Employment First

Employment First is a national initiative that encompasses policies, legislation, and system change efforts leading to increased community-based employment for people with disabilities. Employment First is a belief that community-based, integrated employment should be the primary day activity for working age youth and adults with disabilities. It supports an overarching goal that eligible persons with disabilities should have access to integrated work settings most appropriate for them, including the supports necessary to help them succeed in the workplace. Employment First does not mean employment only and does not deny individual choice, but is intended to increase employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.