REHAB MATTERS - Fall 2018 - Challenges

24 ➤ Rehab Matters ➤ Fall 2018 CAVEWAS CORNER By Jennifer Griffiths MS, RRP, CCRC, CCVE C AVEWAS facilitated an excel- lent training day at the most re- cent VRAC con- ference in Kings- ton on May 30, 2018. Below are some highlights from these informative and inspira- tional sessions. Career Handbook project update Representatives from Social Develop- ment Canada presented an update on the Career Handbook project. For the past year, CAVEWAS members and other professionals in the field have been involved in consultations in the development of the research plan for this important project. Participants were able to ask questions and review a timeline for the project completion. A notable addition was a significant source of occupational information which will be pulled from the Ameri- can O*Net system. O*Net is a standard source of career information for the United States as well as other coun- tries; it integrates much detail and val- ue in terms of occupational profiles. Currently the timeline projects initial occupational profiles to be completed by the fall of 2018. Further consulta- tions from professionals in the field of vocational evaluation and career counselling will be needed in the con- tinuation of the project. Our partners at Social Development Canada are ea- ger for any related feedback, contribu- tions or questions. Our current contact is Best practices for vocational eval- uators in preparing expert reports and testifying in court Stephen Birman of Thomson, Rogers, a Toronto-based firm specializing in per- sonal injury law, presented on the topic of expert testimony. He provided the group with a review of current case law in the field of vocational experts and disability decisions by the courts. The concept of the ‘Reasonable Man’ standard was discussed. This pertains to using common care and prudence to decide if work is reasonable given the care and attention a personmay need as a result of the disability. Several infor- mative case examples were discussed to help the group see how some fac- tors influence the decisions of the court over disability cases (auto accident, CPP and long term disability). One case involved the use of surveillance to make claims determinations. The deci- sion found that the Insurer over-relied on footage which did not fully capture the claimant’s activity over a 24 hour period. The specific duty of an expert witness was discussed; do’s and don’ts were also provided. Vocational asses- sors are deemed experts in the eye of the courts. Lastly, a live mock trial was enacted. This demonstration showed both sides of what it would be like to testify from direct examination as well as from a cross examination position. A leap of faith or a push from a friend Justin McKenna and Jason Harps from Ottawa presented their story about how one employer (Jason) hired a brain injured man (Justin) to work for his company. The session was very lively and the group laughed, cried and learned some valuable lessons about determination, understanding and open-mindedness in working with people with disabilities. Justin had a great sense of humour and kept every- one laughing with his quick responses and sayings, ‘oh baby’ his primary one! When he first went for his interview with Jason he was asked, why do you think you are a goodmatch for working with us? To this Justin responded, ‘My devastating good looks!’ Jason shared that from his experience, people with disabilities work harder and are highly valued employees that serve as an ex- ample for others at the workplace. This engaging presentation inspired every- one to look at disability from a differ- ent perspective and see how challenges can be turned into valuable assets for both employers and employees in the world of work. Job development strategies 101 Renee Daudlin-Iacobelli, president of CAVEWAS and owner of Insight Ad- vantage Inc. in southwestern Ontario, presented on the newest strategies for job development. The role of Job De- veloper (JD) has evolved a lot over the past few years. The JD is really a strong marketing expert to find where the jobs are, and then match those jobs with the right candidates. It is an art and requires sound skills. The first step of job development is to have a solid understanding of what employers are looking for. The JD needs to really do their homework to find out what the employer does, what the trends are in the industry and what are the trouble spots. The old style of opening the phone book and cold calling employ- ers was shown to be of little use today. Searching current job postings and using staffing firms are better choices because they are advertising a job that is currently needed to be filled. Net- working still remains the top method used by successful Job Developers and job seekers. Defining a client as ‘hard to place’ can be a self-fulfilling prophecy – believing in what your client can do is the key to finding the right placement and employer. Dealing with problems that can come up was also discussed. It is highlighted that the JD cannot con- trol what the client does on the job but they can respond appropriately and professionally. This gives an opportu- nity to provide good value and service to an employer where there could be a chance to place another candidate in the future. Overall, the sessions at the annual CAVEWAS event were strongly re- ceived. Participants commented on how interesting and engaging the speakers were and how the information they offered was of practical value and could be directly applied to the work of vocational rehabilitation professionals. We are looking forward to next year’s offerings in an effort to keep our pro- fession at the forefront of the vocational rehabilitation industry. n