The Illinois Department of Human Services, Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) is the state's lead agency serving individuals with disabilities. DRS works in partnership with people with disabilities and their families to assist them in making informed choices to achieve full community participation through employment, education, and independent living opportunities.
DRS assists individuals with disabilities and their families in overcoming the many barriers people with disabilities may face in achieving full community participation. Through informed choice and a network of wraparound services, DRS provides the skills and training needed for individuals with disabilities to achieve their educational, career, and independent living goals. DRS provides Disability Determination Services for individuals seeking Social Security Benefits and Benefits Planning to aide customers in navigating the rules governing SSA recipients who wish to pursue employment. The Division's organizational structure includes the major bureaus of: Bureau of Field Services, Bureau of Blind Services, Bureau of Home Services, and Bureau of Disability Determination Services. In addition to those bureaus, DRS provides specialized services for the Blind or Visually Impaired, Deaf or Hard of Hearing, and Individuals with Disabilities who are Latino or Hispanic.
Data Collection Processes
The Division of Rehabilitation Services administers programs with differing regulatory oversight, and in some instances are required to adhere to the practices outlined by the Social Security Administration, which does not allow the collection of race or ethnic data (roughly 73% of all customers). DRS continues to make the expansion of data collection and analysis a priority and works to ensure all services are provided with an equity lens. As a standard practice, DRS aligns data collection designations with the Federal Department of Education Rehabilitation Services Administration.
- DRS collects data on customers in the Vocational Rehabilitation program, Home Services Program, Independent Living program, Older-Blind (VR/Title-IV)
- DRS collects data on customers served by the three state schools (through the Illinois State Board of Education SIS system).
- There are data collection restrictions on roughly 73% of DRS customers (primarily the Bureau of Disability Determination Services).
DRS SFY 2020 Demographic Data (see Appendix)
- Total Number of Programs - 6
- Total Number of Participants - 317,291
- Number of Participants whose Race and Ethnic Demographics are being Reported - 87,017