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Personal Assistance: Key to Employability of Persons with Physical Disabilities

Nosek MA. Personal assistance: Key to employability of persons with physical disabilities. Journal of Applied Rehabilitation Counseling 1990;21(4):3-8.


A significant number of people with disabilities in America have the skills and motivation to work, but are limited in employment potential by a lack of reliable, affordable personal assistance to help them meet their daily needs. Rehabilitation counselors frequently work with clients who have no concept of how they can have the assistance they need without public financial support or with less reliance on family when they become employed. This article presents basic information on what personal assistance is, how it is used by persons with disabilities, and how it affects employability. It gives recommendations for rehabilitation counselors on how they can assist their clients to meet more effectively their need for personal assistance by helping them (a) assess the adequacy of current arrangement for receiving personal assistance, (b) specify needs if a change in arrangement is necessary or desirable, (c) identify relevant aspects of the individual's personality and cognitive abilities, (d) explore various methods for meeting and financing needed services, (e) change arrangements if desired, and (f) develop a backup support network.

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