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2.9 Supported Employees Program

Manual: Employment and Separation Procedures

Subsection: Nonstatus Appointments


PA 87-346 was enacted on 9/9/91, and added Sec. 36s to our Act (Act) (110 ILCS 70/36s) charging the Merit Board with developing and implementing a Supported Employment Program.  Supported employment is described as competitive work in integrated work settings for individuals with severe handicaps for whom competitive employment has not traditionally occurred, or for whom it has been interrupted or intermittent as a result of a severe disability and who needs on-going support services to perform such work.  Participation in the program is to be based on the assumption that with support, adaptation, or both, a job can be designed to take advantage of the supported employee’s special strengths.

A supported employee is described as an individual who has one or more physical or mental disability which seriously limits functional capacities, including, but not limited to, mobility, communication, self-care, self-direction, work tolerance or work skills, in terms of employability as defined, determined and certified by the Department of Human Services (DHS).

Sec. 36s(d) of the Act (110 ILCS 70/36s(d)) provides for the establishment of “job classifications for supported employees who may be appointed into the classifications without open competitive testing requirements” for not less than 3 or more than 12 months.


Employers desiring to participate in the Supported Employees Program should contact their local DHS office and request that candidates certified as eligible for supported employment be referred for consideration. Inasmuch as supported employees are to be appointed without open competitive testing, Intern Appointments are to be utilized for these placements. In this regard, the entry level of any promotional line, or any single class not a part of any promotional line may be considered an “entry class” for purposes of using Intern Appointments for supported employee placements only.  As a part of the process in finalizing the individual’s appointment, a Form 2.6a, Request to Establish Apprentice/Intern Program should be completed which describes the type and amount of training to be made available to the individual. Upon approval of the request, the appointment process may be finalized.

Section 36s(f) of the Act (110 ILCS 70/36s(f)) requires the Merit Board to submit an Annual Report to the General Assembly regarding the employment progress of supported employees.  Accordingly, DERs shall submit a copy of Form 2.9a, Monthly Supported Employee Program Report to the University System office within 10 working days following the end of each month. 

(Reference section 110 ILCS 70/36s of the Act
Revised 5/16/2012