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Employment Services

Supported Employment
This program explores employment opportunities within the community.

Integrated Business, Supported Employment, Prevocational Services, and Access-VR

Supported Employment Services

Supported Employment Services place people with disabilities into integrated work sites in the community with the support of a Job Coach. The Job Coach gives intensive on-site training and provides individuals with support to ensure successful long-term employment. Through intensive training in natural work environments, people are able to experience social integration. The program fosters a productive vocational experience.

Charles R. Hayes Essex Industries

Essex Industries is an integrated work center where people with developmental disabilities gain skills needed to work in the community. Essex Industries takes advantage of its location in the heart of the Adirondacks by producing high quality canoe accessories, as well as handcrafted picnic tables, which can be found in parks throughout New York State. Since opening in 1974, Essex Industries has provided a wide range of vocational and prevocational training experiences. These experiences guide individuals toward increased productivity and self-esteem. Essex Industries is currently certified to provide services to seventy-seven individuals.

Mountain Lake Consignment & Engraving

Mountain Lake Consignment & Engraving Shop is a local business with a social purpose that makes a positive economic, social, and environmental impact in our community. The Consignment & Engraving Shops objective is to train individuals enrolled in employment services to learn job readiness skills that contribute to employability in a paid community setting. The shop offers a friendly, inexpensive experience of shopping for a variety of items such as clothing, home goods and engraving services.

Mountain Weavers' Farm Store and Guild

Mountain Weavers’ Farm Store supports area farmers throughout Essex County and provides fresh local food to our community. Seasonal fruits and vegetables, bread, eggs, dairy products, meats and more all from area producers are carried in the Store.

Hand crafted baskets made by our weavers’ program, as well as produce and value-added food products grown and produced by our horticulture program are featured. Both weaving and horticulture programs provide pre-vocational services to build social skills and work skills, preparing the individuals supported for competitive employment.

The Farm Store itself also provides valuable work experience for individuals in both programs.

For further information about OPWDD eligibility or receiving services from Mountain Lake Services, please contact our Clinical Services office at 518-546-3386.

Programs & Services

Service Eligibility

To receive services from Mountain Lake Services, one must be deemed eligible for services provided by OPWDD. This is determined by a regional eligibility committee.

To qualify for services, an individual must possess a diagnosis of a developmental disability as defined by OPWDD. The onset of the disability must occur prior to the age of 22.

Qualifying diagnoses are:
  • Intellectual Disabilities
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Epilepsy
  • Neurological Impairment
  • Learning Disability
  • Autism
  • Other Developmental Disabilities

Some individuals who do not meet the above listed diagnoses may still be eligible for Supported Employment services based on ACCES-VR eligibility.

Other Helpful Resources

Front Door!

The Front Door is based on the understanding that, as a person with developmental disabilities you have the right to:

  • Enjoy meaningful relationships,
  • Experience personal growth,
  • Participate in your community and,
  • Live in the home of your choice.

The Front Door is the way OPWDD connects you to the services you want and need. Once you enter, a person-centered planning process begins, which helps you learn about and access service options that take your needs and desires into consideration. It will also give you the chance to direct your own service plan or help your family member or loved one as they direct theirs.

Front Door staff will guide you through the steps involved in finding out if you are eligible for services with OPWDD, identify your needs, goals and preferences and help you work on a plan for getting those services.