SAW/RTW Policy Dissemination
Active June 26–July 14, 2017
The Stay-at-Work (SAW)/Return-to-Work (RTW) Policy Collaborative is hosting an online dialogue to get input on how its policy working groups (PWGs)—on replicating and adapting the Washington Centers of Occupational Health and Education (COHE) model, musculoskeletal injuries and pain management, and the transition back to work—can best reach key audiences and develop and disseminate policy products for these audiences.
The SAW/RTW Policy Collaborative’s PWGs are charged with identifying and proposing ways to address policy gaps; collecting best practices and successful strategies; producing a policy action paper and other policy products; and disseminating these products to policymakers and other stakeholders in developing and implementing SAW/RTW policy.
Participants in the online dialogue are asked: Who are the key policy audiences and what policy products can best reach them? How can these products be disseminated—e.g., social media, website posts, email, in combination with technical assistance?
The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) established the Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work (SAW/RTW) Policy Collaborative to support the development of policies, programs, and practices that encourage the continued employment of workers likely to leave the workforce due to injury, serious illness, or disability. Through the SAW/RTW Community of Practice (CoP), the expert-led virtual Policy Work Groups (PWGs), online platforms that include ePolicyWorks, ODEP resource centers, and other related resources, the SAW/RTW Policy Collaborative shares informational materials and other resources among a large and varied group of stakeholders, and produces recommendations for retention and re-employment programs and policies that promote not only the workforce participation, but also the workforce attachment of individuals with disabilities.
In its fourth year, the SAW/RTW Policy Collaborative is taking the work of the SAW/RTW Collaborative to the next step by convening experts and identifying and developing policy products to help states and other key stakeholders take action in several key policy focus areas. Building on previous years’ work, the PWGs are addressing important issues in improving stay at work and return to work outcomes for individuals experiencing disabilities resulting in work limitations. Through a collaborative effort with the State Exchange Employment and Disability (SEED) initiative, working with the National Council of State Legislators (NCSL), the Council of State Governments (CSG), and the National Governors Association (NGA), as well as through collaboration with other federal agencies, ODEP has identified policy areas for us to focus on this year, including:
- Best practices for working with injured workers to coordinate care and return to work,
- State-of-the art methods of addressing musculoskeletal injuries and pain management (particularly in relation to the use of opioids), and
- Strategies to promote the transition back to work such as partial disability, partial return-to-work, and employer subsidies.