The relations between cost-efficiency (from the perspective of worker, taxpayer, and society) and personal characteristics of supported employees (i.e., IQ, level of mental retardation, multiple disabilities, gender, ethnicity, and age) were examined. Results suggest that when sheltered workshops were used as alternative placements, supported employees with high IQs benefited more from employment within the community than did supported employees with lower IQs. From society's perspective, African American and male supported employees were more cost-efficient than were European American and female supported employees. Further, regardless of the severity or number of disabilities, all individuals were cost-efficient from each perspective (i.e., worker, taxpayer, and society) and time period (i.e., 1990, 1994, and projected lifelong).
The author sincerely thanks Janis Chadsey, Frank Rusch, Laird Heal, Lisa Stahurski, and Walter McMahon for their encouragement and advisement related to this project.