Absence of conflict of interest.
- The study’s objective was to examine the impact of the Individualized Placement and Support (IPS) program on employment outcomes for justice-involved veterans experiencing homelessness.
- The study used a randomized controlled trial to examine differences between justice-involved veterans experiencing homelessness who were offered the IPS program and veterans who did not receive IPS programming. Using survey data, the authors conducted statistical tests to compare outcomes.
- The study found a statistically significant relationship between the IPS program and increased employment three months following completion of the IPS program.
- The quality of causal evidence presented in this report is high because it was based on a well-implemented randomized controlled trial. This means we are confident that the estimated effects are attributable to Individualized Placement and Support (IPS) program, and not to other factors.
Features of the Intervention
The IPS program is a vocational model focused on supportive employment programming for populations with significant barriers to employment. The program is based on several core principles that include rapid job search, small caseloads, and the integration of vocational and mental health treatment services. Participants received specialized job search assistance and ongoing work-based vocational assessment. This study implemented IPS with justice-involved veterans who have a history of incarceration and were identified as experiencing homelessness upon program enrollment. To support this population, the study authors modified the original IPS program to also include programming from the About Face (AF) model. AF is a one-week vocational rehabilitation program in which participants create resumes and discuss strategies to overcome barriers to employment following previous incarceration. Participants focused on developing strategies to discuss their incarceration within the context of employment, identify concrete employment skills, and practice interviewing techniques. Both the treatment and comparison group participants received AF vocational programming, but the treatment group also received IPS programming.
Features of the Study
The study used a randomized controlled trial to examine differences between justice-involved veterans who were offered the AF and IPS program and justice-involved veterans who only received AF programming. Of the 63 eligible veterans with a minimum of one felony conviction, 25 participants were randomly assigned to the AF comparison group, while the remaining 38 participants were assigned into the AF + IPS treatment group. The participants were predominantly male, were a racial-ethnic minority, and had experienced a substance use disorder. The intervention was conducted through a total of 27 vocational groups from 2012 to 2015 at a large U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs health care facility. The primary data source were baseline surveys reporting on employment outcomes and follow-up survey updates on the outcomes. The authors verified the self-report data via pay stubs and communications with employers and used statistical tests to examine differences between the groups.
- The study found a statistically significant positive relationship between the IPS program and obtaining employment three months following program completion, with 55% of IPS participants obtaining employment within three months, compared to 24% of justice-involved homeless veterans who received the AF program only.
Causal Evidence Rating
The quality of causal evidence presented in this report is high because it was based on a well-implemented randomized controlled trial. This means we are confident that the estimated effects are attributable to the IPS program, not to other factors.