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MEMO: AP 00-08

Last Updated: June 25, 2018

DATE: July 3, 2000

TO: RWDB Directors; RWDB Chairpersons; Grant Recipients

FROM: Lorna Joseph, Acting Director of Operational Support

SUBJECT: Definitions Necessary for Low Income Determination

Background: As you are aware, the Workforce Investment Act provides that at least 95 percent of youth ages 14 - 21 in WIA formula programs must meet the following eligibility requirements:

1) qualify as low income; and

2) meet at least one of the following barriers to employment:

a. basic skills deficient
b. school dropout
c. homeless, runaway, or foster child
d. pregnant or parent
e. offender
f. requires additional assistance to complete education programs, or to secure employment.
Policy: This issuance is to provide state guidance and/or definitions to be used in the determination of who meets the low income criteria. We have attempted to the extent feasible, to adopt definitions that are not significantly different than those used previously under JTPA.

The attached contains the stateís guidance on the determination of low income for youth formula program eligibility. This issuance should be used as a guide for all new youth (14-21) formula program eligibility determinations on or after July 1, 2000.

If you have any questions, please contact your WIA area designated liaison.

Low Income Determination Definition


A family shall be defined as:

Two or more persons related by blood, marriage or decree of court, who are living in a single residence, and are included in one or more of the following categories:

(a) a husband, wife and dependent children;
(b) a parent or guardian and dependent children;
(c) a husband and wife.

1. An individual with a disability shall be considered a family of one for purposes of family size if such individual has a physical or mental disability which for such individual constitutes or results in a substantial handicap to employment. (Further guidance on this issue is included in this policy.)

Please note that if such individual will not qualify by using family of one status, but will qualify by using their actual family size, then their actual family size should be utilized.

2. Any youth who has been determined by State of Connecticut law to be either an emancipated youth or a court adjudicated youth separated from the family may be considered to be a family of one.

3. Any youth who meets the definition of runaway youth contained in this policy may be considered a family of one.


1. Living in a Single Residence

The term living in a single residence with other family members includes temporary, voluntary residence elsewhere (e.g., attending school or college, or visiting relatives). It does not include involuntary, temporary residence elsewhere (e.g., incarceration, or placement as a result of a court order).

2. Dependent Children

For the purposes of (a) and (b) under the family definition, dependent children shall mean:

a. any child through age 17; or
b. any child aged 18-23 who is a full time student; or
c. any child aged 18-23 who is not a full time student who does not provide for at least 50 percent of his/her own support at the time of application.
3. Runaway Youth

A runaway youth for purposes of this policy on family is defined as a person under 18 years of age who absents himself or herself from home or legal residence without the permission of parents or legal guardian. (This definition is from regulations issued pursuant to the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act.)

4. Individual with a Disability

The following definition for individual with a disability is taken from Section 35.104 of the Americans with Disabilities Act regulations. It is intended to assist you in making determinations of the term individuals with a disability.

Disability means, with respect to an individual, a permanent or temporary physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more of the major life activities of such individual; a record of such an impairment; or being regarded as having such an impairment.

(1) (i) The phrase physical or mental impairment means:

(A) any physiological disorder or condition, cosmetic disfigurement, or anatomical loss affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological, musculoskeletal, special sense organs, respiratory (including speech organs), cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genitourinary, hemic and lymphatic, skin and endocrine;
(B) any mental or physiological disorder such as mental retardation, organic brain syndrome, emotional or mental illness, and specific learning disabilities.

(ii) The phrase physical or mental impairment includes, but is not limited to, such contagious diseases and conditions as       orthopedic, visual, speech, and hearing impairments, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, mental retardation, emotional illness, specific learning disabilities, HIV disease, tuberculosis, drug  addiction, and alcoholism

(iii) The phrase physical or mental impairment does not include homosexuality or bisexuality.

(2) The phrase major life activities means functions such as caring for oneís self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, and working.

(3) The phrase has a record of such an impairment means has a history of, or has been misclassified as having, a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

(4) The phrase is regarded as having an impairment means:

(i) has a physical or mental impairment that does not substantially limit major life activities, but that is treated by a public entity as constituting such a limitation;
(ii) has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits major life activities only as a result of the attitudes of others toward such impairment; or
(iii) has none of the impairments defined in paragraph (1) of this definition, but is treated by a public entity as having such an impairment.

(5) The term disability does not include:

(i) transvestism, transsexualism, pedophilia, exhibitionism, voyeurism, gender identity disorders not resulting from physical impairments, or other sexual behavior disorders;
(ii) compulsive gambling, kleptomania, or pyromania; or
(iii) psychoactive substance use disorders resulting from current illegal use of drugs.

Individual with a disability means a person who has a disability. The term individual with a disability does not include an individual who is currently engaging in the illegal use of drugs when the public entity acts on the basis of such use.

Public entity means:

(1) any state or local government;

(2) any department, agency, special purpose district, or other instrumentality of a state or states or local government; and

(3) the National Railroad Passenger Corporation, and any commuter authority (as defined in Section 103(8) of the Rail Passenger Service Act).

Determination of Individual with a Disability

On a reporting level for WIA, it is necessary to classify individuals in the following manner:

1. those individuals with a physical or mental disability which for such individual constitutes or results in a substantial handicap to employment;

2. those individuals with a physical or mental disability which for such individual does not constitute or result in a substantial handicap to employment;

3. those individuals without a disability.

While both items 1. and 2. above will mean the individual is classified as having a disability, only item 1. will allow the individual to be considered a family of one when determining income eligibility under WIA. The difference between items 1. and 2. is the phrase substantial handicap to employment.

To assist WIAs in making the determination on whether the handicap is substantial, we are adopting the following guidance:

Substantial handicap to employment - is a loss of occupational choices of a class or group of jobs due to the disability, i.e., significant diminishment of choices.

To further assist you in making determination on whether there has been a loss of occupational choices, the state is offering the following additional guidance:

1. An individual with an observable physical or mental disability may be considered as having a substantial handicap to employment if it results in a significant diminishment of choices.

2. On all other individuals with a disability (including those with a learning disability), you should consider whether the loss of occupational choices were in areas where the affected individual had previously or currently demonstrated either an interest in or an aptitude for.

The documentation of the disability can be provided through a number of sources. We have adopted as official state policy the following:

Individuals with Disabilities

NOTE: If an individual declares a disability, any of the listed items may be used.

  • letter from drug or alcohol rehabilitation agency
  • letter from child study team stating specific disability
  • medical records
  • physicianís statement
  • psychiatristís diagnosis
  • psychologistís diagnosis
  • rehabilitation evaluation
  • school records
  • sheltered workshop certification
  • Social Security Administration disability records
  • Social Service records/referral
  • Veterans Administration letter/records
  • Vocational Rehabilitation letter
  • Workers Compensation records
Administrative Procedures Memos

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