Direct Support Connect helps match direct support workers to employers

Emily Erck
Staff Writer

There is nothing people want more than to be allowed the same opportunities as everyone else. 

This has not always been an option for everyone, but a company called Direct Support Connect is slowly making it one. 

Created by the Minnesota Department of Human Services, Direct Support Connect is a dedicated online job board for direct support professionals—such as PCAs—and the people who hire them. 

They encourage and allow people who need assistance to create a personal profile, which will highlight the kind of workers they are looking to hire, while also creating the opportunity for support workers to create profiles that highlight their skills, availability, and other personal preferences they may have.

This company was built to help address the shortage of direct support workers in Minnesota. 

An often misconception with this company is that you have to be registered with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU); however, this is false.

 Direct support workers are not required to be union members to register with Direct Support Connect. 

Not only does the website allow you to create your own profile, but gives you a significant amount of information on how to become a direct support worker. 

They offer online training courses to become a Personal Care Assistant—the most common type of direct support worker. If you are interested in becoming a Personal Care Assistant, you are encouraged to take their online training course and pass a one-time test and background study. 

This job also requires no previous experience.

There are also a few other common Direct Support jobs. The first one is a Consumer Directed Community Supports Worker (CDCS). As a CDCS, you are hired directly by a person who receives CDCS services. 

The person using the CDCS services is offered more choices and responsibility. 

They allow you to choose or design the services and supports that fit your assessed needs, decide when you should receive services and supports, and hire the people you want to deliver those services and supports. Another Direct Support employment option is a Consumer Support Grant worker (CSG). 

As a CSG, you are also hired directly by a person who receives CSG services. 

The Consumer Support Grant program is a state-funded alternative to Medicaid home care services of home health aide, personal care assistant, and/or private duty nursing. Similar to the CDCS, it provides the consumers with the flexibility to choose their services, payment rates, and the type of service they receive. 

Direct Support Connect is allowing workers and consumers all across Minnesota to more employment and employer options. 

It is safe, secure, and easy to use, while also providing career building resources to workers including classes and certification.

 They are changing the way Minnesota connects helpers to those with disabilities and helps employ them all across the state. To get more information, go to directsupportconnect.com, click contact us, and they will have a specialist get in touch with you and answer your questions.

Header photo courtesy of Flickr.

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