The Alabama Department of Mental Health, in partnership with the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services and community partners, aims to support the recovery of people with mental illness through meaningful and competitive employment, through Individual Placement and Support.

Individual Placement and Support is an evidence-based service model aimed to assist people with serious mental illness (SMI), including co-occurring substance use disorders, in obtaining and maintaining competitive jobs based upon their preferences.

Benefits of Work for People with Serious Mental Illness

  • Increased self-esteem
  • Better control of psychiatric symptoms
  • Reduced psychiatric hospitalizations
  • Reduced criminal justice involvement
  • Increased self-sufficiency
  • Decreased dependence on others

IPS Teams provide ongoing supports through all phases of job development and continue after employment is obtained. IPS Teams collaborate with local vocational rehabilitation offices, career centers, educational institutions, and community employers.

Research demonstrates that the IPS model has a high rate of success when provided as a mental health service to individuals who express interest in joining the workforce. To date, the IPS program has served over 450 adults with serious mental illness resulting in 280 job starts. This success is a tribute to the Supported Employment Coordinating Committee’s leadership and guidance.

Mainstream education and technical training are included as ways to advance career paths. Work is not the result of treatment and recovery but integral to both. Work is the best treatment we have for serious mental illness (i.e., people with schizophrenia spectrum disorder, bipolar, or depression).

The goal of IPS Alabama is sustainability and expansion of Alabama’s Individual Placement and Support-Supported Employment program (AL-IPSSEP).

Denise Bern, IPS Coordinator

IPS Teams are located in three areas of our state.  Participating providers include the following:

To learn more about IPS, visit the IPS Employment Center at
To learn more about Employment statewide, visit AlabamaWorks! at