Description of Research Report: Randolph-Sheppard National Online Training Curriculum for Program Staff: Findings from a National Survey of Randolph-Sheppard Directors
The Randolph-Sheppard Business Enterprise Program provides employment for more than 2,300 entrepreneurs who are legally blind across the United States. Moreover, these entrepreneurs employ an additional 14,000 people, of whom almost 2,000 are visually impaired or have other disabilities (Rehabilitation Services Administration [RSA], 2010). With annual program sales of more than $800 million, the average annual income of individual entrepreneurs is approximately $60,000. Signed into law in 1936, the Randolph-Sheppard Act (20 U.S.C. §107 et seq) grants individuals who are legally blind the authority to operate food service facilities on federal property. With oversight from RSA, the act locates the state licensing agency for the program in the individual state vocational rehabilitation agencies across the United States. Over the years, the Randolph-Sheppard program has changed dramatically from single vendor–managed concessions and newsstands to large military food service facilities, kiosks, convenience stores, laundry facilities, restaurants, snack bars, automated vending machine operations, and other similar businesses.