RSA-227 - Annual Client Assistance Program (CAP) Report

Illinois (ILLINOIS DEPT OF REHAB SERVS -- CLIENT ASSISTANCE PROGRAM) - H161A120014 - FY2012

General Information

Designated Agency Identification

NameIllinois Department of Human Services
AddressDivision of Rehabilitation Services
Address Line 2400 West Lawrence - P. O. Box 19429
CitySpringfield
StateIllinois
Zip Code62794-9429
E-mail Address
Website Address
Phone217-524-7552
TTY 217-524-7552
Toll-free Phone
Toll-free TTY
Fax217-558-4270

Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)

NameIllinois Client Assistance Program
AddressRichland Community College
Address Line 2One College Park - Room W155
CityDecatur
Zip Code62521
E-mail Addresscathy.meadows@illinois.gov
Website Addresshttp://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=37637
Phone217-875-9106
TTY217-875-9106
Toll-free Phone1-866-794-2683
Toll-free TTY1-866-794-2683
Fax217-875-9797

Additional Information

Name of CAP Director/CoordinatorCathy Meadows
Person to contact regarding reportCathy Meadows
Contact Person Phone217-875-9106

Part I. Agency Workload Data

A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)

Multiple responses are not permitted.

1. Information regarding the Rehabilitation Act133
2. Information regarding Title I of the ADA4
3. Other information provided675
4. Total I&R services provided (Lines A1+A2+A3)812
5. Individuals attending trainings by CAP staff (approximate)368

B. Individuals served

An individual is counted only once during a fiscal year. Multiple counts are not permitted for Lines B1-B3.

1. Individuals who are still being served as of October 1 (carryover from prior year)29
2. Additional individuals who were served during the year106
3. Total individuals served (Lines B1+B2)135
4. Individuals (from Line B3) who had multiple case files opened/closed this year. (In unusual situations, an individual may have more than one case file opened/closed during a fiscal year. This number is not added to the total in Line B3 above.)0

C. Individual still being served as of September 30

Carryover to next year. This total may not exceed Line I.B3. 17

D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files

Choose one primary reason for closing each case file. There may be more case files than the total number of individuals served to account for those unusual situations, referred to in Line I.B4, when an individual had multiple case files closed during the year.

1. All issues resolved in individual's favor45
2. Some issues resolved in individual's favor (when there are multiple issues)12
3. CAP determines VR agency position/decision was appropriate for the individual8
4. Individual's case lacks legal merit; (inappropriate for CAP intervention)11
5. Individual chose alternative representation2
6. Individual decided not to pursue resolution19
7. Appeals were unsuccessful0
8. CAP services not needed due to individual's death, relocation, etc.0
9. Individual refused to cooperate with CAP20
10. CAP unable to take case due to lack of resources0
11. Other (please explain)

1 - Not feasible or appropriate for CAP to become party to federal lawsuit.

E. Results achieved for individuals

1. Controlling law/policy explained to individual91
2. Application for services completed.0
3. Eligibility determination expedited1
4. Individual participated in evaluation10
5. IPE developed/implemented4
6. Communication re-established between individual and other party8
7. Individual assigned to new counselor/office2
8. Alternative resources identified for individual0
9. ADA/504/EEO/OCR/ complaint made2
10. Other0
11. Other (please explain)

Part II. Program Data

A. Age

As of the beginning of the fiscal year. Multiple responses are not permitted.

1. 21 and under14
2. 22 - 4045
3. 41 - 6473
4. 65 and over3
5. Total (Sum of Lines A1 through A4. Total must equal Line I.B3.)135

B. Gender

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Female66
2. Male69
3. Total (Sum of Lines B1 and B2. Total must equal Line I.B3.)135

C. Race/ethnicity

1. Hispanic/Latino of any race11
For individuals who are non-Hispanic/Latino only
2. American Indian or Alaskan Native0
3. Asian2
4. Black or African American35
5. Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander1
6. White62
7. Two or more races3
8. Race/ethnicity unknown21

D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Blindness (both eyes)9
2. Other visual impairments9
3. Deafness6
4. Hard of hearing4
5. Deaf-blind0
6. Orthopedic impairments22
7. Absense of extremities1
8. Mental illness28
9. Substance abuse (alcohol or drugs)0
10. Mental retardation20
11. Specific learning disabilities (SLD)15
12. Neurological disorders5
13. Respiratory disorders2
14. Heart and other circulatory conditions1
15. Digestive disorders2
16. Genitourinary conditions1
17. Speech Impairments1
18. AIDS/HIV positive0
19. Traumatic brain injury (TBI)1
20. All other disabilities8
21. Disabilities not known0
22. Total (Sum of Lines D1 through D21. Total must equal Line I. B3.)135

E. Types of individuals served

Multiple responses permitted.

1. Applicants of VR Program76
2. Clients of VR Program59
3. Applicants or clients of IL Program0
4. Applicants or clients of other programs and projects funded under the Act0

F. Source of individual's concern

Multiple responses permitted.

1. VR agency only131
2. Other Rehabilitation Act sources only1
3. Both VR agency and other Rehabilitation Act sources3
4. Employer0

G. Problem areas

Multiple responses permitted.

1. Individual requests information10
2. Communication problems between individual and counselor59
3. Conflict about services to be provided86
4. Related to application/eligibility process15
5. Related to IPE development/implementation26
6. Other Rehabilitation Act-related problems4
7. Non-Rehabilitation Act related1
8. Related to Title I of the ADA0

H. Types of CAP services provided

Choose one primary CAP service provided for each case file/service record.

1. Information/referral0
2. Advisory/interpretational104
3. Negotiation14
4. Administrative/informal review0
5. Alternative dispute resolution0
6. Formal appeal/fair hearing0
7. Legal remedy0
8. Transportation0

Part III. Narrative

Narrative

III. NARRATIVE

a. Type of agency used to administer CAP: The Illinois Division of Rehabilitation Services (DRS) is the agency designated by the Governor to receive Rehabilitation Act (Act) federal funds to administer the Client Assistance Program (CAP). CAP is internal to the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) program and is organizationally part of the DRS’ Director’s office. DRS is part of the Department of Human Services (DHS). CAP is physically separate from all DRS’ offices.

CAP provides individual case advocacy, systems advocacy, information and referral, outreach and training throughout the state. CAP advocates for clients of DRS, and the 22 Centers for Independent Living. CAP contracts statewide legal services to provide clients with an option for legal representation. They can provide the full range of CAP services, in addition to legal representation in court.

CAP also provides services to individuals with disabilities who have concerns with the DRS’ Home Services Program (HSP). HSP provides personal attendant services that enhance independent living. Since HSP advocacy is not funded under the Act, HSP data is not included. The DRS HSP program funds the CAP staff who work on HSP cases, so their expenses, budget and number of person-years are not included in this report.

b. Sources of funds expended:

Source of funding Total expenditures spent on individuals Federal funds $320,350 State funds 0 All other funds $19,263 Total from all sources $339,613

c. Budget for current and following fiscal years:

Category Current Fiscal Year 2012 Next Fiscal Year 2013 Wages & Salaries $304,981 $350,000 Fringe Benefits (FICA, unemployment, etc.)Included above Included above Materials/Supplies $0 $100 Postage 0 Telephone $8830 $11,000 Rent $19,000 Travel $4,802 $12,000 Copying 0 0 Bonding/Insurance 0 0 Equipment Rental/Purchase $1500 Legal Services $21,000 $20,000 Indirect Costs 0 Miscellaneous $1,000 Total Budget $339,613 $414,500

d. Number of person-years: Type of position Full-time equivalent % of year position filled Person-years Professional Full-time 1 100% 1.33 Full-time (2) 2 25% .5 Part-time .33 100% .33 Clerical Part-time (2) .66 100% .66

Three positions, CAP Manager, Administrative Assistant, and clerical are paid 1/3 time for VR. One VR Advocate is full-time. Two VR Advocates retired in December 2011. e. Summary of presentations made:

Expos and Fairs: Resource/Job Fair, Springfield DRS and Community Resources 100 Job Fair, Mae Jamison School in Harvey 200

Consumer/Parent Groups/Providers: ICRE Wood BBS training facility in Chicago/Bureau of Blind Service students 15

DRS Staff: New Employee Orientation 3 Statewide Supervisor’s Meeting 50

f. Involvement with advisory boards:

CAP is a member of the Illinois State Rehabilitation Council (SRC). The SRC meets quarterly with the Director of DRS, and various administrative staff, to receive updates, discuss current issues, work on the needs assessment and the State plan.

g. Outreach to unserved/underserved populations:

Brochures and forms are available in Spanish. CAP has access to the Interpreter Bank, which covers all major languages.

h. Alternative dispute resolutions:

DRS’ rules incorporate the availability of mediation to clients. DRS has an Administrative Rule requiring that every client who requests an appeal be informed of the availability of the mediation process and the informal resolution process. In addition to the counselor’s role of informing clients of their rights, the Administrative Hearings Unit sends a letter to clients who have requested an appeal, informing them of their appeal rights, the mediation process and how to contact CAP. CAP follows the mandate to resolve issues at the lowest possible level.

i. Systemic advocacy:

• Problem: DRS Administrative Rules on the Appeal Process combines both VR and other DRS’ programs, including how Impartial Hearing Officers are chosen. The current rule does not specify that Hearing Officers for the VR program are to be jointly approved by the Director and the State Rehabilitation Council. Steps Taken: CAP wrote and spoke to DRS administrative staff about adding clarification to this rule. VR Response: DRS agreed to change this rule to require that Hearing Officers for VR are jointly approved by the Director and the SRC. Update: Rule change is still going through the finalization process. In the meantime, however, the Hearings Unit is abiding by these requirements when assigning new Hearing Officers.

j. Interesting cases: Case One

Client contacted CAP because DRS denied her request to keep her case open and help her pursue working from home as a telemarketer. CAP met with client, counselor and supervisor, who agreed to keep her case open. Client contacted CAP again later because she did not have the funds to keep her internet and work phone intact while she was applying for positions. CAP consulted with a different VR counselor (in another part of the State) who was more experienced in this process, and got her involved with the case. CAP also assisted with expediting the payments through a special fund. The result was that DRS paid her internet and work phone bills for an extended period of time which resulted in client being able to secure work from home employment and begin receiving an income.

Case Two

Client contacted CAP because he was denied a tuition payment by DRS, even though it was written on his IPE. CAP found that the counselor (who was previously managing his case) had been promoted and the new counselor (who took the case over) felt the case had been mismanaged and, therefore, was unwilling to pay the tuition any longer. CAP presented the supervisor with the fact that the client’s IPE listed that DRS would pay client’s tuition for that semester. In the end DRS agreed to pay. CAP also made additional calls to help expedite the payment.

Case Three

Client’s family member contacted CAP in mid-July stating they were having a hard time getting her set up for college. She needed support services, an interpreter, and large print materials (because of her disability of low vision and hearing impairment). Client had a Transition Counselor, while in high school, but after she graduated she was unable to reach anyone at DRS to help her. CAP found that the Transition Counselor was no longer employed at that office and also discovered the client’s case had been closed. CAP then contacted the VR counselor who, initially, said it was too late to open a new case and get the client set-up for training that fall semester. CAP recommended that the supervisor expedite and fast track this client since the delay was caused by a miscommunication between the Transition counselor and the VR counselor. DRS abided by CAP’s request to expedite the process to assist the client with training and support services, and the client was pleased to start school in time for the Fall semester.

k. On-line information/outreach:

CAP’s web page is within the State of Illinois DHS site at http://www.dhs.state.il.us/page.aspx?item=29978. This past year, 53 email requests were received for information about vocational rehabilitation services, client rights, the appeal process, or how to contact an advocate.

Certification

Approved

This Report is Complete and Correct.Yes
Date Signed:19-Dec-12
Name of Designated Agency Official:Cathy Meadows
Title of Designated Agency Official:Cathy Meadows