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

Colorado (Center for Legal Advocacy) - H161A180005 - FY2018

General Information

Designated Agency Identification

NameCenter for Legal Advocacy
Address455 Sherman Streeet
Address Line 2Suite 130
CityDenver
StateColorado
Zip Code80203
E-mail Addressmaharvey@disabilitylawco.org
Website Addresshttp://www.disabilitylawco.org
Phone303-722-0300
TTY 303-722-3619
Toll-free Phone800-288-1376
Toll-free TTY800-288-1376
Fax303-722-0720

Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)

NameCenter for Legal Advocacy
Address455 Sherman Streeet
Address Line 2Suite 130
CityDenver
Zip Code80203
E-mail Addressmaharvey@disabilitylawco.org
Website Addresshttp://www.disabilitylawco.org
Phone303-722-0300
TTY303-722-3619
Toll-free Phone800-288-1376
Toll-free TTY800-288-1376
Fax303-722-0720

Additional Information

Name of CAP Director/CoordinatorJennifer Purrington
Person to contact regarding reportJennifer Purrington
Contact Person Phone303-722-0300

Part I. Non-case Services

A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)

Multiple responses are not permitted.

1. Information regarding the vocational rehabilitation (VR) program3
2. Information regarding independent living programs0
3. Information regarding American Indian VR Service projects0
4. Information regarding Title I of the ADA0
5. Other information provided2
6. Information regarding CAP6
7. Total I&R services provided (Lines A1 through A6)11

B. Training Activities

• September 26, 2018 - Presentation at New DVR Counselor Orientation about CAP/PABSS services. There were 3 new counselors present. • August 22, 2018 — Presentation at New DVR Counselor Orientation about CAP/PABSS services. There were 10 new counselors present • August 16, 2018 — Presentation to parents and advocates about special education law and transition services in Grand Junction, CO. There were 20 advocates and parents present. • June 16, 2018 — Presentation at transition conference. The goal was to educate teachers and school districts on their students' transition rights. There were 50 teachers/school representatives present. • April 30, 2018 — Presentation at New DVR Counselor Orientation about CAP/PABSS services. There were 15 new counselors present. • April 27, 2018 — Presentation at Parents Encouraging Parents in Crested Butte, CO on Special Education Law and transition services. There were 200 parents and educators present. • February 23, 2018 — Presentation at Parents Encouraging Parents in Colorado Springs, CO on Special Education Law and transition services. There were 150 parents and educators present. • January 24, 2018 — Presentation to DVR Supervisors about the information we were presenting in our New DVR Counselor Trainings about CAP/PABSS services. There were 15 supervisors present. • January 18, 2018 — Presentation at New DVR Counselor Orientation about CAP/PABSS services. There were 10 new counselors present. • November 13, 2017 — Presentation by the DLC Grand Junction staff (along with the ARC of West Central Colorado, and Colorado Legal Services) went and presented to the residents of Delta County. The goal of the presentation was to educate and create outreach to other attorney's and residents in Delta county about DLC programs and the type of law DLC practices. There were 4 residents present. • November 1, 2017 — Presentation by the DLC Grand Junction staff at a luncheon for the Mesa County Bar Association. We provided information to attorneys who may use DLC as a resource for clients who are under-served in Mesa County. DLC provided information to the Bar Association about all of our programs. There were 25 attorneys present. • October 20, 2017 — Presentation at Parents Encouraging Parents in Breckenridge, CO on Special Education Law and transition services. There were 150 parents and educators present. • October 17, 2017- Presentation about ADA issues, especially employment and university/college accommodation issues at the Community College of Aurora for students and staff. There were 10 students and staff present.

Over the past year we have visited multiple schools across the state in a general monitoring effort. One major question we focused on in our monitoring was whether schools were utilizing DVR services for their students.

We have created a fact sheet on DVR services. This fact sheet is available to the public on our website. We also bring this information to any resource fairs and events we attend on behalf of Disability Law Colorado.

1. Number of training sessions presented to community groups and public agencies.13
2. Number of individuals who attended these training sessions.662
3. Describe training presented by the staff. Include the following information:
  1. topics covered
  2. purpose of the training
  3. description of the attendees

C. Agency Outreach

Describe the agency's outreach efforts to previously un-served or underserved individuals including minority communities.

We collaborate with and reach out to the following entities and request referrals of individuals who are unserved/underserved/minorities: the Colorado Department of Education, the Arc of Colorado and the local Arcs throughout the state, the PEAK Parent Training Center, Parent to Parent Colorado, the Colorado Autism Society, the International Dyslexia Association, the Colorado Developmental Disabilities Council and the University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research, and Service, the Colorado Assistive Technology Project, the Denver Metro Parent Center, the Civil Rights Education and Enforcement Center, and Colorado Cross-Disability Coalition. Our primary means for reaching minority communities has been through our training sessions across the state. This is especially true with our participation with Parents Encouraging Parents and the trainings they have all across Colorado. These sessions attract hundreds of parents from varying ethnic and racial communities from across Colorado. We have also increased our presence at tabling events and resources fairs over the last year. During these events we provide information and fact sheets about our services and encourage people to contact us with issues. We also provide a large majority of our resource information in English as well as Spanish so consumers in the Hispanic community have access to the same information.

D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency

For each method of dissemination, enter the total number of each method used by your agency during the reporting period to distribute information to the public. For publications/booklets/brochures (item 4), enter the total number of documents produced. Agencies should not include website hits. See instructions for details.

Publications disseminated by the agency: The Everyday Guide to Special Education Law(713), Guia de la Ley de Educacion Especial (Spanish version of The Everyday Guide)(46), But I Don't Want Eldercare Residents Rights BINGO game(129), Preventing Litigation in Special Education(31), Mainstream Newsletter - published bi-annually(6,480), E-news(10, 540), Brochures disseminated in our office lobby (1,000), Resource table event collateral(1,650).

1. Agency Staff Interviewed or Featured on Radio and TV2
2. Articles about CAP Featured in Newspaper/Magazine/Journals0
3. PSAs/Videos Aired about the CAP Agency1
4. Publications/Booklets/Brochures Disseminated by the Agency7
5. Number of Times CAP Exhibited at Conferences, Community Fairs, etc.0
6. Other (specify below)6

E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage

Describe the various sources and information disseminated about your agency by an external source.

There was no external media coverage about the CAP; however, the agency (Disability Law Colorado) received significant media coverage during FY2018: Newspaper articles: 14 *TV: 9 *Radio: 6 *Online: 11 *Press releases issued: 2 Some of the issues that were of particular interest to the media included: Voters with disabilities - access and rights Jail Wait Litigation - People with mental illness in jail for months awaiting competency evaluations and restorative treatment Red Rocks case settlement - Access to Red Rocks concert venue for people with disabilities Service animals - this continues to be an issue that the public, and therefore the media, are very interested in. Disability Law Colorado is viewed by many as an expert on this issue.

DLC ran radio PSA ads in August - September 2018 on Colorado's Western Slope to inform people about our services and how to contact our offices. The ads resulted in an increase to the number of people requesting services.

Part II. Individual Case Services

A. Individuals served

An individual is counted only once during a fiscal year. Multiple counts are not permitted for Lines A1-A3.

1. Individuals who are still being served as of October 1 (carryover from prior year)7
2. Additional individuals who were served during the year16
3. Total individuals served (Lines A1+A2)23
4. Individuals (from Line A3) 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 A3 above.)1
5. Individual still being served as of September 30 (Carryover to next year. This total may not exceed Line A3.)7

B. Problem areas

Multiple responses permitted.

1. Individual requests information2
2. Communication problems between individual and VR counselor2
3. Conflict about VR services to be provided13
4. Related to VR application/eligibility process1
5. Related to assignment to order of selection priority category0
6. Related to IPE development/implementation
  1. Selection of vendors for provision of VR services
  2. Selection of training, post-secondary education
  3. Selection of employment outcome
  4. Transition services
4
7. Related to independent living services0
8. Other Rehabilitation Act-related problems2
9. Non-Rehabilitation Act related
  1. TANF
  2. SSI/SSDI
  3. Housing
  4. Other:
0
10. Related to Title I of the ADA0

C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases

(Choose one primary service the CAP provided for each closed case file. There may be more case files than actual individuals served.)

1. Short Term Technical Assistance13
2. Investigation/Monitoring0
3. Negotiation3
4. Mediation and other methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution0
5. Administrative / Informal Review1
6. Formal appeal / Fair Hearing0
7. Legal remedy / Litigation0
8. Total17

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.)

Client received information about DVR Determined not to be a CAP issue

1. All issues resolved in individual's favor7
2. Some issues resolved in individual's favor (when there are multiple issues)1
3. CAP determines VR agency position/decision was appropriate for the individual0
4. Individual's case lacks legal merit; (inappropriate for CAP intervention)3
5. Individual chose alternative representation1
6. Individual withdrew complaint2
7. Issue not resolved in clients favor0
8. CAP services not needed due to individual's death, relocation, etc.0
9. Individual not responsive/cooperative with CAP1
10. CAP unable to take case due to lack of resources0
11. Conflict of interest0
12. Other (Please explain below)2

E. Results achieved for individuals

(Choose one primary outcome for each closed case file. There may be more case files than the total number of individuals served.)

*Issues with DVR resolved in client's favor- DVR agreed to pay for additional training *Discussed case with client, after intake she was able to get VRC to agree that the eval could be provided to her therapist. If there are ongoing issues she will contact Disability Law Colorado for another intake. *Client non-responsive *Client was able to put forward his best argument for appeal *Determined not to be a CAP issue - client served by a different P&A program *Client did not follow up

1. Controlling law/policy explained to individual4
2. Application for services completed0
3. Eligibility determination expedited0
4. Individual participated in evaluation0
5. IPE developed/implemented/Services Provided3
6. Communication re-established between individual and other party2
7. Individual assigned to new counselor/office1
8. Alternative resources identified for individual1
9. ADA/504/EEO/OCR complaint made0
10. Other (Please explain below)6

Part III. Program Data

A. Age

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Up to 180
2. 19 - 242
3. 25 - 405
4. 41 - 6416
5. 65 and over0
6. Total (Sum of Lines A1 through A5. Total must equal Part II, Line A3.)23

B. Gender

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Females11
2. Males12
3. Total (Lines B1+B2. Total must equal Part II, Line A3.)23

C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served

1. Hispanic/Latino of any race (for individuals who are non-Hispanic/Latino only)3
2. American Indian or Alaskan Native0
3. Asian0
4. Black or African American2
5. Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander0
6. White16
7. Two or more races1
8. Race/ethnicity unknown1

D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Acquired Brain Injury0
2. ADD/ADHD2
3. AIDS/HIV0
4. Amputations or Absence of Extremities0
5. Arthritis or Rheumatism0
6. Anxiety Disorder2
7. Autism Spectrum Disorder2
8. Autoimmune or Immune Deficiencies (excluding AIDS/HIV)0
9. Blindness (Both Eyes)3
10. Other Visual Impairments (Not Blind)0
11. Cancer0
12. Cerebral Palsy1
13. Deafness2
14. Hard of Hearing/Hearing Impaired (Not Deaf)1
15. Deaf-Blind0
16. Diabetes0
17. Digestive Disorders0
18. Epilepsy0
19. Heart & Other Circulatory Conditions0
20. Intellectual Disability2
21. Mental Illness2
22. Multiple Sclerosis0
23. Muscular Dystrophy0
24. Muscular/Skeletal Impairment1
25. Neurological Disorders/Impairment1
26. Orthopedic Impairments3
27. Personality Disorders0
28. Respiratory Disorders/Impairment0
29. Skin Conditions0
30. Specific Learning Disabilities (SLD)0
31. Speech Impairments0
32. Spina Bifida0
33. Substance Abuse (Alcohol or Drugs)0
34. Other Disability1
35. Total (Sum of Lines D1through D34. Total must equal Part II, Line A3.)23

E. Types of Individual Served

Multiple responses permitted.

1. Applicant of VR17
2. Individual eligible for VR services currently on a wait list1
3. Individual eligible for VR services not currently on a wait list4
4. Applicant or individual eligible for Independent Living1
5. Transition student/High school student0
6. All other applicants or individuals eligible for other programs or projects funded unther Rehabilitation Act0

Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation

A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities

(1) Over the past year we have visited multiple schools across the state in a general monitoring effort. One question we focused on in our monitoring was whether schools were utilizing DVR services for their students. Unfortunately, the results from our monitoring indicating that many schools either did not know about DVR services, did not utilize the services, or felt that DVR was not willing to have a presence in their schools. Although we have plans to address this in the future, we believe this issue is systemic, and we plan to address it as such with DVR. The policy/practice has not been addressed at this time, as our efforts this year were information gathering. We plan to use this information to change DVRs policy/practice in the coming year. Changing these policies/practices will help students with disabilities access DVR services in the future, providing them with more opportunities to work in integrated settings overall. (2) Also, during the past year we have requested and reviewed cumulative data from DVR about their case closures across the state. After receiving this information, we had a conference call with upper level DVR administration about the data and the trends we were seeing. Although we do not believe there is reason to act at this time regarding this data, we believe we now have a baseline of data to work off of in the future and have successfully opened a dialogue with DVR about their overall success with clients. No policies or practices have been changed at this time, but we will continue to monitor the data to determine if there is a need for policy/practice changes in the future. Our efforts will assist people with disabilities by helping to prevent premature DVR case closures in the future. (3) Additionally, with the implementation of WIOA there has been an overhaul at DVR regarding their training efforts with their staff. We are trying to stay on top of those changes to training and with changes to the DVR policy manual itself. Part of our success in following these changes and addressing issues as they come, is making sure that we are having an open dialogue with DVR at the highest level possible, namely their Director, Steve Anton. To date we have not had to be involved in policy/practice changes, however, our open dialogue with DVR will help us deal with this issue in the future if it arises. (4) Additionally, we have accepted every opportunity available to talk with incoming DVR counselors to inform them about our role as advocates. We have presented multiple trainings over the last year with this goal in mind. Our trainings have mostly been presented to incoming DVR counselors. We are not changing policies during these trainings but merely reminding the counselors or their responsibilities to their clients and introducing them to CAP and the role CAP may play in their work in the future. The more information counselors have about CAP and its services, the more likely a counselor will appropriately refer a client to CAP if help is needed. We also continue to see a large need for CAP services and our funding limits our ability to help everyone.

1. Number of non-litigation systemic activities not involving individual representation that resulted in the change of one or more policy or practice of an agency.4
2. Describe the systemic activities conducted by CAP during the fiscal year and its impact on other agency's policies or practices.

B. Litigation

No litigation activities were conducted during FFY 2018.

1. Total number of CAP cases requiring litigation involving individual representation resulting in, or with the potential for, systemic change.
a. Number of cases requiring litigation involving individual representation filed during fiscal year.0
b. Number of on-going cases pending at start of fiscal year (carryover from prior fiscal year).0
c. Number of cases resolved through litigation during fiscal year.0
2. Describe the agency's on-going and completed systemic litigation activities involving individual representation.

Part V. Agency Information

A. Designated Agency

1. Agency Type (select only one option) External-Protection and Advocacy agency
2. Name of designate agencyCenter for Legal Advocacy d/b/a Disability Law Colorado
3. Is the designated agency contracting CAP services?No
4. If yes, name of contracting agency:N/A

B. Staff Employed

Provide a description of all CAP positions (see instructions)

Total FTE = 1.70. Program Coordinator 15.3% * Advocate 46.4% * Grand Junction Attorney 11.3% * Grand Junction Advocate 13% * Attorney 14.2% * Attorney 2.1% * Senior Intake Specialist 5.9% * Director of Legal Services 9.2% * Executive Director 5.3% * Director of Administrative Services 5.9% * Office Manager 5.8% * Accounting Manager 8.5% * Administrative Asst / Advocate 6.1% * Administrative Assistant 6.4% * Administrative Assistant 3% * Administrative Assistant - Grand Junction 8.9% * Human Resources 3.1%

Part VI. Case Examples

Provide some examples of some interesting cases during the past fiscal year.

Case 1 Client is a 51-year-old female with an intellectual disability. In this particular case, the client was receptive to coaching for self-advocacy, which ultimately led to reaching a successful outcome with DVR. The client’s employment goal was to be an Oriental Medicine Practitioner, specifically to receive a master’s degree for acupuncture and to be an herbalist. Client reported that DVR was not willing to provide her tuition assistance in getting a master’s degree because she was too old to pursue an advanced degree and they didn’t support employment goals in the type of field she was seeking. When the client initiated contact with CAP, she was in the first steps of the final level of informal appeal, with the DVR Supervisor II. Client decided that instead of allowing CAP to review her case thoroughly and possibly assist her with her final informal appeal, she would prefer to receive self-advocacy assistance from our CAP advocate. Thus, this case involved coaching in self-advocacy. After significant support to the client to provide her with the best information/argument to provide to the DVR Supervisor II, the client was able to negotiate successfully with DVR. Through the appeal, the Supervisor II decided to support the client's employment goal and an amended IPE was executed. At the time the case was closed, the client was in her first semester of training to be an Oriental Medicine Practitioner. The client’s first appeal to the DVR Supervisor I was not well-reasoned and organized, but through CAP’s assistance in self-advocacy for her Supervisor II appeal, the client was allowed to successfully move forward in her career goal with DVR’s support. Case 2 Client is a 48 year old female with mental illness, specifically PTSD. This case was handled by our advocate in our Grand Junction office. It is very helpful that we have an office on the western slope that can interact with clients on the other side of our state and advocate for them as someone who lives and works in their general geographic area. Client is a highly educated woman with two college degrees, is a veteran, and has license in cosmetology. Client went to DVR to seek assistance with finding/applying for a job, and her ability to job search adequately is affected by her PTSD. Client contacted the CAP program after her IPE had been signed but services were not being provided. Additionally, the client was unhappy with the IPE employment goal. Initially the client wanted to pursue a career as a paralegal but was put in a plan for a customer service representative. The CAP advocate reviewed records and spoke with DVR about client’s IPE and her employment goals. Through this information it was clear that DVR and client had several communication issues, likely some on the client’s end due to her disability. The CAP advocate attended an in-person meeting with the client and DVR to discuss changing client’s employment goal and to discuss communication moving forward. During the meeting, the CAP advocate helped the client express to DVR her individual needs not only based on her issues related to her disability and her responsibilities to her children. The CAP advocate worked with client to advocate for developing a new plan that included the employment goal as a paralegal. Together with DVR, and through CAP’s advocacy, the client and DVR were able to find a self-paced online paralegal course through Colorado Mountain College. This program had less credits than the other programs discussed and overall would best meet the client’s overall needs. Through CAP’s advocacy, client’s plan was redirected back to her personal needs, and the plan was approved by the DVR and signed by client.

Certification

Reports are to be submitted to RSA within 90 days after the end of the fiscal year covered by this report. Please be reminded that you can enter data directly into RSA's website via the internet. Information on transmittal of the form is found on pages 19 and 20 of the reporting instructions.

Name of Designated Agency OfficialMary Anne Harvey
Title of Designated Agency OfficialExecutive Director
Date Signed12/14/2018