RSA-509 - Protection & Advocacy of Individual Rights (PAIR) Program Performance Report

Alaska (DISABILITY LAW CENTER OF ALASKA) - H240A110002 - FY2011

General Information

Designated Agency Identification

NameDisability Law Center of Alaska
Address3330 Arctic Blvd. 103
Address Line 2
CityAnchorage
StateAlaska
Zip Code99503
E-mail Addressakpa@dlcak.org
Website Addresshttp://www.dlcak.org
Phone907-565-1002
TTY 907-565-1002
Toll-free Phone800-478-1234
Toll-free TTY800-478-1234
Fax907-565-1000
Name of P&A Executive DirectorDavid C. Fleurant
Name of PAIR Director/CoordinatorDavid C. Fleurant
Person to contact regarding reportDavid C. Fleurant
Contact Person phone907-565-1002
Ext.

Part I. Non-Case Services

A. Individual Information and Referral Services (I&R)

Multiple responses are not permitted.

1. Individuals receiving I&R within PAIR priority areas383
2. Individuals receiving I&R outside PAIR priority areas382
3. Total individuals receiving I&R (lines A1 + A2)765

B. Training Activities

1. Number of trainings presented by PAIR staff14
2. Number of individuals who attended training (approximate)282

In FY11 the Alaska P&A continued the effort to bring trainings and legal clinics to rural communities. These outreach efforts took staff to the communities of Ketchikan, Kotzebue, Nome, and most notably—the remote island of St. Paul. The settlement and island of St. Paul are located in the Pribilofs, a small group of islands in the Bering Sea. The town is comprised of just over 500 people, about 85% of which are Native Alaskan. A Staff Attorney from the Alaska P&A was invited to visit St. Paul in collaboration with a representative from Hope Community Services, an Alaskan service provider agency for people with disabilities. Their visit lasted just short of a week, during which the P&A attorney attended the community’s health fair where she met with nearly a hundred people and was able to tell them about the P&A services. Because St. Paul is—by both location and culture—very insular, it was important for the P&A representative to take part in community activities. In addition to the health fair, she volunteered side-by-side with community members for a day of painting a public building exterior. During those interactions she was able to meet the family of a woman who was confined to her home because of physical mobility issues. The attorney ended up visiting the home and was able to address some of the concerns the woman was having, including the possibility that she was being abused by a family member. As a result of the P&A’s outreach this year, just short of 300 people received information about their rights and were given the opportunity to meet one-on-one with staff to discuss legal concerns associated with their disabilities. Training topics included: benefits available for transitioning individuals (ages 17-22), strategies for advocacy and access to workplace accommodations and the Ticket to Work and other work incentives, prevention/detection of abuse and neglect; housing rights, special education rights, social security benefits and the administrative appeals process.

As with the last few years, several SOAR (SSIISSDI Outreach, Access and Recovery) trainings were conducted as well. This is a project the Alaska P&A is coordinating with Federal, State, Municipal, and private providers to facilitate the SSI process for the homeless. Through SOAR, providers are trained to properly complete SSIISSDI applications, which are then flagged and prioritized by the state disability determination service. The Social Security field office designates staff to be available to assist providers who may have questions or need assistance while the application is being completed. By training providers to help their clients through this process-many; many more individuals are receiving much-needed benefits more quickly than if they were going through the applications on their own.

C. Information Disseminated to the Public

1. Radio and TV appearances by PAIR staff0
2. Newspaper/magazine/journal articles0
3. PSAs/videos aired4
4. Hits on the PAIR/P&A website62,865
5. Publications/booklets/brochures disseminated1,189
6. Other (specify separately)0

Narrative

In FY11 the Alaska P&A was granted use of a public service message created to run on TV by the North Central Chapter Paralyzed Veterans of America. The ad is a 30 second spot in which you see a young woman in a manual wheel chair, struggling to push her way through the snow on a sidewalk which has not been cleared. The only sound you hear is the creak of the wheels in the snow and the sound of the woman breathing heavily because of the effort of trying to move only 10 or 15 feet. At the end is a text reminder to please keep sidewalks and ramps clear with a note that the message is from the Disability Law Center of Alaska.

The ad was sent statewide to television stations broadcasting to the following communities: Anchorage, Barrow, Bethel, Cordova, Fairbanks, Homer, Juneau, Kenai/Soldotna, Ketchikan, Kodiak, Kotzebue, Mat-Su, Nome, Petersburg, Seward, Sitka Valdez, and Wrangell. It was sent just at the end of the snowy season in the spring of 2011, so only ran a few times. It will stay in rotation as we enter winter again.

Part II. Individuals Served

A. Individuals Served

Count individual once per FY. Multiple counts not permitted for lines A1 through A3.

1. Individuals still served as of October 1 (carryover from prior FY)74
2. Additional individuals served during the year78
3. Total individuals served (lines A1 + A2)152
4. Individuals w. more than 1 case opened/closed during the FY. (Do not add this number to total on line A3 above.)0

B. Individuals served as of September 30

Carryover to next FY may not exceed total on line II. A.3 above 77

C. Problem Areas/Complaints of Individuals Served

1. Architectural accessibility0
2. Employment14
3. Program access3
4. Housing9
5. Government benefits/services101
6. Transportation1
7. Education2
8. Assistive technology0
9. Voting0
10. Health care4
11. Insurance2
12. Non-government services0
13. Privacy rights0
14. Access to records0
15. Abuse7
16. Neglect6
17. Other3

D. Reasons for Closing Individual Case Files

1. Issues resolved partially or completely in individual favor32
2. Other representation found1
3. Individual withdrew complaint3
4. Appeals unsuccessful2
5. PAIR Services not needed due to individual's death, relocation etc.8
6. PAIR withdrew from case1
7. PAIR unable to take case because of lack of resources6
8. Individual case lacks legal merit19
9. Other3

Please explain

1. Lack of client cooperation 2. Shortly after the letter was sent, the client met with the employer who subsequently terminated her for a reason unrelated to her disability. 3. Lack of client cooperation

E. Intervention Strategies Used in Serving Individuals

List the highest level of intervention used by PAIR prior to closing each case file.

1. Technical assistance in self-advocacy1
2. Short-term assistance51
3. Investigation/monitoring4
4. Negotiation5
5. Mediation/alternative dispute resolution0
6. Administrative hearings12
7. Litigation (including class actions)2
8. Systemic/policy activities0

Part III. Statistical Information on Individuals Served

A. Age of Individuals Served as of October 1

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. 0 - 41
2. 5 - 223
3. 23 - 59119
4. 60 - 6419
5. 65 and over10

B. Gender of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Females84
2. Males68

C. Race/Ethnicity of Individuals Served

For individuals who are non-Hispanic/Latino only

1. Hispanic/Latino of any race5
2. American Indian or Alaskan Native31
3. Asian5
4. Black or African American12
5. Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander0
6. White95
7. Two or more races1
8. Race/ethnicity unknown3

D. Living Arrangements of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Independent107
2. Parental or other family home15
3. Community residential home7
4. Foster care0
5. Nursing home3
6. Public institutional living arrangement4
7. Private institutional living arrangement2
8. Jail/prison/detention center5
9. Homeless5
10. Other living arrangements3
11. Living arrangements not known1

E. Primary Disability of Individuals Served

Identify the individual's primary disability, namely the one directly related to the issues/complaints

1. Blind/visual impairment3
2. Deaf/hard of hearing5
3. Deaf-blind0
4. Orthopedic impairment53
5. Mental illness2
6. Substance abuse0
7. Mental retardation0
8. Learning disability2
9. Neurological impairment14
10. Respiratory impairment5
11. Heart/other circulatory impairment11
12. Muscular/skeletal impairment17
13. Speech impairment1
14. AIDS/HIV1
15. Traumatic brain injury3
16. Other disability35

Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation

A. Systemic Activities

1. Number of policies/practices changed as a result of non-litigation systemic activities1

2. Number of individuals potentially impacted by policy changes100

Describe your systemic activities. Be sure to include information about the policies that were changed and how these changes benefit individuals with disabilities. Include case examples of how your systemic activities impacted individuals served.

In FY11 the Alaska P&A tackled 3 issues that we classify as systemic advocacy or intervention, only one of which resulted in change of policy. That was an issue of subsidized housing options for young people with disabilities.

The other two systemic issues included 1) an opportunity to advocate in front of the Alaska Supreme Court about the rights of people with disabilities to select their own guardian, and 2) in response to a series of complaints the P&A received—concerned advocating for the State of Alaska Office of Adult Protective Services to respond in a more timely way to reports of vulnerable adults in need of protection.

Outcomes included the following: In the first case, Anchorage’s local housing authority proposed re-designating a 120-unit housing complex from a mixed population to elderly-only. The disability community was concerned about this plan as it would effectively remove 120 units from the inventory available to young adults with disabilities, including 12 units that were wheelchair accessible and 4 units that were sight and sound modified. Under the existing preference system, homeless individuals with disabilities received more points than elderly individuals. When a vacancy in the complex occurred, it was more likely than not to be filled by a homeless individual with disabilities. As no effort was made to connect these younger individuals with supportive housing services, intergenerational conflicts arose. It was these conflicts that served as the basis for the plan to re-designate the complex to elderly only.

HUD eventually approved the re-designation plan, but with certain changes advocated by the Alaska P&A. The 12 accessible units and the 4 sight and sound modified units were excluded from the designation so that they are available to persons of any age who need them. Additionally, the local housing authority was required to develop a supported housing strategy in an effort to increase the chances of a successful tenancy by those individuals with disabilities who were formerly homeless. As a result of P&A advocacy, there was no net loss of accessible housing units in Anchorage and supported housing services were initiated.

In the second, the Alaska Supreme Court invited the Alaska P&A to present friend-of-the-court arguments about the preference system for selecting guardians for adults with disabilities. The case is about a young woman who lives with her parents and wants them to be her guardians. There is a dispute within the extended family about whether the parents or another relative ought to be guardian, but the young woman’s own preference for her parents is clear. Unfortunately, the lower court handling the case decided that the bad blood within the extended family was so bad that it was necessary to appoint the state-supplied Public Guardian instead of any family member as guardian. The lower court said that it did not trust the parents to allow the young woman to stay in touch with others in the family and that the parents had not taken full advantage of the services that should be available to the young woman in the community.

It’s the P&A’s position that the guardianship system is meant to preserve as many rights as possible for someone who needs a guardian, and one of the most important of these rights is to choose the person or people who should be your guardians. We have argued to the Alaska Supreme Court that a person’s preference should be honored unless there is clear and convincing evidence that the people the ward wants to be her guardians are unfit to serve. At the oral argument in September, the Court was interested in this argument, and also interested in the parents’ argument that they have a constitutional right to be selected as guardians. Our view is that the constitutional rights in this situation belong to the person with disabilities and that in this case the parents’ rights depend on the fact that their daughter has chosen them.

The Alaska Supreme Court case is Matter of Protective Proceedings of T.J., No. S-13698. A decision from the Alaska Supreme Court is expected during the next several months.

In the last instance, the Alaska P&A received complaints that the State of Alaska Office of Adult Protective Services was not timely responding to reports of vulnerable adults in need, especially in rural areas of the state. The Alaska P&A expressed its concerns to APS that vulnerable adults were likely individuals with all types of disabilities and that its statutory duties require that it follow up on all reports, including making an onsite visit to the adult. In response, APS stated that it was following the statutory requirements, but if the Alaska P&A had specific incidents to report that it would check into each incident. The Alaska P&A continues to closely review all complaints against APS to ensure that its statutory obligations are carried out.

B. Litigation/Class Actions

1. Number of individuals potentially impacted by changes as a result of PAIR litigation/class action efforts0
2. Number of individuals named in class actions0

Describe your litigation/class action activities. Explain how individuals with disabilities benefited from your litigation activities. Be sure to include case examples that demonstrate the impact of your litigation.

Part V. PAIR'S Priorities and Objectives

A. Priorities and Objectives for the Fiscal Year Covered by this Report

For each of your PAIR program priorities for the fiscal year covered by this report, please:

  1. Identify and describe priority.
  2. Identify the need, issue or barrier addressed by this priority.
  3. Identify and describe indicators PAIR used to determine successful outcome of activities pursued under this priority.
  4. Explain whether pursuing this priority involved collaborative efforts by other entities. If so, describe this collaboration.
  5. Provide the number of cases handled under the priority. Indicate how many of these, if any, were class actions.
  6. Provide at least one case summary that demonstrates the impact of the priority.

DISABILITY LAW CENTER OF ALASKA FY2011 PAIR PRIORITIES, GOALS, OUTCOME INDICATORS

PRIORITY: ABUSE AND NEGLECT

GOAL A: To investigate allegations of abuse (including the use of seclusion and restraint), neglect, and exploitation of individuals with disabilities.

Issue: Individuals with disabilities have a right to be free from abuse and neglect.

Outcome Indicators: A.1. To assess whether, in at least 2 investigations, all federal, state, and local agencies charged with the responsibility of investigating complaints of abuse and neglect of individuals with disabilities conduct their investigations in a timely, thorough and objective manner; A.2. To investigate 1 report of abuse and neglect of individuals with disabilities; A.3. To establish and maintain contact with residents of assisted living homes, psychiatric facilities (adult and child), prisons jails, and in Division of Juvenile Justice facilities, through at least 1 facility visit.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Complaints alleging the following abuse will be prioritized: suspicious death, seclusion & restraint, eminent threat of harm, sexual misconduct. Complaints originating in facilities with repeated complaints of abuse and neglect will be prioritized. If a complaint of abuse or neglect is being investigated by the police, DLC will delay its own investigation pending the outcome of that investigation.

Collaboration: The Alaska P&A has sought to develop and maintain cooperative, complimentary relationships with state agencies that have similar mandates and authority to investigate allegations of abuse or neglect and other complaints filed by or on behalf of individuals who experience a disability. In Alaska, those agencies include, but are not limited to: Health Facilities Licensing & Certification (licensing and certifying health facilities as well as assisted living homes); the Office of the Long-Term Care Ombudsman; Adult Protective Services; Medicaid Fraud Unit; and others.

To date, the P&A’s efforts have gone largely unrewarded. This may, at least in part be because the P&A has, on occasion, found problems with investigations conducted by those agencies. Those issues notwithstanding, the Alaska P&A does often recommend to individuals who call that they may want to concurrently report a complaint to one or more of the agencies noted above. At those times, the Alaska P&A will follow-up and review that agency’s investigation, initiating its own investigation if the other agency’s investigation is found wanting. The Alaska P&A also receives occasional referrals from other investigative agencies, when they believe the nature of the allegation falls outside their mission or authority.

Number of Cases: Under the heading of Abuse and Neglect, the P&A worked on 34 cases in FY11 including monitoring visits, investigations and individual advocacy.

Case Summary: In one case Alaska P&A learned of an Alaskan elder in the state psychiatric hospital who was being held without legal authority and who wanted to return to his village. The elder had dementia, but was not mentally ill. After multiple attempts by the Alaska P&A to get the psychiatric hospital to release the elder, the Alaska P&A filed a petition for habeas corpus asking that the court rule that there was no authority to keep the man in the hospital. The court found that indeed there was no current authority to hold the man and gave the hospital a short period of time to get an order keeping the man there or to return him to his village. The hospital returned the man to his village just a few days later.

In another instance, the Alaska P&A received a report that an 80-year old resident of a State-operated assisted living home had fallen, broken her hip, and died 5 days later in the hospital. The report included an allegation that the nurse first on the scene after the fall failed to conduct an adequate assessment before moving the resident, potentially resulting in additional pain and harm to the resident. During the course of its investigation, the Alaska P&A found problems with the Home’s system for assessing residents after a fall; the use of certain medications; providing adequate observation and supervision; and the Home’s failure to ensure residents or their representatives consistently received the information necessary to make informed decisions relative to treatment options. Those findings resulted in a determination of neglect. An investigative report, including recommendations, was sent to the Home and made available to the public.

PRIORITY: OUTREACH

GOAL B: To provide outreach to unserved/underserved individuals with disabilities in Alaska.

Issue: Individuals with disabilities who are unaware of their rights can neither exercise those rights, nor protect themselves from rights abuses.

Outcome Indicators: B.1. To conduct 12 monthly outreach/intake visits in Anchorage with the Alaska Native Justice Center and other agencies to assist homeless individuals with disabilities, through referral or direct legal assistance, in accessing appropriate supports and services; B.2. To conduct at least 12 monthly outreach/intake visits at the Veterans Administration’s Comprehensive Homeless Center; B.3. To produce a series of 6 public service announcements or ads to run in newspapers to promote awareness of DLC in rural areas of Alaska; B.4. To conduct 2 outreach events to military and National Guard with disabilities, and their families, on access to services in Alaska; B.5. To conduct 5 trainings statewide regarding benefits available for transitioning individuals, ages 17-22, specifically targeting individuals in rural areas with traumatic brain injury. B.6. To contact 2 regional Native non-profit health corporations and offer training on the rights of individuals with disabilities and the services available in Alaska, including those offered by DLC.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Outreach activities may be suspended when caseloads involving direct legal advocacy exceed manageable resource levels. The regional Native non-profit health corporations contacted in Objective B7 should be corporations not previously contacted by DLC.

Collaboration: PAIR, PAIMI and PADD programs work together to conduct outreach to unserved/underserved populations. Such collaboration helps defray the costs of travel in Alaska. Staff also collaborates with other state and local agencies in outreach efforts to the homeless to secure for them any necessary legal assistance. In FY11 the Alaska P&A also collaborated with a service provider agency to travel to the remote island of St. Paul. (See further detail on the St. Paul outreach under Part 1. Non-Case Services.)

Number of Cases: There are no specific clients/cases to record under this priority, but specific outcomes for each indicator are listed below.

Case Summary: B.1. An advocate from the P&A did make 3 visits to the Anchorage homeless shelter in FY11. The outreach visits began as a collaborative effort between many legal agencies, but were essentially run by one agency. The intake process they created was not one that encompassed the population that the P&A serves so despite our presence on-site, we were unable to make contact with potential clients. The P&A tried for more than 6 months to influence a revision of the system so that we might participate and be able to serve those clients with developmental disabilities. Whether it was because of staff turnover at the shelter and at the other legal agencies, or an unwillingness to prioritize the individuals with disabilities and the issues on which the P&A could help, changes were never made. Ultimately we had to shift our resources to areas where we could reach individuals that needed P&A assistance.

However, the P&A did not leave the homeless population behind when it comes to services. As will be discussed in objective B.4, we participate in several outreach events specific to homeless individuals in the Anchorage community. Additionally, the Alaska P&A entered its fourth year with the SOAR (SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access & Recovery) Project which collaborates with care coordinating agencies throughout Alaska to train care coordinators how to assist homeless individuals apply for Social Security benefits.

B.2. The Alaska P&A sets aside time to make monthly visits to the Veterans Administration’s Comprehensive Homeless Center (aka: the “VA Domiciliary” or “the Dom”). The P&A’s contact at the Dom works closely with their residents and calls to let us know if there will be anyone who wants to meet with us at the designated time. If nobody is on the schedule, we will forego that month’s visit.

Most intakes at the Dom involve providing information and referral with an offer of more assistance if the person does not find success in following the information and referral provided. Most questions involve Social Security disability benefits.

The Alaska P&A also participated in 1 event geared specifically toward providing services and information to homeless veterans in Anchorage. At this event, the P&A provided information and referral regarding disability related questions. The P&A also has a variety of publications available for individuals to take with them. Additionally, as noted under priority B.1, the P&A entered its fourth year with the SOAR (SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access & Recovery) Project which collaborates with care coordinating agencies throughout Alaska to train care coordinators how to assist homeless individuals apply for Social Security benefits.

B.3. With direct-service priorities taking precedent, this goal was not met.

B.4. During the last year, the Alaska P&A completed 2 outreach events as planned to military and National Guard with disabilities, and their families—one in Anchorage, and one on the island of Kodiak.

B.5. During the last year, staff from the Alaska P&A traveled throughout the state and did conduct 5 trainings on benefits available for transitioning individuals, ages 17-22, specifically targeting individuals in rural areas with traumatic brain injury. Trainings took place in Anchorage and the remote communities of Kodiak, Nome and Kotzebue.

B.6. Contact was made with 1 regional Native non-profit health corporation. They declined the offer for the P&A to present training, which would have been about the rights of people with disabilities as well as information on services available through the P&A. A second corporation was not contacted this fiscal year as the P&A had so many training requests coming in from other agencies. Resources were directed toward the areas where the strongest need presented itself.

PRIORITY: HOUSING

GOAL C: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities for housing and to prevent homelessness.

Issue: Being part of the community and living as independently as possible are among the most important values and goals shared by people with disabilities, their families, friends, and advocates. A home of one’s own — either rented or owned -- is the cornerstone of independence for people with disabilities. However, across the nation, individuals with disabilities face a crisis in the availability of decent, safe, affordable, and accessible housing.

Outcome Indicators: C.1. To advocate on behalf of 3 individuals with disabilities who have complaints of Fair Housing Act and other housing rights violations related to the disability, or require assistance in requesting a reasonable accommodation; C.2. To disseminate information on the housing rights of Alaskans with disabilities through legal clinics (4) and publications on housing rights.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: DLC will prioritize assisting individuals in institutions at risk of losing their community-based housing as a result of institutionalization, but not incarceration. DLC will assist individuals requesting reasonable accommodations in housing as short term assistance to try to ensure better outcomes as a result of the initial accommodation request.

Collaboration: Typically, PAIR, PAIMI and PADD work together to help Alaskans with disabilities secure housing or prevent the loss of housing.

Number of Cases: The Alaska P&A had 7 housing cases in FY11 and also completed 5 legal clinics, 1 more than planned.

Case Summary: A mother contacted the Alaska P&A in regard to her six year old son’s need to have a service animal in their home as a result of his seizure disorder and as prescribed by his doctor. The homeowner’s association (HOA) had a “no pet policy” that they claimed did not allow service animal accommodations. When the client’s mother contacted the HOA to receive permission to obtain a service animal for her son, the HOA asked for information outside the limits of questions allowed by the Federal Fair Housing Act (FFHA) when making a reasonable accommodation decision. The Alaska P&A contacted the HOA’s attorney and informed them of the scope of information the FFHA allows individuals to be asked when seeking a reasonable accommodation and asked that the HOA approve the accommodation or provide legal authority the supported the denial by a certain date. The HOA did not respond to the Alaska P&A by the date provided and a follow-up letter was sent notifying the HOA they were constructively denying the request for accommodation by delaying approval. Shortly after this letter was sent to the HOA, they approved the request and officially changed the HOA policy to include service animal accommodations. The client’s mother is now in the process of obtaining a service animal for her son.

As far as the legal clinics go, 5 were conducted—one in each of the following communities: Anchorage, Kodiak, Bethel, Nome and Kotzebue.

PRIORITY: COMMUNITY INTEGRATION

GOAL D: To facilitate the community integration of individuals with disabilities by protecting their rights to receive appropriate supports and services in the most integrated setting.

Issue: Under state and federal laws people with disabilities have the right to live in integrated settings in their local communities with the appropriate supports and services. However, many individuals with disabilities who are in both large and small facilities encounter barriers that make it difficult or prevent them from living in an integrated setting. Examples of such barriers include rules and policies that have a disparate impact on individuals with disabilities, the absence of community-based services, and the diversion of scarce resources away from community-based services.

Outcome Indicators: D.1. To advocate on behalf of 3 individuals with disabilities who are being denied appropriate community-living and assisted-living options, including elders in need of dementia care; D.2. To monitor at least 1, if not all, applications for Certificates of Need regarding the construction of new facilities and increasing bed capacity to prevent the diversion of scarce resources from community-based programs and services; D.3 To assist 2 individuals with disabilities who have been denied access to programs or services because they have a disability; D.4. To meet with the Commissioner for the Department of Health and Social Services and advocate for the development and implementation of a comprehensive, effectively working plan for ensuring community-based services for individuals with disabilities in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Olmstead.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Examples of ADA and §504 cases include failure to provide reasonable accommodations to programs and services. Advocacy in Objective D.3 may also include efforts to challenge any changes to the Certificate of Need statutes that would eliminate public comment on the necessity of facilities for people with disabilities;

Collaboration: PAIR, PAIMI and PADD work together to assist individuals with disabilities receive services in the most integrated setting. Staff also collaborates with local independent living centers to help achieve this goal for our clients.

Number of Cases: Under the heading of Community Integration the P&A worked on 8 cases of individual advocacy in FY11.

Case Summary: D.1. The Alaska P&A did advocate on behalf of 3 individuals under this indicator, as planned. In one case, a woman with brain cancer contacted the Alaska P&A because of a notice she received from her long-term disability insurance carrier, and employer provided policy. The insurance company has sent her a notice about a change in her policy that would mean her benefits will expire when she reaches age 65. Given her cancer diagnosis, she has lived long past her life expectancy and feels that with this change of policy that she’s being discriminated against.

Upon further review, the P&A determined her dispute was not disability related, but a rather a matter of how the policy was interpreted. The client was given information on her rights and as far as the P&A knows, she continued to self-advocate for a different interpretation of her policy.

D.2. No Certificates of Need came up for review in this fiscal year.

D.3 The Alaska P&A assisted 5 individuals this year (3 more than was planned under this indicator) including the following case:

An individual with kidney disease contacted the Alaska P&A for assistance when he was notified that he would be denied boarding to his upcoming cruise because of his use of a home dialysis kit which he planned to use on the ship. The cruise line would only let him and his wife go on the cruise if he had been using the kit for at least 1 year per its policy, but he had only be using it for 5 months. Additionally, the cruise line required that he purchase travel insurance although nondisabled passengers were not required to do so.

The Alaska P&A wrote a letter to the cruise line explaining that under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act, not only did the cruise line need to accommodate the individual and allow him to board the ship and use his home dialysis kit since he and his wife were certified in its use, but also because he had a fit-to-travel letter from his doctor. The Alaska P&A also explained to the cruise line that they could not require a passenger with a disability to purchase insurance solely because of his disability.

The cruise line responded by eliminating the insurance requirement and making a reasonable accommodation to its one year policy to allow the individual and his wife go on the cruise.

D.4. Again this year the P&A was unable to hold discussions with the Commissioner for the Department of Health and Social Services regarding the comprehensive Olmstead plan. The P&A has brought Olmstead litigation against the State claiming that it does not have a comprehensive, effectively working plan. Although the goal of meeting with the Commissioner stands, it seems that while litigation is pending that meeting will be unlikely. The P&A will continue to advocate for this priority and hopes that the litigation will prompt the State to improve whatever plan they do have.

There is no one case that demonstrates the impact of this priority, however the state’s current Olmstead plan has no measureable goals, assigns no responsibility, and excludes individuals with physical disabilities who became disabled after the age of 21. The plan does not even mention nursing homes despite the fact that the percentage of nursing home residents in Alaska in the 31-64 age group rose from 20.8% in 2000 to 23.3% in 2007, the highest rate in the Nation; Nearly one-third of the nursing home population in Alaska have no impairments in activities of daily living; and nearly 27% of the Alaska nursing home population has no cognitive impairments.

PRIORITY: EMPLOYMENT

GOAL E: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities who face discrimination in employment.

Issue: More than 20 years after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, many employers have discriminatory practices that adversely affect people with disabilities in hiring, retention, promotion and termination of employment.

Outcome Indicators: E.1. To advocate on behalf of 2 individuals with disabilities threatened with an adverse employment action, such as termination, or denied a reasonable accommodation related to their disabilities.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Assisting individuals with employment related matters may not, in all instances, include court or administrative representation (unless individuals qualifies for assistance under PABSS), but may involve the provision of self-advocacy assistance and training. If a complaint of employment discrimination is being, or should be, investigated by another agency, such as the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission, the Alaska State Commission on Human Rights, or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, DLC may delay its own investigation and/or make a referral to the appropriate agency. Where self-advocacy assistance is provided, staff will initiate post-assistance contact to assess the value of the assistance provided.

Collaboration: PAIR, PAIMI and PADO work together to assist individuals with disabilities obtain and/or maintain employment Periodically, P&A staff work with the Client Assistance Program to facilitate achieving this goal. Additionally this year, in many cases the P&A worked in collaboration with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Alaska Human Rights Commission.

Number of Cases: The P&A received a surprising 15 requests for assistance with employment issues in FY11 and was able to assist with some aspect of all 15 cases. We say surprising because it was over twice as many requests in this area as were received in the previous year.

Case Summary: In one case, the Alaska P&A was contacted by a woman who has Multiple Sclerosis, which makes her eyes extremely photosensitive and she gets severe migraines when she works under the bright fluorescent lights. She requested assistance in obtaining a reasonable accommodation at work. By the time she contacted the P&A she had already spoken with her employer about having the brightness in her work area reduced, but they said they could not or would not do it. She had then filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

The P&A was able to assist the client in responding to the EEOC’s requests for information, and with negotiations with her employer. The P&A first obtained the woman’s employment records, and opened negotiations with the employer. We then researched the law and the technology available for accommodating photosensitivity and presented this information to the both employer and the EEOC investigator.

Ultimately, the EEOC found for the client, ordered the employer to undergo ADA training, to accommodate the employee’s disability and also to pay her compensatory damages.

In another case, a 50-year-old man contacted the Alaska P&A requesting assistance with an appeal before the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) after being denied a Halibut Charter Permit. New charter regulations held that an individual had to fish the 2008 season in order to qualify for a 2011 permit. However, the client was unable to fish the 2008 season due to his seizure disorder which left him unable to run his boat. Without being able to qualify to fish for the 2011, the client would lose his main livelihood running fishing charters.

The regulations state that if an individual does not fish during the 2008 season due to unavoidable circumstances that were unforeseeable, they can appeal the issue and be granted the permit. The client’s seizure disorder was normally controlled through medication, diet, and exercise and he had not experienced a seizure for many year. However, right before the 2008 season began, the client had a seizure which led to a car accident and he lost his driver’s license. Because the seizure occurred before he could modify his boat to accommodate any future seizures, he was unable to fish the 2008 season.

The Alaska P&A represented the client in his administrative appeal and performed additional briefing following the hearing. NOAA determined that the client’s seizure disorder, which caused him to not fish the 2008 season, was an unavoidable circumstance and granted him a transferable charter halibut permit. This permit allows the client to support himself, keep his charter business, and continue doing the job he loves.

Lastly, in a third case a 55-year-old woman contacted the Alaska P &A in regard to an employment discrimination claim that she filed with the Alaska Human Rights Commission (AHRC). The client has a diagnosis of fibromyalgia and filed a claim with the AHRC and EEOC that her employer discriminated against her because of her disability and retaliated against her for complaining of discrimination by suspending her from work and refusing to schedule her for shifts. When the client contacted the P&A, the AHRC had already investigated the charges and found substantial evidence to support the allegations of discrimination in her place of work. The client asked for assistance from the P&A in negotiating the final details of the conciliation agreement.

The P&A was able to communicate with the AHRC attorney and help facilitate the conciliation agreement which included a financial settlement and the employer agreeing to provide training to its managers, supervisors, and employees in the laws prohibiting discrimination in employment, with an emphasis on disability-based discrimination and retaliation.

PRIORITY: GOVERNMENT BENEFITS

GOAL F: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities who seek access to government benefits.

Issue: Access to basic individual and community supports through government assistance programs is necessary for people with disabilities before they can consider independent living, continued education and employment. These supports include Social Security programs, Alaska Public Assistance, in-home support services, individualized support from state government and private providers, Medicaid, Medicare, and managed care among others.

Outcome Indicators: F.1. To assist 30 individuals with disabilities to obtain and maintain SSI/SSDI and related benefits, such as Medicaid and Adult Public Assistance; F.2. To conduct 8 trainings statewide on social security benefits and the administrative appeals process; F.3. To conduct 3 trainings and make 3 presentations on how the Medicaid, CLASS Act, and individual insurance provisions of federal health reform would affect people with disabilities; F.4. To represent 2 individuals with disabilities to obtain or retain services under a Medicaid Waiver, Medicaid’s EPSDT program, or obtain or retain related services such as PCA services; F.5. To conduct at 5 statewide trainings regarding strategies for advocacy and access to workplace accommodations and the Ticket to Work and other work incentives.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Assisting individuals with disabilities obtain social security benefits does not include the initial application process. Assisting individuals with disabilities maintain social security benefits does not include the provision of direct legal assistance for continuing disability reviews. Assisting individuals with disabilities maintain social security benefits does not include the provision of direct legal assistance for overpayment issues unless the individual demonstrates significant cognitive impairments or qualifies for services under the PABSS grant.

Collaboration: PAIR, PAIMI and PADD work together in assisting clients to acquire benefits and in-home support services Staff also collaborates with other local agencies in outreach efforts to the homeless to secure for them the benefits to which they are entitled.

Number of Cases: The Alaska P&A assisted 100 individuals with Government Benefits issues this year.

Case Summary: F.1. In this case, the Alaska P&A’s client requested help in appealing the decision of the Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP) to stop providing assistance to their family. ATAP provides cash assistance and work services to low-income families with children to help them with basic needs while they work toward becoming self-sufficient.

The P&A’s client has a condition called Ménière’s Disease which puts him at risk, at any moment, of falling or passing out. His wife cannot leave the home to work full-time because he is at this risk, so the family’s only income was his Social Security benefits. They were denied an ATAP extension beyond the standard five-year deadline because the ATAP contractor concluded the wife could and ought to leave the home to work.

The P&A represented the family in the appeal and reached a favorable settlement in which the family not only became eligible, but received nearly a year’s worth of back benefits because a notice of denial had not been adequate. The family continued to get ATAP benefits until their son reached the age of 19.

In another case, a client came to the Alaska P&A in regards to a cessation of SSDI benefits. The Social Security Administration (SSA) was asserting that this woman had fled jurisdiction to avoid prosecution in another state. A felony warrant had been issued for her arrest in and because of that SSA had discontinued her SSDI benefits. Between the time the warrant was issued until her benefits were terminated, SSA had tabulated an overpayment of $37,000. The client had been residing in an Assisted Living Home, was on a Medicaid Waiver, and needed to live in a medically monitored environment due to multiple medical diagnoses which included: Multiple Sclerosis, Lupus, a degenerative fasciitis disorder, chronic depression, and PTSD. The discontinuation of benefits affected this woman’s day-to-day ability to live her life and get the medical care she needed to manage her health and well-being. When she came to the Alaska P&A she was in extreme crisis. She had no idea how to handle what was happening to her and offered that all of her health conditions were exacerbated by the extreme stress this situation had created.

In April of 2009 a case was won against the Social Security Administration and Commissioner Astrue, in Martinez v. Astrue. This decision essentially asserted that in cases similar to this client’s, the SSA should not have ceased the payment of benefits. This decision was extremely important and a “win” for our client. We shared the news with her and supported and informed her throughout the next many months as she waited for the SSA to restart her benefits. Finally, her disability benefits were fully reinstated and she received a large amount of back-pay.

This case was a great example of the significant impact the Alaska P&A can have on the lives of Alaskan’s with by disabilities. We provided; compassion, advocacy, education and information, and systems intervention. The P&A learned a lot from this case and used that information to provide guidance and perspective when other individuals in similar situations requested our services. F.2. 4 of the planned 8 trainings took place. Locations included Anchorage, Kotzebue, Kodiak and Nome.

F.3. 6 presentations/trainings took place in FY11.

F.4. In FY11, 1 individual was represented in retaining services under a Medicaid Waiver and with appropriate discharge planning from a facility. The case is ongoing.

F.5. Although the P&A planned to conduct at 5 statewide trainings regarding strategies for advocacy and access to workplace accommodations and the Ticket to Work and other work incentives, 7 trainings took place. The trainings were held across the state in the following communities: Anchorage (2), Kotzebue, Nome, Kodiak, Bethel & Kenai.

PRIORITY: EDUCATION

GOAL G: Advocate on behalf of all children with disabilities to ensure that they have access to a free appropriate public education and are not subject to discrimination for reasons related to their disabilities.

Issue: Under state and federal law, students with disabilities have the right to be educated in integrated settings and to participate meaningfully in academic and non-academic activities with non-disabled children. Lack of information about special education laws is just one of many barriers preventing Alaskans with disabilities from benefiting from their special education programs.

Outcome Indicators:

G.1. Advocate on behalf of 2 children with disabilities whose education plans are either wholly or substantially inadequate and/or inappropriate. G.2. Advocate on behalf of 1 child with disabilities whose school districts have failed to comply the procedural protections, including child find, to which these children and their parents are entitled. G.3. Conduct six (6) trainings on special education law, including at least three (3) in rural locations. These trainings will emphasize substantive rights, procedural safeguards and techniques for effective self-advocacy.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Under Objective G.1., children with disabilities without any education plan will be prioritized over children receiving inadequate services. Otherwise, prospective cases will be prioritized in the following order of importance: inappropriate placement decisions; the lack of required related services; the lack of appropriate transition services; the lack of needed supplementary aids and services; and inadequate 504 plans.

Promoting self-advocacy will be an essential factor in all case assessments, which assessment will occur prior to the execution of an advocacy or representation agreement.

Collaboration: PAIR and PADD work together in assisting clients to receive a free appropriate public education. Staff also collaborates with other local agencies in outreach efforts to parents and older students to inform them of their rights and teach self-advocacy skills.

Number of Cases: There were no individual advocacy cases under the P&A’s Education priority for PAIR in FY11.

Case Summary: Six trainings were planned, but eight were completed due to additional requests from families. In FY11 the P&A conducted these trainings in the following communities: Anchorage (4), Wasilla, Nome, Kotzebue, & Healy.

B. Priorities and Objectives for the Current Fiscal Year

Please include a statement of priorities and objectives for the current fiscal year (the fiscal year succeeding that covered by this report), which should contain the following information:

  1. a statement of each prioirty;
  2. the need addressed by each priority; and;
  3. a description of the activities to be carried out under each priority.

DISABILITY LAW CENTER OF ALASKA FY2012 PAIR PRIORITIES, GOALS, OUTCOME INDICATORS

PRIORITY: ABUSE AND NEGLECT

GOAL A: To investigate allegations of abuse (including the use of seclusion and restraint), neglect, and exploitation of individuals with disabilities.

ISSUE: Individuals with disabilities have a right to be free from abuse and neglect.

Outcome Indicators: A.1. Investigate 3 reports of abuse and neglect of individuals with disabilities; A.2. Assess whether, in at least 3 investigations, all federal, state, and local agencies charged with the responsibility of investigating complaints of abuse and neglect of individuals with disabilities conduct their investigations in a timely, thorough and objective manner; A.3. Advocate for full recognition of DLC’s access authority by State Certification and Licensing and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) with regard to investigations and surveys conducted under the auspices of CMS, and CMS’s reporting to the DLC all restraint related deaths that occur in hospitals, including psychiatric facilities (2 year priority); A.4. Establish and maintain contact with residents of assisted living homes, psychiatric facilities (adult and child), prisons, jails, and in Division of Juvenile Justice facilities, through at least 5 facility visits;

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Complaints alleging the following abuse will be prioritized: suspicious death, seclusion & restraint, eminent threat of harm, sexual misconduct. Complaints originating in facilities with repeated complaints of abuse and neglect will be prioritized. If a complaint of abuse or neglect is being investigated by the police, DLC may delay its own investigation pending the outcome of that investigation.

PRIORITY: OUTREACH

GOAL B: To provide outreach to unserved/underserved individuals with disabilities in Alaska.

ISSUE: Individuals with disabilities who are unaware of their rights can neither exercise those rights, nor protect themselves from rights abuses.

Outcome Indicators: B.1. To conduct at least 12 monthly outreach/intake visits at the Veterans Administration’s Comprehensive Homeless Center; B.2. To conduct 5 trainings statewide regarding government benefits available for individuals ages 17-22 who are transitioning from school, specifically targeting individuals in rural areas with traumatic brain injury; B.3. To disseminate information on the housing rights of Alaskans with disabilities through 4 outreach/intake events and via publications on housing rights; B.4 To conduct 8 trainings statewide on social security benefits and the administrative appeals process; B.5. To conduct at 5 statewide trainings regarding strategies for advocacy and access to workplace accommodations and the Ticket to Work and other work incentives; B.6. Conduct six (6) trainings on special education law, including at least three (3) in rural locations. These trainings will emphasize substantive rights, procedural safeguards and techniques for effective self-advocacy; B.7. Disseminate to 100 rural clinics information on education rights and appropriate educational programming for students with traumatic brain injury.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Outreach activities may be suspended when caseloads involving direct legal advocacy exceed manageable resource levels.

PRIORITY: HOUSING

GOAL C: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities for housing and to prevent homelessness.

ISSUE: Being part of the community and living as independently as possible are among the most important values and goals shared by people with disabilities, their families, friends, and advocates. A home of one’s own — either rented or owned -- is the cornerstone of independence for people with disabilities. However, across the nation, individuals with disabilities face a crisis in the availability of decent, safe, affordable, and accessible housing.

Outcome Indicators: C.1. To advocate on behalf of 2 individuals with disabilities who have complaints of Fair Housing Act and other housing rights violations related to the disability, or require assistance in requesting a reasonable accommodation.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: DLC will prioritize assisting individuals in institutions at risk of losing their community-based housing as a result of institutionalization, but not incarceration. DLC will assist individuals requesting reasonable accommodations in housing as short term assistance to try to ensure better outcomes as a result of the initial accommodation request.

PRIORITY: COMMUNITY INTEGRATION

GOAL D: To facilitate the community integration of individuals with disabilities by protecting their rights to receive appropriate supports and services in the most integrated setting.

ISSUE: Under state and federal laws people with disabilities have the right to live in integrated settings in their local communities with the appropriate supports and services. However, many individuals with disabilities who are in both large and small facilities encounter barriers which make it difficult or prevent them from living in an integrated setting. Examples of such barriers include rules and policies that have a disparate impact on individuals with disabilities, the absence of community-based services, and the diversion of scarce resources away from community-based services.

Outcome Indicators: D.1. Advocate for the development and implementation of a comprehensive, effectively working plan for ensuring community-based services for individuals with disabilities in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Olmstead (2 year priority); D.2. To advocate on behalf of 3 individuals with disabilities who are being denied appropriate community-living and assisted-living options, including elders in need of dementia care; D.3. To monitor at least 1 application for Certificates of Need regarding the construction of new facilities and increasing bed capacity to prevent the diversion of scarce resources from community-based programs and services; D.4. To assist 2 individuals with disabilities who have been denied access to programs or services because they have a disability; D.5. Advocate for systemic reform of the mental health care system within the Department of Corrections to reduce the rate of recidivism of offenders who are also Alaska Mental Health Trust beneficiaries (2 year priority).

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Examples of ADA and §504 cases include failure to provide reasonable accommodations to programs and services. Advocacy in Objective D.3 may also include efforts to challenge any changes to the Certificate of Need statutes that would eliminate public comment on proposals to build facilities for people with disabilities.

PRIORITY: EMPLOYMENT

GOAL E: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities who face discrimination in employment.

ISSUE: More than 20 years after the passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act, many employers have discriminatory practices that adversely affect people with disabilities in hiring, retention, promotion and termination of employment.

Outcome Indicators: E.1. To advocate on behalf of 5 individuals with disabilities threatened with an adverse employment action, such as termination, or denied a reasonable accommodation related to their disabilities; E.2. To assist individuals with disabilities learn more about their rights by publishing and distributing 1,000 employee rights handbook.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Assisting individuals with employment related matters may not, in all instances, include court or administrative representation (unless individuals qualifies for assistance under PABSS), but may involve the provision of self-advocacy assistance and training. If a complaint of employment discrimination is being, or should be, investigated by another agency, such as the Anchorage Equal Rights Commission, the Alaska State Commission on Human Rights, or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, DLC may delay its own assessment and/or make a referral to the appropriate agency. Where self-advocacy assistance is provided, staff will initiate post-assistance contact to assess the value of the self-advocacy assistance provided.

PRIORITY: GOVERNMENT BENEFITS

GOAL F: To advocate on behalf of individuals with disabilities who seek access to government benefits.

ISSUE: Access to basic individual and community supports through government assistance programs is necessary for people with disabilities before they can consider independent living, continued education and employment. These supports include Social Security programs, Alaska Public Assistance, in-home support services, individualized support from state government and private providers, Medicaid, Medicare, and managed care among others.

Outcome Indicators: F.1. To assist 30 individuals with disabilities to obtain and/or maintain SSI/SSDI and related benefits, such as Adult Public Assistance; F.2. To represent 2 individuals with disabilities to obtain or retain services under Medicaid, Medicaid Waivers, Medicaid’s EPSDT program, or obtain or retain related services such as PCA services; F.3. To advocate on behalf of 20 individuals to ensure that representative payees in charge of Social Security and other public monies for these individuals uses them in accordance with their obligations under state and federal law and that Social Security properly oversees representative payees and investigates allegations of misuse of funds (2 year priority).

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Assisting individuals with disabilities obtain social security benefits; does not include the initial application process. Assisting individuals with disabilities maintain social security benefits; does not include the provision of direct legal assistance for continuing disability reviews. Assisting individuals with disabilities maintain social security benefits does not include the provision of direct legal assistance for overpayment issues unless the individual demonstrates significant cognitive impairments or qualifies for services under the PABSS grant.

PRIORITY: EDUCATION

GOAL G: Advocate on behalf of all children with disabilities to ensure that they have access to a free appropriate public education and are not subject to discrimination for reasons related to their disabilities.

ISSUE: Under state and federal law, students with disabilities have the right to be educated in integrated settings and to participate meaningfully in academic and non-academic activities with non-disabled children. Lack of information about special education laws is just one of many barriers preventing Alaskans with disabilities from benefiting from their special education programs.

Outcome Indicators: G.1. Advocate on behalf of 2 children with disabilities whose education plans are either wholly or substantially inadequate and/or inappropriate;

G.2. Advocate on behalf of 1 child with disabilities whose school district has failed to comply with procedural protections, including child find, to which children and their parents are entitled.

Strategic/Resource Guidance: Under Objective G.1., children with disabilities without any education plan will be prioritized over children receiving inadequate services. Otherwise, prospective cases will be prioritized in the following order of importance: inappropriate placement decisions; the lack of required related services; the lack of appropriate transition services; the lack of needed supplementary aids and services; and inadequate 504 plans.

Under Objective G.2., prospective cases primarily involving procedural violations will be prioritized in the following order of importance: Child Find; Evaluations; IEP Development & Parental Participation; Independent Educational Evaluations; Manifestation Determinations & Disciplinary Procedures; and Access to Records. Special attention will also be paid to whether or not the school district provided the parents with proper notice, including Prior Written Notice, Notice of Procedural Safeguards, Notice of IEP Team Meeting, and Notice of Disciplinary Action.

Promoting self-advocacy will be an essential factor in all case assessments, which assessment will occur prior to the execution of an advocacy or representation agreement.

Part VI. Narrative

At a minimum, you must include all of the information requested. You may include any other information, not otherwise collected on this reporting form that would be helpful in describing the extent of PAIR activities during the prior fiscal year. Please limit the narrative portion of this report, including attachments, to 20 pages or less.

The narrative should contain the following information. The instructions for this form outline the information that should be contained in each section.

  1. Sources of funds received and expended
  2. Budget for the fiscal year covered by this report
  3. Description of PAIR staff (duties and person-years)
  4. Involvement with advisory boards (if any)
  5. Grievances filed under the grievance procedure
  6. Coordination with the Client Assistance Program (CAP) and the State long-term care program, if these programs are not part of the P&A agency

PART VI. NARRATIVE: A. Sources of funds received and expended: Provide the amount of funds the PAIR program received from each of the sources indicated during the fiscal year covered by this report. In addition, specify the total amount expended, from each of the sources of funds, in providing services to PAIR-eligible individuals. Provide this information even if the PAIR’s only source of funding is the Federal formula grant under section 509 of the Act. The following chart is recommended when providing this information:

Source of Funding Amount Received Amount Spent Federal (section 509) 175,632 175,632 State 0 0 Program income 5,000 5,000 Private 0 0 All other funds 19,916 19,916 Total (from all sources) 200,548 200,548 B. Budget for the fiscal year covered by the report:

Category Prior Fiscal Year Report Fiscal Year Wages/salaries 77,635 96,293 Fringe benefits 28,930 39,737 Materials/supplies 2,018 4,087 Postage 549 623 Telephone 2,407 2,493 Rent 13,478 14,371 Travel 7,955 5,818 Copying 2,669 3,117 Bonding/insurance 798 831 Equipment 0 0 Legal services 1,769 1,000 Indirect costs 41,617 49,639 Miscellaneous 6,296 8,282 Total Budget 186,121 226,291

C. Description of PAIR staff: Provide a description of the PAIR staff in terms of "person-years" and duties. "Person-years" refer to the actual time that positions (both professional and clerical) were filled during the period covered by this annual report. If a position was filled throughout the year, it counts as one person-year. For those positions that were filled for only a fraction of the year, you will have to calculate the "person-year" for that position by first calculating the "full-time equivalents (FTEs)" for that position. Person-years should be reported for all PAIR personnel whose salaries are paid fully or partially by section 509 funds. Be sure to include an explanation of the number of full-time part-time, and vacant positions.

Executive Director - .05 FTE from this grant. This Anchorage-based position provides overall direction for the PAIR project. The Executive Director is also responsible for the administration of the organization and reports to the Board of Directors.

Legal Director - .20 FTE from this grant. This Anchorage-based position provides day-to-day supervision of Protection and Advocacy services, including both legal and non-legal advocacy. This position reports to the Executive Director.

Staff Attorneys — 0.76 FTE from this grant. These four positions are supervised by the Supervising Attorneys. The Staff Attorneys provide support to the program’s Legal Advocates, as well as providing training and legal assistance to clients.

Legal Advocates — .56 FTE from this grant. These positions provide general agency intake and advocacy services, and are responsible for conducting training and outreach activities. One position (.10) was vacant throughout the year.

Paralegal - .15 FTE from this grant. This Anchorage-based position provides legal and clerical support to the staff attorneys and advocates, primarily with conducting legal research, case file organization and maintenance, and the copying and organization of training materials for education and outreach activities.

Development Coordinator — 0.15 FTE from this grant. This Anchorage-based position has responsibility for the coordination, quality and supervision of outreach services including presentations, training, community awareness education and street outreach. This position reports to the Executive Director.

Type of Position FTE % of year filled Person-years Professional Full-time 1.77 100% 1.77 Part-time 0 0 0 Vacant .10 100% .10 Clerical Full-time 0 0% 0 Part-time 0 0 0 Vacant 0 0 0

D. Involvement of Advisory Boards

The Alaska P&A does not have an advisory board for the PAIR program.

E. Grievance Filed Under the Grievance Procedure

There were two grievances filed under the PAIR program during the relevant reporting period.

F. Coordination with the Client Assistance Program and the State Long-Term Care Program.

The CAP is operated by another private non-profit company in Alaska. Pam Stratton, the director, works closely with the P&A staff. The P&A and CAP share a Letter of Affiliation and Agreement that outlines each programs’ legal authority and services to be provided.

The P&A also works closely with the Long Term Care Ombudsman on issues related to nursing homes and senior citizens.

Certification

Signed?Yes
Signed ByKaren Tessandore
TitleDevelopment Coordinator
Signed Date12/20/2011