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

Alabama (UNIV OF ALABAMA ALABAMA - DISAB ADVOCACY PROGRAM) - H240A120001 - FY2012

General Information

Designated Agency Identification

NameAlabama Disabilities Advocacy Program
AddressBox 870395
Address Line 2
CityTuscaloosa
StateAlabama
Zip Code35487
E-mail Addressadap@adap.ua.edu
Website Addresshttp://www.adap.net
Phone205-348-4928
TTY 205-348-4928
Toll-free Phone800-826-1675
Toll-free TTY800-826-1675
Fax205-348-3909
Name of P&A Executive DirectorEllen B. Gillespie
Name of PAIR Director/CoordinatorEllen B. Gillespie
Person to contact regarding reportRosemary Beck
Contact Person phone205-348-4928
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 areas283
2. Individuals receiving I&R outside PAIR priority areas185
3. Total individuals receiving I&R (lines A1 + A2)468

B. Training Activities

1. Number of trainings presented by PAIR staff26
2. Number of individuals who attended training (approximate)895

1)“Special Education is More than ‘Reading, ‘Riting, and ‘Rithmetic” •Topics Covered: Basics of federal and state special education law and how to handle special educational concerns and conflicts •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate case workers, therapists and other professionals associated with the Alabama council for Community Mental Health Boards to advocate for the special education needs of their clients so they are successful in school.

2)JBS Mental Health Authority’s Parent Support Group •Topics Covered: Self-advocate for the mental and behavioral needs of their children including how to ensure that their children are evaluated and made eligible where appropriate. •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide parents of children with disabilities with the advocacy skills they need to ensure their children’s’ mental health and behavioral needs are met in school.

3)Alabama Governor’s Youth Leadership Forum Parent Training •Topics Covered: Transitioning youth; parent rights; college responsibilities for youth, and other legal issues of parents of transitioning youth. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture; Exhibit •Purpose of Training: To familiarize the audience, made up of parents, with valuable information for transitioning youth with disabilities.

4)ACES •Topics Covered: General disability rights presentation including employment opportunities, ADA access issues, and Medicaid waivers. •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide information to the ACES support group composed of persons with Autism and their family members so they can better understand their rights and self-advocate if needed.

5)Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind •Topics Covered: Rights information under the American with Disabilities Act (ADA). •Training Methods: Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide information to the individuals residing at the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind regarding their rights under the ADA.

6)Alabama Psychiatric Services Special Education Training •Topics Covered: The referral and eligibility process under Section 504 of the Rehab Act of 1973 and the IDEA and how schools must support the mental health needs of their patients. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint •Purpose of Training: To empower clinicians to advocate effectively for the needs of students with disabilities by training them on special education referral, evaluation, referral and planning processes and unique issues related to transition, behavior, discipline, and seclusion and restraint.

7)ALASIB — Alternatives to Guardianship •Topics Covered: Information on alternatives to guardianships, the guardianship process, and special needs trusts to siblings of persons with disabilities. •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate siblings of persons with disabilities on the rights of persons with disabilities with respect to decision making and personal choice.

8)APEC Parent Conference •Topics Covered: The recent amendments under federal and state law regarding Section 504 eligibility and service planning and the new seclusion and restraint regulations. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate parents about their rights, the recent amendments, and the rights of their children.

9)Birmingham City Schools IEP Training •Topics Covered: An overview of 5 basic advocacy strategies for parents of children receiving special education services. •Training Methods: PowerPoint •Purpose of Training: To educate parents of children receiving special education services about their rights under IDEA and 504 as it pertains to referral, eligibility, evaluation, and IEP meeting advocacy.

10)Birmingham PTA Council •Topics Covered: Information about children’s rights under state and federal special education laws. •Training Methods: Q&A •Purpose of Training: To provide the Council of PTA’s with information about children’s rights to enable them to support parents within their individual school councils who have children with special education needs.

11)Children’s Rehab Training •Topics Covered: Issues related to eligibility and special education planning, access to assistive technology, least restrictive environment considerations and transition planning. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To empower clinicians and case managers affiliated with the state’s children’s rehabilitation office with information regarding planning processes for children with disabilities.

12)FOCUS — Senior Citizen Group Disability Rights Training •Topics Covered: General information about the P&A and disability rights •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide senior citizens with information about the P&A and disabilities rights.

13)Children’s Transition Training AFAPA •Topics Covered: Transition services for children with disabilities •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture; Exhibit •Purpose of Training: To empower foster, adoptive parents, biological, foster and adoptive youth and other relevant stakeholders to self-advocate and make them aware of transition services available for children.

14)Hope & Cope Conference / Children’s Hospital of Alabama •Topics Covered: Education rights of children with cancer and blood disorders in school settings. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To empower parents of children with cancer or blood disorders to be able to ensure their disability related needs are met in school.

15)Lee County Youth Development Center •Topics Covered: Education rights training •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide training to therapists, counselors, and case managers associated with the youth development center about protecting the educational rights of children with disabilities residing in a residential treatment center/therapeutic foster care agencies.

16)Medicaid Road Show — Part Two •Topics Covered: Alabama’s Medicaid waivers and their differences •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint •Purpose of Training: To educate persons with disabilities, their family members, and service providers about Medicaid waivers and their differences.

17)Merrill Lynch Advisors •Topics Covered: Medicaid waivers, special needs trust, benefits planning, and services for youth transitioning to adulthood. •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide a better understanding of Alabama’s Medicaid waivers and be provided with strategies to prepare for family members with disabilities transitioning into adulthood.

18)Nebraska Peer Run Programs Consultation •Topics Covered: The development and implementation of peer-run supported employment and emergency room peer provider programs for Alabama. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To discuss in depth the models for peer supported programs and determine how to have similar programs in Alabama.

19)Public Transportation Options •Topics Covered: Accessing public transportation •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate persons with disabilities about their rights with respect to accessing public transportation.

20)RISE School •Topics Covered: Rights of children with disabilities, specifically regarding special education, guardianship, the ADA, and Medicaid waiver services. •Training Methods: Q&A; Lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate parents on the rights of children with disabilities

21)Seraaj Foster Care Provider Training •Topics Covered: Eligibility, special education planning, assistive technology, least restrictive environment considerations, and school behavioral planning and transition. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; lecture •Purpose of Training: To enable foster care parents, case managers, and therapists to advocate for their clients’ learning needs.

22)Seraaj Foster Parent IRP Training •Topics Covered: The educational rights of children receiving services under IDEA or 504. •Training Methods: PowerPoint •Purpose of Training: To educate foster parents on the rights of children receiving services under IDEA or 504.

23)Shelby County People First •Topics Covered: The rights of persons with disabilities to access places of public accommodations, government services, and Medicaid waivers. •Training Methods: Q&A; lecture •Purpose of Training: To provide members of the Shelby County chapter of People First of Alabama with a better understanding of the rights of persons with disabilities with regard to access and Medicaid waivers.

24)Trussville Parent Support Group •Topics Covered: IDEA, least restrictive environment, the use of assistive technology, and behavioral interventions. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint •Purpose of Training: To provide Trussville Parent Support Group with resources and information so they will be able to advocate on behalf of their children more effectively throughout the IEP process.

25)Voting Awareness Convention •Topics Covered: Voter registration, absentee voting, and polling place accessibility. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; lecture •Purpose of Training: To educate individual with regard to their voting rights and encourage voter participation.

26)Visually Impaired People (VIP) Conference •Topics Covered: Voting rights and polling place access. •Training Methods: Q&A; PowerPoint; lecture •Purpose of Training: The purpose of the conference is to being vendors and low vision professionals and consumers together to teach the visually impaired of the Black Belt how to live with vision loss by using assistive technology. The P&A provided training in order to promote and encourage participation in the electoral process.

C. Information Disseminated to the Public

1. Radio and TV appearances by PAIR staff0
2. Newspaper/magazine/journal articles9
3. PSAs/videos aired0
4. Hits on the PAIR/P&A website15,453
5. Publications/booklets/brochures disseminated2,545
6. Other (specify separately)3

Narrative

1) The P&A used 16 distinctive publications for training: A Family Guide to ISP’s; Access to Protect and Advocate; ADAP Agency Brochure; ADAP Goals and Priorities; Beneficiaries of Social Security; Get Ready for Work!; Go to Work - Partening for Success!; Know Your Rights; On Guard: Making Sensible Decisions about Guardianship; School Mental Health and Behavioral Services; Seclusion and Restraint; Reference Guide for Parents to Seclusion and Restraint in Alabama Schools; Special Education: A Right Not a Favor; SSI for Youth Who Want To Work; Traumatic Brain Injury; Voting Rights for People with Disabilities.

2) 17 online newsletters or bulletins were published on the P&A website.

3) Four postings were made to the P&A Facebook page.

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)33
2. Additional individuals served during the year38
3. Total individuals served (lines A1 + A2)71
4. Individuals w. more than 1 case opened/closed during the FY. (Do not add this number to total on line A3 above.)3

B. Individuals served as of September 30

Carryover to next FY may not exceed total on line II. A.3 above 38

C. Problem Areas/Complaints of Individuals Served

1. Architectural accessibility18
2. Employment2
3. Program access7
4. Housing6
5. Government benefits/services3
6. Transportation1
7. Education13
8. Assistive technology1
9. Voting0
10. Health care7
11. Insurance0
12. Non-government services1
13. Privacy rights1
14. Access to records1
15. Abuse3
16. Neglect7
17. Other0

D. Reasons for Closing Individual Case Files

1. Issues resolved partially or completely in individual favor13
2. Other representation found3
3. Individual withdrew complaint6
4. Appeals unsuccessful0
5. PAIR Services not needed due to individual's death, relocation etc.10
6. PAIR withdrew from case0
7. PAIR unable to take case because of lack of resources0
8. Individual case lacks legal merit5
9. Other0

Please explain

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-advocacy5
2. Short-term assistance8
3. Investigation/monitoring14
4. Negotiation5
5. Mediation/alternative dispute resolution2
6. Administrative hearings0
7. Litigation (including class actions)3
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 - 40
2. 5 - 2215
3. 23 - 5936
4. 60 - 648
5. 65 and over12

B. Gender of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Females18
2. Males53

C. Race/Ethnicity of Individuals Served

For individuals who are non-Hispanic/Latino only

1. Hispanic/Latino of any race0
2. American Indian or Alaskan Native0
3. Asian0
4. Black or African American25
5. Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander0
6. White46
7. Two or more races0
8. Race/ethnicity unknown0

D. Living Arrangements of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Independent19
2. Parental or other family home18
3. Community residential home1
4. Foster care0
5. Nursing home8
6. Public institutional living arrangement0
7. Private institutional living arrangement0
8. Jail/prison/detention center22
9. Homeless0
10. Other living arrangements3
11. Living arrangements not known0

E. Primary Disability of Individuals Served

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

1. Blind/visual impairment9
2. Deaf/hard of hearing5
3. Deaf-blind0
4. Orthopedic impairment15
5. Mental illness0
6. Substance abuse1
7. Mental retardation0
8. Learning disability2
9. Neurological impairment15
10. Respiratory impairment2
11. Heart/other circulatory impairment5
12. Muscular/skeletal impairment6
13. Speech impairment0
14. AIDS/HIV2
15. Traumatic brain injury0
16. Other disability9

Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation

A. Systemic Activities

1. Number of policies/practices changed as a result of non-litigation systemic activities3

2. Number of individuals potentially impacted by policy changes92,500

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.

Systemic Activities: AllKids Behavioral Health Advisory Committee Description: The P&A participated in providing input and recommendations regarding the standards and eligibility for the provision of behavioral health services to individuals through the Department of Public Health’s AllKids low cost insurance program. Policies or practices changed: Coverage was expanded to include more persons in this fiscal year. How change benefitted individuals: More individuals with disabilities received services due to the expansion of coverage. Example of impact: Without these efforts, there would be less availability of low cost coverage for behavioral health services and the quality of those services and providers would be lacking due to the failure to set appropriate standards.

Systemic Activities: SEA Monitoring Practices Description: To identify areas of need in the federal and state special education monitoring process. Policies or practices changed: The Alabama State Department of Education (SDE) has agreed to work with the P&A to strengthen the role of the Special Education Advisory Panel (SEAP) as it implements the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) to be developed “Results Driven Accountability” (RDA) monitoring model. How change benefitted individuals: To enhance the role of parents in special education policy making. Example of impact: The impact of the state’s adoption of Common Core Standards (aka College and Career Ready Standards and Plan 2020) on children with disabilities, including implications for promotion, assessment, accountability, and graduation options is currently being analyzed.

Systemic Activities: Older Alabamians System of Information and Services (OASIS) Description: The P&A participates on the Advisory Council for OASIS to share information and referrals for older Alabamians who wish to remain independent in their homes. Policies or practices changed: The assistants/drivers working with OASIS staff are now Vision Rehabilitation Assistants (VRA) and are able to take the program under the guidance of a mentor who would be a certified rehabilitation teacher. How change benefitted individuals: This training will help because if frees the teacher up to continue working with other consumers which will ultimately result in serving more consumers. Example of impact: The VRA’s have an opportunity to learn how to teach skills and how to follow up.

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 actions80,369

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.

1) Description:The P&A filed an amicus brief in support of plaintiff’s parents in the trial court and, ultimately, on appeal to the Eleventh Circuit, where the plaintiff student/parents claim the local school board violated the Individuals with Disabilities Education (IDEA) by denying them an independent education evaluation (IEE) at public expense and copies of their child’s educational record. The P&A, as amicus, argues the defendant’s position is contrary to Congressional intent under the IDEA to provide parents with meaningful participation in their child’s education and utilize expert testimony in due process proceedings. The case is on appeal to the Eleventh Circuit where the U.S. DOJ filed a brief in support of the plaintiff’s and P&A’s position. How Individuals Benefitted:As a result of the litigation, the individual student/parents were able to obtain an independent education evaluation (IEE) at public expense and obtain copies of the student’s education records. Example of Impact: If the individual student/parents had not succeeded in the litigation, the case could have set a new precedent that would have reversed current law and made it difficult, if not impossible, to obtain an independent education evaluation (IEE) at public expense and obtain copies of the student’s education records.

Description:CB uses a wheelchair and experienced accessibility problems at a hair salon where the facility did not have a compliant entry ramp and the restroom lacked grab bars. After the P&A failed to resolve the issues informally, we filed an ADA Title III complaint. DOJ is reviewing for investigation. How Individuals Benefitted:By filing an administrative complaint for a person with a disability who uses a wheelchair, and who could not gain physical access to a commercial place of public accommodation, the P&A has requested that the US Department of Justice launch a formal investigation of the ADA Title III violation described in the complaint. Example of Impact: The noncompliant commercial establishment has been notified of the ADA Title III violation described in the administrative complaint.

Description:DW could not gain physical access to several places of public accommodation as well as city, county, and state buildings in Double Springs. The P&A filed ADA Title II and III complaints against several entities. DW decided to sue some of those entities and the P&A referred her as she requested. That attorney sued some entities, negotiated with others, and achieved partial success. DW is experiencing retaliation and difficulty in enforcing agreements, and the P&A assisted DW’s private attorney to address those issues. The P&A represents DW with one pending DOJ complaint, and is monitoring DOJ’s investigation. How Individuals Benefitted:Working with the P&A and a private attorney to whom the P&A referred DW when she asked, DW prevailed on several ADA Title II and III complaints against various city, county and state entities in Double Springs, Alabama, the county seat of rural Winston County. Example of Impact:By working with the P&A and a private attorney to whom the P&A referred DW, DW was able to make several local government buildings in Double Springs, Alabama, the county seat of rural Winston County, more readily accessible to persons with physical disabilities.

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.

1. Identify and describe priority: Individuals with disabilities will be able to exercise freedom of choice. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: Individuals with disabilities have the right to exercise their freedom of choice. 3. Indicators: a. Provide eight persons with disabilities with individual case services in situations where their freedom of choice is threatened. b. Provide 40 information and referral services regarding freedom of choice for persons with disabilities. c. Provide five education/training sessions to persons with disabilities regarding freedom of choice. d. Work with a local Long-Term Recovery Committee (LTRC) to improve efforts addressing the needs of persons with disabilities in disaster planning and recovery. 4. Collaboration: The P&A collaborated with: a. United Way, Department of Mental Health, Red Cross, and Presbyterian Churches in Tuscaloosa to identify persons with disabilities who needed assistance in recovering from a disaster. b. The Mental Health Association of Nebraska, a consumer-run, voluntary not-for-profit statewide association bringing together service recipients, families, professionals, advocates and concerned citizens to address all aspects of mental health; to discuss the development of a similar program in Alabama. 5. Number of cases handled: The P&A provided six individual case services and 22 information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: The grandmother of a client attempted to take legal action to restrict the client’s rights and control the client’s decision-making. The client sought the P&A’s assistance. After the P&A communicated with the client (via use of a sign language interpreter) and determined the client’s capacity and wishes, the P&A represented the client in an adult protective services case. The P&A reviewed the court file, including a previous failed attempt by the grandmother to seek a guardianship over the client, and worked with the client’s guardian ad litem. Because a psychiatric evaluation of the client showed no mental illness and contradicted the grandmother’s petition for adult protective services, the grandmother eventually dismissed her case. As a result, the P&A helped preserve the client’s independence and her ability to make her own decisions.

1. Identify and describe priority: Individuals with disabilities will be able to exercise their rights to access state and local government services and places of public accommodation. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for individuals with disabilities to exercise their rights to access state and local government services and places of public accommodation. 3. Indicators: a. Provide two persons with disabilities denied access to a state or local government service with individual case services. b. Provide an individual with disabilities denied access to a place of public accommodation with individual case services. c. Provide 20 information and referral services regarding the denial of access to a state or local government program or place of public accommodation for persons with disabilities in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and/or the Rehabilitation Act. d. Provide nine education/training sessions on the rights of persons with disabilities under Titles II and III of the ADA. e. Provide an education/training session on the rights of persons with disabilities in accessing public transportation. f. Disseminate information regarding the rights of persons with disabilities to access recreational facilities. g. Improve access for persons with disabilities to a specific local government service. 4. Collaboration: The P&A collaborated with: a. Southern Poverty Law Center to assist in visits to Alabama prisons to identify prisoners who need access to services and programs and as co-counsel if litigation becomes necessary. b. Alabama Department of Public Health, Alabama Department of Rehabilitation, and Children’s Rehabilitation Services to provide input regarding the provision of behavioral health services to children through the AllKids Insurance program. c. Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services (ADRS) to provide input on general disability rights, employment opportunities, ADA access issues and Medicaid waivers to the Autism Community Employment Support Group (ACES). ADRS also provided the meeting space and invited attendees. 5. Number of cases handled: The P&A provided 23 individual case services and 40 information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: The P&A’s client, a child who is blind (and her parent), sought and was denied services at several daycare programs because of her disability. The P&A provided the child’s parent with information about the child’s access rights, advocated with a provider on the child’s behalf, and provided information to the provider about the child’s right to services. As a result of the P&A’s representation, the daycare provider accepted the child into their program.

1. Identify and describe priority: Persons with disabilities will have access to Medicaid waiver services. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for persons with disabilities to have access to Medicaid waiver services. 3. Indicators: a. Provide two individual case services to persons with disabilities who need or are at risk of losing Medicaid waiver or other community services. b. Assist persons with disabilities who currently receive Medicaid waiver services, but need additional services, by providing two individual case services. c. Provide 10 information and referral services to persons requesting information concerning the application for Medicaid and/or Medicaid waiver services. d. Advocate for outplacement of persons with disabilities from nursing homes to a less restrictive, appropriate community placement. e. Provide three education/training sessions on Medicaid waiver services.

4. Collaboration: The P&A collaborated with: a. Alabama Council on Developmental Disabilities who provided funding and advertising for the “Medicaid Road Show Part II”. 5. Number of cases handled: the P&A provided four individual case services and 15 information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: After the P&A’s client sued the state Medicaid Agency, seeking to move from a nursing home to a home in the community, the defendant’s discovery led to its denial of the client’s eligibility for benefits for reasons related to the client’s family’s finances. The P&A represented the client when he appealed Medicaid’s denial on the eligibility issue. After the appeal was initially denied at an administrative hearing, the P&A appealed to the state circuit court where the case was settled and the client’s eligibility was restored.

1. Identify and describe priority: Eligible students with disabilities will be identified for services and educated in their least restrictive environment with appropriate support. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for students with disabilities to be identified for services and educated in their least restrictive environment with appropriate support. 3. Indicators: a. Represent a student with disabilities to ensure the provision of a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment by providing individual case services. b. Provide 85 information and referral services regarding the provision of a free, appropriate public education in the least restrictive environment for students with disabilities. c. Educate parents and service providers on special education rights and advocacy skills by providing 10 education and training sessions. d. Collaborate with advocacy partners to identify areas of need in the state’s monitoring system of special education services. 4. Collaboration: The P&A collaborated with: a. Alabama Parent Education Center (APEC), Alabama School Connection (ASC), and Community Outreach Special Education PTA (COSEPTA) who assisted in identifying areas of need in federal and state special education monitoring process. b. Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services (ADRS), Children’s Rehabilitation Services (CRS), and Family Voices to provide information at the 2012 Alabama Governor’s Youth Leadership Forum Parent Training. ADRS provided the meeting space, advertisement, and additional speakers; Alabama Voices and CRS provided substantive information on medical transitions. c. Children’s Hospital of the Hope and Cope Program who provides on-going technical assistance to program advocates and clinicians regarding the educational rights of children with cancer. d. The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN), Georgia Advocacy Office, and Disability Rights Florida to assist with the review and development of the P&A’s amicus brief regarding a parent’s right to a publically funded Independent Education Evaluation (IEE) under the Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). e. Children’s Hospital and the University of Alabama/ Birmingham - Division of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology to co-edit the special education chapter of the parent manual produced by the American Childhood Cancer Organization (ACCO) entitled “Educating the Child with Cancer: A guide for Parents and Teachers”. 5. Number of cases handled: The P&A provided nine individual case services and 198 information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: The P&A’s client is a high school teen athlete being recruited several universities for sports scholarships, and is HIV-positive. The teen’s parent contacted the P&A to ask whether the teen is required to disclose her HIV status in the recruitment process. After researching the issue and conferring with a range of national experts, the P&A advised our client and her mother how and when to disclose her HIV status in the recruiting process and about her confidentiality and non-retaliation protections after any such disclosure.

1. Identify and describe priority: Youth with disabilities will have effective school and community-based transition services to ensure successful movement from school to post-high school education, work and independent living. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for youth with disabilities to have effective school and community-based transition services to ensure successful movement from school to post-high school education, work and independent living. 3. Indicators: a. Provide two information and referral services regarding transition services and policies for youth with disabilities. b. Provide three education/training sessions to families and service providers about the services provided under the PABSS program, work incentive assistance programs, and transition for youth moving from school to work. 4. Collaboration: a. Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services (ADRS), Children’s Rehabilitation Services (CRS), and Family Voices to provide information at the 2012 Alabama Governor’s Youth Leadership Forum Parent Training. ADRS provided the meeting space, advertisement, and additional speakers; Alabama Voices and CRS provided substantive information on medical transitions. 5. Number of cases handled: the P&A provided four information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: A client/child with a disability is a teen in high school whose parent called to express concern regarding the use of vocational rehabilitation services as part of her son’s transition services. The parent was especially concerned that using vocational rehabilitation services could have a negative impact on her son’s receipt of the school supports and services to which he is entitled. The P&A advised the parent that her son’s receipt of vocational rehabilitation services should not have a negative impact on her son’s education and, indeed, it should benefit her son to obtain vocational rehabilitation services and supports. After being assured of her son’s rights, the parent used the information provided by the P&A to help her son obtain needed transition services through the state’s vocational rehabilitation agency.

1. Identify and describe priority: Youth with disabilities will have appropriate community-based mental health and behavioral services. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for youth with disabilities to have appropriate community-based mental health and behavioral services. 3. Indicators: a. Provide three information and referral services regarding appropriate community-based mental health and behavioral services for youth with disabilities. 4. Collaboration: n/a 5. Number of cases handled: The P&A provided four information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: The P&A met with approximately 40 parents and guardians of children who have mental health needs and who are consumers of services provided by the Jefferson — Blount - St. Clair (JBS) Mental Health Authority. The P&A provided members of the parent support group with the advocacy skills they need to ensure their children’s mental health and behavioral needs are met in school through proper implementation of the IDEA and Section 504.The P&A also addressed in more detail how to ensure that their children are evaluated and made eligible where appropriate and that education plans are crafted to meet their children’s mental health and behavioral support needs. The P&A distributed several publications including the P&A’s publication that specifically addresses “School Mental Health and Behavioral Services”.

1. Identify and describe priority: Youth with disabilities involved in the juvenile justice system will receive appropriate educational and treatment services, will be free from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations, and will be served in the least restrictive setting possible, to include appropriate community-based alternatives to incarceration. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for youth with disabilities involved in the juvenile justice system to receive appropriate educational and treatment services, to be free from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations, and to be served in the least restrictive setting possible, to include appropriate community-based alternatives to incarceration. 3. Indicators: a. Provide five information and referral services regarding abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations of youth with disabilities in juvenile justice systems. 4. Collaboration: n/a 5. Number of cases handled: n/a 6. Example of impact: The P&A conducted a training for twenty-seven therapists, counselors, and case managers who provide residential and treatment services to youth in the custody of the Department of Youth Services and other agencies. The training focused on assisting professionals who provide services to youth with disabilities to learn the skills needed to advocate for the special education needs of the youth in their care. The training was provided at the Lee County Youth Development Center, a residential treatment facility and therapeutic foster care agency for youth associated with the Department of Youth Services and other agencies.

1. Identify and describe priority: Youth with disabilities in schools or daycare centers will have appropriate mental health supports and services, protection from illegal disciplinary measures, and protection from the use of seclusion and restraint. 2. Identify the need, issue or barrier: The need for youth with disabilities in schools or daycare centers to have appropriate mental health supports and services, protection from illegal disciplinary measures, and protection from the use of seclusion and restraint. 3. Indicators: a. 15 information and referral services will be provided to ensure the provision of appropriate mental health supports and services, protection from illegal disciplinary measures and the inappropriate use of seclusion and restraint for youth with mental illness in schools or daycare centers. b. Conduct five education and training sessions for service providers and parents on special education rights and advocacy related to behavioral, disciplinary, and seclusion and restraint issues. 4. Collaboration: n/a 5. Number of cases handled: The P&A provided 34 information and referral services under this priority. 6. Example of impact: The P&A made a presentation at the state’s 2012 Conference of Community Mental Health Boards entitled “Special Education is More than ‘Reading, ’Riting, and ‘Rithmetic.” At the Conference, the P&A trained approximately 45 case workers, therapists and other professionals who are employed by various community mental health centers around the state. The P&A focused on how to advocate for the special education needs of students so they can achieve success in school. The training introduced the basics of federal and state special education law and provided participants with a road map for how to handle special education concerns and conflicts.

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.

1. Statement of priority: Individuals with disabilities, residing in institutions, will be safe from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations. 2. The need addressed: The need for individuals with disabilities residing in institutions to be safe from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations. 3. Indicators: a. Advocate for appropriate treatment on behalf of individuals with disabilities residing in institutions. b. Advocate for out-placement of individuals from institutions who are appropriate for community placement. c. Monitor two nursing homes to ensure residents are receiving appropriate treatment and are free from abuse and neglect.

1. Statement of priority: Individuals with disabilities will be able to exercise freedom of choice. 2. The need addressed: The need for individuals with disabilities to exercise freedom of choice. 3. Indicators: a. Provide eight individuals with disabilities advocacy services in situations where their freedom of choice is threatened. b. Provide two education/training sessions to persons with disabilities regarding freedom of choice. c. Monitor three sheltered workshops to ensure participants are receiving appropriate services and wages. d. Provide education/training on the use of assistive technology for persons with disabilities and how it can provide them with more independence and choice.

1. Statement of priority: Individuals with disabilities will be able to exercise their rights to access state and local government services and places of public accommodation. 2. The need addressed: The need for individuals with disabilities to exercise their rights to access state and local government services and places of public accommodation. 3. Indicators: a. Provide advocacy services to four individuals with disabilities who have been denied access under Titles II and/or III of the Americans with Disabilities Act. b. Provide four education/training sessions on the rights of persons with disabilities under Titles II and III of the ADA. c. Improve access for persons with disabilities to a specific public accommodation and/or state/local government service.

1. Statement of priority: Barriers that impede the ability of persons receiving SSI and SSDI benefits to return to work will be removed. 2. The need addressed: The need for barriers that impede the ability of persons receiving SSI and SSDI benefits to return to work to be removed. 3. Indicators: a. Identify deficiencies in entities providing vocational rehabilitation services, employment services, and other support services to beneficiaries with disabilities.

1. Statement of priority: Persons with disabilities will have access to Medicaid waiver services. 2. The need addressed: The need for persons with disabilities to have access to Medicaid waiver services. 3. Indicators: a. Provide advocacy services to two individuals with disabilities who need or are at risk of losing Medicaid waiver or other community services. b. Advocate for Alabama’s Department of Mental Health to expand waiver services provided to persons with developmental disabilities. c. Provide three education/training sessions on Medicaid waiver services. d. Advocate for an eligibility determination at the time an individual applies for Medicaid waiver services.

1. Statement of priority: Eligible students with disabilities will be identified for services and educated in their least restrictive environment with appropriate support. 2. The need addressed: The need for eligible students with disabilities to be identified for services and educated in their least restrictive environment with appropriate support. 3. Indicators: a. Provide advocacy services to students with disabilities to ensure the provision of a free, appropriate public education (FAPE) in the least restrictive environment with appropriate support. b. Conduct 10 education and training sessions for parents and service providers on special education rights and advocacy skills. c. Monitor the Alabama State Department of Education’s (ALSDE) exercise of its supervisory authority to ensure that public agencies comply with state and federal special education laws. d. Produce a series of Q&A e-newsletters in collaboration with the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE) and the Alabama Parent Education Center (APEC) on matters related to special education.

1. Statement of priority: Youth with disabilities will have effective school and community-based transition services to ensure successful movement from school to post-high school education, work and independent living. 2. The need addressed: The need for youth with disabilities to have effective school and community-based transition services to ensure successful movement from school to post-high school education, work and independent living. 3. Indicators: a. Identify and provide policy recommendations regarding barriers in the provision of vocational rehabilitation services, school-based transition services, employment services and other support services that impede access to employment in integrated settings. b. Provide three education/training sessions to families and service providers about transition rights, planning, and services.

1. Statement of priority: Youth with disabilities will have appropriate community-based mental health and behavioral services. 2. The need addressed: The need for youth with disabilities to have appropriate community-based mental health and behavioral services. 3. Indicators: a. Advocate for enhanced family and child centered planning by the state’s Multiple Needs Child local and state committees.

1. Statement of priority: Youth with disabilities involved in the juvenile justice system will receive appropriate educational and treatment services, will be free from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations, and will be served in the least restrictive setting possible, to include appropriate community-based alternatives to incarceration. 2. The need addressed: The need for youth with disabilities involved in the juvenile justice system to receive appropriate educational and treatment services, to be free from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations, and to be served in the least restrictive setting possible, to include appropriate community-based alternatives to incarceration. 3. Indicators: a. Monitor adult jails to ensure that youth with disabilities are receiving appropriate treatment and services and are free from abuse, neglect, and disability rights violations.

1. Statement of priority: Youth with disabilities in schools or daycare centers will have appropriate mental health supports and services, protection from illegal disciplinary measures, and protection from the use of seclusion and restraint. 2. The need addressed: Youth with disabilities in schools or daycare centers will have appropriate mental health supports and services, protection from illegal disciplinary measures, and protection from the use of seclusion and restraint. 3. Indicators: a. Monitor compliance with Alabama’s new school seclusion and restraining regulations by reviewing state and local system data. b. Conduct five education and training sessions for parents and service providers on special education rights and advocacy related to behavior, discipline, and seclusion and restraint issues.

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

A. Sources of funds received and expended: Source of Funding Amount Received Amount Spent Federal (section 509) 231,611 182,080 State 0 0 Program Income 0 0 Private 0 0 All other funds 0 0 Total (from all sources) 231,611 182,080

B. Budget for the fiscal year covered by this report: Category Prior Fiscal Year Current Fiscal Year Wages/salaries 105,251 114,826 Fringe benefits (FICA, unemployment, etc.) 31,638 34,248 Materials/supplies 445 5,000 Postage 573 750 Telephone 498 3,500 Rent 0 0 Travel 2,755 12,750 Copying 124 250 Bonding/insurance 750 1,522 Equipment (rental/purchase) 0 0 Legal services 58 Indirect costs 40,914 50,665 Miscellaneous 3,620 8,100 Total Budget 186,626 231,611

C. Description of PAIR staff (duties and person-years): Type of Position FTE % of year filled Person-years Professional Full-time 1.94 92.3% 1.79 Part-time Vacant Clerical .36 100% .36 Full-time Part-time Vacant

D. Involvement with advisory boards (if any): n/a

E. Grievances filed under the grievance procedure: 2

A. Prisoner grieved the P&A decision not to open a file for an investigation. After further review, the P&A granted the prisoner’s grievance where prisoner alleged he was injured when he lapsed into a diabetic coma and, as a result, fell of a top bunk even though he had a bottom bunk profile. The P&A is actively working this case.

B. Prisoner grieved the P&A decision to deny services. The P&A granted the grievance where the prisoner claims he did not receive adequate medical care or physical therapy. The P&A is actively working this case.

F.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:

The P&A has received case referrals from the Long-Term Care (LTC) and often makes referrals to that agency. This past fiscal year, the P&A received at least two referrals from the LTC. The P&A also informed the LTC of the P&A’s interest in representing persons who wish to be out-placed from nursing homes to more integrated, community settings and requested the LTC refer those individuals to the P&A for possible assistance. With regard to the CAP program, the P&A often refers clients to the CAP program whenever a client has a dispute with the Alabama Department of Vocational Rehabilitation Services. The CAP also refers clients to the P&A for various disability rights issues. The P&A is specifically seeking to assist persons who wish to engage in integrated employment, as opposed to sheltered workshops. The P&A requested the CAP program to refer those individuals to the P&A for possible assistance.

Certification

Signed?Yes
Signed ByEllen Gillespie
TitleDirector
Signed Date12/28/2012