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

New Jersey (Disability Rights New Jersey) - H240A160031 - FY2016

General Information

Designated Agency Identification

NameDisability Rights New Jersey
Address210 S. Broad Street 3rd Floor
Address Line 2
CityTrenton
StateNew Jersey
Zip Code08608
E-mail Addressadvocate@drnj.org
Website Addresshttp://www.drnj.org
Phone609-292-9742
TTY 609-633-7106
Toll-free Phone800-922-7233
Toll-free TTY
Fax609-777-0187
Name of P&A Executive DirectorJoseph B. Young
Name of PAIR Director/CoordinatorMary A. Ciccone
Person to contact regarding reportMary A. Ciccone
Contact Person phone609-292-9742
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 areas849
2. Individuals receiving I&R outside PAIR priority areas1,232
3. Total individuals receiving I&R (lines A1 + A2)2,081

B. Training Activities

1. Number of trainings presented by PAIR staff26
2. Number of individuals who attended training (approximate)1,100

Trainings DRNJ staff conducted 26 education and training programs attended by approximately 1,100 individuals. These programs included issues such as special education, including transition services, employment, the Americans with Disabilities Act, housing, voting, and health care. Underserved Populations DRNJ staff conducted 13 outreach, public awareness, and training events targeted to the elderly, deaf and hard of hearing, blind, urban minority, women with disabilities, African American, Latino and rural Latino, and the military. DRNJ presented information to approximately 160 consumers and family members at three different conferences serving the needs of the elderly. In addition, DRNJ staff presented information about assistive technology, voting, special education. and transition services as well as DRNJ's services at two different events that targeted urban minorities. Approximately 80 consumers and family members attended these events. DRNJ presented to three different Spanish-speaking groups on topics regarding special education and DRNJ’s services. Approximately 265 consumers and family members attended these events. DRNJ attended a consumer fair for individuals with blindness and provided information regarding assistive technology and DRNJ’s services. Approximately 75 consumers and family members attended this event. DRNJ also attended a deaf community fair and provided information regarding special education to approximately 100 consumers and family members. Finally, DRNJ continued its efforts to outreach to the military. During the year, DRNJ provided information about special education and health care in addition to its services at three events that focused on military consumers and their families. Approximately 560 family members and consumers attended.

C. Information Disseminated to the Public

1. Radio and TV appearances by PAIR staff0
2. Newspaper/magazine/journal articles3
3. PSAs/videos aired0
4. Hits on the PAIR/P&A website1,509,637
5. Publications/booklets/brochures disseminated20,178
6. Other (specify separately)4

Narrative

A DRNJ attorney was interviewed for an article in the New Jersey Law Journal about the “Pledge for Change.” The “Pledge for Change” is a tool created by the American Bar Association's Commission on Disability Rights to promote diversity and inclusion of persons with disabilities in the legal profession. The DRNJ attorney explained it importance for individuals with disabilities and encouraged professionals in the New Jersey legal community to sign the pledge. A DRNJ attorney was interviewed in the New Jersey Law Journal and The Daily Princetonian regarding the status of W.P. v. Princeton University. DRNJ disseminated 20,178 publications/brochures during 2016 through outreaches, trainings, and DRNJ's website. DRNJ sent out two eblasts regarding voting, specifically advising of the deadlines for voter registration and vote-by-mail ballots. DRNJ also sent out an eblast of The Bar Report reprint of the “Pledge for Change” interview in the New Jersey Law Journal.

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)188
2. Additional individuals served during the year387
3. Total individuals served (lines A1 + A2)575
4. Individuals w. more than 1 case opened/closed during the FY. (Do not add this number to total on line A3 above.)11

B. Individuals served as of September 30

Carryover to next FY may not exceed total on line II. A.3 above 236

C. Problem Areas/Complaints of Individuals Served

1. Architectural accessibility9
2. Employment33
3. Program access2
4. Housing35
5. Government benefits/services4
6. Transportation6
7. Education327
8. Assistive technology8
9. Voting0
10. Health care96
11. Insurance0
12. Non-government services0
13. Privacy rights0
14. Access to records0
15. Abuse3
16. Neglect3
17. Other47

D. Reasons for Closing Individual Case Files

1. Issues resolved partially or completely in individual favor243
2. Other representation found15
3. Individual withdrew complaint67
4. Appeals unsuccessful1
5. PAIR Services not needed due to individual's death, relocation etc.2
6. PAIR withdrew from case0
7. PAIR unable to take case because of lack of resources0
8. Individual case lacks legal merit20
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-advocacy148
2. Short-term assistance38
3. Investigation/monitoring77
4. Negotiation19
5. Mediation/alternative dispute resolution7
6. Administrative hearings6
7. Litigation (including class actions)27
8. Systemic/policy activities1

Part III. Statistical Information on Individuals Served

A. Age of Individuals Served as of October 1

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. 0 - 421
2. 5 - 22322
3. 23 - 59139
4. 60 - 6433
5. 65 and over60

B. Gender of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Females229
2. Males346

C. Race/Ethnicity of Individuals Served

For individuals who are non-Hispanic/Latino only

1. Hispanic/Latino of any race114
2. American Indian or Alaskan Native0
3. Asian8
4. Black or African American118
5. Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander0
6. White310
7. Two or more races6
8. Race/ethnicity unknown19

D. Living Arrangements of Individuals Served

Multiple responses not permitted.

1. Independent166
2. Parental or other family home388
3. Community residential home1
4. Foster care1
5. Nursing home12
6. Public institutional living arrangement0
7. Private institutional living arrangement1
8. Jail/prison/detention center2
9. Homeless2
10. Other living arrangements2
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 impairment24
2. Deaf/hard of hearing24
3. Deaf-blind0
4. Orthopedic impairment80
5. Mental illness13
6. Substance abuse2
7. Mental retardation0
8. Learning disability111
9. Neurological impairment164
10. Respiratory impairment10
11. Heart/other circulatory impairment21
12. Muscular/skeletal impairment17
13. Speech impairment18
14. AIDS/HIV2
15. Traumatic brain injury28
16. Other disability61

Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation

A. Systemic Activities

1. Number of policies/practices changed as a result of non-litigation systemic activities2

2. Number of individuals potentially impacted by policy changes250,000

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.

Voting DRNJ continued its efforts to conduct systemic activities in the area of voting. DRNJ collaborated with the Division of Elections, the New Jersey League of Women Voters, and the American Civil Liberties Union New Jersey chapter to ensure that disabled voters had access to voting. DRNJ also collaborated with other disability groups to raise awareness of voting and encourage voter registration. DRNJ expanded its outreach and conducted five outreaches to disability groups to raise awareness of their right to vote. In addition, DRNJ continued its collaboration with the Boggs Center and the Council on Developmental Disabilities to continue its distribution of Voting: It’s Your Right, a voter’s guide for persons with disabilities. Finally, DRNJ conducted a voting hotline during the general election and the primary to assist individuals with disabilities on election day. Special Education DRNJ participated in several stakeholders meetings sponsored by the NJ Department of Education to provide comments on the Office of Special Education’s State Performance Plan. DRNJ also collaborated with a task force convened by the New Jersey Education Association to address issues regarding special education reform. DRNJ continues its membership in the New Jersey Juvenile Justice Reform Coalition (NJJJRC). The NJJJRC is a collaborative organization that is led by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice. Other member agencies include the NJ ACLU, the Rutgers Law School Justice Clinic, the NJ Public Defenders Office, the pro bono division of Lowenstein Sandler, the NJ Parents Caucus, and numerous others. The NJJJRC’s goal is to raise awareness in communities about issues in the juvenile justice system such as the school-to-prison pipeline, conditions of confinement, and alternatives to incarceration, and engage in dialogue with policymakers to enact change. DRNJ participates in the school-to-prison pipeline working group and the conditions of confinement working group. These groups are currently in the process of identifying current problems and developing plans to address through legislative advocacy or litigation. Transportation DRNJ staff continues to monitor New Jersey Transit’s compliance with the Americans with Disability Act through participation on New Jersey Transit’s ADA advisory committee, the North Jersey Transit Planning Authority, and the New Jersey Transit ADA Task Force. In addition, DRNJ staff attended meetings of the NJ Transit Local Programs Support Citizen’s Advisory Committee and the New Jersey Council on Special Transportation during the past year. DRNJ continues to distribute its Consumers Transportation Handbook.

B. Litigation/Class Actions

1. Number of individuals potentially impacted by changes as a result of PAIR litigation/class action efforts220,000
2. Number of individuals named in class actions2

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.

DRNJ et al. v. New Jersey Department of Education et al. DRNJ, along with the Education Law Center, SPAN, and the ARC of New Jersey filed suit in federal court against the New Jersey Department of Education in 2007. The complaint alleged that DOE failed to address the systemic problem that New Jersey children with disabilities are not being educated in the least restrictive environment as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In February 2014, the parties settled the complaint. The settlement required the following activities: • Completion of a Needs Assessment by 75+ school districts with the worst track record in inclusion; • District site visits by the DOE, including classroom observations and staff interviews; • Extensive training and technical assistance for district staff, and regular assessment of the trainings and technical assistance; • Training of state complaint investigators; • Specially designated state and local inclusion facilitators; • Annual compliance monitoring; • Parental input regarding district failures to appropriately include students with disabilities; and • Oversight by a stakeholder committee comprised of disability advocates. The settlement became effective upon the judge’s February 19, 2014 signing of the Order with implementation beginning immediately and continuing for three years. DRNJ staff was named to the stakeholder committee that oversees the needs assessment and training schedule. The committee met during the past year and reviewed the compliance reports and training evaluations. Approximately 70 of the 76 districts were found non-compliant in specific categories regarding least restrictive environment. As a result of these findings, each of these non-compliant districts must identify an inclusion facilitator in the district and must address the non-compliance in the next year as specified in the settlement agreement. In addition, the committee offered suggestions regarding future training sessions specifically regarding the common areas of non-compliance that were found in the districts. DRNJ will continue to monitor the settlement for the remainder of the time it is in effect. Complaint Investigation Against Jersey City School District DRNJ intervened on behalf of a six-year-old resident of Hudson County who has a hearing impairment. The child’s mother contacted DRNJ because she was seeking an independent occupational therapy evaluation from the school district. She had requested an independent evaluation, but the district only offered her only one evaluator from which to choose. DRNJ filed a complaint investigation with the New Jersey Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) seeking an independent evaluation. OSEP investigated the complaint and determined that the district violated N.J.A.C. 6A:14-2.5(c)(1)(i) by failing to provide the mother with more than one evaluator or providing her with sufficient information about where an evaluation may be obtained. OSEP ordered that the district either deny the request for an independent evaluation by filing for due process or agree to pay for an independent evaluation and provide the mother with the required information so that she has adequate information to choose an independent evaluator. In addition, OSEP ordered the district to develop procedures to ensure that when a parent requests an independent evaluation, they are provided information, in writing, about where an independent evaluation may be obtained and the criteria for independent evaluations. OSEP also required that these new procedures be disseminated to child study team members and training regarding these new procedures be given to all child study team staff so that these procedures are implemented. Complaint Investigation Against Toms River Regional School District DRNJ intervened on behalf of a six-year-old resident of Ocean County who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and behavioral disabilities. The child’s mother contacted DRNJ because her child was declassified without receiving notice of a meeting so she was unable to participate. DRNJ reviewed the child’s file and found numerous notices in the file. However, the notices did not have the student’s name nor were they addressed to the parent. DRNJ filed a complaint investigation with OSEP regarding the school district’s lack of proper notices. OSEP investigated the school district and found the district’s notices were non-compliant. Specifically, OSEP found the notices did not consistently identify the purpose of the meeting or the participants that would be attending the meeting. In addition, many of the notices were not addressed to the parent. Finally, OSEP found the district improperly obtained verbal authorization for evaluations. OSEP ordered the district to distribute a memorandum to all Child Study Team staff specifying: (1) notice requirements relating to eligibility meetings; (2) the components of written notice; (3) documentation of attempts to secure parental participation; and (4) verbal consent for evaluation does not satisfy consent requirements.

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.

ISSUE 1 — ABUSE AND NEGLECT GOAL 15-1X ABUSE AND NEGLECT — To ensure that individuals with disabilities living in institutions and the community are free from abuse and neglect. OBJECTIVE 1X.1 To address complaints of abuse and neglect living in institutions or community residential programs in at least one (1) matter. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 60-year-old resident of Bergen County who has spina bifida. The individual contacted DRNJ because he was residing in a long-term care facility and no longer wanted to reside in this facility. He complained that he is too far from his preferred doctors. He also made multiple complaints about the care. DRNJ notified the Ombudsman for the Institutionalized Elderly of the client's complaints. DRNJ is also communicating with the social worker on the unit to monitor their efforts at securing a transfer to another facility. Client was urged to continue to work with the social worker on transfer. He is also aware of the procedure to contact the Department of Health and the Office of the Ombudsman for any future complaints regarding care. 10 cases were handled under this priority. ISSUE 2 — DISCRIMINATION GOAL 15-2A HOUSING: To ensure that people with disabilities have greater access to accessible, affordable housing and experience decreased housing discrimination. OBJECTIVE 2A.1 To participate in at least one (1) coalition, task force, advisory, or work group seeking to increase accessible, affordable housing. DRNJ is an active participant in the Supportive Housing Association, which is a statewide, nonprofit organization that promotes and maintains a strong supportive housing industry in New Jersey serving persons with special needs through information, training, and collaboration, promoting systems change to provide more flexible funding and increased mainstream housing opportunities, and educating policy makers, elected officials, and the public on the use and benefits of the supportive housing model. Mt. Laurel Litigation In 1975, the New Jersey Supreme Court held that municipalities in the state could not use exclusionary zoning practices to keep out low- and moderate-income citizens, and often racial and ethnic minorities, from their communities. According to the Court, New Jersey’s constitution not only prohibits exclusionary zoning, it also imposes an affirmative obligation on the municipalities to ensure zoning that allows the municipality to meet its fair share of regional affordable housing obligations. New Jersey’s implementation of the Court’s decision stalled in 1999, and effectively came to a halt during the last three to four years. In 2015, the process was revived by the Supreme Court removing authority for implementation from the executive branch and returning it to the courts. As a result, there has been active litigation in many of New Jersey’s 15 regional courts to determine each municipality’s fair housing obligation. In calculating the number of affordable housing units required over the next ten years, a couple issues have cut across the state. Initially, the coalition of municipalities attempted to argue that the very poor should not be included in the calculation of persons in need of affordable housing because their incomes were too low to afford even affordable housing. This issue spurred DRNJ’s initial involvement in the litigation because this argument would have excluded most households headed by individuals receiving Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income from the calculation of need. On behalf of itself and 15 other organizations, including Advancing Opportunities, the Alliance for the Betterment of Citizens with Disabilities, The Arc of New Jersey, the Coalition of Mental Health Consumer Organizations, Collaborative Support Programs of New Jersey, Community Access Unlimited, the Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey, the Mental Health Association in New Jersey, the New Jersey Association of Mental Health and Addiction Agencies, the New Jersey Association of Community Providers, the New Jersey Psychiatric Rehabilitation Association, the Supportive Housing Association, the System of Care Association, Autism New Jersey, and the Community Health Law Project, DRNJ filed an amicus curiae (friend of the court) in three county courts, arguing against the exclusion of the very poor from these calculations. While the effort to exclude the poorest households from the calculation of the need for affordable housing was largely abandoned, the municipalities then focus on excluding households formed during the period from 1999 to 2015 when the state’s implementation of the municipalities’ obligation to establish affordable housing was largely stalled. A trial court judged held that households formed during the gap period should be included in the calculation of the need for affordable housing. The municipalities appealed to the Appellate Division. DRNJ had filed a brief in the Appellate Division supporting the decision of the trial court. The Appellate Division reversed the trial court’s decision. After a couple of false starts, the New Jersey Supreme Court agreed to hear the dispute at the end of November. OBJECTIVE 2A.2 To pursue individual and/or systems advocacy in at least one (1) housing matter addressing discriminatory barriers to accessible, affordable housing. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 58-year-old resident of Mercer County who uses a wheelchair for mobility. Inside the building where she lives, there are three steps that lead to her apartment’s hallway. The landlord had placed a portable ramp over a portion of the three steps to allow her to get in and out of the building. However, the landlord ordered the maintenance staff to remove the ramp after she uses it. While her husband was living, this was not a problem because he would retrieve the ramp and set it up when she needed it. However, he recently died, so she has to try and locate maintenance staff to replace the ramp when she needs it. DRNJ contacted the management company to request that the portable ramp remain in place all the time so that the individual would have access to her apartment. As a result, the management company advised the maintenance staff to allow the portable ramp to remain in place, and the individual can now easily enter and leave her apartment. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 78-year-old resident of Union County who is blind. She contacted DRNJ because she had recently purchased a condominium unit. The entrance to the building has three steps with no railing, which is difficult for her to climb because she uses a cane and has a service dog. She contacted the condominium association requesting that they allow her to install railings at her own cost. The homeowner’s association denied her request. DRNJ contacted the homeowner’s association and advised them of their obligations under the Fair Housing Act and the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination. Within a week after DRNJ contacted the association, the association agreed to allow her to install the railings. DRNJ intervened on behalf of an 83-year-old resident of Morris County who has orthopedic impairments. She contacted DRNJ because the parking lot for her condominium was inaccessible to her. Specifically, the parking lot was on a hill with stairs to access it, and her assigned parking space was quite a distance from the entrance of the building. DRNJ contacted the association requesting accommodations for the individual. The association agreed to place an accessible parking space in front of the building, which the individual now uses regularly. In addition, the association agreed to install railings for the stairs to the parking lot. When the individual uses the parking lot, she is able to use the railings for support. 35 cases were handled under this priority. GOAL 15-2B EMPLOYMENT: To ensure that people with disabilities experience decreased discrimination and gain increased employment opportunities. OBJECTIVE 2B.1 To address through individual and/or systems advocacy employment discrimination issues or complaints in at least fifteen (15) matters DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 51-year-old resident of Essex County who was diagnosed with cancer. The individual contacted DRNJ because he wanted to return to work after a leave of absence for his cancer treatments, but wanted an accommodation to temporarily reduce his sales quota until he was physically stronger. His employer denied his request. DRNJ contacted the employer and requested that the employer enter into an interactive process with the individual to address his request for an accommodation. After entering into the interactive process, the employer agreed to the temporary accommodation, and the individual was able to return to his employment. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 32-year-old resident of Ocean County who has a traumatic brain injury, is vent dependent, and uses a wheelchair for mobility. The individual contacted DRNJ because she requested accommodations for her disabilities from her employer. Her employer requested that she sign an overly broad medical authorization form that permitted her employer to obtain all of her medical records and to speak with any of her doctors. She did not believe that her employer had the right to have access to medical information about her that was not related to her accommodation request to assist her with her job. She did not mind submitting a letter from her doctor explaining the accommodations she needs and how the accommodations will assist her in performing her job. However, the employer insisted that a medical note was not sufficient and insisted that she complete the authorization form in its entirety and submit it. DRNJ reviewed the medical authorization form and made editing suggestions to the individual regarding some of the overly broad language. In addition, DRNJ suggested that she submit her doctor’s letter advising of the need for accommodations with the revised authorization. The individual followed DRNJ’s advice, and the employer accepted the revised form with the note from the doctor. 34 cases were handled under this priority. GOAL 15-2C VOTING: To ensure that people with disabilities have the opportunity and can exercise the right to register and vote. OBJECTIVE 2C.1 To participate in at least three (3) activities promoting and protecting the right to vote of people with disabilities. DRNJ operated a hotline for the general election of November 3, 2015. DRNJ received approximately two calls throughout the day. One voter wanted to know the location of their polling place. DRNJ staff searched the Division of Elections website and was able to provide the individual with the address of their polling place. In addition, another individual wanted information about transportation to the polls which was provided. Prior to the general election, DRNJ sent out e-blasts to its email list to advise individuals of the voter registration deadline and the deadline to request Vote-By-Mail ballots. DRNJ collaborated with other disability advocacy organizations during the spring and summer of 2016 to raise awareness about voting rights of people with disabilities and to encourage voter registration of people with disabilities during this presidential election year. DRNJ staff also spoke directly to many disability organizations about voting rights of people with disabilities and conducted a voter rights training at the Abilities Expo. DRNJ participated in meetings with the Secretary of State, Director of the Division of Elections, the League of Women Voters of New Jersey, and the American Civil Liberties Union of New Jersey before the primary and the general election to discuss potential voter issues during the elections. In addition, DRNJ participated in a meeting with Commissioner Matthew Masterson of the Election Assistance Commission and New Jersey election officials. DRNJ raised concerns regarding the current voting machines and their difficulties with usability for individuals with disabilities. DRNJ continues to distribute its voter guide, Voting: It’s Your Right, to individuals, advocacy groups and election officials. GOAL 15-2D PUBLIC ACCOMMODATIONS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES: To ensure that people with disabilities have non-discriminatory access to public accommodations and public entities. OBJECTIVE 2D.1 To undertake individual and/or systems advocacy in at least ten (10) matters addressing discrimination against people with disabilities in public accommodations and services. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 63-year-old resident of Camden County who has paraplegia and a traumatic brain injury following removal of a brain tumor and two cerebral vascular accidents. The individual contacted DRNJ because the parking lot at a local shopping center was in such disrepair, she was unable to navigate the parking lot safely in order to gain access to the stores. DRNJ contacted the management office of the shopping center to advise them of the individual’s complaint. Within 90 days after DRNJ sent the letter, the parking lot was repaired. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 28-year-old resident of Morris County who is deaf. She contacted DRNJ because her cosmetology school advised her that they would cease providing American Sign Language interpreters for her classes and advised her to seek funding for the interpreters from the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. DRNJ wrote to the cosmetology school and advised that the school was responsible for providing the interpreters under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. After DRNJ’s intervention, the school agreed to continue providing the interpreters. 62 cases were handled under this priority. ISSUE 3 — COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES GOAL 15-3A COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES AND SUPPORTS — To ensure that people with disabilities have access to appropriate community-based supports and services to promote integration and independence. OBJECTIVE 3A.1 To provide individual and/or systems advocacy in at least three (3) matters promoting or addressing access to community supports and services. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 54-year-old resident of Bergen County who has a traumatic brain injury. The individual was residing in a nursing home but was seeking a housing voucher from the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) to return to the community. DCA had rejected the resident's application because of an alleged history of past violent behavior. DRNJ sent a letter to DCA requesting that they schedule a hearing in this matter. DCA relented and allowed the resident to re-file for a voucher. After the resident was unable to find an apartment within the first sixty days, DRNJ contacted DCA and requested an extension. DRNJ requested several more extensions, with the last extension expiring in April 2016. The resident selected an apartment shortly before the last extension expired. 5 cases were handled under this priority. GOAL 09-3B - ACCESSIBLE TRANSPORTATION: To improve the availability of accessible transportation for people with disabilities. OBJECTIVE 3B.1 - To participate in at least one (3) individual and systems matters addressing lack of accessible transportation services for people with disabilities. DRNJ staff continues to monitor New Jersey Transit’s compliance with the ADA, through participation on New Jersey Transit’s ADA advisory committee, the North Jersey Transit Planning Authority, and the New Jersey Transit ADA Task Force. In addition, DRNJ staff attended meetings of the NJ Transit Local Programs Support Citizen’s Advisory Committee and the New Jersey Council on Special Transportation, an organization of consumers and professionals that focuses on local county paratransit systems. DRNJ intervened on behalf of 57-year-old resident of Mercer County with multiple sclerosis, cognitive impairment, impaired vision, and diabetes. She contacted DRNJ because she lost her transportation through the Mercer County Unity Way when she forgot to update her enrollment information. When she called to re-apply, she was advised that criteria for the program changed and that she no longer met the criteria for eligibility for services. DRNJ assisted the individual by referring her to the Mercer County local paratransit program. She contacted the paratransit program and received transportation through that program. 5 cases were handled under this priority. ISSUE 4 — HEALTH CARE GOAL 15-4A HEALTH CARE: To ensure that people with disabilities have access to appropriate health care services. OBJECTIVE 4A.1 To provide individual assistance and advocacy in at least five (5) matters promoting access by people with disabilities to health care. DRNJ intervened on behalf of an 83-year-old resident of Bergen County who has colon cancer and physical impairments resulting from her chemotherapy and radiation treatments. The individual’s daughter contacted DRNJ because her mother was receiving 26 hours per week of Personal Care Assistance (PCA) to assist her with basic tasks such as bathing, dressing and feeding. However, her Medicaid managed care organization (MCO) notified her that it was reducing the number of PCA hours to 18 hours per week. DRNJ requested that the MCO conduct a new assessment as their assessment did not properly take into account her deteriorating medical condition. In addition, DRNJ paid for an independent assessment of her needs. Based upon the two new assessments, the MCO not only agreed to reinstate her hours, the MCO agreed to increase her services to 31 hours per week. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 33-year-old resident of Ocean County who fell down the stairs in 2016, which resulted in a traumatic brain injury. His mother contacted DRNJ because the MCO that administers his Medicaid services denied further rehabilitation therapies and transferred him into a nursing home for custodial care. DRNJ negotiated with the MCO, and the MCO agreed authorize his treatment in a rehabilitation facility that specializes in treating patients with traumatic brain injuries. He is now receiving restorative rehabilitative services including physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy. 100 cases were handled under this priority. GOAL 15-4B INFORMED DECISION MAKING — To ensure that the rights of individuals with disabilities are protected through informed individual and /or surrogate decision making. OBJECTIVE 4B.1 To promote individual rights and informed decision making through at least one (1) educational and systems advocacy activities related to advance directives and end-of-life activities. DRNJ has targeted consumer and family education and training programs centering on end-of-life decision making for individuals with developmental disabilities and advance directives for mental health care. During each of these programs an effort is made to include information on medical advance directives and informed consent applicable to peoptle with disabilities who are not eligible for PADD or PAIMI services and are present, or whose family members are present, at these programs. DRNJ has also collaborated with the Office of the Public Guardian to promote joint decision making for individuals receiving guardianship services. ISSUE — EDUCATION GOAL 15-5A EDUCATION: To promote inclusive education for children with disabilities in least restrictive environments consistent with and appropriate to their needs. OBJECTIVE 5A.1 To engage in individual advocacy in at least fifty (50) matters addressing inclusive education and least restrictive environment. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 14-year-old resident of Camden County who has cyclic vomiting syndrome. The student’s mother contacted DRNJ because her son had not been able to attend school. The district had placed him on home-instruction for the 2014-2015 school year. However, for the 2015-2016 school year, the school district proposed an IEP that placed him in his local school. His mother was concerned that he would not be able to attend. DRNJ filed for due process. The parties attended a case settlement conference. At the settlement conference the parties were able to negotiate a transitional return to school for the student. Specifically, the student would receive on-line home instruction for all of his major subjects with the exception of Spanish. He would receive one-on-one instruction of Spanish at the local library. He would meet weekly with a counselor at the high school to help him acclimate to the school. In November, he would start taking two afternoon classes in the high school. In January, he would transition to three afternoon classes in the high school. Following this transition, an IEP would be held to determine whether he was capable of handling a full day of classes at the high school. The mother and student were pleased with the transitional plan to return to school. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 9-year-old resident of Burlington County who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiance disorder, and severe anxiety. The child’s mother contacted DRNJ because she had been experiencing severe behavioral issues in her self-contained classroom at school. DRNJ requested that the district conduct a Functional Behavioral Assessment to determine the causes of the child’s behavior, but the district failed to respond. DRNJ then requested an independent functional behavioral assessment, but once again the district refused to respond. In May, the child made a suicidal threat in class. The district suspended the child. However, because she was concerned about the child’s mental health, the mother refused to allow her to return to that classroom and disenrolled her from the district for the remaining weeks of school. DRNJ had the child evaluated during the summer to determine what placement setting would be appropriate for her. The evaluator found that the prior placement was inappropriate as it caused her severe anxiety, and she should not return to that specific classroom or school building. Once the evaluation was completed, the mother re-enrolled her in the district, and the parties met to discuss placement. The district continued to insist that the self-contained classroom that she had been in was appropriate. DRNJ then filed for due process and submitted a medical request for home instruction. The district failed to respond to the request for home instruction so DRNJ filed for emergent relief in order to obtain home instruction. The judge ordered the home instruction be provided until January 1, 2016, as set forth in the medical excuse. The parties then met for a settlement conference regarding the due process. At the settlement conference, the parties agreed that the student would be placed out-of-district for the remainder of the 2015-2016 school year, and the district agreed to do re-evaluations during the remainder of the school year. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 17-year-old resident of Burlington County who has oppositional defiance disorder, learning disabilities, and impulse control disorder. The student had been placed out-of-district for several years, but child study team and parent agreed to bring him back in-district for his senior year. However, the parent called DRNJ because prior to his returning to school, the principal of the school told the child study team that he did not want the student in the building and that the child study team needed to keep him out of the high school. DRNJ filed for mediation to challenge the principal’s decision to keep him from returning to school. In order for the child to have a successful senior year, the parties agreed that he would only be in the high school for one-half of the day, which will allow him to gain the credits necessary to graduate. The district agreed to collect data for the first few weeks of school regarding his behavior while in school, and then the parties would hold an IEP meeting to revise his behavioral intervention plan as needed. The child study team case manager agreed to check-in with the student on a regular basis during the first two months of the year and then phase that out as appropriate. Finally, the district agreed to provide counseling to the student twice a week. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 13-year-old resident of Cumberland County who has behavioral and learning disabilities. The child’s foster parent contacted DRNJ because the child was being bullied in school. During an altercation with the bully, the child swung her arms and accidentally hit a teacher. The district immediately suspended the child. The district then violated the child’s due process rights by cancelling the scheduled board hearing and continued to refuse to allow the child to return to school. The child was out of school for several months. DRNJ filed a Petition of Appeal challenging the suspension and requested emergent relief in order for her to be returned to school. At the emergent relief hearing, the district agreed to allow the child to return to school. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 17-year-old resident of Atlantic County who has Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS) which is a long-term illness that causes significant fatigue and memory problems. The student’s mother contacted DRNJ because he had been on home instruction for over a year and his grades dropped significantly. The mother had sought special education classification for him, but after initial evaluations the district denied special education eligibility because it claimed his IQ was too high. DRNJ filed for due process to obtain classification. Following the filing of due process, the district agreed to independent evaluations and to reassess its denial following the independent evaluation. After the completion of the independent evaluation, the parties held an eligibility meeting. The district again denied eligibility, but agreed to develop a section 504 plan for the student. DRNJ worked with the district to put in place accommodations that would address his needs. The 504 plan was successful, and the student was accepted at an in-state four-year college. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 13-year-old resident of Monmouth County who has behavioral disabilities. His mother contacted DRNJ because she did not believe he was making any progress in school. An independent functional behavioral assessment showed that his teachers in school were not engaging with him, and he was not participating in class. DRNJ filed for mediation on behalf of the student. The district offered a resolution session, and DRNJ and the parent agreed to attend. At the resolution session, the district agreed to send the student to an out-of-district public school that had a behavioral program that could address his behavioral needs. The school accepted him, and although he is still having some behavioral difficulties, he is now making progress. 148 individual cases were handled under this priority. 15-5A.2 - To monitor settlement of litigation addressing the disproportionate number of children with a diagnosis of mental illness or severe emotional disorder eligible for special education services who receive educational services in segregated placements. DRNJ, along with the Education Law Center, SPAN, and the ARC of New Jersey, filed suit in federal court against DOE in 2007. The complaint alleged that DOE failed to address the systemic problem that New Jersey children with disabilities are not being educated in the least restrictive environment as required by the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). In February 2014, the parties settled the complaint. The settlement required the following activities: • Completion of a Needs Assessment by 75+ school districts with the worst track record in inclusion; • District site visits by the DOE, including classroom observations and staff interviews; • Extensive training and technical assistance for district staff, and regular assessment of the trainings and technical assistance; • Training of state complaint investigators; • Specially designated state and local inclusion facilitators; • Annual compliance monitoring; • Parental input regarding district failures to appropriately include students with disabilities; and • Oversight by a stakeholder committee comprised of disability advocates. The settlement became effective upon the judge’s February 19, 2014 signing of the Order, with implementation beginning immediately, and continuing for three years. DRNJ staff was named to the stakeholder committee that oversees the needs assessment and training schedule. The committee met during the past year and reviewed the compliance reports and training evaluations. Approximately 70 of the 76 districts were found non-compliant in specific categories regarding least restrictive environment. As a result of these findings, each of these non-compliant districts must identify an inclusion facilitator in the district, and must address the non-compliance in the next year as specified in the settlement agreement. In addition, the committee offered suggestions regarding future training sessions specifically regarding the common areas of non-compliance that was found in the districts. DRNJ will continue to monitor the settlement for the remainder of the time it is in effect. In addition, DRNJ staff participates in several work groups and committees dealing with systemic issues, such as the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities Education Taskforce and the Special Education Practitioner’s Group. In addition, DRNJ participated in several stakeholders meeting sponsored by the NJ Department of Education to provide comments on the Office of Special Education’s State Performance Plan. DRNJ also collaborated with a task force convened by the New Jersey Education Association to address issues regarding special education reform. GOAL 15—5C — BULLYING: To ensure that children with disabilities do not experience bullying in educational settings. OBJECTIVE 5C.1 To provide individual advocacy and representation in at least one (1) matter addressing bullying. DRNJ intervened on behalf of a 17-year-old resident of Monmouth County who has irritable bowel syndrome. The student’s parent contacted DRNJ because his son had been bullied at his first high school, a parochial high school. After transferring to his public high school due to the bullying, the students continued to bully the student online and through text messaging. The public school district did not address the bullying, and eventually the parents sent the child to a private school out-of-state. The district agreed to classify the student and provide supports and services in-district, but the parents continued to keep him in the out-of-state placement. DRNJ filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education Office of Civil Rights (OCR) against the public school district for failing to address the bullying. DRNJ went with the parents to mediation through OCR, and the district agreed to pay $75,000 for reimbursement for the unilateral placement in the out-of-state school. 11 individual cases were handled under this priority. 15-5D - SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE: To ensure that children with disabilities receive appropriate services and supports to oppose policies and practices that promote the school-to-prison pipeline. 15-5D.1 - To collaborate with community and advocacy organizations, and court personnel, including local public defenders, to ensure that children with disabilities receive appropriate services and supports to oppose policies and practices that promote the school-to-prison pipeline. DRNJ is a member of the New Jersey Juvenile Justice Reform Coalition (NJJJRC). The NJJJRC is a collaborative organization which is led by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice. Other member agencies include the NJ ACLU, the Rutgers Law School Justice Clinic, the NJ Public Defenders Office, the pro bono division of Lowenstein Sandler, the NJ Parents Caucus, and numerous others. The NJJJRC’s goal is to raise awareness in communities about issues in the juvenile justice system such as the school to prison pipeline, conditions of confinement, and alternatives to incarceration, and to engage in dialogue with policymakers to enact change. DRNJ has signed up to be a part of two working groups (the school to prison pipeline group and the conditions of confinement group) and over the next several months will meet with the other members of the working group to fully outline the issues in these areas and formulate plans to address them. No individual cases were handled under this priority. ISSUE 6 — ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY GOAL 15-6D ADVOCACY - To increase access to and funding for assistive technology through individual advocacy and legal representation. OBJECTIVE 6D.1 Provide short term assistance, advocacy services, or legal representation to at least ten (10) people with disabilities to assist them to obtain access to or funding for assistive technology. DRNJ intervened on behalf of 50-year-old resident of Mercer County who has orthopedic impairments, behavioral disabilities, mental illness, and digestive disorders. His mother and legal guardian contacted DRNJ because she was having difficulties with the vendor of a manual wheelchair that she had bought her son through his trust fund. Specifically, when the wheelchair was delivered to her son’s nursing home, she discovered that the vendor delivered the wrong chair. After numerous complaints, the vendor returned four months later to pick up the wheelchair and adjust it to the proper specifications. The vendor left a loaner chair for the individual while the original one was being repaired. However, the mother reported that the loaner chair was used and dirty. The vendor refused to return the mother’s calls. DRNJ contacted the vendor directly and was able to discuss the family’s complaints. The vendor assured DRNJ that the wheelchair was properly repaired to the individual’s required specifications. The wheelchair was repaired and the family accepted the repaired wheelchair. 8 individual cases were handled under this priority. ISSUE 7 — WORK & VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION GOAL 15-7B WORK-RELATED OVERPAYMENTS - To assist beneficiaries of Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income who receive notices of work-related overpayments to challenge disputed overpayment claims and to obtain waivers of repayment as appropriate. OBJECTIVE 7B.1 To provide advocacy and legal representation for beneficiaries with overpayments related to efforts to secure, retain, or regain employment. DRNJ assisted a 55-year-old resident of Salem County who was diagnosed with physical and orthopedic impairments and a prosthetic eye. The individual contacted DRNJ when the Social Security Administration (SSA) informed her that she had incurred a $59,856 overpayment. DRNJ worked with the individual to identify extensive Impairment-Related Work Expenses (IRWEs) and attended SSA personal conferences with the individual to present the IRWEs and related documentation. SSA later advised that as a result of her IRWE submission, the overpayment was reduced to $29,186. DRNJ assisted the individual with establishing a repayment plan with SSA for the balance of the overpayment. 1 case was handled under this priority. ISSUE 8 — CONSUMER EDUCATION AND TRAINING GOAL 15-8A UNDERSERVED POPULATIONS: To increase services to historically underserved urban, rural and minority persons with disabilities. OBJECTIVE 8A.1: OUTREACH - Conduct at least six outreach/education presentations on disability rights, issues and services in underserved communities. DRNJ staff conducted 13 outreach, public awareness, and training events targeted to the elderly, deaf and hard of hearing, blind, urban minority, women with disabilities, African American, Latino and rural Latino, and the military. DRNJ presented information to approximately 160 consumers and family members at three different conferences serving the needs of the elderly. In addition, DRNJ staff presented information about assistive technology, voting, special education, and transition services as well as DRNJ's services at two different events that targeted urban minorities. Approximately 80 consumers and family members attended these events. DRNJ presented to three different Spanish-speaking groups on topics regarding special education and DRNJ’s services. Approximately 265 consumers and family members attended these events. DRNJ attended a consumer fair for individuals with blindness and provided information regarding assistive technology and DRNJ’s services. Approximately 75 consumers and family members attended this event. DRNJ also attended a deaf community fair and provided information regarding special education to approximately 100 consumers and family members. Finally, DRNJ continued its efforts to outreach to the military. During the year, DRNJ provided information about special education and health care in addition to its services at three events which focused on military consumers and their families. Approximately 560 family members and consumers attended. OBJECTIVE 8A.3: WORKGROUP ON CULTURAL DIVERSITY: Participate on the State’s Workgroup on Cultural Diversity. DRNJ continues to be an active participant on the Statewide Network for Cultural Competence, a network of about 30 core public and private agencies and programs whose mission is to increase the ability of all agencies and programs to serve and meet the needs of people with disabilities from culturally diverse populations. The Network, which meets quarterly, has an annual conference, and sponsors webinars, also regularly updates its internet-based resource guide that identifies service providers, what they do, who they serve, and their capacity to serve people with disabilities. The Network also now serves as a clearinghouse for training and information. GOAL 15-8B EDUCATION AND TRAINING: To promote the education of consumers and their families regarding disability rights and issues. OBJECTIVE 8B.1: Conduct at least five (5) consumer education and training programs on disability rights issues and services for people with disabilities including rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act. DRNJ staff conducted 26 education and training programs attended by approximately 1,100 individuals. These programs included issues such as special education, including transition services, employment, the Americans with Disabilities Act, housing, voting, and health care.

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.

ISSUE 1 — ABUSE AND NEGLECT GOAL 15-1X ABUSE AND NEGLECT — To ensure that individuals with disabilities living in institutions and the community are free from abuse and neglect. OBJECTIVE 1X.1 To address complaints of abuse and neglect living in institutions or community residential programs in at least one (1) matter. ISSUE 2 — DISCRIMINATION GOAL 15-2A HOUSING: To ensure that people with disabilities have greater access to accessible, affordable housing and experience decreased housing discrimination. OBJECTIVE 2A.1 To participate in at least one (1) coalition, task force, advisory, or work group seeking to increase accessible, affordable housing. OBJECTIVE 2A.2 To pursue individual and/or systems advocacy in at least one (1) housing matter addressing discriminatory barriers to accessible, affordable housing. GOAL 15-2B EMPLOYMENT: To ensure that people with disabilities experience decreased discrimination and gain increased employment opportunities. OBJECTIVE 2B.1 To address through individual and/or systems advocacy employment discrimination issues or complaints in at least fifteen (15) matters GOAL 15-2C VOTING: To ensure that people with disabilities have the opportunity and can exercise the right to register and vote. OBJECTIVE 2C.1 To participate in at least three (3) activities promoting and protecting the right to vote of people with disabilities. GOAL 15-2D PUBLIC ACCOMMODATIONS AND GOVERNMENT SERVICES: To ensure that people with disabilities have non-discriminatory access to public accommodations and public entities. OBJECTIVE 2D.1 To undertake individual and/or systems advocacy in at least ten (10) matters addressing discrimination against people with disabilities in public accommodations and services. ISSUE 3 — COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES GOAL 15-3A COMMUNITY-BASED SERVICES AND SUPPORTS — To ensure that people with disabilities have access to appropriate community-based supports and services to promote integration and independence. OBJECTIVE 3A.1 To provide individual and/or systems advocacy in at least three (3) matters promoting or addressing access to community supports and services. GOAL 09-3B - ACCESSIBLE TRANSPORTATION: to improve the availability of accessible transportation for people with disabilities. OBJECTIVE 3B.1 - To participate in at least one (3) individual and systems matters addressing lack of accessible transportation services for people with disabilities. ISSUE 4 — HEALTH CARE GOAL 15-4A HEALTH CARE: To ensure that people with disabilities have access to appropriate health care services. OBJECTIVE 4A.1 To provide individual assistance and advocacy in at least ten (10) matters promoting access by people with disabilities to health care. GOAL 15-4B INFORMED DECISION MAKING — To ensure that the rights of individuals with disabilities are protected through informed individual and /or surrogate decision making. OBJECTIVE 4B.1 To promote individual rights and informed decision making through at least one (1) educational and systems advocacy activities related to advance directives and end-of-life activities. ISSUE — EDUCATION GOAL 15-5A EDUCATION: To promote inclusive education for children with disabilities in least restrictive environments consistent with and appropriate to their needs. OBJECTIVE 5A.1 To engage in individual advocacy in at least fifty (50) matters addressing inclusive education and least restrictive environment. OBJECTIVE 5A.2 - To monitor settlement of litigation addressing the disproportionate number of children with a diagnosis of mental illness or severe emotional disorder eligible for special education services who receive educational services in segregated placements. GOAL 15—5C — BULLYING: To ensure that children with disabilities do not experience bullying in educational settings. OBJECTIVE 5C.1 To provide individual advocacy and representation in at least one (1) matter addressing bullying. GOAL 15-5D - SCHOOL-TO-PRISON PIPELINE: To ensure that children with disabilities receive appropriate services and supports to oppose policies and practices that promote the school-to-prison pipeline. OBJECTIVE 5D.1 - To collaborate with community and advocacy organizations, and court personnel, including local public defenders, to ensure that children with disabilities receive appropriate services and supports to oppose policies and practices that promote the school-to-prison pipeline. ISSUE 6 — ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY GOAL 15-6D ADVOCACY - To increase access to and funding for assistive technology through individual advocacy and legal representation. OBJECTIVE 6D.1 Provide short term assistance, advocacy services, or legal representation to at least ten (10) people with disabilities to assist them to obtain access to or funding for assistive technology. ISSUE 7 — EMPLOYMENT GOAL 15-7B WORK-RELATED OVERPAYMENTS - To assist beneficiaries of Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income who receive notices of work-related overpayments to challenge disputed overpayment claims and to obtain waivers of repayment as appropriate. OBJECTIVE 7B.1 To provide advocacy and legal representation for beneficiaries with overpayments related to efforts to secure, retain, or regain employment. ISSUE 8 — CONSUMER EDUCATION AND TRAINING GOAL 15-8A UNDERSERVED POPULATIONS: To increase services to historically underserved urban, rural and minority persons with disabilities. OBJECTIVE 8A.1: OUTREACH - Conduct at least six outreach/education presentations on disability rights, issues and services in underserved communities. OBJECTIVE 8A.3: WORKGROUP ON CULTURAL DIVERSITY: Participate on the State’s Workgroup on Cultural Diversity. GOAL 15-8B EDUCATION AND TRAINING: To promote the education of consumers and their families regarding disability rights and issues. OBJECTIVE 8B.1: Conduct at least five (5) consumer education and training programs on disability rights issues and services for people with disabilities including rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

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. In addition to funds received from the U.S. Department of Education, DRNJ received a $35,000 grant from New Jersey’s Interest on Lawyers Trust Accounts program for legal and advocacy assistance in special education cases for individuals with low income. A portion of this grant is allocated to the PAIR program. B. Budget for Fiscal Year Covered by this Report The following are the actual expenses for FY 2016. Payroll $ 271,406.73 Fringe Benefits $ 101,568.40 Advertising $ 0.00 Advisory and Governing Board $ 260.68 Audit $ 3,651.60 Auto $ 0.00 Conference $ 0.00 Consultants - Administration $ 2,403.83 Consultants — Programs $ 9,134.27 Copier $ 2,086.55 Equipment/Furniture $ 400.08 Insurance $ 2,886.30 Interns $ 0.00 Legal $ 0.00 Library $ 6,428.85 Litigation $ 17,907.44 Membership $ 1,765.67 MIS $ 3,675.64 Office Expense $ 1,666.57 Office Supplies $ 1,310.02 Other Personnel $ 1,715.76 Outreach $ 203.35 Postage $ 403.16 Printing $ 39.02 Staff Training $ 3,413.28 Subcontractors $ 11,507.50 Telephone $ 0.00 Travel $ 3,437.30 Volunteers $ 0.00 Total $ 447,272.00 Notes: The State of New Jersey provides in-kind support for rent, telephone, and postage. Because of rounding the total may not equal the sum of the budget lines. C. Description of PAIR staff (duties and person-years) During the year 2016, the PAIR program had the following staff assigned directly to program activities, a Managing Attorney responsible for coordinating the activities of the program and supervising the staff; six Staff Attorneys assigned part-time to the PAIR program; two Staff Advocates assigned part-time, and one secretary assigned part-time. For FY 2016, the PAIR program received approximately 2.95 person-years of staff time. D. Involvement with Advisory Boards The PAIR program is responsible to DRNJ’s Governing Board, which meets four times a year. DRNJ staff invites the Governing Board to participate in consumer-driven activities such as our priority review focus groups and identification of barriers to accessibility throughout the state. E. Grievances Filed Under the Grievance Procedure All individuals requesting assistance from DRNJ are sent a copy of the grievance policy and procedure along with the letter from the Intake Coordinator advising whether their request for assistance has been assigned to a member of the staff for further action. Individuals are also advised of their right to appeal whenever a decision is made to close a file or not file an appeal contrary to the individual’s wishes. Any disputes that cannot be resolved by the program’s managing attorney are reviewed by the Director of Administration in consultation with the Executive Director. An individual may appeal a decision of the Executive Director to a committee of the Board of Directors. DRNJ processed eight formal appeals during FY 2016, and three were for clients of the PAIR program. F. Coordination with the Client Assistance Program (CAP) and the State Long-Term Care Program The Client Assistance Program (CAP) is one of nine programs within Disability Rights New Jersey. The two programs share many activities including outreach, technical assistance and training, staff development, information and referral, and cooperation, consultation, and collaboration in the handling of cases. Shared priorities include the transition of students in special education, quality assurance, public awareness, and information and referral. Cooperation between the PAIR Program and the Long Term Care Ombudsman has included collaboration on many substantive issues and interaction between the Ombudsman and DRNJ staff, as well as participation on the Long Term Care Ethics Consortium. Referrals are made between the two agencies.

Certification

Signed?Yes
Signed ByJoseph B. Young
TitleExecutive Director
Signed Date12/21/2016