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RSA-227 for FY-2021: Submission #1169

Wyoming
09/30/2021
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Protection & Advocacy System, Inc.
7344 Stockman Street
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Cheyenne
WY
82009
https://www.wypanda.com
307-638-7668
800-821-3091
800-821-3091
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
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Additional Information
Connie Peterssen
Jeanne Thobro
307-632-3496
jcoyote@wypanda.com
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
7
1
1
0
0
2
11
B. Training Activities
23
399
During this fiscal year, at least 207 persons with disabilities attended training sessions. Of the 23 events, five of the events targeted transition-age youth and five of the events included persons who are members of traditionally unserved or underserved people groups. CAP distributed 754 publications statewide during this fiscal year, including distribution to transition-age youth and their families and to persons who are members of traditionally unserved or underserved population groups. Additional information is shared below.
On October 6, 2020, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program in a virtual presentation to Albany County School District #1, in Laramie, Wyoming. Attendees included transition-age youth and a school representative. Attendance: 5 persons, including 4 transition-age youth.
On October 13, 2020, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Rehabilitation Council statewide virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, persons with disabilities, and family members of persons with disabilities. Attendance: 15 persons, including 6 persons with disabilities.
On October 14, 2020, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual joint meeting of the Wyoming Assistive Technology Resources and Wyoming Institute for Disabilities task forces and staff. Attendees included persons with disabilities and agency staff. Attendance: 14 persons, including at least 2 persons with disabilities.
On October 28, 2020, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program and vocational rehabilitation process to a virtual outreach to Goodwill Industries, a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Attendees included persons with disabilities, some of whom are members of traditionally unserved or underserved people groups, service provider staff, and guardians. Attendance: 23 persons, including 18 persons with disabilities.
On October 29, 2020, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual outreach to Magic City Enterprises, a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Attendees included persons with disabilities and service provider staff. Attendance: 11 persons, including 4 persons with disabilities.
On November 17, 2020, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to a virtual event to the Wyoming Institute for Disabilities Advisory Council virtual meeting, hosted from Laramie. Attendees included persons with disabilities, guardians, family members, service providers, case managers, and agency personnel. Attendance: 29 persons, including 5 persons with disabilities.
On December 1, 2020, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Independent Living Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included independent living counselors and administrators, vocational rehabilitation administrators, and persons with disabilities. Attendance:11 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On December 15, 2020, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Rehabilitation Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and persons with disabilities. Attendance: 8 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On February 2, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Rehabilitation Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and persons with disabilities. Attendance: 7 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On February 9, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Independent Living Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included independent living counselors and administrators, vocational rehabilitation administrators, and persons with disabilities. Attendance:14 persons, including 8 persons with disabilities.
On June 1, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual outreach event to Lincoln Self-Reliance, a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Lincoln and Uinta Counties, in western Wyoming. Nine separate locations were included in the virtual event, including the cities of Afton, Evanston, Freedom, Kemmerer, and rural areas in between. Attendees included persons with disabilities, service provider staff, family members, and guardians. Attendees included persons with disabilities who are members of traditionally unserved or underserved population groups. Attendance: 60 persons, including 45 persons with disabilities.
On June 2, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual outreach event to Rehabilitation Enterprises of Northeast Wyoming (RENEW), a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Sheridan, Wyoming. Two separate locations in the city of Sheridan were included in the virtual event. Attendees included persons with disabilities, service provider staff, family members, and guardians. Attendance: 24 persons, including 19 persons with disabilities.
On June 2 and 3, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Independent Living Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included independent living counselors and administrators, vocational rehabilitation administrators, and persons with disabilities. Attendance:13 persons, including 6 persons with disabilities.
On June 8, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Rehabilitation Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and persons with disabilities. Attendance: 8 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On June 24, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program and work incentives to a virtual outreach event to Advancing Abilities, a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Casper, Wyoming. Attendees included persons with disabilities, service provider staff, family members, and guardians. Attendees included persons with disabilities who are members of traditionally unserved or underserved population groups. Attendance: 26 persons, including 22 persons with disabilities.
On June 24, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual outreach event to the Wyoming State Hospital, located in Evanston, Wyoming. Attendees included administrators and staff at the Wyoming State Hospital. Attendance: 10 persons.
On June 25, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program to a virtual outreach event to Diversified Services, Inc., a Home and Community Based Waiver Services provider located in Torrington, Wyoming. Attendees included persons with disabilities and service provider staff. Attendance: 16 persons, including 10 persons with disabilities.
On August 2, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program and information regarding vocational rehabilitation to a virtual meeting of the State Transition Team task force, hosted from Cheyenne. The task force was developed to enhance vocational and school-to-work transition services for youth, many of whom are members of traditionally unserved or underserved population groups. Attendees included transition-age youth, parents, education personnel, and vocational rehabilitation administrators. Attendance: 10, including 3 with disabilities. A follow-up virtual meeting was held on September 2, 2021, with 11 persons in attendance, including 3 transition-age youth.
On August 17, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to a joint virtual meeting of the State Rehabilitation Council and the State Independent living Council, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included persons with disabilities, service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and family members. Attendees included persons with disabilities who are members of traditionally unserved or underserved population groups. Attendance: 16 persons, including 7 persons with disabilities.
On August 18, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Independent Living Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included independent living counselors and administrators, vocational rehabilitation administrators, and persons with disabilities. Attendance:11 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On August 23, 2021, CAP staff presented information about the CAP program to the State Rehabilitation Council virtual meeting, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included service providers, vocational rehabilitation counselors, and persons with disabilities. Attendance: 10 persons, including 3 persons with disabilities.
On September 2, 2021, CAP staff presented information regarding the CAP program and information regarding vocational rehabilitation to a follow-up virtual meeting of the State Transition Team task force, hosted from Cheyenne. Attendees included transition-age youth, parents, education personnel, and vocational rehabilitation administrators. Attendance: 11 persons, including 3 transition-age youth.
On September 28, 2021, CAP staff conducted a virtual training to the Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. Topics included the CAP program, needs of transition age youth, and the vocational rehabilitation process. Attendees included administrators and counselors of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and persons with disabilities. Attendance: 51 persons, including 20 persons with disabilities.
C. Agency Outreach
CAP provides information in alternate formats, including large print versions and Spanish translated materials. CAP maintains a list of interpreters for individuals with hearing impairments, and interpreters who can assist with language translation services. The agency website provides language translation options. CAP has a general business card embossed in Braille. CAP can accommodate persons through the Relay System or a TTY telephone. CAP personnel have continued to work with the Council of the Blind regarding the Talking Books Program and the need for its continued funding in Wyoming. CAP has targeted outreach to reach individuals with traumatic brain injury and mental illness through mailings to groups, community programs and institutions which serve these populations which are traditionally unserved and underserved in Wyoming. CAP materials have been mailed to the Wind River Reservation which is home to the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes. Due to the pandemic, mailings, as opposed to on-site visits, have been necessary. CAP has focused on rural and less populated areas of the state to inform persons of CAP services. CAP has targeted outreach to transition-age youth through mailings to school districts.
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
0
1
4
7
0
Not Applicable
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
References about the agency services and contact information have been included in the publications of the University Center on Excellence in Disabilities, the Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities, the Wyoming State Bar, the 211 resource directory, the Independent Living Council website, State Rehabilitation website, and various publications of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
3
2
5
0
0
B. Problem areas
0
0
2
0
0
3
0
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
0
0
5
0
0
0
5
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
5
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Not Applicable
E. Results achieved for individuals
0
0
0
0
4
1
0
0
0
0
Not Applicable
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
0
1
1
3
0
5
B. Gender
3
2
5
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
0
0
0
0
0
4
1
0
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
0
0
0
0
0
2
0
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
5
E. Types of Individuals Served
5
0
0
0
0
0
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
4
ACTIVITY ONE: CAP reviewed the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) Business Enterprise Program (BEP) procedure guide for DVR counselors to follow when assisting clients who are starting their own business. The guideline did not address the steps necessary when BEP partners with the Wyoming Women Business Center (WWBC). CAP made a recommendation to the VR Administrator to add the WWBC micro loan to the Individual Plan of Employment for applicable clients. This would occur prior to any individual's signing of any WWBC loan documents. As a direct result of CAP systemic advocacy, the recommendation was added to the BEP process to make casework for both clients and the VR counselor more efficient. BEP served 50 individuals in the last fiscal year to start up a small business.
ACTIVITY TWO: CAP contributed to the development of the new manual for Community Rehabilitation Programs (CRP) which went into effect September 1, 2021. CAP provided input on a policy that addresses consistency of services and accountability throughout Wyoming and may be the first policy created by DVR to do so. Definitions of services are outlined including the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act provisions and Pre-employment Transition (PreETS) Services with examples of measurable gains documentation. The VR agency now requires all CRP's to complete both Intel shield and Department of Family Services background checks prior to working with VR clients. CAP's systemic advocacy impacts the 2,560 active VR cases reported as of 9-30-21, with 792 of the cases being PreETS clients.
ACTIVITY THREE: Due to the pandemic, CAP collaborated with VR to ensure that CAP's requested files from DVR were digitized to expedite advocacy requests. As a result of CAP's systemic advocacy, clients were given the option to meet virtually to meet individual needs to expedite services. CAP's systemic advocacy impacts the 2,560 active DVR cases reported as of 9-30-21, with 5 CAP clients realizing direct benefit.
ACTIVITY FOUR: CAP established a quarterly meeting with DVR staff to include addressing systemic concerns. This collaborative methodology has the potential to impact DVR's annual caseload each year. As of 9-30-21, DVR's active caseload was reported as 2,560 active cases.
B. Litigation
0
0
0
Not Applicable
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Protection & Advocacy System, Inc.
No
Not Applicable
B. Staff Employed
Professional Staff: 0 FT for 12 months. The professional part-time category is comprised of 5 professional staff positions working part-time in the CAP Program, as follows: 1 CEO/Administrator at .07 FTE, filled the entire funding period: 1 Attorney/Legal Director at .02 FTE, filled the entire funding period; 1 CFO at .07 FTE, filled the entire funding period; 1 Senior Program Administrator at .01 FTE filled the entire funding period; 1 CAP Director at .75 FTE filled the entire funding period. No vacant professional positions. Clerical/Support Staff: 1 full-time working part-time in the CAP Program at .01 FTE, filled the entire funding period.
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
Example One: CAP's client was an individual with a diagnosis of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The eligible individual requested assistance with the Vocational Rehabilitation application process and the development of an Individual Plan of Employment (IPE). CAP was successful in advocating for expedited eligibility and an IPE. The IPE was developed to ensure its consistency with the client's strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, interest and informed choice. CAP requested assistance from the Wyoming Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) Area Manager and the Senior Administrator to collaborate with CAP and the DVR Counselor to overcome technical challenges involved with the case. As a direct result of successful CAP advocacy efforts, a telehealth small business plan was approved by the Vocational Rehabilitation Business Enterprise.
Example Two: CAP's client was an individual diagnosed with an adjustment disorder with anxiety and depression. In this case, a Vocational Rehabilitation counselor did not assist with accommodations necessary for the individual to be successful with online and in person courses through the University of Wyoming. DVR also did not pay for the counseling services which were outlined in the IPE, which service fees were ultimately turned over to a collection agency for failure to pay. CAP successfully advocated for an updated psychological evaluation to address additional accommodations to complete the employment goal to become a Music Therapy teacher. Informed choice was provided in the selection of vendors. Wyoming DVR has five service vendors at the present time for individuals to choose from for an evaluation. CAP assisted with an accommodation letter which was submitted to the University of Wyoming, along with the recommendation. CAP provided an additional service to the client by reviewing electronic documents that revealed that DVR had paid for 24 counseling sessions. However, there was a gap of payments and through CAP advocacy, DVR agreed to pay the remaining balance of $292.14 to the service provider. CAP's successful advocacy allow the individual to continue with employment preparatory education and the individual's employment opportunities increased.
Example Three: A CAP-eligible individual with a depressive disorder sought assistance with a variety of employment needs. Through successful CAP advocacy, the individual obtain counseling services connected to the IPE to be employed as a commercial driver. Maintaining adequate mental health services were vital to the successful employment outcome. CAP was successful in advocating for the client's ability to use informed choice for a mental health provider. In addition, CAP successful advocated for the purchase of corrective glasses for the individual. As a direct result of CAP advocacy, the individual is successfully employed, earning an average of $55,000/year.

Certification
Approved
Jeanne A. Thobro, M.A.
Chief Executive Officer
2021-10-25
OMB Notice

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