RSA-227 for FY-2017: Submission #930

Massachusetts
9/30/2017
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Massachusetts Office on Disability
One Ashburton Place #1305
{Empty}
Boston
MA
02108
http://www.mass.gov/mod
(800) 322-2020
(800) 322-2020
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Massachusetts Office on Disability
One Ashburton Place #1305
{Empty}
Boston
02108
Massachusetts
http://www.mass.gov/mod
(800) 322-2020
(800) 322-2020
Additional Information
Naomi Goldberg
Naomi Goldberg
(617) 727-7440
{Empty}
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
273
268
0
422
3970
266
5199
B. Training Activities
127
3437
CAP provided multiple trainings during FFY17. In anticipation of new obligations under WIOA the focus of our outreach was primarily directed at transition youth, informing them, their families, and their providers of vocational rehabilitation and independent living services, how to navigate those services, and how CAP can assist applicants and clients who have concerns about receiving and retaining those services (VR/IL/CAP training). Beginning with high schools, CAP provided VR/IL/CAP training to Special Education Directors at five regional school systems and at three large high schools as well as one such training to the staff of the Out-of-District Coordinators Council for Massachusetts public schools. CAP provided specific outreach to parents of youth with disabilities offering VR/IL/CAP training at six parent transition fairs. We similarly offered a training to parents, staff, and youth with disabilities on a busy evening at a popular YMCA location. We connected with transition aged youth directly at an Easter Seals Youth Leadership event and offered training. CAP also connected with and provided outreach and training to disability specific agencies including a large group of providers who serve youth with psychiatric disabilities and meet quarterly to share information with one another. We also offered CAP/VR/IL training during 2 different sessions of Independence College, an educational program that teaches self-advocates about advocacy and rights. More focused outreach/training on CAP was provided to two independent living centers and to the social rehabilitation teachers for the vocational rehab agency that serves individuals who are blind. Specifically, the goal and focus of the CAP training to those entities is to ensure that VR/IL staff understand CAP’s role in resolving issues and to encourage staff to use CAP as a resource. CAP staff also presented at two sessions at the NDRN annual conference on topics of interest to CAP program attendees. Finally, CAP offered training to VR counselors from the vocational rehabilitation agency that serves individuals who are blind in response to a change of policy with regard to funding that they provide to clients for assistive technology that is used at work. In line with this new policy, CAP offered Title I training about employer obligations and how to assist clients in navigating the reasonable accommodation process at work. During FFY17 MOD provided twenty-one trainings on Title I of the ADA. These trainings were presented to state agencies, municipalities, institutes of higher education, and to a financial institution. The remainder of the trainings that the agency conducted included the following topics; Titles II and III of the ADA, Section 508 and technology usability, emergency preparedness, service animals, and architectural access. The attendees of these trainings included state and municipal employees, people with disabilities and their family members, local disability commis
C. Agency Outreach
In planning outreach for the year CAP seeks to identify organizations that specifically serve populations that have been unserved and underserved, including minority and rural populations. CAP uses standard methods of outreach; first identifying schools, state agencies, organizations that assist individuals with disabilities in becoming employed, and other disability related organizations that would most benefit from connecting with VR/IL/CAP and then contacting them via mail/email or by phone to introduce CAP and to arrange a meeting or training. CAP also does a great deal of outreach through networking at various disability-related events that occur during the year. MOD is routinely asked to staff exhibitor tables at disability related events that occur throughout the state. If the event is employment related or independent living related CAP will staff the table. Employment related events at which we exhibited during FFY17 included our own annual Mass Office on Disability Summit on Employment, the Institute for Community Inclusion Expanding Employment, Wounded Warriors Hiring Event, and Work without Limits, Raise the Bar. Participating in community events as an exhibitor or even as an attendee provides opportunities to interact with individuals with disabilities, their family members, and agencies/organizations that are not aware of VR/IL and would benefit from more information. These interactions often result in an individual contacting CAP for direct assistance with a VR/IL issue, an agency contacting CAP for technical assistance or information at a later time, or an organization requested that CAP provide an in-service training. During FFY17 through CAP and MOD, CAP materials were distributed at a wide range of disability related events and conferences including trainings presented by MOD. In many cases these outside events provided CAP access to individuals who are not otherwise connected or are minimally connected to disability related agencies/organizations or are individuals with whom CAP would not have otherwise interacted through our traditional outreach methods. In many instances these events were attended by individuals representing diverse populations as well as individuals living in more remote locations in the state. MOD staff has numerous opportunities to network with individuals with disabilities and providers when representing the agency on various boards and committees and when attending events and conferences throughout the state. Some of the events at which CAP exhibited during FFY17 included; Annual Legislative Breakfast Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council, Mass Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Technology Resource Fair, City of Boston ADA Day, New England ADA Center Celebrate ADA 27, Personal Emergency Preparedness Fair, among others. CAP has attempted to connect with unserved/underserved individuals with disabilities by identifying and contacting multi-service agencies that assist specifi
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
1
0
0
61616
19
0
<P><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
<P><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
23
67
90
2
23
B. Problem areas
2
40
43
6
0
37
6
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
27
29
9
0
4
0
69
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
32
3
16
0
3
2
0
0
13
0
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
33
2
0
1
14
17
0
2
0
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
2
14
21
45
8
90
B. Gender
49
41
90
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
8
3
1
12
0
65
1
0
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
8
2
0
0
0
3
8
1
8
2
0
1
1
1
1
0
1
0
0
3
19
0
2
5
9
5
0
1
0
8
0
1
0
0
90
E. Types of Individuals Served
9
1
77
4
1
1
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
0
During FFY17 CAP continued to see multiple instances of what appears to be a failure of some VR staff to explain services clearly and consistently to clients. Also during the end of FFY17 we have recognized a particular administrative barrier with regard to purchasing services when there is no available vendor within the system. We have noted a lack of flexibility in trying to ensure that the purchase is made consistent with what is outlined in the IPE. CAP began to investigate the issue at the very end of FFY17 and is working towards addressing it in FFY18. With regard to the former issue, we understand that establishing specific communication protocols is complex when dealing with very nuanced situations in a program that offers very individualized services. Nevertheless, we address the issue with VR agencies at every training and discuss it informally with counselors and during routine interactions with administrators of the VR programs over the course of the year. Due to sudden departures of two CAP staff and a change in a VR Commissioner at the general VR agency during FFY17 CAP was unable to follow through with its intentions to establish more routine meetings and communication with administrative staff at the larger VR agency. CAP is a member of the SRC for both VR agencies and a member of the SILC. In the case of the larger VR agency, CAP chairs the newly formed policy subcommittee. CAP&rsquo;s intention is to ensure that the SRC is providing routine focused feedback on both policy and VR service related issues. While none of CAP&rsquo;s activities appear to have resulted in a systemic change, we will continue to monitor patterns and will address systemic issues when possible. <p><p>
B. Litigation
0
0
0
<P><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-other public agency
Massachusetts Office on Disability
No
none
B. Staff Employed
CAP employed three full time employees during FFY17. The two CAP employees who left their positions during FFY17 were temporarily replaced by existing staff. <p><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
A student with a learning disability was seeking funding from the VR agency to fund her housing and an additional course post-graduation while she studied for a radiology technician licensing exam. CAP had previously assisted her when the VR agency denied funding for the out of state private college that she wanted to attend because it offered specific disability related services that she could not obtain at the local public college. CAP was successful in appealing the decision and the client had since finished the radiology technician program at that institution but was having difficulty passing the licensure exam for that profession. A former professor suggested she audit a course in preparation for the licensing exam and offered to provide her individualized tutoring. Since the school was out of state, in addition to seeking funding for the course, she needed rent money to remain in the area of the school. The VR agency was reluctant to finance this maintaining she could get the same tutoring service in state and live with her parents rent free. After researching the local options, CAP found that it was more economical and feasible for her to remain in the vicinity of her out of state school, audit the course there for a small fee, and to have free tutoring from her former professor. CAP was eventually able to persuade the VR agency that in addition to enabling her to reach her vocational goal, given her relationship with the school and the professor, funding this option made it much more likely that she would pass her exam and be successfully employed in her chosen field. <p><p>An individual with a psychiatric disability had missing front teeth and it was preventing him from obtaining employment in business operations, his chosen field. Although the VR agency had agreed to fund dental work and it was memorialized in his IPE the agency rescinded because they were no longer contracted with any dental providers. When the client contacted CAP he had almost been waiting for one year to receive the services and it was preventing him from finding a job. CAP represented him at an administrative review and an agreement was reached that would allow the client to receive the work and CAP and client researched various vendors and their rates and found a provider that was willing to sign on as a vendor and do the work for an established fee. After the administrative review decision however, the area office refused to follow through claiming that they wanted to obtain additional quotes from a health center that they had previously used that was not an approved vendor. They were hoping that this health center would both agree to do the work and become a vendor. CAP argued that the decision had already been made to use a particular provider, that the agency was delaying the process, and that they were not even sure that the health center would do work or would be a vendor. The office was undeterred so CAP reached out to the administrative off
Certification
Approved
Naomi Goldberg
CAP Director
2017-12-26
OMB Notice

OMB Control Number: 1820-0528, approved for use through 07/31/2023

According to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, no persons are required to respond to a collection of information unless such collection displays a valid OMB control number. Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 16 hours per response, including time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. The obligation to respond to this collection is required to obtain or retain a benefit (Section 13 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended). Send comments regarding the burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C. 20202-4537 or email ICDocketMgr@ed.gov and reference the OMB Control Number 1820-0528. Note: Please do not return the completed form to this address.