RSA-227 for FY-2017: Submission #974

California
9/30/2017
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Disability Rights California
1831 K Street
{Empty}
Sacramento
CA
95811
(800) 776-5746
(800) 719-5798
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Disability Rights California
1831 K Street
{Empty}
Sacramento
95811
{Empty}
(800) 776-5746
(800) 719-5798
Additional Information
Connie Chu
JoAnn Parayno
(916) 504-5919
{Empty}
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
1353
0
0
646
1758
4891
8648
B. Training Activities
38
1401
In fiscal year 2017, Disability Rights California (DRC) utilized Client Assistance Program (CAP) funds for training throughout California to serve and support people with disabilities. DRC focused training efforts on the rights of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) to Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE) instead of sub-minimum wage jobs and informed choices in receiving vocational rehabilitation services. CAP trainings also addressed access to employment, services, and information for underserved people throughout the state, including non-English speaking communities. <p><p>For example, DRC provided a training to Spanish-speaking families in March 2017 at the Involved Exceptional Parents Day regarding the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). More than 30 parents and professionals received training on the California Blueprint for Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE), WIOA, special education transition planning, and Regional Center Services. The Blueprint is a detailed plan of systemic changes over the next five years to cease the placement of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) in sheltered workshops and other segregated settings and increase CIE opportunities. <p><p>DRC staff also participated in the 2017 Alameda County Transition Resource Fair targeting youth with I/DD and their parents. Participants included DOR clients and applicants from communities of color such as Asian, African American, and Hispanic children and parents. DRC staff shared information about how to access pre-employment transition services, and other supports from the DOR. <p><p>DRC also provided a training in both English and in Spanish at the Exceptional Parents Day in San Diego in March 2017. The purpose of the event was to provide resources and training workshops to professionals, clients and family members of clients of the San Diego Regional Center. Topics included transition services for youth and changes to transition services as a result of the WIOA and California&rsquo;s Blueprint. CAP advocates also covered the rights of people with I/DD who receive vocational services to obtain CIE. Our advocates answered many questions related to the responsibilities of the Regional Center, DOR, and school districts to provide these services to people with I/DD, and support their rights to attain fair employment. The attendees of the workshop were grateful for the information and stated that they would contact DRC if they had additional questions about employment or transition services. <p><p>In January 2017, DRC provided a presentation to clients of Pacific Clinics in Rialto, a clubhouse for individuals with mental health disabilities where they can connect to resources in the community such as employment, mental health services, and independent living services. Many clubhouse members expressed an interest in going back to work. CAP advocates gave a presentation and discussed how the DOR process
C. Agency Outreach
During this 2017 fiscal year, DRC continued its ongoing outreach efforts to unserved and underserved mono-lingual and marginalized communities. CAP staff participated in 23 outreach events, reaching a total of 2,237 people. These statewide events were collaborations with agencies such as the Department of Rehabilitation, Employment Development Department, independent living centers, and school districts. DRC identified outreach opportunities specifically targeted to increase DRC&rsquo;s visibility and services to underserved communities and to ensure that the clients we serve are representative of the diversity in our areas of service. <p><p>For example, DRC participated in outreach events and collaborative meetings to raise disability rights awareness among students with visual impairments throughout California. In February 2017, DRC advocates provided information to the California Association of Blind Students about the services that DRC provides, including CAP. Attendees asked questions and shared their experiences and concerns about the California Department of Rehabilitation (DOR). DRC encouraged those with additional questions and concerns to call our intake line and visit our website. In September 2017, advocates provided information about CAP and DRC services at the San Diego Braille Institute. Participants included people with visual impairment from the Latino community. DRC advocates informed attendees of DOR services and distributed accessible material, including the brochure, What is the Client Assistance Program? <p><p>In April 2017, DRC provided information about DRC and CAP services at a Spanish-speaking Parenting Network group in Tulare. Parents received training regarding Social Security work incentives and transition services for youth. One parent shared her experience with many ongoing obstacles when she tried to find suitable volunteer/internship options for her daughter, who has a disability. DRC invited the parent to contact CAP advocates in her area for advocacy assistance for her daughter. The parent expressed her gratitude for our guidance and help for her daughter. <p><p>DRC also provided outreach in geographically underserved areas. For example, on October 22, 2016, DRC participated in the Inland Empire Disabilities Expo, held annually in San Bernardino. The Expo is a large regional resource fair coordinated by a variety of agencies that are part of the Inland Empire Disabilities Collaborative. DRC shared information and resources with the region&rsquo;s disability community including fact sheets for consumers interested in employment. Attendees were given DRC and CAP brochures containing helpful information on disability-related issues such as access to benefits and actions against discrimination. Many people who visited DRC&rsquo;s table did not know about DRC&rsquo;s resources and stated that they would visit DRC&rsquo;s website or call with questions to learn more about our services. <p><p>
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
0
0
2967
55
4693
Online Information/Outreach- <p><p>DRC disseminates information about CAP and related topics on its website, both on our English webpage and Spanish webpage. DRC&rsquo;s main site also provides CAP related publications in various languages, links to the DOR&rsquo;s website and application process, and information about DRC services. Publications are available in the following threshold languages: English, Spanish, Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Russian, Tagalog, Hmong, Armenian, Arabic, Farsi. There have been 2,534 unique hits to the CAP home page and 2,159 hits to the CAP publications page for a total of 4,693 hits. <p><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
0 <p><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
113
609
722
81
147
B. Problem areas
111
104
313
91
0
192
0
14
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
599
0
44
0
14
15
672
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
211
375
3
2
2
52
0
0
8
19
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
507
25
13
4
68
41
4
10
0
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
35
58
185
408
36
722
B. Gender
368
354
722
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
180
11
35
164
10
267
23
32
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
1
15
4
2
4
9
47
5
48
32
9
21
53
12
2
4
2
4
15
28
167
4
5
6
14
123
1
4
0
43
1
2
3
32
722
E. Types of Individuals Served
157
10
480
6
18
14
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
3
1. DRC Helps Dreams Come True for Deaf Clients in Fresno- <p><p>On March 11, 2017, DRC staff collaborated with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Service Center in Fresno to conduct an employment forum. The forum consisted of 1) trainings by DRC staff regarding Social Security Work Incentives and available services from the Department of Rehabilitation (DOR); 2) completion of client intakes by CAP; and 3) a town hall style meeting in which members of the deaf/ hard of hearing (DHH) community discussed the challenges they faced in attempting to access DOR services. Participants explained that for over a decade, all deaf clients in the Fresno office were referred to one counselor who routinely denied their requests for services and refused to approve jobs, such as hairstylist or truck driver that she believed DHH clients could not do. Several participants shared that she had crushed their dreams. However, when they requested a new counselor, they were told she is the only one they could work with and did not understand that they had a right to appeal. <p><p>Following the event, DRC&rsquo;s Executive Director and a Supervising Attorney met with senior administrators at the DOR to address the problems. The DOR agreed to formally address long standing concerns and issues related to the quality of vocational rehabilitation services to the DHH community, to transfer all DHH clients at the Fresno office to a new counselor, and to meet with DRC staff immediately to address the needs of the 8 clients DRC was representing. They also agreed to make an ASL video explaining consumers&rsquo; rights to appeal. The video is posted on the DOR website (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-yTX7hkyw9w). Most of our clients are receiving their long overdue services. We are still advocating for reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses clients incurred for services improperly denied by DOR. <p><p>2. CAP, DOR, Regional Center Partner in an Innovative Approach to Help People with ID/DD Obtain Competitive Integrated Employment- <p><p>In January 2017, DRC, in partnership with the Orange/San Gabriel District of the Department of Rehabilitation and the Regional Center of Orange County (RCOC), launched the Competitive Integrated Employment (CIE) Clinics. Regional centers provide case management for eligible individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). CIE clinics are a series of training and technical assistance meetings that take place over the course of 8 months. Each clinic is designed to provide adult persons with I/DD with the knowledge and self-advocacy skills needed to obtain meaningful employment in the community at competitive wages. While policy changes address the systems that serve people with I/DD in non-CIE activities, these clinics assist individuals who are transitioning from non-CIE activities to CIE with comprehensive training and technical assistance strategy to help them resolve problems with multiple agencies. <p><p>The CIE clinics are
B. Litigation
0
0
0
CAP did not engage in any class action or individual representation litigation during the reporting period using CAP funding, but provided direct representation to individuals in the administrative hearing process with the DOR. The following are examples of DRC&rsquo;s representation of individuals in administrative hearings: <p><p>1. DOR Agrees to Provide Trained Service Dog to College Student- Ava is a person with mental illness who is a client of the DOR. She has an employment goal of becoming a human services worker, and is in the process of completing her college degree. Due to her disability, she requires a service dog that has been individually trained to perform tasks that prevent her anxiety symptoms from causing her emotional distress during stressful situations. <p><p>DOR denied her request for a trained psychiatric service dog, stating that she did not need it in order to complete her employment goal. DRC represented Ava in meetings with the DOR staff and submitted updated medical documentation supporting her request for the psychiatric service animal. Since the DOR would not change its decision, DRC filed for mediation and fair hearing on behalf of the client. <p><p>After extensive negotiation, the DOR finally agreed that a psychiatric service dog was necessary for Ava to reach her work goal. Due to DRC&rsquo;s advocacy, the DOR also agreed to pay for the cost of acquiring and individually training the psychiatric service dog, the reasonable cost of travel and lodging necessary for our client to participate in a psychiatric service dog training program, reasonable fees and costs charged for the training program, and the cost of maintenance and care of the psychiatric service dog. <p><p>Recently, Ava was paired with a psychiatric service dog, who recently graduated from her training program. Ava is now ready to start her college classes, with her service animal by her side. <p><p>2. DOR Client Receives Services to Retain Employment of 16 Years- Frank, a person with cerebral palsy, has been working for the same agency for 16 years. He finds his work particularly meaningful because he helps other people with disabilities overcome barriers to employment. Several years ago, the DOR help fit Frank&rsquo;s van with a lift so he could transport his wheelchair to and from work. The vehicle modifications allowed him to use a device to load the wheelchair in the back of his van, then walk to the driver&rsquo;s seat, which was equipped with hand controls. However, as Frank&rsquo;s CP progressed, he was no longer able to safely load his wheelchair into the back of his van or ambulate and transfer to the driver&rsquo;s seat. Without a modified van, Frank could no longer travel to and from work and would lose his job. <p><p>He requested assistance from the DOR. The DOR referred Frank to the Mobility Evaluations Program (MEP) which determined that his van could not be further modified to accommodate his disability and recommended that D
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Disability Rights California
No
N/A
B. Staff Employed
CAP services were provided by professional staff of 7.57 PTE with 6.80 years and clerical staff of 2.91 PTE with 2.14 years. <p><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
1. CAP Provides Self-Advocacy Tools to Client to Advocate for DOR Services- Samantha is a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) who applied for services from the DOR. She was referred to a vocational services provider for a Trial Work Evaluation (TWE) because she needed to seek a new career and needed vocational exploration services. <p><p>Samantha contacted DRC because although more than 60 days had passed since she had applied for DOR services, the DOR had not yet determined whether she was eligible. Samantha believed that after the TWE, the provider reported to the DOR counselor that she was &ldquo;emotionally unstable.&rdquo; She was concerned that, based on that information, DOR would find her ineligible and not provide her any services to get back to work and become self-sufficient again. <p><p>DRC advised Samantha that the regulations require the DOR to determine eligibility within 60 days, unless the applicant agreed to an extension, which she had not. DRC also advised her that the DOR could only deny eligibility based on the TWE if it demonstrated, based on clear and convincing evidence, that a person is incapable of benefiting from vocational rehabilitation services due to the severity of the applicant&rsquo;s disability. <p><p>Samantha contacted DOR and advocated for herself, requesting that an eligibility determination be made immediately, since the timeline had already passed. DOR agreed to make Samantha eligible for services and to work with her to develop the Individualized Plan of Employment. <p><p>2.DRC Helps Client Secure Post- High School Vocational Rehabilitation and Regional Center Services- Stanley is a young man with Autism and a passion for sports and the outdoors. When he exited from special education, he was found eligible for services. An IPE was developed for him that included minimal services and did not reflect his employment interests. He sought assistance from DRC to help him secure services for employment in his area of interest from both the regional center and the DOR. (Regional centers provide case management for eligible individuals with I/DD.) <p><p>Because Stanley has complex support needs, DRC determined it would be best to bring both agencies together to plan integrating activities related to Stanley&rsquo;s vocational rehabilitation into his day program. As a result of DRC&rsquo;s advocacy, Stanley&rsquo;s day program activities now include his educational and vocational activities. Stanley will continue to receive medical and behavioral supports funded by the regional center while he participates in these activities. Additionally, his IPE was amended to include services to support his paid internship and volunteer work while he attends school for his chosen vocational goal of Recreation Worker. Currently, Stanley is working on obtaining a high school diploma with DOR support. <p><p>DRC negotiated with the DOR to support Stanley&rsquo;s education up to a Bachelor&rsquo;s degree or
Certification
Approved
Catherine Blakemore
Executive Director
2017-12-14
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