RSA-227 for FY-2018: Submission #997

Florida
9/30/2018
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Disability Rights Florida
2473 Care Drive
Suite 200
Tallahassee FL
FL
32308
(800) 342-0823
(800) 346-4127
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Disability Rights Florida
2473 Care Drive
Suite 200
Tallahassee FL
32308
Florida
(800) 342-0823
(800) 346-4127
Additional Information
Cherie Hall, Interim Director
Ann Robinson
(850) 488-9071
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Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
96
5
0
17
4
26
148
B. Training Activities
9
507
CAP provided training at the Polk County Symposium on Special Education related to transition services and how to access and advocate for appropriate Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) services. The purpose was to educate students with disabilities, parents, caregivers, community agencies and Polk County District staff on navigating the resources available for transition services. There were approximately 50 individuals trained at this event. CAP provided Adulting 101: WIOA, Transition and Finances for Students with Disabilities on May 3, 2018 for the Guardian Ad-Litem Annual conference. The purpose was designed to help participants understand transition services available for foster care students and students with disabilities. There were 200 participants who were Guardian Ad-Litems and attorneys working with children with disabilities. <p><p>Family Caf&Eacute; is the nation&rsquo;s largest cross-disability event that reaches almost 12,000 participants each year. Floridians with disabilities and their families are provided with training, public and private resources, financial strategies, and networking during this three day event. CAP presented Getting Hired: A Job-Seekers Guide to Navigating the Hiring Process on June 14, 2018 at the Family Caf&Eacute;. Topics included a general overview of the ADA Title I rights as an applicant and employee, exposure to how to apply for Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) services, self-advocacy strategies in requesting an accommodation, what information to disclose in the interview process and information on CAP. There were 35 attendees that represented individuals with disabilities from underserved populations and their parents. CAP presented Navigating the Transition Process and Vocational Rehabilitation at the Family Caf&Eacute; on June 14, 2018. Topics included information on appropriate transition planning from high school to post-secondary options and services provided by DVR, CAP along with information on WIOA. This workshop provided transition information and resources to youth and adults with disabilities, family members and other advocates. There were 35 participants. CAP presented Adulting 101: WIOA, transition and Finances for Students with Disabilities on June 15, 2018 at the Family Caf&Eacute;. Topics covered included DVR programs and Social Security benefits provided through the SSI and SSDI programs, and work incentives. The purpose was to educate youth and their parents to make full use of transition resources, including CAP, in the event of concerns with DVR and independent living programs. There were approximately 70 individuals at the workshop and primarily consisted of parents and youth with disabilities. CAP presented Dispute Resolution and Navigating the Process workshop at the Family Caf&Eacute; on June 16, 2018 related to transition services of the public school system and vocational rehabilitation services. Self-advocacy and conflict resolution of disagreements with agencies including cha
C. Agency Outreach
CAP outreach was provided to previously un-served and underserved individuals including minority communities and rural communities throughout Florida. CAP staff exhibited and provided information on transition services, DVR, DBS and Centers for Independent Living as well as information on Title I of the ADA. The Intake Outreach Coordinator has over two decades of specific experience in CAP and is a skilled ambassador for employment and rehabilitation resources.The following CAP outreach events were conducted: Oct 4, 2017 FAU Healthy Expo. This free expo in West Palm Beach was hosted by Florida Atlantic University. The purpose of the event was to increase disability awareness focusing on the use of assistive technology and available services for students, agencies, parents and providers. October 4, 2017 Disability Employment Awareness Celebration. Hosted by the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and Division of Blind Services in celebration of Disability Employment Awareness Month. Together these agencies honored outstanding employers for their commitment to hiring people with disabilities. Individuals with disabilities shared their success stories, participants learned more about resources available throughout the local community and state. October 7, 2017, the 10th Annual YES! Families Abilities Information Rally (FAIR). This daylong event is one of the largest disability education and awareness events in Tampa Bay. October 7, 2017 The 2017 Expo Broward 211: Road to Possibilities. The expo was supported by Nova Southeastern University, Center for Independent Living, Lighthouse of Broward, Able United and 2-1-1 Broward. The expo is a family oriented event that provides opportunities to learn about services, resources, products and information for persons of all ages and with any disability. Individuals who were not aware of the information or services provided by Disability Rights Florida were encouraged to contact Disability Rights Florida. October 12, 2017 DBS (Division of Blind Service) Outreach at annual training to educate DBS staff on services and supports. DBS staff requested a presentation for their staff about Disability Rights Florida and how we can work together to serve our clients. October 13, 2017 Tampa Lighthouse for the Blind White Cane Day celebration and fall cookout. Attended event honoring White Cane Day to provide information on services. October 29, 2017 Spirit of the ADA Jacksonville 2017. Annual event hosted by the Independent Living Resource Center (ILRC) of Jacksonville to spread awareness of the ADA. This year emphasized individuals with deafness. November 2, 2017 Employment Symposium: Hiring Abilities Expo and Job Fair 2017. The City of Jacksonville hosted an Expo for employers and a Job Fair for individuals with disabilities. November 9, 2017 Jacksonville Veterans Administration (VA)/Community Mental Health Summit 2017. This event focused on individuals with ment
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
0
0
18800
35
{Empty}
The 2017 Disability Rights Florida annual report distributed throughout 2018 contained an article highlighting CAP advocacy for a DVR client. The individual was assisted through a supervised referral to obtain home, office and vehicle modifications as well as a new prosthesis. <P><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
The Florida Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and Florida Division of Blind Services include information on the CAP program on their website and in their online counselor manuals. The Florida Rehabilitation Council website also has information on how to access the CAP program. <P><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
44
179
223
13
30
B. Problem areas
2
38
129
48
2
12
2
1
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
4
2
74
0
9
3
92
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
122
42
2
6
0
29
1
1
0
0
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
24
21
8
4
1
19
13
3
1
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
11
45
39
114
14
223
B. Gender
95
128
223
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
52
0
3
53
0
100
2
13
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
0
8
3
3
1
6
28
1
18
5
0
5
14
14
1
2
0
1
3
8
35
2
0
8
17
26
0
1
0
10
2
0
1
0
223
E. Types of Individuals Served
39
4
134
4
46
1
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
15
CAP 2018 PPR Systemic <p><p>Efforts early in the federal fiscal year focused on establishing a working relationship with the new Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) Director Allison Flanagan after the retirement of the outgoing DVR Director. Director Flanagan had been the Deputy Director of the Division of Blind Services so was very familiar with the Client Assistance Program (CAP). Meetings and discussions were scheduled to alert her to CAP ongoing advocacy concerns. CAP Training Module CAP developed a training module for DVR Staff. The Division included it as a part of on-boarding for all DVR staff, ensuring that it has a greater visibility than with just the new counselors. DVR made the training mandatory by including it on their training site with a link to the Disability Rights Florida website and then having the staff person attest to completion of the module. The DVR staff viewing is being tracked. The roll out of the module was the first week of May 2018. <p><p>The DVR Director has continued to foster an open door policy for CAP to share concerns. CAP alerted her to concerns regarding a specific office after repeated complaints for a specific unit. CAP shared the following:<p>Communication between counselors and consumers: consumers are repeatedly inquiring on services to be provided and DVR counselors are either: ignoring their questions, providing inaccurate information on services available, citing improper policy, verbally denying services (violation of due process rights) and most importantly, not providing the appropriate guidance and counseling to their customers. Most of the issues would have been avoided if the DVR counselor had initially followed VR policy and protocol.<p>Counselors and Supervisors are significantly delaying services by placing additional unjustifiable demands on clients by requesting unnecessary documents (not supported by VR policy) when they already have the required documentation to proceed with service authorizations.<p>The DVR Director responded immediately to the concerns and addressed it with the appropriate staff and a management strategy plan put in place to address the issues.<p>Additionally, the DVR Director also resolved the issue of inconsistency in CAP accessing client records. Some units believed all of the CAP records requests needed to be reviewed by their Legal Department. CAP alerted the DVR Director and this issue was resolved and our access to CAP client files was restored without delay.<p>CAP staff met with representatives of the 7 DVR offices from early October 2017 through August 2018 as part of the CAP initiative to explain the Client Assistance Program to DVR staff. The locations were: DVR Ocala and Gainesville, October 2017; DVR Leesburg, December 2017; DBS Daytona Beach, January 2018 and April 2018; DVR Ft. Myers, January 2018; DVR St. Augustine, August 2018 and DVR Mirror Lake, August 2018.<p>Additionally, CAP staff provided training on CAP post-secondary systemic issues and p
B. Litigation
0
0
0
not applicable <P><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Disability Rights Florida
No
NA
B. Staff Employed
PositionPosition Type% of Year filled% of position funded by CAPPerson Years Advocacy Specialist (half time)Professional50.00%11.4%0.5 Advocacy SpecialistProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Advocacy SpecialistProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Advocacy SpecialistProfessional100.00%11.4%1 AdvocateProfessional100.00%57.2%1 Advocate InvestigatorProfessional33.00%1.2%1 Advocate InvestigatorProfessional100.00%97.3%0.33 Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%2.3%1 Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%91.1%1 Dir. Of Education, Advocacy & OutreachProfessional100.00%29.3%1 Director of Finance & AdministrationProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Director of InvestigationsProfessional100.00%13.7%1 Director of Public PolicyProfessional100.00%3.1%1 Executive DirectorProfessional75.00%11.4%0.75 Intake CoordinatorProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Intake ManagerProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Intake Outreach CoordinatorProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Managing AttorneyProfessional100.00%1.3%1 Outreach CoordinatorProfessional100.00%50.9%1 Personnel & Benefits CoordinatorProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Senior Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%2.0%1 Senior Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%6.3%1 Sr. Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%2.0%1 Sr. Advocate/InvestigatorProfessional100.00%6.9%1 Staff AttorneyProfessional100.00%1.0%1 Staff AttorneyProfessional92.00%1.6%0.92 Staff AttorneyProfessional100.00%1.7%1 Staff AttorneyProfessional100.00%8.3%1 Staff AttorneyProfessional83.00%11.9%0.83 Staff AttorneyProfessional17.00%21.6%0.17 Staff AttorneyProfessional100.00%29.4%1 Staff AttorneyProfessional100.00%40.2%1 Technology & Communications ManagerProfessional100.00%11.4%1 Accounting AssociateClerical100.00%11.4%1 Administrative AssistantClerical58.00%11.4%0.58 Communications Intern (quarter time)Clerical50.00%11.4%0.25 Executive AssistantClerical100.00%11.4%1 Legal SecretaryClerical100.00%9.2%1 ParalegalClerical100.00%11.4%1 Project ManagerClerical100.00%0.9%1 Senior ParalegalClerical100.00%11.4%1 Sr. ParalegalClerical100.00%11.4%1 Staff AssistantClerical83.00%11.4%0.83 Staff AssistantClerical100.00%11.4%1 Staff AssistantClerical100.00%11.4%1 Staff AssistantClerical100.00%11.4%0.92 Total Professional 30.5 Total Clerical 11.58 <P><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
JM requested assistance from CAP because the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) refused to pay for tutoring services, academic support, independent living training and social skills training. CAP intervened and DVR agreed to sponsor college, tutoring by College Living Experience, driving lessons, a peer mentor to learn self-advocacy, pre-placement training, SOAR for social skills training, and computer software when needed. JM gained knowledge of JM's rights, options, DVR policies and how to communicate with DVR. AV, a person with autism, contacted CAP with questions regarding the vocational rehabilitation process. AV applied for services from the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and was unclear about eligibility and the timeline for development of the Individual Plan Employment (IPE). Disability Rights staff contacted Vocational Rehabilitation for information on AV&rsquo;s status and successfully advocated for a case transfer and reassignment of counselors. Staff continued to monitor as the newly assigned counselor worked quickly to develop an IPE which resulted in AV being able to receive services from the REACH program without further delay. <p><p>SS is a transition age individual with a learning disability. SS contacted CAP requesting assistance in navigating the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) process. SS completed 8 courses for child care assistant but wanted to complete the child care certification process and needed support and tutoring to complete that training. CAP negotiated a resolution with DVR and DVR agreed to sponsor the mandatory daycare training, exams and tutoring services required to ensure SS maintains employment. <p><p>DB, a person who is visually impaired, contacted CAP regarding concerns about access to services from the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) and the Division of Blind Services (DBS). CAP learned that both divisions were attempting to close their respective cases without providing the services DB was seeking in spite of her status as a Social Security recipient. Our advocacy resulted in DBS maintaining an open case and developing an Individual Plan Employment. DVR accepted an application for services, agreed to expedite the IPE and agreed to collaborate with DBS. <p><p>TP, an individual with a neurological disorder and who is quadriplegic from a gunshot wound to the head, requested assistance with a Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) referral and modifications to a vehicle. CAP staff completed the referral and advocated for DVR to provide the appropriate services. Disability Rights CAP intervention led to TP receiving an updated driving evaluation, lessons and vehicle recommendations to ensure the vehicle would be suitable for the necessary modifications. <p><p>RG, an individual with deafness, contacted Disability Rights Florida for assistance with his Division of Vocational Rehabilitation case. Specifically, RG requested an ASL interpreter for job intervi
Certification
Approved
Cherie HallI
Interim Executive Director
2018-12-31
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