RSA-227 for FY-2018: Submission #1004

Kansas
9/30/2018
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Disability Rights Center of Kansas
214 SW 6th Ave, Suite 100
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Topeka
KS
66603
http://drckansas.org
(877) 776-1541
(877) 335-3725
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
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Additional Information
Rocky Nichols
Rocky Nichols
(785) 273-9661
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Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
B. Training Activities
327
7829
<p>a) In FY2018 we facilitated numerous trainings for youth with disabilities about transitioning out of high school, post-secondary and employment accommodations, and available resources such as Vocational Rehabilitation.</p><p><p>b) The purpose of the trainings were to help prepare students with disabilities for a successful transition out of high school.</p><p><p>c) Attendees include high school students with a variety of disabilities and their supports as well as school staff members.</p><p><p>The CAP presented a three-hour workshop for transition age (16-21) students with disabilities from Junction City High School. This interactive workshop was developed to educate and empower students to become self-advocates. The first part of the workshop was a warm up and discussion about what self-advocacy is and how they are already self-advocates in different aspects of their lives. The second part was about self-advocacy in IEP meetings and speaking up for their transition goals. We used the questions asked in our iTransition app to start the conversation about their own hopes and dreams. VR services are a critical part of transition from high school to adult life. Therefore, how to navigate VR services and how to advocate for effective services, like an IPE with VR, were a critical part of the presentation. The third part of the presentation was about self-advocacy in employment and daily life activities. Even this self-advocacy helps with advocacy with VR, because of VR&rsquo;s engagement and importance with employment. Participants also learned about the CAP and how it can help them with advocacy and resolution of issues involving services funded by Rehabilitation Act, like VR.</p><p>
C. Agency Outreach
<p>DRC focuses on outreach efforts to previously un-served or underserved individuals. DRC identifies un and underserved populations and proactively works to include those populations in future outreaches. One underserved population that DRC focused it outreach on in FFY 2018 were youth with disabilities. Unfortunately, youth with disabilities are often over looked by other advocates and disability providers when providing training and resources. DRC has identified this as a critical underserved population. DRC offered education and information at 18 events specifically for youth with disabilities and their support systems. These events included resource fairs, Disability Mentoring Days, collaborations with the Kansas Youth Empowerment Academy, high school special education classes, and employment panels.</p><p><p>Because of our outreach efforts, youth with disabilities have reported feeling more empowered so that they can now speak up in their IEP meetings about what THEY want, and not just want the professional members of the IEP team say they want for them. They students have also better learned how to access valuable services such as VR.</p><p>
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
18
29
5
9
37
0
<P><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
<p>Radio/TV Coverage DRC Staff was quoted on 18 TV or Radio Reports 2. Newspapers/Magazines/Journals DRC was interviewed or quoted in the following radio and newspapers (for a total of 29 times throughout the year); Topeka Capital Journal (12); KCUR (9); Kansas Public Radio (4); Wichita Eagle (2); KC Star (2) 3. PSAs/Videos DRC has 5 video flyers about persons with disabilities rights on their website. 4. Publications/Booklets/brochures Agency brochures on several disability topics and fact sheets on a specific issue.</p><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
8
45
53
0
13
B. Problem areas
4
15
30
1
0
2
0
2
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
40
0
0
0
1
0
41
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
11
11
8
0
0
6
0
0
4
1
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
7
2
0
1
3
18
0
5
0
5
<p>No response from clients</p><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
3
8
10
29
3
53
B. Gender
23
30
53
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
4
0
0
5
0
43
0
1
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
0
5
0
0
1
4
1
0
1
0
0
0
2
23
0
0
4
2
5
0
1
0
0
0
1
0
0
53
E. Types of Individuals Served
24
0
29
0
1
0
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
1
<p>DRC Kansas was a founding member of the Employment Systems Change (ESC) Coalition, which was established to examine the obstacles and barriers limiting Kansans with disabilities from obtaining competitive, integrated employment.</p><p><p>The ESC Coalition conducted an extensive cross-disability study through multiple methods.</p><p><p>Numerous statewide focus groups were held with people with disabilities, parents and service providers. These focus groups obtained important input regarding the barriers and opportunities to improve competitive, integrated employment in Kansas. In total, 16 focus groups were held across Kansas in seven cities using a research-based method of facilitated engagement, in conjunction with the University of Kansas. Over 320 people attended these focus groups.</p><p><p>In addition to the town halls, we conducted the most extensive online survey of its kind to obtain input and data from Kansans with disabilities, parents, families, guardians, state employees and employees of disability service providers. This survey was completed by nearly 1,700 Kansans.</p><p><p>The ESC Coalition also established mentor states to help educate Kansas about the successes experienced in other states. The mentor states were Iowa, Oklahoma, Delaware, New Hampshire and Washington state. Idea and leadership exchanges occurred with these mentor states in order to generate ideas to improve employment outcomes for Kansans with disabilities.</p><p><p>Finally, an extensive report with specific recommendations was made by the ESC Coalition to improve employment outcomes for Kansans with disabilities, especially regarding competitive, integrated employment was issued.</p><p><p>The results of the ESC Coalition&rsquo;s findings were shocking.</p><p><p>What we found is that the disability community, and particularly individuals with disabilities, say that most of the required standards under vocational rehabilitation or post-secondary transition are simply not happening.</p><p><p>There are significant myths about working and maintaining one&rsquo;s disability benefits. As one example, only 4.2% of individuals with a disability on SSI knew how much they could make and still receive at least some part of their SSI disability check. In fact, 76.4% of SSI recipients wrongly believe they will &ldquo;never come out ahead by working&rdquo; because &ldquo;for every $1 I earn, my SSI disability check will be reduced by $1&rdquo; or they believe they will lose their entire check if they work at all. Both of these concepts are not only completely false, they are scaring individuals with disabilities away from seeking integrated competitive wage jobs. In fact, 64.6% of individuals with a disability according to this survey reported that they are not currently working.</p><p><p>A staggering 65.4% of all respondents, including those who are employees of service providers and state employees, were unaware of the requirements under the Employment First law passed in 2011 that s
B. Litigation
0
0
0
<p>There were no litigation activities in FFY 2018.</p><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Disability Rights Center of KS
No
N/A
B. Staff Employed
<p><u>Type of positionFTE% yr filledPerson-years</u></p><p><p>Executive Director 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Deputy Director - Administrative Division 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Deputy Director - Legal Division 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Director of Policy &amp; Outreach 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Case Attorneys 6 81% 4.88</p><p><p>Case Advocates 7 70% 4.87</p><p><p>Office Assistant 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Administrative Assistant 1 100% 1</p><p><p>Communications &amp; Outreach Director 1 100% 1</p><p><p><u>Explanation of Duties for all Positions</u>:</p><p><p>Executive Director - Overall leader and director of the agency. Administrative head of the agency. Employs staff (hires/fires). Ensures accountability, effectiveness and efficiency of agency&rsquo;s programs and services.</p><p><p>Deputy Director - Administrative Division - Responsible for accounting, bookkeeping, accounts receivable &amp; payable, building and lease issues, human resources, etc. Supervises the Office Assistant and Communications &amp; Outreach Director.</p><p><p>Deputy Director - Legal Division - Responsible for legal work product of the agency. Supervises the staff attorneys and advocates. Carries an active caseload. Prosecutes cases.</p><p><p>Director of Policy &amp; Outreach - Responsible for performance of work directly relating to the management policies or general business operations of DRC or its customers.</p><p><p>Case Attorneys - Provide legal representation.</p><p><p>Case Advocates - Provide advocacy representation and case advocacy.</p><p><p>Office Assistant - Answers phones, does office and administrative tasks, etc.</p><p><p>Administrative Assistant - Provides administrative support to the legal division and assists with general administrative tasks for the entire agency.</p><p><p>Communications &amp; Outreach Director - manages the tasks associated with outreach, communications/public relations, marketing/publications, and certain administrative office functions of the agency.</p><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
<p>Shawnee County: RH is a 48-year-old female with Kienbock&rsquo;s Disease and Lupus. She is a recipient of Vocational Rehabilitation services. RH&rsquo;s doctor recommended she begin water therapy to assist with her rehabilitation, improving her ability to work. After placing a request with her VR counselor to have VR cover the water therapy, she did not get a timely response from her counselor. RH contacted DRC for assistance and a DRC Advocate contacted the regional VR Administrator on her behalf. Because of DRC advocacy, RH&rsquo;s water therapy was approved and she was paired with an employment specialist to help her identify potential employment opportunities.</p><p><p>Johnson County: AP is a 34-year-old male and has a hearing impairment. He had been receiving Vocational Rehabilitation services for six months when he was notified that his VR counselor had quit. Despite repeated attempts to have someone from VR contact him, AP received no communication from anyone at VR for almost a year. AP was at the end of his rope. He finally reached out to DRC assistance. A DRC advocate contacted the VR regional administrator to report the issue and reestablish communication. Within the week AP was assigned a new counselor and he was back on track to obtain his employment goal as an auto mechanic.</p><p>
Certification
Approved
Rocky Nichols
Executive Director
2018-12-21
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