RSA-227 for FY-2018: Submission #1019

Pennsylvania
9/30/2018
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Center for Disability Law & Policy
1515 Market Street
Suite 1300
Philadelphia
PA
19102
(888) 745-2357
(888) 745-2357
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
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Additional Information
Stephen S. Pennington
Stephen S. Pennington
(215) 557-7112
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Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
362
75
0
12
442
335
1226
B. Training Activities
46
1506
<p>CAP visited several OVR offices in Pennsylvania during FY'18. In January of 2018, CAP staff visited with approximately 25 of the Allentown VR staff. We discussed and refreshed their knowledge of CAP's role in the VR process. We strongly emphasized our interest in assisting the VR counselor with any case they feel they could use some objective problem solving and informing them of some specifics regarding OVR policy and the law. In addition, CAP staff spent time visiting with the staff from Reading, York, Williamsport and the Philadelphia OVR/BVS District Offices. Our training also included visits to the Philadelphia County Center for Independent living (Liberty Resources) and the Camp Hill Center for Independent Living. It also gave us an opportunity to inform them of how our advocacy services can assist their consumers that are receiving services under any of their federally funded programs. We met with 15 of their staff/consumers.</p><p><p>We were invited to speak at a York OVR staff meeting. At lunch, we had an opportunity to talk informally with some counselors. At the staff meeting, CAP staff spoke generally about CAP, but focused primarily on the types of calls we get and some of the more common client issues that cause clients to be concerned with OVR services. Communication problems, such as miscommunication, lack of communication, mixed communication, confusing communication, etc. and questions about cost services when a plan has not been developed yet are examples of cases that we assist with as we help reconnect the client and counselor. The importance of forming and maintaining a good relationship with your client is paramount to a successful closure, which is the common goal we all share in this process. We discussed the three times in the process the counselor is required to inform their client of our services, at application, at the developing and signing of their IPE, and at closure/denial of services. We referred them to our website and active Facebook page and suggested they refer clients to our &ldquo;Guide to VR Services&rdquo; as this should help clients have a better understanding of the process which in turn should help the counselor work more effectively with their clients. We also spoke of our active role in systemic changes such as the college policy workgroup. A few OVR staff had questions and we also had a chance to speak privately with counselors who had specific client questions. Finally, we reiterated our commitment to being available to counselors as well who have questions about specific cases in which they could use some advice to further assist their clients. CAP staff also spoke with the OVR supervisor who runs their Consumer Advisory Committee.</p><p><p>CAP staff and an OVR Transition Supervisor visited Penn Air, in York. We met with the Human Resources Manager, and the Transition Consultant at Lincoln IU 12 to explain the services CAP provides to its clients.</p><p><p>In the last few months CAP has been wo
C. Agency Outreach
<p>CAP&rsquo;s commitment to unserved and underserved disability populations flourished in 2018. These populations included: deaf/hard of hearing, blind/visually impaired, epilepsy, autoimmune diseases, drug and alcohol, and HIV/AIDS. Some of our specific outreach efforts to these groups include the following connections. In FY 2018 one of our advocates focused on reaching out to organizations that work with individuals with some form of an autoimmune condition. A few of these are American Autoimmune Related Disease Association, AARDA; Lupus Foundation of PA; National Fibromyalgia Association; Myasthenia Gravis Foundation of America; Sjogren&rsquo;s Syndrome Foundation Inc.; and the National Graves&rsquo; Disease and Thyroid Foundation. CAP outreach materials were sent to these organizations in the hope that this underserved group will now have a chance to become aware of our advocacy services.</p><p><p>One of the underserved populations CAP outreached to was individuals with epilepsy. As we have focused a lot this year on transition, in connecting with some of these support groups, the CAP advocate learned that there are support resources for youth and young adults with epilepsy. There is an Epilepsy Youth Council which provides various support services. A successful transition requires determination, patience and a touch of creativity, this is true for any youth with a disability. Transition is an event not a process. The Youth Council advocates a Comprehensive Transition Plan and refers to it as BASIC. B- be prepared to make changes and repeat certain steps one must adapt to changes in health/personality A-assessments Obtain current social/educational assessments from schools, doctors, therapists, community partners S-set goals and write them into plans I-identify individuals who you can invite to assist you with your Transition Plan such as teachers, doctors, advocates. C-commit to success in education, employment and independence! A few of the epilepsy support groups we outreached to in FY'18 include: Bucks County Epilepsy Support Group, Delaware County Epilepsy Support Group, Lackawanna Epilepsy Support Group, Lancaster Epilepsy Support Group, Lehigh Epilepsy Support Group, Philadelphia Epilepsy Support Group and the Epilepsy Foundation of Central/Western PA. Each of these groups were contacted and provided CAP information. The Epilepsy Foundation stated they would look into adding a short blurb about our services on their website.</p><p><p>We will continue to connect and reconnect with these groups as we take pride in our commitment in spreading the word as there is always at least one more individual with a disability who could become more productive as a result of CAP advocacy. CAP's outreach to underserved/unserved disabilities is strong and steady. We will continue to be passionate about uncovering more such groups in addition to networking more with the individuals we educated, informed and assisted within these gr
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
4
0
26379
34
0
<P><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
<P><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
98
132
230
1
96
B. Problem areas
10
120
125
17
2
24
0
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
10
23
99
2
0
0
134
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
107
16
1
0
0
8
0
2
0
0
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
30
4
5
17
48
28
2
0
0
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
26
50
49
97
8
230
B. Gender
121
109
230
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
6
0
5
74
1
139
5
0
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
9
10
2
2
2
5
40
2
7
16
2
5
10
5
1
1
3
1
3
12
45
4
3
4
6
11
0
2
0
12
0
0
1
4
230
E. Types of Individuals Served
39
5
152
5
27
2
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
0
<p>CAP continued to address systemic issues with OVR, which are ongoing. No specific change has occured during the fiscal year with regard to CAP's systemic activities.</p><p>
B. Litigation
0
0
0
<p>none</p><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-other nonprofit agency
Center for Disability Law & Policy
No
not applicable
B. Staff Employed
<p>4 full-time professionals - 4 person years 2 part-time, 1 full-time equivalent 1 Director, 3 CAP Advocates, 2 part-time clerical</p><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
<p>CAP advocate Margaret McKenna: This case shows the importance of thinking &quot;outside the box&quot; and working together with the client valuing his pride and justifying his ability and capability of being productive. This case also reveals how the strong support of the counselor can have a positive role in vocational services. This gentleman is a very proud man who is trying his best to earn a living and be productive. He owns a farm which is borderline profitable. His employment goal is farmer. He contacted CAP after OVR had denied him a skid steer which was recommended by an Agribility evaluation he had done in an effort to determine what equipment could benefit him on the farm. Based on OVR's farm policy a skid steer is a piece of equipment that is excluded from equipment that OVR would be able to provide as per their policy. In addition to his farm this man also has an auto repair shop which is a bit more profitable than his farm right now. After various attempts to see how OVR would agree to buying a skid steer, in my efforts to advocate on his behalf, I spoke with client and counselor to see if perhaps an evaluation could be done to see what assistance/equipment would be recommended to assist him in being more profitable with his auto repair shop. My client agreed to amend his IPE and change his goal. His counselor liked this idea and provided him some choices of providers. An evaluation was done at his auto repair shop and there are pieces of equipment that are being recommended which OVR may provide which may also help him work better on his farm! Although OVR had not made a final decision regarding approval of equipment in this evaluation, there does definitely appear to be a much better chance of OVR providing these recommendations and of my client being more successful in this chosen field. In following up with the counselor last week he agrees this was a much more viable option in helping Michael be more productive and profitable still within his capabilities, abilities and interests. In sum, a bit of brainstorming and creative thinking Combined with a trusting client counselor relationship is the key to good advocacy.</p><p><p>This case has a couple different positive pieces which is what makes it interesting to me. First, this case was referred by a guidance counselor from a school district I had outreached to awhile ago as I had done a CAP training to the Transition Coordinating Council of which this school district is a part of in this particular county. It is worthwhile to note that this guidance counselor remembered about our services and had my contact information from a year or so ago and was glad to reconnect with me. She contacted me on behalf of the student as for a few reasons his mom was not very involved in this process. It is becoming more and more clear as I handle more transition cases that the student needs as many support persons in his corner as possible as there are many pieces to this process. It w
Certification
Approved
Stephen Pennington
C.E.O.
2018-12-31
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