RSA-227 for FY-2019: Submission #1080

Texas
9/30/2019
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Disability Rights Texas
2222 W Braker Ln
{Empty}
Austin
TX
78758
(800) 252-9108
(866) 362-2851
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Disability Rights Texas
2222 W Braker Ln
{Empty}
Austin
78758
{Empty}
mfaithfull@drtx.org
(800) 252-9108
(866) 362-2851
Additional Information
{Empty}
{Empty}
{Empty}
{Empty}
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
77
6
0
0
5
66
154
B. Training Activities
64
3018
CAP provided education and training sessions in various settings. The focus of the information varied depending on the audience. The topics included information about CAP, vocational rehabilitation, how to navigate through the vocational rehabilitation program, competitive integrated employment, individual rights, pre-employment transition services, transition services, disability rights, reasonable accommodations, supported decision making, assistive technology, informed choice and referenced the Ticket-to-Work Program. CAP also provided information regarding the Independent Living Program and centers, and on self-advocacy skills. <p><p>One of the purposes of the training was to make people aware of the CAP program, the benefits of the program, and how to access the program. Also, some of the trainings were focused on making individuals aware of the vocational rehabilitation program and its process, timeframes, and services. The information empowers, informs and educates individuals about their rights and how to access help in protecting their rights in various situations they may encounter. Lastly, this information provides vocational rehabilitation and independent living professionals with an understanding of CAP and its purpose. The trainings offer CAP resources that the VR and independent living professionals can refer their clients to when rights issues are encountered. <p><p>The attendees of the trainings varied greatly. CAP presented to persons with disabilities including transition students and young adults, and to persons attending resource events for persons with disabilities who may be in need of housing and other resources to maintain their independence. Presentations were also targeted to people with mental illness, intellectual disabilities, visual impairments and blindness, and those interested in employment. <p><p>
C. Agency Outreach
CAP has continued to focus attention on unserved and underserved groups, including transition-age students and have continued to work with other teams at DRTx including the Institutional Rights and Civil Liberties team which works with individuals in institutions and hospitals who are interested in discharging to the community. Additionally, CAP works with the Education team and the Housing, Transportation, Disaster team which represent individuals who needed assistance going to work and either needed referrals to TWS-VRS or help navigating TWS-VRS or the IL program. Also, CAP has continued to work and attend meetings to improve services to students with disabilities in Foster Care. We have worked with the Foster Care team to improve services to transition-age youth who are in the foster care system, by meeting with VR, ILC&rsquo;s, Texas Education Agency, Texas Workforce Commission, and the Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC). CAP has also focused outreach to teachers and counselors at a number of school districts and attended several transition fairs. Many of these events were targeted to Hispanic youth and their families. <p><p>CAP focused a number of outreach events to persons with vision loss and blindness, reaching a large number of individuals through outreach at fairs, speaking at events and conducting webinars. <p><p>Lastly, CAP also focused outreach to professionals who work with people with disabilities. Our efforts focused on staff at state agencies, including the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, Education Service Centers, and TWS-VRS. <p><p>
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
30
1
13
14021
16
4
Our Facebook followers grew to 9,583 - a 38 percent increase. We posted 180 times on Facebook, reaching 912,677 people. Our engagement rate on Facebook grew by seven percent. Average engagement rate for Facebook is 3.9 percent and anything over one percent engagement rate is considered good. This year we were able to collect $6,400 in Facebook donations. Out top posts were E-slate voting machine issues and back to school videos <p><p>Our Twitter follower increased to 2,027 - an 18 percent increase. We tweeted 187 times, reaching 145,505 people. our engagement rate was one percent. An average engagement rate of .09 percent to .33 percent is considered high for Twitter. Out top tweets were black history and disability, voting hotline and special education report by district. <p><p>Our Instagram followers grew to 731 - a 170 percent increase. We posted 91 times. <p><p>We sent out seven newsletters/special edition mailings reaching 11,598 people. our open rate average was 39 percent, which is higher than the 15 percent industry average. Our click through average was 13 percent. The average click through industry rate is seven percent. We gained 416 new subscribers. <p><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
Our media coverage top sources were the Dallas Morning News, Disability Scoop (national online), the Houston Chronicle, Houston Public Media, KVUE-TV Austin, the San Antonio Express-News and several smaller city news papers such as the Brownsville Herald and the Eagle Pass Journal. We placed 187 articles, reaching 409 million people. Our advertising value is $378 million. <P><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
133
144
277
10
124
B. Problem areas
3
50
131
44
0
45
13
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
23
43
89
3
0
4
162
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
82
14
3
4
1
31
0
5
20
1
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
27
15
1
0
51
33
21
13
0
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
11
39
80
123
24
277
B. Gender
143
134
277
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
55
4
9
92
0
111
6
0
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
3
10
1
12
2
5
23
4
26
6
0
12
10
7
3
5
1
1
6
18
60
2
2
5
24
17
0
0
0
10
0
2
0
0
277
E. Types of Individuals Served
54
0
197
18
10
0
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
6
CAP addressed several issues with Texas Workforce Solutions Vocational Rehabilitation Services (TWS-VRS) during the year of a systemic nature. The following is a summary of those activities. Obtaining records from providers: Clients who requested a copy of their file from Community Rehabilitation providers, specifically job placement providers were informed that they could not have their file. CAP addressed this with TWS-VRS management who agreed clients should be able to obtain a copy of their file. A policy was developed for the Standards for Provider Manual which instructs providers to provide a client a copy of the file, if requested. This policy change allows clients to obtain a copy of their file from a provider if they make that request. Two computer screens on counselor desks: CAP noticed many TWS-VRS counselors in multiple offices, now have two monitors on their desk. The screens were positioned so that clients could not see the TWS-VRS counselor who typically sits behind the desk. This negatively affects the client/counselor relationship and communication with the client. CAP asked the counselors to reposition the monitors when meeting with their client. CAP brought this issue to Austin Management who agreed to look at other options for positioning the monitors so that counselors can see their clients across the desk. In the meantime, counselors have been asked to move the monitors out of the way when meeting with clients. This change in practice will allow the counselors and clients to establish and maintain a good rapport with each other as they work together to reach the client&rsquo;s vocational goals. <p><p>Counselors who have specialized knowledge in Head injury: CAP has advocated that TWS-VRS have counselors on staff who are specialized and knowledgeable of head injury and spinal cord injury. Although TWS-VRS did not initially agree to include this disability group as a priority, TWS-VRS has made changes to the Post-Acute Brain Injury (PABI) program to include TBI/and spinal cord injury specialists to work with the program clients. These specialists are receiving training on a monthly basis. Having a counselor specializing in head injury and spinal cord injury will result in more timely and better quality services because the counselors are knowledgeable and skilled in serving the unique needs of a person with these disabilities. <p><p>Work Experience/Internships for all clients: CAP worked with a client, who had a master&rsquo;s degree but had not worked in nearly 10 years. The client desired an internship to gain work experience for her resume. When we discussed this option with TWS-VRS, they noted that the policy on supporting internships was basically for transition-age students, not every client. While TWS-VRS in Austin agreed that they could provide the services to develop and support an internship, they acknowledged that the current policy does not clearly indicate whether a counselor can provide this service
B. Litigation
0
0
0
CAP did not represent anyone in litigation during this year. There is no ongoing or resolved cases with litigation to report. <P><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-Protection and Advocacy agency
Disability Rights Texas
No
N/A
B. Staff Employed
Full-time equivalent person years - 9.51 Part-time: 0 Vacant: 1 <P><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
Case Example 1: Our client is a 64 year old male, who worked as a radiologist and experienced a stroke. His medical treatment included a doctor&rsquo;s recommendation for residential Post-Acute Brain Injury (PABI) services. TWS-VRS denied the services for various reasons, stating the client was not ready for employment, the client was not released for employment, and client required assistance with activities of daily living. His medical specialists recommended inpatient PABI services to allow him to be able to return to employment, although not to the same job he held at time his of stroke. TWS-VRS denied the request for PABI services. Client called CAP. CAP advocated that the client did not need to be released for employment or ready for employment in order to receive PABI services. CAP recommended TWS-VRS, the client, and CAP propose questions to the medical team to help clarify the client&rsquo;s employment potential. This was completed as well as a meeting to review the proposed questions. During this time, the client continued to attend outpatient services and was showing improvement. Unfortunately, the TWS-VRS counselor continued to deny services for the same reasons already noted. CAP communicated with the supervisor, manager and the Regional Office in an effort to obtain agreement and approval for the PABI treatment. CAP requested Regional Office involvement, noting a systemic issue in how PABI requests are reviewed and the barriers the current policy creates to receiving services. TWS-VRS had determined inpatient PABI services had not been successful for other clients in the past and as a result, the agency was reviewing policies and procedures for approving this service. CAP provided a timeline of how this case was handled (which took over a year) and the ineffective process for staffing the case. The Regional Office agreed, the service was approved and the client received inpatient PABI services. <p><p>Case Example 2: Our client is a 20 year old male who has Cerebral Palsy, utilizes a wheelchair for mobility, and also has learning disabilities that impact his ability to read and write. He is a SSI recipient, attends college and receives accommodation for taking notes in class. He received scholarships and financial assistance to pay for the first three semesters of college. Then he asked for assistance from VR for the fourth semester. Initially, TWS-VRS agreed to assist with tuition and then denied the tuition assistance. Client called CAP. Subsequently, TWS-VRS agreed to assist with tuition. Client was also paying a neighbor to transport him to and from school. TWS-VRS was not assisting with transportation, and when our client asked for assistance with transportation, the counselors suggested the client attend a school closer to home. Transportation to get to the other college required a mile walk to a public bus stop. TWS-VRS had supported client to receive 20 hours of drivers training, and an additional 20 hours was requested. T
Certification
Approved
Mary Faithfull
Executive Director
2019-12-19
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