RSA-227 for FY-2019: Submission #1084

Washington
9/30/2019
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Client Assistance Program
2531 Rainier Avenue South
{Empty}
Seattle
WA
98144
http://washingtoncap.org
(800) 544-2121
(888) 721-6072
Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Client Assistance Program
2531 Rainier Avenue South
{Empty}
Seattle
98144
{Empty}
capjerryj@gmail.com
http://washingtoncap.org
(800) 544-2121
(888) 721-6072
Additional Information
Jerry Johnsen
Jerry Johnsen
(206) 849-2939
{Empty}
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
1250
35
58
140
420
520
2423
B. Training Activities
69
73
. Presentation to general VR agency local units Topic: Role and purpose of the Client Assistance Program within both state VR systems to provide advocacy and address clients&rsquo; and remedies throughout their VR process. Purpose: To engage VR Counselors, VR support staff and VR Supervisors, throughout the state to build relationships, strengthen partnerships and promote open communication and transparency with the Client Assistance Program and to explain CAP&rsquo;s perspective to WIOA and Order of Selection. Description of Attendees: VR Counselors, VR Supervisors, and Vocational Rehabilitation Technicians. 12 presentations to units of VR staff for a total of 120 persons <p><p>Individual Training with VR staff regarding CAP role and services. Topic: Role and purpose of the Client Assistance Program within both state VR systems to provide advocacy and address clients&rsquo; rights and remedies throughout their VR process. Purpose: To engage VR staff by working with them one on one to understand Client Assistance Program role and function to improve customer service, build relationships and promote open communication and transparency with CAP. Explain CAP perspective on WIOA and Order of Selection. Description of Attendees: VR Counselors and BR Supervisors from General and Blind VR agencies. 28 individual sessions for a total of 28 persons <p><p>Training on CAP Rehabilitation Law/History, systemic issues in VR system and how to better serve customers. Topic: New Employee Orientation (Division of Vocational Rehabilitation) Purpose: Explain CAP role, responsibilities, function, and how-to best work with CAP to support customers. Enlighten VR staff to the mission, purpose and goals of VR legislation. Brief explanation of history of VR related laws, nationally and, Description of Attendees: New staff including VR counselors, Supervisors, and support staff from General and Tribal VR agencies 2 training sessions for a total of 48 persons <p><p>Presentation to General and Blind State Rehabilitation Councils Topic: Updates on CAP customer trends and systemic issues. Purpose: Educate council members on relevant systemic issues impacting the delivery of VR services and Order of Selection Description of attendees: Council members, representatives from community agencies and concerned citizens, and VR staff. 4 presentations to General Agency State Rehab Council (SRC) members 4 presentations to the Blind Agency State Rehabilitation Council (SRC) members 8 presentations for a total of 155 persons. <p><p>Presentations to State Independent Living Council (SILC) Topic: CAP&rsquo;s role in both policy and individual advocacy, Order of Selection, challenges around independent living (IL)services, and customer trends and systemic issues. Purpose: Provide CAP updates to the SILC, discuss IL challenges in the VR process, educate about WIOA and Order of Selection, and build relationships with new SILC members. Description of attendees: SILC
C. Agency Outreach
CAP continues to reach out to school districts and special education providers to help them, their transition youth, and families understand services under WIOA and changes related the implementation of Order of Selection. CAP continues to work with the Deaf-Blind Service Center and the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youth and Adults CAP continues to work with the Statewide Benefits Planning Network, a consortium of all certified Benefits Specialists in WA state. They work for a variety of programs, from Vocational Rehabilitation to Mental Health, and include the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance organizations funded by Social Security. This group assists customers who receive Social Security benefits and want to work. Many of their customers are not connected to a VR program. CAP reached out to provide information on OOS and how CAP could assist VR customers. <p><p>CAP is housed as tenant in a WorkSource Center located in one of the most diverse neighborhoods in the State of Washington. On a daily basis, CAP has opportunities to work with individuals who are referred from the WorkSource who are underserved individuals including many who are English Language Learners Washington CAP continues to educate our organization on the awareness of the cultural issues and cultural norms that discourage one from seeking assistance around disability support. This is an ongoing process. To this end, we reached out further to those communities that do not typically request assistance. We contacted and sent materials to over 15 institutions that service those communities, offering to speak with key leadership and stakeholders. These organizations included, but not limited to, the Horn of Africa, Asian Counseling and Referral Services, as well as El Centro de la Raza in addition to an expanded outreach to Washington Tribal communities. <p><p>A major unserved disability group is the homeless. Many live on the streets and are faced with many obstacles to overcome barriers to vocational rehabilitation services. CAP has experienced an increase of those living out of their cars, tents, and couch surfing. As a volunteer at our church run homeless shelter, I have become painfully aware of the number of persons with disabilities whom everyday seek work opportunities. Some are recipients of VR services but most do not have the time and patience to pursue VR services. The other substantial obstacle in outreach to those underserved groups is Order of Selection. It is a challenge to encourage persons to engage in the public VR process when your state agencies are in OOS and the bar to receive services is high. This most certainly has changed the way we do outreach. <p><p><p><p>
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
0
0
15000
2
0
<P><p>
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
<P><p>
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
17
105
122
0
16
B. Problem areas
19
84
68
29
30
40
4
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
21
50
29
0
22
0
122
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
40
40
30
3
0
0
9
0
0
0
0
0
<P><p>
E. Results achieved for individuals
40
3
10
12
19
24
14
0
0
0
<P><p>
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
4
15
27
65
11
122
B. Gender
60
62
122
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
7
7
4
35
3
54
12
0
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
6
6
0
0
0
9
8
0
10
4
1
1
7
5
2
1
0
1
3
2
33
2
0
4
2
2
10
0
0
2
0
0
1
0
122
E. Types of Individuals Served
40
28
80
2
10
0
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
1
CAP continues to work closely with both our General and Blind Agencies in reviewing proposed policies and rules as well as procedures affecting the delivery of services to customers. The CAP director serves on both the General Agency and Blind Agency&rsquo;s SRC as well as serving on the Policy Committee for both councils. <p><p>CAP works closely with our VR agencies to engage early in the policy development stage prior to becoming final form. <p><p>This year, CAP had several systemic issues in which it focused its attention. In late November 2018, the General Agency director announced major strategies for decreasing expenditures which included supervisors&rsquo; approval all Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRP), Community Based Assessments, job retention services, and Post-Secondary Educations services. In addition, all non-supported employment customers ready for job search were mandated to utilize WorkSource for 90 days before being referred to a CRP for placement services. <p><p>CAP made the following systemic concerns known to the director: Prior to announcing these sweeping changes, it is the obligation for the General Vocational Rehabilitation Agency (DVR) to consult with its key stakeholders and partners, i.e., CAP, the State Rehabilitation Council, the state Work Force System and other partners. The absence of this communication created panic and chaos for stakeholders, partners, staff, and customers, as they tried to interpret how these new directives would affect the delivery of VR services. <p><p>This directive was essentially a cost saving measure that compromised services for all customers with open cases. It created a chilling effect across the board. Staff changed their focus from providing quality services to focus on saving money. Customers felt the sting as the new directives took place. <p><p>Prior to this directive there was minimal engagement with the Work Source system. These partners were not prepared for these VR referrals. The Work Source partners also lacked training and understanding of disability related barriers, issues of accommodation, and sensitivity that are core standards for VR customers. <p><p>The &ldquo;ninety-day requirement&rdquo; also failed to view the VR customer as an individual, allow choice, and created and arbitrary timeline strictly to balance financial issues. CAP&rsquo;s position was made clear that if the agency did not have the resources to provide all needed services to customers, they needed to close all OOS categories until resources became available (because of external pressures the VR agency felt it not feasible to close all categories). CAP clearly stated, from administration, to field staff and to customers, that services were individual in nature and the services should not be compromised based on cost saving measures. We insisted on sound policy directives that gave customers and staff choices. CAP worked closely with DVR&rsquo;s SRC to ensure future policy dir
B. Litigation
0
0
0
<P><p>
Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-other nonprofit agency
Client Assistance Program
No
N/A
B. Staff Employed
Full Time CAP Director .33 Administrative Assistant <P><p>
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
LUCY<p>Lucy was a 45-year-old customer of the General State VR program (DVR). She came to CAP because she had been put on the state&rsquo;s wait list 2 MD. A month prior Lucy had an open DVR case in another region and was considered priority 1, most severely disabled (MSD). <p><p>CAP&rsquo;s initial concern was that Lucy&rsquo;s case was closed in the first place since she was just moving to a different part of the state (Had the case been left open, she would have continued being served as an open case, and avoided the consuming reapplication process.). <p><p>The fact that a new counselor in the different region of the state looked at the same information and made a different determination points to a major continuity issue with OOS category placement. The regional cultures in Washington State General VR create distinct interpretations of what determines functional loss barriers which determines whether a customer is served or waitlisted. <p><p>DVR recognizes this inconsistency exists and have been working to remedy the situation. However, the progress has been slow; first in creating clear direction and second, in putting a statewide training in place. <p><p>CAP sees two perspectives at work where determining function loss barriers: <p><p>One group adheres to the more conservative &ldquo;medical model&rdquo; which wants to have all barriers spelled out by a medical practitioner. The other group builds from the diagnosis and uses observations the customer reports and other relevant 3rd party information. <p><p>Common definitions around functional loss vary from region to region depending on the influence of leadership in that region. <p><p>In Lucy&rsquo;s case, when CAP spoke with the prior office that closed the case, they actually thought she was too severe to benefit and were considering a TWE. Cap has worked on several cases like this where the customer was considered too severe in prior cases but when reapplying was not determined MSD and put on OOS wait list. This inconsistency points to urgent need of training and making corrections in the way functional loss barriers are determined. <p><p>Systemic Issues Being Addressed 1.Training of all VR staff on what information can be used to determine functional barriers. 2.Creating common definitions from region to region. 3.Adjusting the functional loss tools to ensure we are appropriately capturing those persons who are most significantly disabled, especially those who have severe mental health issues. <p><p>DON<p>Don is a 25-year-old customer of our state general Vocational Rehabilitation program (DVR). His primary barriers to employment were based on behavioral health issues. Don&rsquo;s VR counselor had denied supporting his vocational goal of working with youth at risk because of an earlier psychological evaluation that identified concerns with his mental health stability. Don lobbied his counselor to get an updated psychological evaluation since it had been several
Certification
Approved
Jerry Johnsen
Director
2019-12-23
OMB Notice

OMB Control Number: 1820-0528, approved for use through 07/31/2023

According to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, no persons are required to respond to a collection of information unless such collection displays a valid OMB control number. Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 16 hours per response, including time for reviewing instructions, searching existing data sources, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and completing and reviewing the collection of information. The obligation to respond to this collection is required to obtain or retain a benefit (Section 13 of the Rehabilitation Act, as amended). Send comments regarding the burden estimate or any other aspect of this collection of information, including suggestions for reducing this burden, to U.S. Department of Education, Washington, D.C. 20202-4537 or email ICDocketMgr@ed.gov and reference the OMB Control Number 1820-0528. Note: Please do not return the completed form to this address.