RSA-227 for FY-2020: Submission #1162

New Hampshire
09/30/2020
General Information
Designated Agency Identification
Governor's Commission on Disability
54 Regional Drive, Suite 5
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Concord
NH
03301
603-271-2773
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1-800-852-3405
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Operating Agency (if different from Designated Agency)
Governor's Commission on Disability
54 Regional Drive, Suite 5
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Concord
03301
NH
Charles.Saia@gcd.nh.gov
603-271-2773
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1-800-852-3405
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Additional Information
Lorrie J. Ripley
Lorrie J. Ripley
603-271-2773
Lorrie.Ripley@gcd.nh.gov
Part I. Non-case Services
A. Information and Referral Services (I&R)
0
1
0
13
35
3
52
B. Training Activities
12
230
Trainings were offered as described in the narrative of this report. Training topics consisted of Title 1 of the ADA, employment accommodations, disability etiquette, and STABLE NH accounts. The audiences were varied and included people with disabilities, service providers from Area Agencies, community groups such as the Chamber of Commerce, healthcare workers (Elliot Hospital), the NH Recovery Friendly Workplace Council, and the NH Real Estate Board.

FFY20CAP Activities

Considering the global pandemic, multiple routine engagements and exhibitions were cancelled or postponed indefinitely. The NH CAP program has remained open for business during the entire pandemic. During the last year, the office also was required to physically move, and the program remained open and active. In collaboration with the GCD, CAP shifted gears and concentrated more on social media campaigns (as well as the GCD website) for information delivery via technology resulting in webinars and remote meetings. STABLE NH remains one of CAP’s top priorities as the ability to save money without losing means tested benefits removes a significant barrier to employment for many individuals with disabilities. CAP also continues to provide technical assistance relative to employment matters to both internal and external agencies and individuals. In 2020 CAP has strengthened its position with State government and continues its message as an ADA Title I resource.

Workforce Focus Group

CAP has continued to work with the GCD on the Workforce Focus Group (WFG), which was formed, at the request of Governor Sununu. This group is comprised of representatives of state agencies, advocate groups, GCD members, and consumers. The charge of the group is to examine challenges for individuals with disabilities to achieve and retain competitive, integrated employment across New Hampshire state government agencies. The WFG has Continued work on a draft report outlining challenges as well as model employer practices. The CAP & GCD have already had promising discussions with NH Division of Personnel directly related to Title 1 of the ADA. We anticipate a robust collaboration moving forward. It is anticipated that the final product will be presented to the Governor in the Spring of 2021.

Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) – STABLE NH

CAP provides support and is a major collaborator with the STABLE NH, which is NH’s ABLE Savings Program. CAP and the GCD Executive Director campaigned actively across the state to meet with key stakeholders such as Executive Directors of the ten Area Agencies that provide services to those families who experience developmental disabilities in a concerted effort to build relationships and promote public knowledge of STABLE NH accounts.

STABLE NH Council

CAP convenes and facilitates the STABLE NH Council comprised of a diverse, both geographically and in interest) group of volunteers to further STABLE NH education and promotion. The Council has also been asked to provide feedback to co-administrators around program issues and benefits. The Council has been formulating plans on ways to reach identified target audiences and meets regularly.





Social Media & Website

CAP works with the GCD staff to maintain a robust and effective social media and website audience. The social media committee strives to be a resource for the public and to promote STABLE NH accounts. CAP in its complimentary role at the GCD, acts as the primary administrator of the agency’s website and its ensuing messaging.

Legislative Committee

CAP serves on the internal legislative committee of the GCD and provides support to the GCD standing committee. CAP participates in the routine identification and tracking of proposed NH legislation which may impact those individuals with disabilities.


HB4 – Committee to Study the State’s System of Support for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities and Recommendations for Reforms and Improvements

The GCD was charged by enabling statute with examining the state’s system for developmental disabilities services and for providing recommendations for improvement. This mandate was prescribed a time limit of just about 3 months and required a significant amount of time and labor. CAP was asked to sit on the committee as a resource for employment matters as well as knowledge of the service delivery system at question. The GCD formed a committee which combined the talent and experience of internal and external stakeholders relative to the subject matter. This committee produced an 84-page report complete with recommendations regarding several targeted improvement areas.

Chamber of Commerce

The CAP continued a relationship with the local Chamber of Commerce.
This panel presentation discusses disability etiquette, service animals, reasonable accommodations, and architectural accessibility.

NH Real Estate Commission

CAP participated with the GCD in panel presentations to community groups such as the NH Real Estate Commission. A broad view of disability issues was presented including reasonable accommodations, service animals, architectural accessibility, and disability etiquette. This was a well-attended session and a great opportunity to collaborate with other state employees to bring a message to a different segment of NH.






Elliot Hospital

Elliot Hospital requested a lunch and learn session similar to the previous two descriptions. Again, CAP discussed workplace considerations, accommodations, and general issues relative to disability as a part of an interdisciplinary panel from the GCD.

Recovery Friendly Workplace Initiative

In collaboration with the GCD, CAP presented to the Recovery Friendly Advisory Council relative to Title 1 of the ADA and substance abuse. Given the pervasive nature of addiction and recovery issues, CAP strives to provide resources and share guidance with this initiative.

NH’s Recovery Friendly Workplace project “…promotes individual wellness for Granite Staters by empowering workplaces to provide support for people recovering from substance use disorder. The Recovery Friendly Workplace Initiative gives business owners the resources and support they need to foster a supportive environment that encourages the success of their employees in recovery.” The NH CAP & GCD provides technical assistance to educate around the intersection of the ADA and individuals in recovery from substance abuse disorders.

NEADA meetings
The GCD is the NH state affiliate of the Institute for Human Centered Design, the New England ADA Center (NEADA). As such, CAP attends biannual meetings with NEADA and remaining New England affiliates to discuss emerging practices, developing trends, and research matters.

Statewide Rehabilitation Council

CAP attends regular SRC meetings and policy committee meetings. The Executive Director of the GCD also participates in SRC meetings and activities and sat in the role of Chair of the SRC until 6/2020.

Statewide Independent Living Council (SILC) / State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL)

Given that the SILC Program Assistant is housed within the GCD, opportunity exists for a close relationship between the SILC and the CAP. CAP attends SILC meetings on a regular basis to provide updates on current activities and to support the SILC’s mission.

Rack cards to – Next Steps NH - 250
CAP collaborated with Next Steps NH to provide 250 rack cards for distribution to transition aged youth and their parents. Nest Steps NH provides coaching and profession al development to high schools to increase graduation rates for students with disabilities and students at high risk. The rack cards were designed to provide information about the CAP as well as STABLE NH accounts. The ability to save money for disability related expenses removes a significant barrier to employment.

Employment Leadership Awards-12th Annual

The Employment Leadership Awards are conducted annually as a means for Vocational Rehabilitation to recognize employers who have embraced inclusion in their employment practices. The GCD Executive Director speaks at this event annually and CAP attends as this is a premier event in NH in recognition of October being National Disability Employment Awareness month. The event is an excellent forum to network with both VR and businesses alike to promote the CAP and CAP services.


C. Agency Outreach
CAP collaborates with provider agencies state wide.
D. Information Disseminated To The Public By Your Agency
0
0
0
1068
0
0
-
E. Information Disseminated About Your Agency By External Media Coverage
none
Part II. Individual Case Services
A. Individuals served
0
15
15
6
0
B. Problem areas
14
11
10
1
0
6
0
0
C. Intervention Strategies for closed cases
5
6
3
0
0
1
15
D. Reasons for closing individuals' case files
3
4
0
1
0
4
0
1
1
0
1
0
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E. Results achieved for individuals
4
0
0
0
1
4
0
4
1
1
Individual closed her VR case.
Part III. Program Data
A. Age
0
1
5
6
3
15
B. Gender
8
7
15
C. Race/ethnicity of Individuals Served
0
0
0
0
0
11
0
4
D. Primary disabling condition of individuals served
1
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
0
1
0
0
2
0
0
0
0
0
3
4
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
0
0
0
0
0
0
15
E. Types of Individuals Served
0
0
11
0
0
4
Part IV. Systemic Activities and Litigation
A. Non-Litigation Systemic Activities
0
N/A
B. Litigation
0
0
0
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Part V. Agency Information
A. Designated Agency
External-other public agency
NH Governor's Commission on Disability
No
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B. Staff Employed
OMBUDSMAN Location:US:NH:CONCORD
Employment Type:Classified FT Perm w/BenCategory:

Description: State of New Hampshire Job Posting Governor's Commission on Disability Ombudsman

Summary:Under the direction and supervision of the Executive Director of the Governor's Commission on Disability (GCD), as the designated agency to conduct the Client Assistance Program (CAP), the successful candidate will be responsible to coordinate the provision of statewide information and referral, negotiation, mediation and advocacy services for individuals with disabilities seeking or receiving vocational services authorized under the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended (the Act).

Responsibilities:Maintains basic statutory and regulatory compliance with Section 112 of the Act, 34 CFR 361.70 and the Governor's Assurances submitted to the Rehabilitation Services Administration.Reviews complaints pertaining to the delivery of rehabilitation services provided under the Act. Exercises judgment and provides individual and/or systemic advocacy to resolve consumer complaints. Ensures that individuals with disabilities receive Rehabilitation Act funded services to which they are entitled.Researches and maintains information about laws and regulations pertaining to the Act in order to advise, assist, or represent individuals with disabilities who pursue administrative or legal remedies and to ensure the protection of their right to services authorized under the Act and under Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act, where appropriate.Supervises and trains staff who assist with the provision of services to individuals with disabilities in order to ensure that program policies and procedures are uniformly applied to all applicants for services.

Identifies, analyzes, and monitors problem areas in the delivery of rehabilitation services to individuals with disabilities. May meet with state agencies and other entities to articulate problem areas and to recommend policy changes or other methods of improving agency performance.Informs and advises individuals with disabilities of services available under the Act in order to increase awareness of and access to rehabilitation services authorized under the Act.Develops and implements policies and procedures in order to report to federal and state agencies the activities of and services provided by the Client Assistance Program.Conducts oneself with a cooperative and courteous demeanor. Adheres to the Executive Director's standards on attendance, quantity of work, quality of work, job knowledge, communications, dependability, initiative, safety and personal appearance.Prepares weekly reports to the Executive Director of the GCD including, but not limited to a summary of complaints, incidences, and work schedule for the following week, and provides annual, quarterly and other allied reports.Works with all members of the GCD and other state and federal programs within the GCD to assist in the fulfillment and compliance of the GCDs statutory responsibilities.At the request of the Executive Director, may participate on any committee affiliated with the GCD, as well as seminars, presentations,etc.Minimum Qualifications:Education: Masters degree from a recognized college or university with major study in law-related studies, nursing, public health,human services, education, behavioral sciences, social work, social sciences, rehabilitation counseling, public administration,gerontology, or a related field. Each additional year of approved formal education may be substituted for one year of required work experience.Experience: Four years experience: working as an advocate or representing clients in adversary hearing proceedings; conducting civil rights investigations; coordinating programs for the disabled, elderly, disadvantaged, and/or mentally ill; or related experience. OR Education: Bachelors degree from a recognized college or university with major study in law-related studies, nursing, public health,human services, education, behavioral sciences, social work, social sciences, rehabilitation counseling, public administration,gerontology, or a related field.Experience: Five years experience: working as an advocate or representing clients in adversary hearing proceedings; conducting civil rights investigations; coordinating programs for the disabled, elderly, disadvantaged, and/or mentally ill; or related experience.PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: Juris Doctorate or Masters Degree preferred
Employees may be required to pay an agency/union fee.In order to receive credit for post-secondary education, a copy of official transcripts with a seal and/or a signature MUST be included with this application.For further information please contact Charles Saia, Executive Director at (603) 271-2773.

The Executive Director of the Governor's Commission on Disability (GCD) also provides oversight of the CAP and participates in mediation and fair hearings as necessary when warranted. The GCD Business Administrator provides financial oversight of funds and reconciles monthly expenses to internal reports.

The Business Administrator also attends to monthly draw-downs of funds and reconciling said funds into the state system to cover CAP expenses.

Administrative support is also provided to the CAP by the Administrative Assistant by way of answering routine phone calls, assisting with mailings and conference preparation, and routine office business relative to CAP activities.
Part VI. Case Examples
Case Examples
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Certification
Approved
Charles J. Saia
Executive Director
2020-12-30
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