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 Speaking out for people with
intellectual & developmental disabilities





 VOR

836 S. Arlington Hts Rd.  #351

Elk Grove Village, IL  60007








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Donate to VOR today that we may continue to provide a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.

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DOUBLE YOUR DONATION?

Many companies and employers match employee donations to non-profit organizations like VOR.

We now feature a quick and easy link on our Membership & Donation
pages so that you can see if your company participates.
















SAVE THE DATE!

VOR'S
ANNUAL MEETING & LEGISLATIVE INITIATIVE

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will be held at the

HYATT REGENCY CAPITOL HILL
in
WASHINGTON, D.C.

JUNE 8 - 13, 2018






















Volunteers Needed!
We are currently seeking two members
to join our
Marketing & Communications Committee.

Do you enjoy social media?
We are looking for people to help maintain our Facebook and Twitter accounts
and the VOR web site.

If interested, please email us at
info@vor.net















PRESS CONTACTS NEEDED!

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VOR's Marketing Committee is compiling a list of media contacts who are familiar with I/DD issues and understand the importance of ICF's, Sheltered Workshops, and other services that impact the lives of our family members.


If you know of any reporters or media outlets in your area, please send their name, the name of their organization, and contact information to us at info@vor.net






















WHAT'S HAPPENING IN YOUR STATE?
Share the news with us at 
info@vor.net
or call us toll-free at 877-399-4867

And of course, visit our website at:
www.vor.net
We are here for you.



















Membership Matters!

We are only as strong as our supporters

Join-Renew Blue

Please keep your membership current!



If you are unsure when your membership will expire, please write to
info@vor.net














Guardianship Resources

VOR understands the valuable role that guardians play in the emotional and physical well-being of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). We want to ensure that guardians, the majority of whom are family members or close friends of the person with I/DD, have all the information they need to make informed decisions about this vital part of the safety net. 

Attacks on guardianship have become more frequent, especially with the advent of funding to promote Supported Decision Making as a replacement for guardianship. For more information, see the links on the VOR Website:

http://vor.net/get-help/more-resources/item/guardianship

Many states have guardianship associations affiliated with the National Guardianship Association (NGA)


The NGA advocates for high quality standards in guardianship and certification of guardians and the protection of the rights of incapacitated adults. That said, as with any large advocacy organization, you may not agree with all their policy positions, but they are a good source of information and an avenue for family and friends who have taken on the responsibility of guardianship to make sure their perspective is represented in proposed policy changes.

The NGA lists affiliate organizations for 25 states:

www.guardianship.org/
state_affiliates.htm


If your state is not listed or you know of other local or state guardianship organizations, send VOR an email and we will add a link to our Website.











Free One-Year Digital Memberships for Direct Support Professionals


We want to show our appreciation to the people who provide the long-term care for our loved ones with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.


We are offering 100 free one-year digital subscriptions to VOR's weekly newsletter and Action Alerts. The subscriptions are available to Direct Service Professionals and Nursing, Medical, or Dental Staff at state-run or privately operated Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID).


Members are encouraged to share this offer to caregivers in their loved one's facilities. There will be a limit of five subscriptions per facility. Subscriptions will be active until January 1, 2019.


To apply, simply send an email to info@vor.net with the subject line Free Digital Subscription and include:


1. The name, address, telephone, and email address of the applicant

2. The name and address of the facility at which they are employed

3. The name of the VOR member who has referred them.










SAVE THE DATE!


VOR'S
ANNUAL MEETING & LEGISLATIVE INITIATIVE

Capitol-for-Forum-crop 3

will be held at the

HYATT REGENCY CAPITOL HILL
in
WASHINGTON, D.C.

JUNE 8 - 13, 2018









Support VOR While You Shop!


If you shop at Amazon, shop at AmazonSmile


AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support VOR every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com

you’ll find the exact same prices, selection and shopping experience as Amazon, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to VOR.


To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. Fill in the form and select "VOR - Elk Grove Village".


You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.












TO BECOME A MEMBER OF VOR

or to

RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP

Please click here:

Join-Renew Blue


















VOR's

Marketing Committee needs 2 new members


We need help with the web site and in maintaining our Twitter and Facebook Accounts


If you are interested in helping, please write to us at

info@vor.net























Press Contacts Needed!

presse-2


VOR's Marketing Committee is compiling a list of media contacts who are familiar with I/DD issues and understand the importance of ICF's, Sheltered Workshops, and other services that impact the lives of our family members.


If you know of any reporters or media outlets in your area, please send their name, the name of their organization, and contact information to us at info@vor.net


















Support VOR while you shop!


If you shop at Amazon, shop at AmazonSmile


AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support VOR every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same prices, selection and shopping experience as Amazon, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to VOR.


To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. Fill in the form and select "VOR - Elk Grove Village".


You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.



October 27, 2017

VOR Weekly News Update
News and views for VOR Advocates

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VOR is a national organization that advocates for high quality care and human rights for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities

VOR promises to empower you to make and protect quality of life choices for individuals
 with developmental 
disabilities

=============================

VOR and YOU

VOR Submits Comments to the HHS Draft Strategic Plan for FY 2018 - 2022:

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) submitted a request for pubic comments to a draft of its Strategic Plan for FY 2018 - 2022.


The Draft Plan never mentions ICF's/IID.

No specific mention is made of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, except as part of a larger cohort, "the elderly and people with disabilities".


VOR has submitted point-by-point comments to each of the goals outlined in the HHS plan.


TO READ VOR'S COMMENTS:

CLICK HERE


TO READ HHS' DRAFT STRATEGIC PLAN:

CLICK HERE


=============================

  

VOR’s 2017 Membership Drive:


Every Member - Add A Member

 

Let’s double our membership!

That may sound like a big ask, but it’s actually very easy...if you’ll help.

 

All we need is for every member to add one member.
 

For this year’s membership drive, let’s all reach out to friends who have a loved one with I/DD. Let them know what a great resource VOR can be for them.
 

Ask some of the people you know who know your commitment to the I/DD community and to VOR.


Tell them how we advocate nationally for the full range of residential and employment options for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.


Tell them how we provide a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves, and ask them to be a part of that voice.

Every Member, Add a Member.

http://www.vor.net/get-involved


Blue Act Now Button



  =============================

VOR’s 2017 Membership Drive:

  

A MEMBERSHIP LETTER FOR YOUR FAMILY GROUP


As part of our Fall Membership Drive, we have created a letter that we hope you will send out to the members of your family organization. The purpose of the letter is to show the other families in your group who advocate locally that VOR can help them advocate nationally and unite with families in other states with shared experiences.


Please ask your family group to print copies of this letter and include them in their mailings. You may include this with your newsletters, advocacy campaigns, or post it to your group's website. You may also consider including this letter with the "Thank You" letters that go out to members to after receiving donations to your group.


Download the Membership Letter here


Every Member, Add A Member!


  =============================

NATIONAL NEWS

1. Education Department Defends Rollback of Special Ed Guidance

By Michelle Diament, Disability Scoop, October 24, 2017

The U.S. Department of Education is insisting that its move to withdraw dozens of special education guidance documents will not compromise services for students with disabilities.


The agency said this week that all of the stricken guidance is no longer relevant.


On Friday, the Education Department said it had identified 72 guidance documents to rescind as part of a Trump administration effort “to alleviate unnecessary regulatory burdens.”


Continued


Click here for the List of Rescinded Guidance Documents


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2. Update: DeVos Weighs Changes to Special Ed Rule

The U.S. Department of Education is reportedly considering delaying or wiping out a rule designed to ensure that children from certain backgrounds aren’t unnecessarily placed in special education.


The agency is debating the future of a rule finalized late last year by the Obama administration in an effort to prevent overrepresentation of minorities in special education, according to Politico.


The Washington news outlet says it has obtained an unpublished draft of a Federal Register notice from the Education Department that would ask for comment on delaying the rule for two years and ultimately potentially changing, replacing or doing away with it altogether.


Continued


=============================

VOR’s 2017 Membership Drive:

Free One-Year Digital Memberships for Direct Support Professionals


We want to show our appreciation to the people who provide the long-term care for our loved ones with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.


We are offering 100 free one-year digital subscriptions to VOR's weekly newsletter and Action Alerts. The subscriptions are available to Direct Service Professionals and Nursing, Medical, or Dental Staff at state-run or privately operated Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID).


Members are encouraged to share this offer to caregivers in their loved one's facilities. There will be a limit of five subscriptions per facility. Subscriptions will be active until January 1, 2019.


To apply, simply send an email to info@vor.net

with the subject line Free Digital Subscription and include:


1. The name, address, telephone, and email address of the applicant

2. The name and address of the facility at which they are employed

3. The name of the VOR member who has referred them.


  =============================

STATE NEWS


3. ARIZONA - Arizona Training Program Seeks to Keep Doors Open

Despite an earlier announcement that the Arizona Training Program at Coolidge would have to shut its doors and transform the facility’s mission, a state official says that may no longer be the case.

Last year the Department of Economic Security announced that it would be forced to close the state-operated group homes for the developmentally disabled located at the facility south of Coolidge by June 2019 and close down the entire center in 2021.

The decision came about in light of updated federal regulations for home and community-based services. Among the newer regulations that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services stipulated was that group homes and intermediate care facilities could not be co-located.

At the time DES determined that the ATPC group homes could not be brought into compliance with the new rules. In addition, the department also found that intermediate care facilities were no longer viable.

At the time, the move would have displaced some 87 residents with severe intellectual or developmental disabilities. Today that number has dwindled to 83, with 63 of them housed in the intermediate care facilities. The other 20 reside at the group homes.

“There are people there who I’m concerned about their health as far as moving them out,” said state Rep. T.J. Shope, R-Coolidge.

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In an effort to avoid displacing those residents, the state will now seek a waiver from the federal government to keep both the group homes and intermediate care facilities open, DES Director Michael Trailor said.

For a number of residents at the facility, the center has been their home for almost their entire lives.


Continued


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DONATE 

Donate to VOR today that we may continue to provide a voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.

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Donations may also be sent by mail to
:
VOR 
836 S. Arlington Heights Road  #351
Elk Grove Village, IL  60007

=============================

4. OHIO - Should A Disability Affect Who Gets Organ Transplants?

by Rita Price, The Columbus Dispatch via Disability Scoop, October 25, 2017
As the parent of a child born with both Down syndrome and a heart defect, Jackie Ward knew from the moment of diagnosis that she’d have to become an advocate for her daughter.

But, Ward told a state legislative committee last week, “I had no idea that I would have to advocate to show the world that her life was worth living.”


The Shelby County resident and her husband, Brandon, brought 3-year-old Ellie to the Ohio Statehouse to share their experience of inquiring about a heart transplant and to urge passage of a bill that aims to make sure people cannot be kept off organ-transplant waiting lists in the state solely because of their disability.


At least six states have passed similar anti-discrimination legislation and two others have bills pending, said Courtney Hansen, of Dayton, an advocacy liaison with the Miami Valley Down Syndrome Association who also testified before the committee.


She worked with Republican Rep. Niraj Antani of Miamisburg to craft the Ohio legislation. It was introduced in August, some months after she learned about the issue during a Down syndrome event in Washington.


“It’s really hard to prove, because sometimes it doesn’t happen at the organ-transplant level,” Hansen said. “They might not even be referred to an organ-transplant center.”


Continued


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5. SOUTH CAROLINA - Richmond County Officers Train for New Disability Policy

By Georgiaree Godfrey, WSAV-TV, October 20, 2017

School leaders are hoping a new program will cut down on the number of students with special needs that are being arrested. Richland County is the first school district in the country to start something like this.

The Richland County Sheriff’s Department has been training its officers for the past year for a new disability policy. It changes how school resource officers interact with students and is aimed at decreasing arrests and increasing awareness.

SC Officer

The training involves identifying the disability, being aware of the discipline and previous traumatic experiences. The director of advocacy with SC ABLE explained how this policy will benefit both students and law enforcement. “This policy is designed to support students with disabilities making sure interactions with law enforcement are more positive and they’re able to learn and given a chance to address behaviors before being cuffed and taken away,” said Robbie Kopp.


Continued

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6. MASSACHUSETTS - DDS report faults provider and charges cover-up in near-fatal, group home food aspiration case

By Dave Kassel, The COFAR Blog, October 25, 2017

Update: The Essex County District Attorney’s Office confirmed on October 26 that they have opened a criminal investigation into this matter.


An investigation by the Department of Developmental Services of the near death of a developmentally disabled man who aspirated on a piece of cake in his group home concluded that seven employees of the private provider that operated the residence were at fault in the matter.


The scathing report, which is dated September 8, also stated that a high-level employee of the Beverly-based provider, Bass River, Inc., removed key records from the facility concerning the matter and instructed staff not to cooperate with the DDS investigation. The findings have reportedly led to a criminal investigation by the Essex County District Attorney’s Office.


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The report was released by the Disabled Persons Protection Commission, an independent agency, which investigates abuse and neglect of disabled individuals, and which had referred the case to DDS to investigate.


In August, we first reported that the staff of the group home had failed to react for nearly a week after the 29-year-old man, Yianni Baglaneas, reportedly aspirated on a piece of birthday cake in the residence on April 9. He was admitted to Addison Gilbert Hospital in Gloucester in critical condition on April 15, and spent 11 days on a ventilator and a week in the Intensive Care Unit at Mass. General Hospital.


Aspirating or inhaling food into the lungs is a particularly serious danger among people with intellectual disabilities.


Continued


=============================


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(EP)
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Click here to subscribe:
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=============================

7. Autism Benefit to Air on HBO

by Shaun Heasley, Disability Scoop, October 27, 2017

Some of the biggest names in comedy are coming together for a nationally-televised event, all to raise money for schools, programs and services for those on the spectrum.


Louis C.K., Stephen Colbert, Abbi Jacobson, Jordan Klepper, John Mulaney, John Oliver and Adam Sandler are among the talent lined up for “Night of Too Many Stars: America Unites for Autism Programs.”


The show featuring stand-up performances, sketches and short films is hosted by Jon Stewart and will air on HBO where the former “Daily Show” host has a deal.


Stewart has emceed the event, which previously aired on Comedy Central, since 2005.


Presented live from The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York, “Night of Too Many Stars” benefits the nonprofit NEXT for AUTISM, formerly known as New York Collaborates for Autism.

Over the years, the annual show has raised over $24 million for NEXT for AUTISM, which has developed a charter school to serve students with the developmental disorder in Harlem and created the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain at New York Presbyterian Hospital, among other initiatives.


“Night of Too Many Stars” will air Nov. 18 at 8 p.m. ET on HBO.


Continued

============================= 

 

volunteer_hands

Volunteers Needed!
We are currently seeking two members
to join our
Marketing & Communications Committee.

Do you enjoy social media?
We are looking for people to help maintain our Facebook and Twitter accounts
and the VOR web site.

If interested, please email us at
info@vor.net

CALENDAR EVENTS:


VOR Logo No By Line

SAVE THE DATE!

Capitol-for-Forum-crop 3
VOR'S
ANNUAL MEETING & LEGISLATIVE INITIATIVE
 
will be held at the

HYATT REGENCY
CAPITOL HILL
in
WASHINGTON, D.C.

JUNE 8 - 13, 2018
VOR Logo No By Line
=============================
If you have a conference or group event that you would like posted here, please write to info@vor.com with a description
of your event.


=============================


MEMBERSHIP MATTERS


There is Strength in Numbers. 
Keep VOR Strong!
 
The size of our membership base makes a noticeable difference to legislators, grant foundations, private donors - and to the advocacy organizations that share or oppose our views.

YOUR MEMBERSHIP COUNTS!


TO BECOME A MEMBER OF VOR

or to

RENEW YOUR MEMBERSHIP

Please click here:

Join-Renew Blue


=============================


Support VOR while you shop!


If you shop at Amazon, shop at AmazonSmile


AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support VOR every time you shop, at no cost to you. When you shop at smile.amazon.com, you’ll find the exact same prices, selection and shopping experience as Amazon, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to VOR.


To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. Fill in the form and select "VOR - Elk Grove Village".


You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.


=============================

WHAT'S HAPPENING IN YOUR STATE?
WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!

Share the news with us at 
info@vor.net

=============================


volunteer_hands

Volunteers Needed! Volunteers are needed for several committees and specific tasks. VOR relies on its members to perform many of its key responsibilities. Please join us, and help us to continue our mission.
 
Click Here to See How You Can Help


=============================


Please remember to "like" VOR on Facebook, and to follow us on Twitter. Every time you share our posts or re-tweet our tweets, you are helping VOR to reach a wider audience.

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VOR   836 S. Arlington Heights Rd. #351   Elk Grove Village, IL   60007 

Email: info@vor.net           Call toll free: 877-399-4867

     DONATE TO VOR                MAKE A DIFFERENCE




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VOR
836 S. Arlington Heights Rd.
#351
Elk Grove Village, Illinois 60007
US

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