Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Action Alert: Money Follows The Person

ACTION ALERT in bold white letters on a dark red background

The following advocacy alert comes from the Center for Public Representation:

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Call your Senators now to fund the MPF Program

Last night the House passed H.R. 3253, the Empowering Beneficiaries, Ensuring Access and Strengthening Accountability Act.  This bill funds the Money Follows the Person program through the Fiscal Year 2023. It also extends the HCBS spousal impoverishment protections through March 31, 2024. Thank you for your hard work in advocating to #FundMFP.


We now need the Senate to act! Join our national call-in day and ask your Senators to #FundMFP.  We have a Facebook event with talking points to make it easy for you to call and spread the word or instructions are below. Together we can get Congress to extend this critical program that has helped more than 80,000 people move back to the community!


To Call your Senators:


1. Call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 (Voice) or (202) 224-3091 (TTY) and ask to be connected to your senators. 


2. Repeat. You can use this easy tool to find your members of Congress.


Easy Call Script:


Hello, this is [Name]. I’m a resident of [Town, State].


I am calling to ask Senator [INSERT NAME] to fund the Money Follow the Person (MFP) program.


MFP has enabled over 90,000 older adults and people with disabilities living in institutions to transition back to their communities. MFP is fiscally responsible: it has improved the quality of life for thousands of individuals while saving states money. Congress passed stop-gap funding for the program in January 2019, but those funds will run out in September 2019.


I am asking [Senator’s Name] to cosponsor and support the EMPOWER Care Act S. 548 and H.R. 3253 passed by the House and reauthorize Money Follows the Person Program.


Thank you for taking my call!


[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address and zip code to ensure your call is tallied]


[Optional Add On]


Personal stories are the most effective form of advocacy. Talk about why Money Follows the Person is important for you or someone you know and love.


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Our U.S. Senators from New York are:

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
@SenGillibrand

Washington DC Office
478 Russell
Washington, DC 20510
Tel. (202) 224-4451
Fax (202) 228-0282

North Country Office
PO Box 273
Lowville, NY 13367
Tel. (315) 376-6118
Fax (315) 376-6118

Sen. Chuck Schumer
@SenSchumer

Washington DC Office
322 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: (202) 224-6542
Fax:  (202) 228-3027

Albany Office
Leo O'Brien Building, Room 420
Albany, NY 12207
Phone: (518) 431-4070
Fax:  (518) 431-4076

Friday, June 14, 2019

Weekly Disability Reading List

Closeup picture of a monthly calendar, focused on a single week

Links to three disability-related articles shared last week on NCCI social media. You can always visit NCCI on Facebook and Twitter at the following links:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ncciplattsburgh/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NCCIPlatts

New content is posted every day.

People With Disabilities Face Challenges Campaigning
Abagail Abrams, Time - June 12, 2019

This is an especially well-written story about the struggles and barriers encountered by people with disabilities running for office, and a new effort to help.

I’m Not Sorry If My Disability Makes You Uncomfortable
Anna Zivarts, Rooted In Rights - June 9, 2019

It’s one of the most insidious and exhausting ways we as disabled people tend to sabotage ourselves … by one way or another apologizing for our disabilities.

What Ali Stroker’s Historic Tony Win Means for Wheelchair Users Like Me
Judy Heumann, Hollywood Reporter - June 10, 2019

One of the early founders of the modern disability rights movement talks about why disability representation in media is so important.

Friday, June 7, 2019

Weekly Disability Reading List

Closeup picture of a monthly calendar, focused on a single week

Links to three disability-related articles shared last week on NCCI social media. You can always visit NCCI on Facebook and Twitter at the following links:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ncciplattsburgh/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NCCIPlatts

New content is posted every day.

Designing for accessibility: From Frida Kahlo’s corsets to Franklin Roosevelt’s leg braces
Eleanor Cummins, Popular Science - March 1, 2019

Popular Science Magazine takes a look at prosthetics and adaptive devices used by some of the most famous people with disabilities in history.

I’m a Disabled Teenager, and Social Media Is My Lifeline
Asaka Park, New York Times - June 5, 2019

With all the concern and disdain of social media going around … much of it justified … it’s also important to recognize how important and valuable it is for some of us, particularly people with disabilities.

Club for Adults With Disabilities Fosters Love, Inclusion
Yvonne Wenger, The Baltimore Sun - June 2, 2019

This club for people with disabilities has so many pros and cons that we could discuss it for a week. Is it a joyous thing to be simply appreciated? Or is it yet another segregated program that ignores the question of how “regular” clubs can be made accessible? And based on the tone and content of the article, there’s a thread of paternalism that seems to run through the whole project. It’s very interesting!

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Daring To Hope

By Allison Jonergin

Because of my health struggles, I know worthlessness, uselessness and emptiness. I know sorrow, frustration, loneliness and grief. I know the taste of desperation and the flood of fury.

Guest blogging with white 3 dimensional stick figure writing with a giant penI also know the power of a kind word, a helping hand, a second wind, or a song playing over the radio.

I know the power of someone choosing to employ empathy when one could choose the easier path of sympathy.

I know the power I yield inside to shield myself from feelings of worthlessness and to nourish feelings of resilience and grit.

I can succumb to feeling powerless; I can project my worst anxieties; I can expect the worst outcomes and allow myself to be convinced every day will be the same.

But hope inspires me to believe. I have faith in my ability to change my day, my world and my life with the choice to seek out happiness. When it is nowhere to be found, I choose to trust that it will manifest itself in my heart if I do the painstaking work of taking care of myself physically, mentally and emotionally. If I reach outside of myself, outstretch a hand to a stranger who could use a smile just as badly as I could, I can create a life worth living, loving and sharing with others.

When I allow myself to feel only pain, I am alone, no matter how many people care for me and insist on showing me so. Pain holds me prisoner, but I have the power to shake loose the door of my cell and walk out of it. The chains may remain shackled around my ankles, but mentally I can go anywhere and feel anything I desire if I trust and commit to doing the work every day, not just when I feel like feeling better.

The work looks different for each of us. I’ve found mine begins with respecting myself as well as my limits, which fluctuate throughout the day and the week. When I can trust that I’ll take care of myself first and foremost, I’m freed to love and care for others around me, feeling safe in the belief that when I’m tapped out, I’ll tap out. Until then, I focus my attention purposefully on the things I can do for myself so that I have more to give to others.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Weekly Disability Reading List

Closeup picture of a monthly calendar, focused on a single week

Links to three disability-related articles shared last week on NCCI social media. You can always visit NCCI on Facebook and Twitter at the following links:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ncciplattsburgh/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NCCIPlatts

New content is posted every day.

I’m obese. I want a healthy lifestyle. But it’s often inaccessible to disabled people like me.
Pasquale Toscano, Vox.com - May 27, 2019

Health and weight loss are extremely complicated for people with disabilities, because of inaccessibility, and the extra layers of shaming that obesity can attract.

“We Want Our Freedom,” Declare Disability Advocates to Dems
Ruth McCambridge, Non Profit Quarterly - May 22, 2019

ADAPT is making progress to pass the Disability Integration Act, aimed at making home care available to anyone who needs it and chooses it.

War is hell. Try doing it in a wheelchair.
James Reini, Public Radio International - May 28, 2019

An in-depth look at coping with a disability in the middle of a war zone.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

By The Numbers: NCCI Services October 1, 2018 - March 31, 2019

The graphics below show data on services provided by the North Country Center for Independence between October 1, 2018 and March 31, 2019. You can click on each graphic to see a larger, easier to read version.

People Served
How many people did NCCI serve? 312 people with disabilities. 72 other non-disabled. 16 families.


Disabilities of People Served
Disabilities of people served: 172 physical. 77 cognitive. 39 mental. 19 sensory.


Services Provided
How many people used each service? 266 information & referral. 172 personal assistance services. 99 advocacy. 76 benefits assistance. 24 accessibility assistance. 40 transportation assistance. 21 peer counseling. 20 housing assistance. 4 other services. xx assistive technology.

Friday, May 24, 2019

Weekly Disability Reading List

Closeup picture of a monthly calendar, focused on a single week

Links to three disability-related articles shared last week on NCCI social media. You can always visit NCCI on Facebook and Twitter at the following links:

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ncciplattsburgh/
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/NCCIPlatts

New content is posted every day.

My Disability Is Not a Burden—But to Convince Potential Dates, I First Have to Convince Myself
Esme Mazzeo, Glamour - May 16, 2019

Sometimes the most difficult ableism to overcome is in ourselves.

Why I will start including accessibility information in my restaurant reviews - The Washington Post
Tom Sietsema, Washington Post - May 10, 2019

Restaurant reviews … and all other types of business reviews … should always include marks for accessibility. It’s kind of incredible that they don’t already.

Follow the Money: The U.S. Budget and You | Autistic Self Advocacy Network
Autistic Self Advocacy Network

This guide to the US budgeting process is part of a series of policy and advocacy guides, most of them written in “plain language” for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.