vody/> RCM - Revitalizing Community Membership: Empowering Independence: 2022

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

‘People will die waiting’: America’s system for the disabled is nearing collapse



Providers for intellectually and developmentally disabled struggle to recruit and retain staff amid soaring inflation, pandemic burnout.

Private agencies that provide services for the intellectually and developmentally disabled have long warned that, without fresh state and federal funding, they would be unable to provide housing and staff support to the growing number of Americans who need care.

Over the last 12 months, the Covid-19 pandemic’s lingering effects and once-in-a-generation inflation have turned dire predictions into sobering truths, and agency directors, who for years hobbled along on shoestring budgets, have done in 2022 what not long ago would have been unthinkable: closed their doors.

To read more on this story, click here: ‘People will die waiting’: America’s system for the disabled is nearing collapse


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Lyft Argues that it’s Not a Transportation Company and Has ‘No Obligations’ To Provide Wheelchair Access



Disability rights groups battle Lyft for wheelchair accessible vehicles — again

Lyft officials said the company is exempt from the Americans with Disabilities Act and doesn’t have to cater to people with nonfolding wheelchairs.

In 2018, Ansel Lurio found himself trapped in a snowstorm after leaving a dentist appointment in Westchester County, New York. Lurio usually rode home in his motorized wheelchair, but this time the snow made it impossible. He said the buses weren’t running and there were no paratransit vans around, so he turned to Lyft.

To read more on this story, click here: Lyft Argues that it’s Not a Transportation Company and Has ‘No Obligations’ To Provide Wheelchair Access


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The LEAD Center Will Host a Webinar on Direct Support Professional Careers for People with Disabilities



 

The LEAD Center will host a Webinar on Direct Support Professional Careers for People with Disabilities on Wednesday, August 31, 2:30-4:00 P.M. ET. 

Register to learn about our innovative DSP Academy that trains people with disabilities to work as DSPs. RCM of Washington Chief Executive Officer Amy Brooks and Chief Innovation Officer Susan Brooks will describe RCM’s approach to training and employment placement. Two DSP Academy graduates, Carlos Hilton Zacarias and Tinesha Gray, will share their experiences participating in the training, applying their skills as DSPs, and excelling in a job that is inclusive and tailored to their abilities.

To register, click here, then click on the “Respond” button : https://www.addevent.com/event/Kn14423854

To launch meeting, click here: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84508363845?pwd=SWhQUitTVWl4VTZEaFhySnliYjJmdz09#success



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DISCLOSING A DISABILITY BEFORE AN ACCOMMODATION IS NEEDED



Can an employee later request an accommodation if they didn't when they first disclosed their disability? Yes! Read “Disclosing a Disability Before an Accommodation is Needed”

In our experience at the Job Accommodation Network (JAN), most individuals disclose their disabilities to their employers when they need an accommodation. However, there are other reasons an individual might disclose a disability to an employer such as affirmative action hiring, explaining an unusual circumstance, or just personal preference and comfort in bringing their whole selves to work. One of the questions we often get from individuals who have disclosed without needing an accommodation is what happens if later they do need an accommodation? Are employers on notice and is it then up to them to recognize that an accommodation is needed?

To read more on this story, click here: DISCLOSING A DISABILITY BEFORE AN ACCOMMODATION IS NEEDED



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Selma Blair Is Helping Redefine Makeup Design in Her New Job as Creative Director of Guide Beauty



 

"I’ve seen what beauty can do for an emotional spirit and sometimes that can be everything,” says Selma Blair over Zoom. “There’s many other facets to show yourself besides makeup but it can be an amazing tool of expression or confidence or armor—or, for me, character. Mood is no small thing.” Blair, who has openly shared her diagnosis and struggles with multiple sclerosis—including in a 2021 documentary Introducing, Selma Blair and her recent memoir, Mean Baby—is sitting next to Terri Bryant, a makeup artist and the founder of Guide Beauty. Bryant, who has Parkinson’s disease, launched the ergonomic makeup line in 2020 with dexterity and fine motor challenges top of mind. Today, Blair has been announced as Chief Creative Officer of Guide Beauty. “The products are a game changer,” says Blair. The line is designed with curves and rings that make gripping the handles secure, graceful, and “like an extension of my hand,” Blair explains.

To read more on this story, click here: Selma Blair Is Helping Redefine Makeup Design in Her New Job as Creative Director of Guide Beauty


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Monday, August 22, 2022

How to talk about disability sensitively and avoid ableist tropes



Disability can be difficult to talk about sensitively because of how embedded ableism is in our language, biases and perceptions of disability.

Conversations about disability are slowly increasing, especially when it comes to ableist language and how disabled people are represented in the media.

Disability advocate Talila A. Lewis' working definition of ableism is a "system that places value on people's bodies and minds based on societally constructed ideas of normalcy, intelligence and excellence."

To read more on this story, click here: How to talk about disability sensitively and avoid ableist tropes


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Beyoncé Changing Lyrics Over Disability Concerns



Thank you Beyonce! People are listening and learning!

Little more than a month after Lizzo agreed to change her song lyrics after facing backlash from people with disabilities, another major star says she will do the same.

Beyoncé will alter the language in her song “Heated” days after it was released as part of her new album “Renaissance.”

The track contained references to “spaz” and “spazzin,” terms that derive from “spastic” and are often used as slurs toward people with disabilities, particularly in the United Kingdom.

To read more on this story, click here: Beyoncé Changing Lyrics Over Disability Concerns





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New Push Underway To Train Doctors, Dentists On Developmental Disabilities



Groups representing the nation’s doctors and dentists are committing to better prepare students in their fields to treat those with intellectual and developmental disabilities in a move that could lead to major improvements in care for people in this population.

The presidents of the American Medical Association and the American Dental Association said that they would work to expand disability training for medical and dental students during an appearance earlier this summer at the American Academy of Developmental Medicine & Dentistry’s One Voice Conference in Orlando, Fla.

To read more on this story, click here: New Push Underway To Train Doctors, Dentists On Developmental Disabilities


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Monkeypox, What You Need To Know



Sharing from Bread for the City:

There has been a lot of conversation surrounding what monkeypox is and is not.

Bread for the City's Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Randi Abramson breaks down what you need to know about it and how to protect yourself in this fact sheet:




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Tuesday, July 26, 2022

RCM is Excited to be Part of the Bridging Aging and Disability Community of Practice



RCM is excited to be part of the Bridging Aging and Disability Community of Practice. A project of national significance and DC was one of 5 states chosen to participate!







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Disability Pride Month: White House Office of Public Engagement Will Host Weekly Zoom Sessions



In recognition of July's designation as Disability Pride Month, the White House Office of Public Engagement will host weekly meetings with leaders from across the Administration about efforts to ensure access, inclusion, and equity for people with disabilities. The next Zoom sessions take place 

• Thursday, July 21, 2 pm

• Thursday, July 28, 2 pm

Register Here, Full Link:   https://pitc.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_RudJxj1NRumTQb02gT5dew?fbclid=IwAR24qWo6Xus3_RREtIhS-nx3V4v0KuWHU5LB1_U2zKysnPslPMjH-34obI4


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Monday, June 27, 2022

Direct Support Professionals Survey June 2022



Providing Direct Support during the COVID-19 Pandemic 

Direct Support Professionals Survey June 2022. 

This survey is being conducted by the National Alliance of Direct Support Professionals (NADSP) in partnership with the Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota. 

To take survey, click HERE



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Monday, June 20, 2022

D.C. AG Sues Housing Authority, Citing ‘Egregious Pattern Of Discrimination’ Against Residents With Disabilities



Many District residents with disabilities living in public housing have had to wait years, or even more than a decade, for accommodations from the DC Housing Authority, D.C. Attorney General Karl Racine alleges in a lawsuit filed Thursday. Some 250 D.C. public housing tenants have been approved for transfer to accessible apartments, according to the suit, but are languishing on a waiting list, living in units that don’t meet their needs, and with no other options for housing.

To read more on this story, click here: D.C. AG Sues Housing Authority, Citing ‘Egregious Pattern Of Discrimination’ Against Residents With Disabilities


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Monday, June 13, 2022

People With Disabilities Feel Left Behind Amid Caregiver Shortage



MINNEAPOLIS — Before the pandemic, Caleb George-Guidry lived in a group home with a circle of friends and staff who understood his spirited personality. He also attended a day support center where he enjoyed a wide range of activities, from painting to yoga, designed for adults like him with significant disabilities.

Now, more than two years later, George-Guidry’s life has been turned upside down. Because of severe staffing shortages, the 31-year-old last fall was forced to move out of his group home of the past 12 years and into a new house with strangers who did not comprehend his way of communication. Then George-Guidry’s day center in St. Paul abruptly suspended his services after nine years — leaving him isolated and depressed. Today, George-Guidry, who was born with a rare disorder that affects his physical and cognitive development, spends much of his time watching videos and playing games in the common space of the house.

To read more on this story, click here: People With Disabilities Feel Left Behind Amid Caregiver Shortage


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Airline To Train Staff On Autism



As an upstart airline from the founder of JetBlue works to expand, the company says it will put a premium on better serving travelers with autism.

Breeze Airways says it intends to become the first certified autism-inclusive U.S. network carrier.

To read more on this story, click here: Airline To Train Staff On Autism


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Saturday, May 7, 2022

Happy Nurses Week! A Big Thank You to All of Our Nurses! We Appreciate You!



A big thank you to all of our Nurses! We appreciate you!

Danielle Schrader Darby: We appreciate each and every nurse that helps the people we support live life to the fullest! Thank you for all you, without you, many people would not be living in the community!






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Thursday, April 28, 2022

Can Emojis Speak Louder Than Words?



Video chat, once relegated to teen social media interactions, has become commonplace for work, school, and social connection in this “new normal” that is post-pandemic life. While many have embraced the technology, there are those for whom the medium presents a new challenge.  

In Project Convey, we see the story of Jack – a 12-year-old on the autism spectrum, who recently moved and wants to keep in touch with his best friend Grady.

Individuals on the autism spectrum often have difficulty interpreting non-verbal social cues like facial expressions and tone of voice - an issue made even more challenging when there is a screen between them. That's why Cox embarked on Project Convey - a partnered effort to create a video chat prototype that helps people on the spectrum make more meaningful connections online. Using speech and facial recognition technology, the prototype analyzes facial expressions, words, and tone of voice to interpret and assign meaning to video chat interactions, translating them instantly into emoji outputs that individuals on the spectrum can readily understand – emojis that convey meaning. 

Cox is releasing all their research and development for the project to the autism community and to video technology companies who can carry on the work. "We see this as just the beginning" said Rachel Negretti, Sr Director of Brand Strategy at Cox. "Our goal was to show that it's possible to make video chat inclusive for individuals on the spectrum. Our hope is that one day every video chat platform out there will have a tool like this or be inspired to create one." 

While the technology is just a prototype, and Cox does not own the video chat platforms it would attach to, a spark is there. And a sentiment one hopes will ignite leading up to April's World Autism Month: everyone deserves more meaningful connections.

(Video below)


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Changes To CDC’s Developmental Milestone Checklists Met With Skepticism




Changes to the federal government’s developmental milestone checklists have some experts concerned about potential delays to early intervention.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released revised versions of the checklists in February as part of its “Learn the Signs. Act Early.” campaign, which was first introduced in 2004 in partnership with the American Academy of Pediatrics. The checklists are commonly used by pediatricians to flag children in need of further screening for autism or other developmental disabilities.

To read more on this story, click here: Changes To CDC’s Developmental Milestone Checklists Met With Skepticism


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