Rhode Island Department of
Behavioral Healthcare,
Developmental Disabilities & Hospitals
BHDDH BULLETIN
August 2016
The BHDDH Bulletin keeps you up-to-date with the
latest news from the Division of Developmental Disabilities.
Recent Developmental Disabilities
Community Forum
Dear Friends, Colleagues and Community Members,

Earlier this month, we held a community forum at the Buttonwoods Community Center in Warwick to provide Rhode Islanders living with developmental disabilities and their families an opportunity to meet with leaders in our Division of Developmental Disabilities, and to share their experiences, concerns, and questions. Thank you to everyone who was able to attend this event.

During the forum, we introduced several members of our team who are working together to enhance our work to provide higher-quality services for Rhode Islanders with developmental disabilities. Their names, titles, and contact information are provided at the end of this email.

After introductions, we provided some key updates on our progress to achieve the terms of the federal consent decree and improve services for Rhode Islanders living with developmental disabilities. 
  • This legislative session, the General Assembly approved more than $11 million in increased funding proposed by Governor Raimondo for developmental disability services in fiscal year 2017. This is a significant investment that will support much-needed wage increases for dedicated direct service workers, as well as supported employment and other integrated, community-based services for the federal consent decree target population.
  • Consent Decree Coordinator Mary Madden walked through the requirements of the consent decree and which populations it covers. You can find a good overview of this information in our recent newsletter. In the fall, the Division will start notifying individuals and families if they fall into one of the target populations. Funding will be available to support enhanced services for those individuals targeted for supported employment services. Others may also access funding as they are ready to explore employment.
The majority of the forum was reserved for community members and other attendees to provide input and ask questions. Attendees also had the option of providing comments anonymously through index cards available on every table. We will post meeting minutes and a set of frequently asked questions based on feedback received during the forum to the BHDDH website by next week.

We also asked attendees how we can better communicate with all of you. If you couldn’t make the meeting but would like to provide input, please take this brief survey. If you missed the forum or have additional feedback or questions, you can contact BHDDH.AskDD@bhddh.ri.gov.

We are also want to share some important upcoming trainings for individuals and/or families:
  • Monday, September 19th from 8:00 - 10:00 am regarding career development plans and supported employment variances training at the Arnold Conference Center at Eleanor Slater Hospital, 111 Howard Ave, Cranston.  Please RSVP to Tracey Cunningham at  401.462.3857 or email her here.
  • Thursday, October 27th is Advocates in Action’s Annual Statewide Self-Advocacy Conference and our Chief Employment Specialist, Tracey Cunningham, will be there. The conference will be held at the Crowne Plaza in Warwick. For more information, please go to the website for Advocates in Action here.

Our next community forum is scheduled for November 9, 2016. We’ve heard your requests to offer different options for the location and timing of these forums, and to provide more advance notice. We will confirm the location and time with this group as soon as it is available. We hope to see you there.

Thank you for your continued partnership. Working together, we can continue to expand opportunities for Rhode Islanders living with developmental disabilities. 

Please feel free to forward this information to others who may be interested in it.

Sincerely,
Jane Gallivan
Acting Director, Division of Developmental Disabilities
RI Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities & Hospitals

The following staff members were introduced at the August 17th community forum:

On Monday, August 22, Anne LeClerc (anne.leclerc@bhddh.ri.gov) also joined our team as the Associate Director of Program Performance. 

RI Department of Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities & Hospitals
Questions about -

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