STAY CONNECTED:
June 7, 2018
LEO'S LETTER leo
How It Was
A father denies the existence of his own son who has a disability. This was not unusual in the 1950s or 1960s. But when the man is legendary playwright Arthur Miller - who wrote  The Crucible to spotlight scapegoating during the McCarthy era, as well as other commentaries on our society - it becomes a major story.
 
Until June 17,  the Huntington Theatre Company will be producing Bernard Weinraub's Fall,  which views Miller through this lens. This is not the first time I have heard this story. Over a decade ago, I read an article in Vanity Fair  in which actor Daniel Day-Lewis, Miller's son-in-law, had encouraged more involvement with the son.
 
How far are we from the stigma that encouraged families to not acknowledge a family member and doctors to counsel families to forget about their child?
 
Dan Sullivan, past board President, shared a story about friends who had counseled him and his wife, Lorraine, to forget about their daughter who has a disability. Not only did they find such advice  offensive , but Dan, who was a popular Baltimore Colts player, talked about his daughter Julie in a newspaper article.
 
These realities - the fact that families decades ago struggled with acknowledging disability in their family or were counseled to forget about them - are symptoms of the powerful bias against those with disabilities in general and those with intellectual disabilities in particular.  It's important to acknowledge the power of bias and how it results in rejection. Even today, I continue to hear from parents about the isolation that they have experienced.
 
Together, we should avoid denial of this reality and directly address these biases. We at The Arc encourage you and all our constituents to share stories of success where bias and rejection seem to have disappeared. Stories of inclusion should be the norm. We also will continue to publicize the everyday lives of people with disabilities as much as possible. Whether the story is about a long working career, a talent in art or music, or just about overcoming a personal challenge, such stories can help those in the broader public appreciate how typical people with disabilities are. No them, no us.

Sincerely,




Leo V. Sarkissian
Executive Director
FEATURED Featured
Invest For a Better Financial Future
The Attainable Savings PlanSM offered by MEFA and managed by Fidelity helps Americans with disabilities begin saving and investing the tax-smart way. While some people prefer to use their account as an investment vehicle to help grow their savings, others use it to manage their monthly and day-to-day living expenses. Whether you're looking to invest your savings or spend from your account regularly, you can choose from a range of professionally managed portfolios that best match your investment objectives, and risk tolerance. Choose the level you're comfortable with, from conservative to aggressive growth. Any earnings in the account grow tax deferred and, when used for qualified disability expenses, are federal income tax-free. Learn more at Fidelity.com/Attainable.

Fidelity Brokerage Services LLC, Member NYSE, SIPC
900 Salem Street, Smithfield, RI 02917
809621.2.0

The Attainable Savings Plan is offered by the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority and managed by Fidelity Investments. Qualified ABLE Programs offered by other states may provide state tax benefits to their residents or taxpayers that are not available through the Attainable Savings Plan. If you are not a resident of Massachusetts, you should consider whether your home state offers its residents or taxpayers state tax advantages or benefits for investing in your home state's qualified ABLE program before making an investment in the Attainable Savings Plan.

Units of the portfolios are municipal fund securities and are subject to market fluctuation and volatility. You may have a gain or loss when you sell your units.

Please carefully consider the Attainable Savings Plan's investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses before investing. For this and other information, contact Fidelity for a free Disclosure Document or view one online. Read it carefully before you invest or send money.
Henry Milorin to become namesake of community service award
Scott Borchardt (Vice President of The Arc of Massachusetts Board of Directors) with Henry Milorin
Henry Milorin, former board member of The Arc, recently received a major recognition. The Mattapan/Greater Boston Technology Learning Center Inc. student body and alumni have created a community service award in his name. 
 
Henry, sometimes called "the father of the Haitian community," will be the namesake for this award which "will be presented annually to an individual who captures the 'love and dedication of a great community leader' and 'reflects the outstanding leadership, selfless and unyielding dedication of Henry Milorin to community service.'"  
 
Congratulations, Henry! 
Giving Stock
The Arc of Massachusetts is working harder than ever for the more than 200,000 people in our state who have disabilities. We are fighting for funding and services, as well as laws that protect the health and wellbeing of people with disabilities.
 
Donors like you are an important part of this work. One way to support The Arc that can also have significant benefits for the donor is by giving appreciated stocks or securities. In doing so, you can avoid paying capital gains taxes and may be able to take a tax deduction on the fair market value. To avoid capital gains taxes, you must provide the securities themselves, not the proceeds of their sale. Plus, if you itemize your deductions, outright gifts of appreciated securities are tax-deductible at full fair-market value, provided you have owned the asset for one year or more.
 
Please do let us know that you are transferring securities so that we credit you properly and issue a receipt for tax purposes. It also is important to consult a tax advisor or your accountant for advice related to your personal circumstances. For more information, please contact Katrin Aback, Director of Development via email at aback@arcmass.org or 781-891-6270 x105.
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRSgovaffairs
Dental therapist expansion passes through Health Care and Finance
Another priority bill for The Arc of Mass has passed favorably through Health Care Finance Committee! The bill will create a new level of oral care professional, called a Dental Therapist. We are grateful to the bill sponsors - Senator Chandler, Rep. Pignatelli, and Rep. Hogan - for their dedicated efforts on this legislation.

The Arc has been successful in adding language to the bill that will require training in best practices for enhancing oral health for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including autism. The Arc has also successfully advocated for this newly formed Dental Therapist to have a required MassHealth caseload.

If you want to learn more about this bill, contact Maura Sullivan at sullivan@arcmass.org and use this link to read the language of the bill.
House/Senate Conference Committee for FY'19 budget 
The next phase of the FY'19 budget debate now turns to the Conference Committee, whose six members include the Chairs and Vice Chairs of the Ways and Means Committee, as well as the ranking minority member of each of the W&M Committees (Senators Spilka, Lovely, and deMacedo and Reps Sanchez, Kulik, and Smola).

The Conference Committee members will reconcile those budget line items where there are difference in wording/funding between the House and the Senate versions of the budget. There are 6 line item recommendations highlighted in yellow in this chart to support either the House or the Senate version of the budget. The aim is to send the Governor a final budget by June 30, 2018, the last day of the fiscal year.

The Conference Committee's job will be to reconcile the differences between the House budget ($41.065 billion) and the Senate budget ($41.49 billion). The final budget will be voted on by the Senate and House, then sent to the Governor, who has 10 days to review and sign the budget.  He also may veto certain items, at which point the budget will be returned to the legislature for any override action.
 
All are encouraged to reach out to their respective Senators/Representatives asking them to urge the Conference Committee members to support the six budget items that we have identified.
WHAT'S TRENDING Whatstrending
Julie Heffernan, Coordinator; Kerry Mahoney, Director of SUPPORTbrokers; Amy Weinstock, Advisory Council Member; and Pat Pakos, Program Manager
 
SUPPORTbrokers of The Arc of Massachusetts is thrilled to have the continued support from the Dana Home Foundation to continue our study of adults with autism over the age of 50. This year, we will provide five individuals over the age of 45 with intellectual disabilities or autism with personal future planning. Individuals must be residents of Lexington. For more information, contact Julie at Heffernan@arcmass.org.
Recruiting and hiring a MassHealth PCA just got easier!

The PCA Workforce Council launched a new PCA Referral Directory Website.  Early registration for MassHealth PCA Consumers began on June 1, 2018.  Go to www.masspcadirectory.org or  call 1-888-627-7722 for help with registration.  Please visit the Council website for additional news.
TRAINING CENTER Workshops
Due to technical difficulties, today's webinar
Eligibility for DDS Services: Which Door to Enter?
has been rescheduled for Tuesday, June 12, 2018 at 2:30 PM.

If you were registered for today's session, you should have received an updated invitation.  If you would like to attend, you may register here. The recorded session will be available after the 12th in the event you are not able to attend. Please let Kerry Mahoney ( Mahoney@arcmass.org) know if you have any questions. Thanks for your patience!
Using Person Centered Practices to Achieve a Meaningful Life!
Presented by Kerry Mahoney, The Arc of Massachusetts
Tuesday, June 12 | 6:00 - 8:00 PM
6 Southside Road, Danvers

Person-Centered Planning is a vision-building and future planning tool which discovers the kind of life a person desires, creates a plan for how it may be achieved, and ensures access to needed supports and services. The focus is always on the vision of what the person would like to be and do. The planning focuses on the strengths of the person rather than his/her challenges. This workshop is designed for individuals with disabilities (14+), their families and supporters, and professionals.  RSVP to Phyllis Kizner at 978-624-3747 or pkizner@ne-arc.org.
Health Insurance for Adults with Autism
Presented by Amy Weinstock, Director
Autism Insurance Resource Center
Wednesday, June 13 | 12:00 - 1:30 PM

Items to be covered include  Private and Public Insurance options;  accessing Autism treatments under insurance;  other insurance benefits;  keeping a dependent on a parent's policy; and  how social security affects coverage.  Space is limited. To reserve your space, contact Audrey.Huntley@umassmed.edu.
SPONSOR SPOTLIGHT sponsorspotlight
The Arc of Massachusetts  | (781) 891-6270 |  thearcofmass.org