This week, Leo reflects on Berkshire County Arc's Annual Meeting; RSVP for next week's vigil for Nicky's Law; an interview with Dr. Brian Skotko about Operation House Call; and more!
Leo's Letter
Advancing Community Inclusion from the Berkshires to Boston

Last week, Tim Franchere got to pose with his state senator, Adam Hinds, in the local news.  Tim was recognized for his achievements, including his job at a store and volunteer work at the local Meals on Wheels program. Anthony Tanner was recognized, too, but not only for his stellar employment history. Anthony’s growth as an employee has spilled over to his personal life, where he has realized with some coaching that he can be more independent in his apartment, too, helping to prepare his own and community meals. Continue reading.
Join us for a vigil for the Abuse Registry (Nicky's Law)!

On Thursday, November 15 , The Arc will launch a vigil at the Massachusetts State House, Room 437 (4th floor, near the cafe) in support of Nicky’s Law. It will begin at 10:00 and last throughout the day. We will continue to support a vigil each day until the bill is passed. We invite you to join us. We will have much more information shortly about the speakers, the agenda, and materials available.

If you are unable to join us at the State House, please submit your words of support for the bill on our new Abuse Registry webpage .

Attention Medical Professionals! Are you an LPN, RN, Nurse Practitioner, Medical Student or MD?

You are invited to attend an important Supported Decision Making Focus Group with other medical professionals on November 16 from 2:00-4:00PM at The Arc of Massachusetts. Learn more.
Dr. Brian Skotko, Director of the Down Syndrome Program at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), sat down with The Arc of Massachusetts to discuss his work at MGH, his thoughts on our program Operation House Call (OHC), and his hopes for the future of medical care for people with I/DD. Learn more about OHC at arcmass.org/ohc .
Government Affairs
The 2018 Midterm Election: Voter Registration and Turnout

The final numbers for the November 6 mid-term election are still being tabulated before the results are turned over the Secretary of State’s office for certification. Results of the September 4 primary showed that of the 4,493,007 registered voters, only 1,004,605 or 22.36% showed up.

Early media reports for this mid-term on November 6 indicated that election officials felt that voter turnout would be much improved, with an anticipated turnout of just under 2.5 million in Massachusetts. Continue reading.
Learn about Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission (MRC)’s redesign of Pre Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) . Pre-employment transition services can start at age 14 and are available until you graduate high school or turn 22. You do not need to apply for Vocational Rehabilitation, instead you can connect directly to a pre-ETS community provider while still in high school and benefit from the five pre-ETS services. MRC recommends that students take part in at least one pre-ETS service before applying for VR services.
Training Center
Adult Family Care: Is It the Right Choice for my Loved One?
Wednesday, December 5, 2018 | 12:00PM, Free
Presenter: Yvette Jones, Director of Adult Family Care, Charles River Center

Adult Family Care (AFC) is a MassHealth program that provides a 24/ 7 supervision and training for adults with disabilities that need assistance with their Adult Daily Living (ADL) skills. Caregiver homes provide a supportive environment that provides and the care and supervision needed. In return caregivers receive a tax free stipend. Learn about eligibility, the benefits of AFC, and the different situations that can enhance a person’s ability to stay in a home environment.
Attention Self-Advocates!

The MPTE Self-Advocacy / Self-Determination subcommittee is inviting young adults with disabilities ages 17 to 25 to participate in a survey about how job readiness is taught in Massachusetts schools. This survey focuses on questions about Individual Education Plan (IEP) employment goals, participation in programs that develop self-advocacy skills, and programs about exploring jobs. This survey may be filled out online or paper copies can be made available. 

If you have any questions, please email Kristin Britton at kristin.britton@state.ma.us  
or Oliver Lyons at oliver.lyons@umb.edu . Thank you again for your participation!
Did you know you can now directly support The Arc through Facebook?

The Arc of Massachusetts is now enrolled in Facebook's onsite giving platform. Unlike with other services such as PayPal, which subtracts a processing fee from your gifts, 100% of your donations will go straight to The Arc of Massachusetts . You can make a donation at any time through the "Donate" button on The Arc's Facebook page.

If you're feeling particularly inspired, you can even run a Facebook fundraiser for The Arc of Massachusetts by selecting "Create a Fundraiser." Whether for your birthday, in recognition of the upcoming holiday season, or just because you want to, running time-limited Facebook fundraisers is a guaranteed way to show your community's full support.
Outside The Arc
MDSC's 14th Annual Educators Forum
Tuesday, November 13 | 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
College of the Holy Cross, Hogan Conference Center
1 College Street. Worcester

Supporting students with complex learning profiles requires training and professional support for teachers and administrators. This year’s Ed Forum is designed to provide general and special educators, administrators, paraprofessionals, support professionals, and parents with practical workshops that will support them as they work hard each day to meet the educational needs of students. Topics include: Assistive Technology, Transition, Math, Literacy, Behavior, IEP Development, and Inclusion.
Agency Spotlight