October 1, 2020 | Issue #61
Facing Crisis And Opportunity

Crisis and Opportunity are the themes that reflect our work at The Arc each day and each week.

“Crisis” is due to the pandemic and related financial limits placed upon our services. Most day and employment providers will be forced to close settings by winter if funding projected for October remains at that level.

Present family supports funding needs to return to June levels if we want to preserve families. Caregivers in cost-effective programs such as adult family or foster care should receive additional stipends to address their 24/7 care. We can’t allow this crisis to result in losses which will take a decade to overcome. Continue reading.
Request for Comments for Amendments of Children's Autism Spectrum Disorder Waiver

MassHealth and DDS are working together to amend the Children’s Autism Spectrum Disorder Waiver. The Center for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) typically approves this waiver every 5 years. The amendments to the waiver include a meal delivery option as well as technical changes to increase flexibility for service planning and case management to occur remotely/via telehealth. You can view the amendments here.

If you want to submit public comment, comments must be submitted by Sunday, November 1, 2020. You may submit by email to HCBSWaivers@mass.gov; by regular mail to the UMass Waiver Unit, Attn: Autism Comments, 333 South Street, Shrewsbury, MA 01545; or orally at a remote public listening session on Thursday, October 22 at 1:00pm.
Computer Menu
Survey on Health Care Transition of Persons with I/DD

A collaborative group is working to improve the health care transition of persons with I/DD to improve health access to adult healthcare. We are working with them and hope you can participate in this Massachusetts health care transition survey.  All of us want to better understand what is happening for young adults in terms of their healthcare needs. If you are a guardian or parent of someone with ID/DD or ASD (or the individuals themselves), please complete this brief survey by Friday, October 16. Any questions may be submitted to nddtransitionsummit@childrens.harvard.edu.
Vinfen to Host Annual Celebration of Family Partnerships

Highlights of Vinfen’s Annual Celebration of Family Partnerships include a special message from Emily Perl Kingsley (an Emmy award winning writer for Sesame Street), family and staff spotlight videos, remarks from Department of Developmental Services Commissioner Jane Ryder and Public Official of the Year Award recipient Senator Julian Cyr, and the unveiling of a commissioned piece of artwork by renowned Gateway Artist Ruby Pearl. Learn more here.
On October 5, join Leo for a continued discussion of social inclusion in the age of COVID-19. Katie Driscoll and Meg Gaydos join us again, this time with Tom Doody who led Citizen Advocacy for 30 years of his 45-year career.
What do Pre Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) look like during COVID? On Tuesday, join Rachel Reyes (Mass Rehab Commission) and Kristin Rotas & Nathan Maynard (Viability) to learn about Pre-ETS services and how they are being delivered.
I Did It My Way! From Day Services to Individualized Supports
Learn from a group of self-advocates and their families on how they transformed their traditional day services into individualized support. Presenters will provide discussion of the before and after, how they decided the right supports, and funding sources utilized. Register for this presentation here.
Sponsor Spotlight

The work of The Arc of Massachusetts is made possible by generous donations from people like you, friend. None of our advocacy, education, and outreach would be possible without your continued support. Please consider giving today.