In This Issue:
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Partners Partners in Policymaking B eginning Soon!

Partners in Policymaking is an  initiative of The Arc Maryland in partnership with People on the Go of Maryland and The Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council that is also funded in large part by the Maryland Developmental Disabilities Council!  This wonderful program prepares parents of children with disabilities and adults with disabilities to be effective advocates at state and local levels, and provides participants with the skills and knowledge needed to successfully make change in their communities.  Graduates of the program go on to do many great things, including being involved on local boards or commissions, testifying at hearings, volunteering on advisory committees or supporting other parents with the IEP process. 

Now, 30 states, including Maryland and the District of Columbia, run classes. Since the program started in 1987, the total number of graduates has grown to more than 27,000.
The Arc Maryland has a long history of facilitating Partners in Policymaking with Developmental Disabilities Council funding beginning in 1998 and through 2006. 

We are thrilled that the grant is back and we will once again have the opportunity to lead the state-wide Partners in Policymaking effort!

We are currently recruiting for the Class of 2019! The 10 session program will begin January 2019 and run through September 2019. Participants will have three overnight sessions, attend Developmental Disabilities Day at the Legislature and The Arc Maryland 2019 Convention as well as participate in 5 day-long sessions.
To learn more about the Partners in Policymaking Program, click here .

If you would like more information about the upcoming year's Partners in Policymaking program, or to suggest a participant for us to invite, please email Kathy Swanson, Director of Education and Advocacy at

Applications will be coming out mid September, so stay on the lookout!
TWB Together We're Better Inclusive Education Campaign and Art Contest:  Back in Action for 2018-19

Assembly at Tridelphia Ridge Elementary School

After a successful 2017-18 campaign year, the Together We're Better Inclusive Education program is back! This month, The Arc Maryland received a grant from the Maryland State Department of Education for the 2018-19 campaign. The upcoming campaign marks 15 years since the program's inception at The Arc Maryland.

A Diversity Celebration Toolkit will soon be distributed to schools across Maryland, featuring resources for teachers and parents to share with students and enrich lesson plans.
Last Year's Winning Art

Over the course of  the 2018-19 school year, a series of assemblies will be p resented by self-advocates and representatives of The Arc Maryla nd. T he presentations aim to educate students on the experiences, interests, challenges, and successes  of people with disabilities.

Students of schools adopting Together We're Better into their curriculum will be  encouraged  to submit artwork featuring themes of the program. Students with winning submissions will be rewarded with  prizes for both themselves and their school. They will also be invited to attend Developmental Disabilities Day in Annapolis this coming February!

For more information about Together We're Better or to recommend a school that we can contact for a free Disability Awareness presentation, please contact Luc Chausse by clicking here!

Kavanaugh The Arc Maryland Responds to Nomination of Judge Kavanaugh to the US Supreme Court

Earlier this summer, Judge Brett Kavanaugh was nominated to serve as our next U.S. Supreme Court Justice. The nomination of Judge Kavanaugh is extremely concerning for many people with disabilities, their families, and other advocates for equal rights and justice for people with disabilities. This is because Judge Kavanaugh has a history of problematic positions and legal decisions that have had negative affects or posed threats to the livelihood, rights, and self-determination of people with disabilities.

CEO of The Arc, Peter Berns had this to say on the nomination:

"We did not take lightly the decision to oppose Judge Kavanaugh's appointment to the US Supreme Court, but after a thorough analysis of his record, we cannot idly sit by knowing that he has demonstrated a disregard for the impact of his judicial philosophy on the lives of people with disabilities and their families time and time again. Judge Kavanaugh has written several troubling opinions and dissents on cases related to disability rights and The Arc's constituents, including those pertaining to education, affordable health care, and self-determination."

To see an overview of these concerns developed by the Bazelon Center click here or continue reading below .

Overview of Judge Kavanaugh's Record on Key Disability Issues

Self Determination
I n Washington,  DC, 2 women with intellectual disabilities were made to have abortions, even though the women didn't want to have the procedure. DC also made another woman with an intellectual disability have eye surgery. These were not surgeries that these individuals needed to save their lives. In general, DC didn't routinely ask people with disabilities what they wanted before letting doctors operate on them. In the case, Judge Kavanaugh ruled that elective, non-emergency procedures could be conducted without permission from patients with disabilities or input from their families.

Health Care
Judge Kavanaugh strongly opposes the Affordable Care Act, which has given many people with disabilities the necessary health care to which they did not previously have access.

Also, Medicaid funding for Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS), has been at risk as recent as this past year through efforts to repeal key provisions of the ACA. Without Medicaid funding for HCBS, many people with disabilities could lose the supports they need to live and work in their communities.

Judge Kavanaugh has sided with employers numerous times in cases of discrimination against people with disabilities for both employees and job applicants. 

The research conducted by fellow advocacy groups and disability rights organizations show that Judge Kavanaugh, who has served on the federal Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia since 2006, has issued many decisions and statements that directly or indirectly concern people with disabilities.

As Senators deliberate on the confirmation of this Supreme Court nominee, please  contact your representative  to voice your opinion of this nominee.

Please carefully read the information provided, and click the following links below for additional information.

The following links contain The Arc's and other organizations' responses to the nomination of Judge Kavanaugh:
UpcomingEventsUpcoming Events
The content for the upcoming events section are from The Arc Maryland, or submitted by local Arc organizations!
Direct Support Professionals:
Sign the Petition to Create a Standardized Occupation Code and Honor Direct Support Professionals During the Week of S eptember 9-15

Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) are frequently referred to as the "backbone" of our system of community services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  They are not only qualified caregivers, but frequently perform other tasks such as medication administration, job coach support, community navigation, driving, and coordination of other supports.  The job of a DSP is complicated; each DSP must possess a unique combination of education, skills, and talents to fulfill the diverse needs of a diverse and relatively large segment of the community.  Unfortunately, the complexity of the DSP position has not resulted in its recognition in the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as a Profession.  

There is currently no Standardized Occupation Code for a DSP.  This is problematic as often budgets are developed utilizing occupation codes.  If DSP supports are being based simply on a "personal care" job code, this does not recognize the richness of the DSP profession and results in gross under-estimations of what is needed, in budgets and in professional preparation/training programs, for an enduring and quality system of care.

We can work together to change things!  Click the link below to sign the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals petition to establish a Direct Support Professional Standardized Occupation Code today!

Next week, Direct Support Professionals nationwide will be recognized for their immense contributions!

Direct Support Professional Recognition Week is a week-long celebration beginning Sunday, September 9 in recognition of the dedication and accomplishments of outstanding Direct Support Professionals and their vital contributions to communities across the country. Please join our chapters as they recognize and celebrate the many who provide support to so many of The Arc members!

Many of the local Arc chapters will be celebrating DSP Recognition Week!  Here are some examples of their plans:

The Arc Howard County will celebrate with a  Staff Appreciation Day to be held on September 12. The evening will feature food, music, and awards for Direct Service Professionals and other exemplary employees. 

The Arc of Southern Maryland gives out gifts to their Direct Service Professionals each year as a special thanks. They also post loving messages to their Direct Service Professionals in the office and on-line.

The Arc of Washington County in addition to having a week-long celebration for DSPs, is hosting a DSP Recognition Week Cookout on September 11 in Hagerstown. You can actually RSVP and click  here to learn more information about it.
Join us for The Arc Maryland Governmental Affairs Retreat:
September 20 from 10 am to 2 pm

The Maryland Legislative Session begins at noon on January 9, 2019.  Let's be ready for it!  

As we set our Public Policy Platform, we need input and guidance from our members.  Join us from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at The Arc Montgomery County on September 20 and take part in setting our direction for the 2019 Legislative Session! Lunch will be provided. Please click the button below to register or get more information.
The Race for Governor
Television Debate:   September 24

The Arc Maryland encourages you to hear from Gubernatorial candidates for Governor in preparation for the 2018 General Election.  Tune into WBAL Baltimore, WJLA Washington, or Maryland Public Television at 7 p.m. on Monday, September 24 to hear from incumbent Larry Hogan (R) and Ben Jealous (D), as they debate on issues across the state. Maryland Public Television will be moderating this 1 hour debate.
Howard County Accessible Transportation Forum:
September 29

Come to the East Columbia Library on Saturday, September 29 from 10 noon, hosted in part by the Howard County Commission on Disabilities. 

The forum will include informational sessions from organizations that provide or advocate for accessible transportation.  You will have the opportunity to add input to the plan for accessible transportation in the county as well!  Sign up for the forum through the button below.
Candidates for Governor Forum on Disabilities:
October 5

Want to hear from candidates on specific issues important to many people with disabilities? Join Maryland's Cross Disability Community for the Candidates for Governor Forum on Disabilities from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.  
The event will be held on Friday, October 5 at the Hyatt Regency at the Baltimore Inner Harbor. This forum is free to attend, but you must register! Click the button below to register online, or for a downloadable copy to mail, email or fax in, click  here  and follow the instructions at the bottom.
STDLocal Chapter  Events
The content for local chapter events comes from our member chapter organizations. For more information, please visit their websites!
The Arc Montgomery County:
Sibshops Support Group
due September 12
Join The Arc Montgomery County for the first of their Fall 2018 Sibshops
Sessions. Sibshops is for kids ages 8-13 who have  siblings with special health or developmental needs. The first session takes place on Sunday, September 23 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. but you  must register to attend. Registration forms can be found here . There is a $30 registration fee for the 3 total sessions. You can also apply for a scholarship  to have the registration fee waived.
To find out more, you can see the flyer here, or check out The Arc Montgomery County's website.
The Arc Northern Chesapeake:
65th Anniversary Golf Tournament
September 27

The Arc Northern Chesapeake is officially a senior citizen! Join them on Thursday, September 27 at 8 a.m. at the Mountain Branch Golf Club in Joppa to  celebrate. You can check out the event on their website for more information.
The Arc Central Chesapeake Region:
Pull! For The Arc Clay Shoot Classic
September 28

Try your hand at Clay Shooting with The Arc Central  Chesapeake on  Friday, September from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The event  includes  breakfast, clay shooting, lunch, and an awards presentation.
Tickets for for "lunch only" are also available. 

Check out the  event page
for details and contact to register.
The Arc Prince George's County:
Inclusion Works Breakfast
October 11

The Arc Prince George's County invites Business Leaders to join them on October 11 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. to discuss inclusion in the workplace and the value of hiring people with disabilities. The event will feature a panel discussion with business leaders who put Inclusion Works in to practice! Find out more on their website.
The Arc Howard County:
Tee It Up for The Arc
Annual Golf Tournament
October 12

The Arc Howard County holds its annual golf tournament on Friday, October 12 starting at 7:30 a.m. at Waverly Woods Golf Club. The day will include 18 holes of golf, breakfast, lunch, silent raffles, and a hole-in-one giveaway! More information can be found on their website. If you are interested in sponsoring this event, more details can be found here.
The Arc of Washington County:
Dancing with The Arc Stars
October 13

Spend your night dancing at Hager Hall with The Arc of Washington County!  The event begins at 6 p.m.  on Saturday, October 13. The night will feature dinner, a dance exhibition, and even a dance competition! You can read more about the event here, You can purchase your tickets online here. Click the following links if you would like to sponsor the event or advertise your business.
The Arc Prince George's County
25th Annual Golf Tournament
October 15

Join The Arc Prince George's County on Monday, October 15 starting at 7:30 a.m. for their 25th annual golf tournament. The day features breakfast and 18 holes at Renditions Golf Course. You can sign up here
from their website, and get more information about the day.
The Arc Baltimore
Art in the Round
October 19
Attend The Arc Baltimore's 17th Annual "Art in the Round", an art exhibition featuring works from artists with developmental disabilities, who will be there to discuss their art with you. The event s tarts at 7 p.m. on Friday, October 19. Art in the Round will also feature food, drink, and the chance to bid on your favorite pieces at the show. Check 
out their website for more information.
The Arc Montgomery County
Halloween Gala
October 26

The Arc Montgomery County is hosting its Gala on Friday, October 26 at  Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center. Make sure to dress to impress (or scare) in your best Halloween costume for a night including a silent auction, cocktail party, dinner, music, and even a live auction! Find out more here
The Arc Southern Maryland
5K Trick-or-Trot & 
1K Fun Run/Walk/Roll
October 28

Keeping with the spirit of Halloween, The Arc Southern Maryland is putting on their 4th annual 5K Trick-or-Trot & 1K Fun Run/Walk/Roll. The day begins at noon on Sunday, October 28, with the 1K at 1pm, and the 5k at 2pm, but with plenty of fun in between including a costume contest, scavenger hunt, pumpkin decorating, and more. Click  here  for more information and to register.
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