February 22, 2016
Disability Policy Consortium Weekly Update

Dear (Contact First Name),

Spring training begins this week for the Red Sox.  That means spring is just around the corner. 

We are including the latest Issue Brief produced by the DPC that is on Housing.  You may remember, we are committed to issuing a new brief every quarter on a public policy matter which impacts the lives of people with disabilities. 

In our calendar section, we draw your attention to Independent Living Education Day at the State House on March 10th.

We have a short term job available at the DPC for a research interviewer.  If you are interested, see the job posting below. 
As always  happy reading.

John Winske
Disability Policy Consortium
DPC News: DPC Releases New Issue Brief on Housing
Earlier this winter, we released our first DPC Issue Brief which was about Food Insecurities and People with Disabilities.  Today, we are pleased to release our latest Issue Brief, this one on Housing.  

The lack of affordable, accessible housing remains a critical barrier to making the goals of the Olmstead ruling a reality.  The DPC continues our advocacy on this issue. Colin Killick represents the DPC in our joint efforts with BCIL to increase funding for the Alternative Housing Voucher Program (AHVP).  Last year, these efforts led to an increase in funding of more than $1 million.  We are pushing for an increase again this year.

In addition, DPC Executive Director John Winske is serving on the Accessible Housing Task Force put together by the City of Boston.    

Our Housing Brief was prepared by Maggie Sheets with assistance from Colin Killick and Dennis Heaphy.  You can download the pdf version here.  You can download the MS Word version here.  
Calendar:  NAMI Latino Leaders Event
When:  Tuesday, February 23, 2016, 6:00 P.M. - 8:30 P.M.

Where:  NAMI Mass Office, The Schrafft's Building, 
171M,  Boston, Mass, 02129

Join us for an evening of inspirational storytelling, poetry, healthcare, immigration discussion with...

Iris Gomez of Mass Law Reform Institute


Immigration Attorney, Poet, Colombian Immigrant & Author of "Try To Remember" 


Jacqueline Martinez for the Disability Policy Consortium's project Yes Health

To confirm email to fwillis@namimass.org or call 617-580-8541.
Calendar:  Self Advocates Voting Event  

When:  Wednesday, February 24, 2016, 6 P.M. - 8 P.M.

Where:  Watertown Free Public Library,  123 Main Street, Watertown, MA  02472

As a reminder, this Forum is geared towards self-advocates, and will cover topics including.
* Voting Rights
* Where to vote and different ways to vote
* How to overcome barriers to voting
* How to find more information on candidates

It will take place on Wednesday February 24th, 6-8pm at the Watertown Free Public Library, Watertown Savings Bank Meeting Room, 123 Main Street, Watertown 02472.

Thank you to the Disability Law Center ( www.dlc-ma.org) for sponsoring this important event!

This event is free, but we ask that people RSVP, so we know how much food to order.To RSVP, or if you have any questions, email or call Rachel at rachel.mass.metro@gmail.com or 339-832-2922.

Please pass on word about this Forum, and replace any printed copies of the flyer with this new version! We look forward to seeing you on the 24th!

Rachel Hayward
MASS Metro Regional Coordinator
(339) 832-2922

Check Out MASS' New Website: www.ma-advocates.org

Metro Region's Facebook Page: www.facebook.com/groups/MetroMassAdvocates
Calendar: MOD Regional Meeting
When:  Wednesday, March 9, 2016, 11 A.M. - 2 P.M.

Where:  Levi Lincoln  Chambers, Room 309, Worcester City Hall, 455 Main Street, Worcester, MA 

The Massachusetts Office on Disability will be holding a regional meeting for members of local Commissions on Disability and interested people hosted by the Worcester Commission on Disabilities. 

It will be an opportunity to hear from David D'Arcangelo, Director, Massachusetts Office on Disability.

Discussion will include the impact of the budget on people with disabilities and an update on what MOD has been doing throughout the state as well as other initiatives that involve the COD's. There will also be time allowed for a general discussion among commission members to network with one another.

This will provide an opportunity to share what your commission has accomplished in the past year as well as time to discuss any roadblocks you may be encountering. Light refreshments will be provided.

We hope you all can join us. Anyone who is interested in this Regional Commission meeting should contact me by March 2, 2016 at the above number. Please advise me no later than March 2, 2016 if you need an accommodation.

Please be aware of the following:
1.   This meeting is open to all COD's and their membership; however, physical mailings only went out to COD's around the Worcester region. 
2.    For other  Regional Commission on Disability Meetings, please visit our website.  There may be an upcoming meeting closer to your region.
3.     Pre-Registration is required.  Contact me if you are interested in attending this meeting by the dates listed above.

Jeffrey L. Dougan
Assistant Director for Community Services

Massachusetts Office on Disability
One Ashburton Place, Room 1305
Boston, MA 02108
Phone: 617-727-7440
Fax: 617-727-0965
Calendar :  Massachusetts Annual Independent Living Education Day at the State House
When: Thursday, March 10, 2016, 11am-3pm

Where: Great Hall (2nd floor), Massachusetts State House

Lunch will be provided.

On March 10, members, consumers and staff of all 11 Independent Living Centers in Massachusetts will gather at the State House to educate our legislators about top priorities for people with disabilities. Please join us to tell your legislators what matters to you!

Please contact your local Independent Living Center to let them know if you will be attending.  They may be able to help you set up meetings with your State Representative or Senator.

We will be speaking out for these priorities:
  • Improve architectural access by aligning Massachusetts Architectural Access Board regulations with the Americans with Disabilities Act (bill SD 1323)
  • Create more job opportunities for people with disabilities (bill SD S.86, HD.110)
  • Expand Mass Rehab Commission's assistive technology programs in the state budget
  • Increase affordable housing for low-income people with disabilities by adding $2.5 million to the Alternative Housing Voucher Program (line item 7004-9030)
  • Protect the Independent Living Center line item (4120-4000) in the state budget and increase it by $500,000

See you on March 10th!

Calendar:  The BCIL Marie Feltin Award

When:   Friday, March 18, 2016 from 6 P.M. - 9 P.M.
Where:  Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel Ballroom,
138 St James Ave, Boston, MA 02116

This year's honorees are:

Kate Nordahl - Spirited Leader for Innovative Medicaid Policy and Programs in Massachusetts

Neil Cronin - Tenacious Activist and Strategist for Disability, HIV, and Poverty Issues for Three Decades

Peggy Johnson and Lauren Easton - Inspired Champions and Designers of Community-Based Mental Health Services

This event honors individuals and institutions who exemplify the pioneering spirit of the late Dr. Marie Feltin, a tireless advocate for disabled and chronically ill patients. Marie was a founder of Boston's Community Medical Group, East Boston Health Center's Home Care Program and the Urban Medical Group, neighborhood healthcare services that focused on encouraging patients to become actively involved in their care as a critical means to bettering their health. Marie was always available for her patients and was a modern day pioneer in providing medical are to society's most neglected and vulnerable populations.

The ceremony is held in support of BCIL, and as a tribute to Marie's legacy which epitomizes BCIL's mission of empowering individuals with disabilities to take control of their lives and live independently. BCIL promotes the civil rights of all people with disabilities and its energized advocacy supports and helps create equal access to healthcare, affordable housing, accessible transportation, and ADA compliance for thousands of Greater Boston residents each year, leading many to jobs, an education, and self-sufficiency for themselves and their families.

For sponsorship information, tickets, or questions about the event, please contact Susan Smith at 617-338-6665 x232 or by email at ssmith@bostoncil.org.
Employment Opportunity: Research Interviewer 

The Disability Policy Consortium is looking for a part-time research interviewer. This is a short-term position. 

The interviewer will complete up to 30 telephone interviews with people who recently used urgent care, paramedics, or emergency services. The calls last approximately one hour. Ideally the candidate will have some basic knowledge or experience as an interviewer. 

Understanding of research and research protocols is a plus.  Pay will be $25 per hour up to a maximum of $5,000 dollars over the course of a year. Training will be provided. To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Kimberley Warsett at kwarsett@dpcma.org.  An understanding of healthcare is preferred.  People with disabilities are encouraged to apply.
Net News:  Rite Aid Announces Accessible Prescription Label Program

I am pleased to announce that Rite Aid  now has talking labels in all its stores across the country. This agreement was as a result of structured negotiations between the American Council of the Blind, the California Council of the Blind, and Rite Aid.
Rite Aid has made the  Talking Pill Reminder system available in their stores (this is the same device used by Walgreens). If the Talking Pill Reminder is not effective for customers, Rite Aid will make the ScripTalk talking labels available. Everything will be available free of charge to blind customers.  Large Print prescription information is also available in the stores. 
With so many stores, it is possible that there will be some implementation challenges early in the rollout.  If you run into any problems, Rite Aid has provided ACB with a contact person for you to call. The Rite Aid contact person is:
Michael Mack 
(717) 975-5878 
The  Rite Aid general customer service number is: 1-800-748-3243.  Please start with the general Rite Aid Customer Service line to resolve any issues. If you have difficulty then contact Michael Mack directly. Rite Aid wants to hear positive and negative feedback on the roll out, so please use the Customer Service line to convey feedback.
This agreement is another big step in ACB's work to make sure blind people have safe and independent access to prescription information. 
In This Issue
DPC Needs your Help!!! 
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Disability Policy Consortium
11 Dartmouth Street
Suite 301
Malden, MA 02148
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