March is National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month
In 1987 President Ronald Reagan officially proclaimed March to be Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month. The presidential proclamation states, “For many of these people with developmental disabilities there is now the prospect of a brighter future and greater opportunity. Americans are becoming increasingly aware that such disabilities need not keep individuals from realizing their full potential in school, at work or at home, as members of their families and of their communities.”
“People with I/DD and their families have come far in improving their lives and enjoying the same access as every other American to housing, education, employment, and more but there is still work to be done," said Peter V. Berns, CEO of The Arc.
Throughout the month, the more than 700 chapters of The Arc will have activities, programs and events designed to continue to raise awareness about intellectual and developmental disabilities.
2014 Developmental Disabilities Day
Feb. 18, 2014- Self-advocates, families, friends, care-providers and organizations across the state of Maryland yesterday in Annapolis, for "DD Day." They convened to meet with state legislators to show support, raise awareness and advocate for the rights and needs of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Participating organizations included chapters of The Arc Maryland, Maryland Disability Law Center, Developmental Disabilities Coalition, Maryland Association of Community Services, and People on the Go Maryland.
Did you know that the proposed minimum wage increase could leave behind people with developmental disabilities and their direct support staff unless you take action?
Click here for important background information.
Take action in two ways:
1.) Attend "Raise the DD Wage" Lobby Night on Monday, February 10th. Meet in the Senate Finance Committee Room in the Miller Senate Office Building at 4:30pm.
2.) Call and email members of the House Economic Matters Committee and the Senate Finance Committee this week. Click herefor talking points.
ACTION ALERT: Minimum Wage Funding
URGENT- YOUR EMAILS AND LETTERS ARE
NEEDED IMMEDIATELY CONTACT THE GOVERNOR AND THE PRESIDING OFFICERS OF THE
- During the upcoming 2014 Legislative Session, the
Maryland General Assembly will consider increasing the minimum wage. The
initiative already appears to have strong support from the Governor and
numerous legislative leaders.
- Raising the minimum wage would help increase wages for
Direct Support Professionals who provide critical supports for Marylanders
with developmental disabilities, IF the State provides the funding needed
to do so. DDA-licensed community agencies rely on state and federal
funding to provide quality supports to Marylanders with developmental
- The state currently factors approximately $9.86 per
hour in the rate paid to providers for Direct Support wages, which is
intended to cover the range of wages from entry level to those with the
- The last time the minimum wage was increased, DDA
funding for direct support wages lost significant ground. In FY 2007, the
DDA hourly wage factor was 77% higher than the minimum wage. In FY 2014,
the wage factor is only 36% higher than the minimum wage. Increasing the
minimum wage further without additional wage funding will make many direct
support positions minimum wage jobs. It will also make it more difficult
to recruit and retain quality direct support professionals.
- Increasing the minimum wage without an equivalent
increase in the DDA rate for wages would have a negative impact on
Marylanders with developmental disabilities. Direct support positions
should not be minimum wage jobs.
ACTION TO TAKE:
Email Governor Martin O'Malley. Governor O'Malley is expected to lead the
effort to increase the minimum wage, and only the Governor can put funding in
the budget. Ask the Governor to ensure that any effort to increase the minimum
wage also include funding to provide equivalent funding to increase direct
support wages through the Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA).
Mail letters to the presiding officers of the Maryland General Assembly (Senate
President Thomas V. Mike Miller, Jr. & House Speaker Michael E. Busch).
Feel free to handwrite a letter if possible. If mail is not an option, please
use email to communicate with President Miller and Speaker Busch. Ask them to
ensure that any legislative effort to increase the minimum wage also address
the need to increase funding for direct support staff in developmental
The Honorable Martin O'Malley
100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD
21401 Email: email@example.com
The Honorable Thomas V. Mike Miller,
State House, H-107 Annapolis, MD
The Honorable Michael E.
Speaker, Maryland House of
State House, H-101 Annapolis, MD
PLEASE BE SURE TO PERSONALIZE YOUR
LETTERS AND EMAILS!
Below are some message points, but
please use your own words as much as possible.
I support increasing the minimum
wage in Maryland contingent upon an equivalent increase in the direct support
professional rate paid to DDA community providers.
DDA community providers rely on
state and federal funding, and the state currently factors approximately $9.86
per hour in the rate paid for Direct Support wages.
The last time the minimum wage was
increased, DDA funding for direct support wages lost significant ground. FY
2007, the DDA hourly wage factor was 77% higher than the minimum wage. In FY
2014, the wage factor is now only 36% higher. Increasing the minimum wage
further without additional funding will make many direct support positions
minimum wage jobs. It will also make it more difficult to recruit and retain
quality direct support professionals.
Direct support staff provide
critical supports to Marylanders with developmental disabilities, and must meet
many requirements, including successfully completing state-mandated training,
becoming certified by the Board of Nursing in order to pass medications,
passing a math and reading test, undergoing a criminal background check, and
assisting people with daily activities that enable them to live and work in the
support positions should not be minimum wage jobs. Without an equivalent increase in the direct support wage
factor, many DDA direct support positions would become minimum wage jobs. DDA
providers already compete with employers who pay a similar wage for less
demanding jobs. Increasing the minimum wage without providing an equivalent
funding increase would further impact providers' and individuals' ability to
hire quality direct support professionals.
The Arc of Southern Maryland is no longer accepting requests for LISS funds due to the volume of requests that have already been received.
As a statewide program, funding for LISS is allocated for each region as designated by DDA - Western, Southern, Central, and Eastern Shore. To date, a high volume of LISS requests have been received for all regions which may commit the available funding for the current fiscal year.
Therefore, applications will no longer be accepted in these regions as of July 15th, 2013.
Due to the volume of requests, The Arc Prince George’s County anticipates that LISS funding will be fully utilized by the requests that have already been received.
LISS Program Funding
The Developmental Disabilities Administration (DDA) is pleased to announce that effective, July 1, 2013, $5.2 Million has been allocated for the DDA Low Intensity Support Services (LISS) program. Low Intensity Support Services (LISS) enable a family to provide for the needs of a child or an adult with developmental disabilities living in the home or to support an adult with developmental disabilities living in the community. The LISS program is flexible to meet the needs of people or families. LISS funds are available on a first-come, first-serve basis until all funds are allocated.
Request for LISS will be accepted beginning on July 1, 2013 via US Mail or in person at one of the DDA LISS agencies. Please be sure to complete the form in its entirety and submit the required documentation including a copy of the Social Security Card, proof of residency, and proof of a developmental disability. As per regulations, approval of services for eligible individuals is based on a first come first served basis and the availability of funds. Therefore no LISS Request forms will be accepted prior to July 1st and need to be dated July 1, 2013 or later. Please do not fax or email any Request Forms as they will not be processed.
Please share this information with your contacts, people with developmental disabilities, and families. The program is established under Maryland Health-General Article §7-717 and governed by COMAR 10.22.14. For additional information regarding LISS see the "Fact Sheet."
LISS FACT SHEET
DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES ADMINISTRATION
LOW INTENSITY SUPPORT SERVICES PROGRAM
What is LISS?
Low Intensity Support Services (LISS) is a statewide grant program designed to help an adult with developmental disabilities living in their home and families to provide for the needs of a child with a developmental disability living in the community. LISS are flexible, creative, preventive in nature, responsive, and time limited. LISS can help improve quality of life, support people to remain in their own homes, increase or maintain independence, and participate in their communities by providing assistance and financial resources.
Who is Eligible for LISS?
To be eligible for LISS an individual must be a Maryland resident, have a documented developmental disability, and currently not receiving DDA funding for full residential services.
What Services are covered under LISS?
The following services are covered under the program:
Ø Attendant Care services (including Personal Care)
Ø Community Integration Services
Ø Counseling, individual & family (if not covered by health insurance)
Ø Day Care
Ø Employment-related services
Ø Health Services, including dietetic & nutritional (letter of recommendation required)
Ø Housing Adaptations and barrier removals
Ø Housing assistance, including eviction assistance, utility disconnections, and deposits
Ø Identification services
Ø Medical equipment purchase, rental, and repair
Ø Recreation programs
Ø Respite Care (up to 45 days a year)
Ø Services to mediate, provide advice, or support the person or family to address their needs
Ø Specialized equipment and assistive technology (letter of recommendation required)
Ø Therapeutic services (letter of recommendation required)
Ø Training and support for self-advocacy
Ø Transportation (does not include purchase or down payment on a vehicle)
What is Not Covered under LISS?
The following services are not covered under the program:
Ø Case Management
Ø Gift Cards
Ø Presents (such as birthday and holiday gifts)
Ø Toys, except for therapeutic purposes
Ø Vehicle gas, tires, registration, or violation such as tickets and fines
Ø Purchase or down payment on a vehicle
Ø Reimbursements for items and/or services previously paid for by family or individual
How Does Someone Apply for LISS?
A LISS request form is completed and submitted along with supporting eligibility and request documents to one of the DDA LISS agencies for consideration.
Requests for LISS will be accepted beginning on July 1, 2013, via US Mail or in person at one of the DDA LISS agencies. It is important to complete the form in its entirety and submit the required documentation including a copy of the applicant’s Social Security Card, proof of residency, proof of a developmental disability, and a cost estimate for the requested service. As per regulations, approval of services for eligible individuals is based on a first come first served basis and the availability of funds. Therefore no LISS Request forms will be accepted prior to July 1st and need to be dated July 1, 2013 or later. Please do not fax or email any Request Forms as they will not be processed.
If you have a Resource Coordinator or case manager, you can seek assistance from them with completing and submitting your LISS application. You may also contact one of the LISS agencies for additional information or assistance. LISS agencies are listed on the DDA website at http://dda.dhmh.maryland.gov/SitePages/liss.aspx
The LISS Request form can also be found on the DDA Website at:
Ø http://dda.dhmh.maryland.gov/SitePages/LISS/2012/83975_LISSRequestForm_SPA%20REVISED.pdf (Spanish Version)
IMPORTANT: The LISS program is established under Maryland Health-General Article §7-717 and governed by COMAR 10.22.14. LISS is provided on a first come first served basis for services/supports up to $3,000 per fiscal year, per individual until all funding is allocated. LISS applications exceeding $3,000 will need to be approved by the DDA Regional Office. Regional Office will also need to approve any requests submitted from individuals receiving DDA services. Additional information about the LISS program is available on the DDA website at: http://dda.dhmh.maryland.gov/SitePages/liss.aspx
2013 Pat Collins Golf Tournament
The Arc’s Golf Classic Puts the “Fun” in Fundraising
More than $25,000 Raised for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities
The 11th Annual Pat Collins Golf Classic held May 23 at the Twin Shield Golf Club raised more than $25,000 on behalf of The Arc of Southern Maryland.
“Each year, I look forward to the Pat Collins Golf Classic and the opportunity to participate in a tournament that truly makes a difference,” said Gail Siegel. She continued, “As a board member, I have the unique opportunity to experience first-hand how The Arc touches lives.”
Sponsors for this year’s tournament include Captain Sponsors Alco Pharmacy, Bourne & Painter, Community Bank of Tri-County, Gail Siegel, O’Brien Realty, Jon S. Frank & Associates, Lusby Town Center, Merrill Lynch-Kevin Murphy, and PSA Insurance & Financial Services; Navigator Sponsor Mullen, Wimbish, Sondberg & Stone; “Hole-In-One” Sponsors Dickinson Jewelers and Winegardner Motor Company; Lunch Sponsors Lexington Park Dentistry, Shah Associates M.D., LLC and SMECO; and Beverage Sponsors Cherry Cove, CSC, Maertens Fine Jewelry, PNC Bank, Stephen D. Mattingly Insurance and Quality Built Homes.
Tee signs Sponsors include Charles Weber Co. Inc, CSM Foundation, Edward Jones-Jeff Quesenberry, Francis J. Collins Funeral Home, Friends of Mark Fisher, Granados Tire, GS Proctor & Associates, Herrington on the Bay, Jackie Morgan Day Spa, Main Street Printing, Marylanders for Mike Miller, Melwood, MRW Lawns, Inc, PNC Bank, Shawe & Rosenthal LLP, Southern Solutions, State Farm Insurance-Mike Paxson, The McNelis Group and Thomas K. Reinecker AIA.
Door prize were donated by Alexander Chiropractic Center, Baltimore Ravens, Big B. Liquors, Bowie Baysox, Calvert County Parks and Recreation, Chick-fil-A: Waldorf, Exxon Mobil-Chuck Shettle, Glenn Dale Golf Cub, Herrington on the Bay, Leonardtown Winery, Linda Fadely/Wine Shop at Home, Panera, Patuxent Wine Store, Proforma ABC, Sneade’s Ace Home Center, Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, Starbuck’s Prince Frederick, Washington Capitals and other prizes donated by Capital Foods, Carrie Polk/Nationwide Insurance, CSM, Main Street Printing and Smoothie King of Prince Frederick for the gift bags. Guffey Engineering sponsored the Women’s “Closest to Pin” and “Longest Drive” and Stephen D. Mattingly sponsored the Men’s “Closest to Pin” and “Merrill-Lynch the Men’s “Longest Drive” award.
The winning team, sponsored by Merrill Lynch-Kevin Murphy, consisted of Kevin Murphy, Don Schwikert, Pamela Schwikert, and Rick Schwikert. The second place team, organized by Lars Reinhart, consisted of Matt Hurley, Ed Magpuei, Reinhart and Eric Sererson. Other winners include Pamela Schwikert and Bill Mullikin, Closest to the Pin for Women and Men respectively. Harriet Yaffe and Steve Potter were the Women’s and Men’s Longest Drive winners respectively.
This annual event is held in honor of Pat Collins, a former Arc board president. Collins worked tirelessly for many years to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Southern Maryland.
For more than 35 years The Arc of Southern Maryland has provided support and services to families and individuals in Southern Maryland with intellectual and developmental disabilities. These services include but are not limited to providing residential housing, day programs, and employment support.
For information on The Arc of Southern Maryland, services, and employment opportunities call 410-535-2413 or visit www.arcsomd.org.
The Arc of Southern Maryland promotes community involvement, independence and personal success for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. For information about The Arc of Southern Maryland, call 410-535-2413 or visit www.arcsomd.org
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The Arc of Southern Maryland promotes community involvement, independence
and personal success for children and adults with intellectual and developmental
The Arc of Southern Maryland is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization,
donations to which are tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed
by law. A copy of the agency’s current nancial statement is available
for the cost of copies and postage, upon written request to The Arc
of Southern Maryland or from the Office of the Secretary of State,
State House, Annapolis, Maryland 21740.