CfDC Minutes — February 5, 2014

Reminder: Next Council meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 5th at noon. Please note new location: Room 0205 LSA Building.

Attending: Special guests from PM&R: Darlene Klien, Jim Rowan, Ned Kirsch; Jack Bernard, Chair; Anna Ercoli Schnitzer, Coordinator/Scribe; Nancy Kaplan; Janet Keller; Margaret Goebel with Leader Dog;-in-training Darlene Nichols; Jane Vincent; Sue Bade; Jill Rice; Lloyd Shelton.

Introductions were made around the table.

Announcements:

Jane reported that a new specialist, a screen reader, has been hired to work with accessibility issues and is coming to Ann Arbor from California.

Anna reported that the theme for October's Investing in Ability is ADDICTION AS DISABILITY (coincidentally topic in all the news lately) with events beginning on October 20th. Intent is to educate, provide resources and support toward recovery, and de-stigmatize addictions.

Discussion:

Special guests from MedRehab presented their ideas for a new transitional program with goal to find and fit into resources that already exist, explaining that they are meeting and have already met with various local groups (MRS, CIL, WISD, CSTS, etc.) to get "the lay of the land" and to understand who the providers are that offer services for the transition (youth to adult) population with disability issues. The Department would like to find out how these groups work with each other and what the role of the Department can be given those already existing services, thus discovering what will be possible for the MedRehab team to provide with their expertise in view of the reimbursement environment and the resources available. The UM community with 40K, employees comprises every possible available job and adaptive technology is readily available on campus, so UM could be a perfect laboratory for placing youth-in-transition, given the proper resources and mentoring. Reorganization is occurring at MRS and Community Mental Health, which presents obstacles to individuals and can prevent them from receiving needed services. Project Search out of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital has 200 such installations around the country. http://www.cincinnatichildrens.org/service/p/project-search/default/

Members' Feedback: What steps for advocacy and independence for youth with disabilities? Job Accommodation Network could be helpful--askjan.org. Vocational assessment as a bridge to work. Medical model prevails. Legal difficulties present with changes (IDEA). Transitional education should start at 5 years of age and continue for 15 years. Medical profession should learn to put patient in a holistic context. Should there be an advisory committee of experts who have gone through this, e.g. Lloyd's newly-formed group of students?