THE ADVOCACY MONITOR: 2022 NCIL Advocacy Priorities Guide Now Available!
By SD Network, 2022-06-17
The National Council on Independent Living released its 2022 Advocacy Priorities Guide. This document contains specific information on the national legislative and policy priorities identified biannually by the NCIL membership, including funding for the Independent Living Program, healthcare and long-term care, housing, transportation, education, and more.
APPLIED SELF-DIRECTION:Core Standards for Information & Assistance Professionals in Self-Direction
By SD Network, 2022-06-06
The Core Standards for Information & Assistance Professionals in Self-Direction resource, developed with the generous sponsorship of Centene, is designed to provide information to states, managed care organizations, and other stakeholders regarding core competencies and skills for professionals providing Information and Assistance (I&A) in support of self-direction. I&A is essential for helping participants understand self-direction, navigate their program and its rules, and have a successful experience self-directing. An underpowered I&A function can limit not only a program’s growth and participant satisfaction but also its integrity, as one of the core functions of I&A is to provide additional program monitoring and safeguards.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: DOJ fact sheet: Enforcement actions – COVID-19 vaccine website accessibility issues
By SD Network, 2022-06-06
A new fact sheet from the Department of Justice (DOJ) reiterates earlier guidance on accessibility requirements for websites under the Americans with Disabilities Act and describes some of the enforcement actions taken by DOJ to address inaccessibility of COVID-19 vaccine websites. DOJ reached agreements with several companies to address issues that limited people with disabilities in using vaccine scheduling websites, such as required information (like first and last names, birthdates, and zip codes) not being “read” to users of screen readers, and available vaccination times not being available to “select” by people using keyboards.
The ADA requires that businesses provide people with disabilities full and equal access to services including those offered online. Similarly, state and local governments must not discriminate based on disability including in services and programs provided online. Both must ensure that they communicate effectively with people with disabilities. As the aging and disability network continue to assist people with disabilities access vaccines and boosters, any suspected violations of the ADA should be reported to the Department of Justice.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: New CMS resource: Public health emergency “unwinding period”
By SD Network, 2022-06-06
The Centers Medicare & Medicaid Services recently released a new resource to help states understand and meet legal requirements for Medicaid, the Basic Health Program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program when the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) ends.
With limited exemptions, states have not been allowed to disenroll Medicaid beneficiaries during the PHE. When the PHE ends, states will have to perform millions of redeterminations to see who is still eligible and who is not. To assist states with that work, the tool includes information on the requirements for eligibility renewals and redeterminations, application processing, fair hearings, coordination with the Marketplace, and other processes. It also highlights temporary options available to states during the unwinding period to facilitate eligibility and enrollment processing and to help retain coverage for eligible individuals.
It will require “all hands on deck” to ensure the PHE unwinding period goes smoothly to avoid harmful gaps in coverage for people who rely on Medicaid to stay well and independent. The aging and disability networks are critical partners in ensuring older adults and people with disabilities can continue to receive the supports and services they need without disruption.
- CMS website on Unwinding and Returning to Regular Operations After the COVID-19 Pandemic
- ACL information on PHE unwinding for the aging and disability networks.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: New Website Launched for Youth Alternatives to Guardianship
By SD Network, 2022-02-16
The Center on Youth Voice, Youth Choice (CYVYC) has launched a new website! CYVYC is a national youth resource center on alternatives to guardianship. It promotes the use of alternatives to guardianship nationally through research, self-advocacy, outreach, coalition building and education.
The new website features:
- a US map with information about alternatives to guardianship in different states;
- photos and bios of our Youth Ambassadors and a Youth Ambassador Training Curriculum;
- resources for many different audiences including ones written in plain language;
- stories about youth; and
- information on State Teams that are part of a national Community of Practice.
ACL POLICY ROUND UP:New ACL Fact Sheet: Insurance coverage of at-home COVID-19 tests
By SD Network, 2022-02-16
Along with vaccinations and sensible individual measures such as wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, and hand-washing, at-home COVID-19 tests are an important tool for stopping the spread of the virus. There now are several no-cost ways to get tested and to obtain at-home test kits to have on hand in case they’re needed. For people who need to purchase additional tests, health insurance may cover the cost (and assistance may be available for those who do not have insurance).The Administration for Community Living pulled together the basic details in this fact sheet.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: Current Vaccine and Booster Guidance
By SD Network, 2022-01-13
We've summarized the latest CDC guidance on vaccines and boosters below. Check our vaccination resources page for the latest guidance and resources.
Who? CDC now recommends booster shots for everyone 12 years old and older.
When? Depends on which vaccine you received initially:
- Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna: You should get a booster FIVE months after your last primary dose.
- Johnson & Johnson/Janssen: You should get a booster TWO months after your primary dose.
Which vaccine should you get?
- CDC recommends the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for children and either the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna boosters for adults, regardless of which shot(s) you got initially.
- Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine is NOT recommended except in limited circumstances.
- You do NOT need to boost with the same vaccine you received initially.
Additional Primary Doses for People who are Immunocompromised:
Who? Moderately or severely immunocompromised people five and older who received initial doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna vaccines.
When? 28 days after your second shot.
Which vaccine? Get the same vaccine you received for your first two doses. (CDC does NOT recommend mixing and matching for your additional dose).
Keep in mind: This is NOT the same as a booster shot, if you are 12 or older you should still get a booster shot after you complete your primary doses. In other words, you should get a booster five months after your third Pfizer or Moderna shot or two months after your single Johnson & Johnson shot.
Getting your vaccine or booster
- Find a vaccination site: Visit vaccines.gov, Text your ZIP code to 438829, or call 1-800-232-0233.
- Help for people with disabilities: The Disability Information and Assistance Line (DIAL) can be reached by calling 888-677-1199 or by emailing DIAL@n4a.org any time.
- Help for older adults: Call the Eldercare Locator at 800-677-1116 or visit the website to chat live or browse resources.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: Resources for Connecting Safely this Winter
By SD Network, 2021-12-16
To help programs support safe holidays and a healthy winter experience, here are select resources from ACL’s Senior Nutrition Program and its Nutrition and Aging Resource Center.
Real Program Practices
Local senior nutrition programs share their creative practices for engaging participants.
- Sullivan Senior Center's Grab & Go – Connecticut program offers holiday smiles and meals.
- Georgia's Senior BrushStrokes – Camden County Senior Center fosters creative connection.
Find more success stories from local programs across the country.
Program Reopening Resources
- Reopening Considerations
- Safety Signage and Communication Materials
- Reopening Resources List
- Reopening Experiences Network Discussion
For more on staying well this season, check out CDC’s Strategies for a Healthy and Safe Holiday Season.
WISCONSIN DISABILITY VOTE COALITION: Voting Rights are Human Rights: In Our Own Voices
By SD Network, 2021-07-31
Recently, the Wisconsin Disability Vote Coalition released a document of stories about how the new voting bills that were passed will impact those with disabilities. These bills will limit voter access even more than it already is.
ADMINISTRATION FOR COMMUNITY LIVING: Federal Programs Provide Assistance During COVID-19
By SD Network, 2021-06-26
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government has provided a range of programs to support individuals, families, and communities. While some of these programs are long-standing, others were formed in direct response to the challenges created or exacerbated by the public health emergency. As we continue to move forward towards a “new normal,” the following resources remain available for those in need:
- The Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) is a temporary Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program to help families and households struggling to afford internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic by providing discounts on service and devices.
- The Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program from the Department of the Treasury assists families that are unable to pay rent or utilities so they can remain in their homes during the pandemic.
- The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) from the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) provides federally funded assistance to cover home energy bills, energy crises, weatherization, and energy-related minor home repairs to eligible households.
- The Low Income Household Water Assistance Program (LIHWAP) from ACF is a new emergency program that provides funds to low-income households for water and wastewater bills, helps avoid water shut offs, and supports water system reconnections caused by missed payments during the pandemic.
- The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) provides monthly benefits that help families purchase healthy food from authorized retail food stores.