The Friday Update is published on Friday mornings by Lon Mitchell, Public Information Manager of the Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities. You may subscribe by sending your email address. You may also read the Friday Update on the Board website and on the mobile app available from the Apple Store and from Google Play.
- Board approves 2020 Action Plan
- Proposed legal settlement will aid special education students in Toledo
- Job Postings
- Winter Weather Health & Safety Alert
- Critical need identified for victims of crime
- Special Recognition Award presented to Assured Health Services
- Board recognizes Miss Cue for inclusive activities
- Juice Williams nominated for NBA Unified team
- Fair Housing Center to conduct focus groups
- Register now for the Why Work Benefits You class
- Upcoming Events
- Worth Repeating
1. Board approves 2020 Action Plan
At its November 25th meeting, the Lucas County Board of DD approved the 2020 Action Plan. The Plan outlines goals and priorities for the coming year. Read the plan.
2. Proposed legal settlement will aid special education students in Toledo
Special education students from several Ohio school districts, including Toledo, are expected to receive additional academic support aimed at improving learning and testing outcomes under a proposed settlement of a 28-year lawsuit.
The proposed settlement was announced recently by Disability Rights Ohio, the Judge Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law and the Ohio Department of Education.
A Disability Rights Ohio analysis says only 38.5% of the students in those districts learned in integrated settings with students outside of special education, compared to 65.1% in other districts. The group says research shows a correlation between such integration and special education achievement. Read the official DRO release.
3. Job postings
To stay up-to-date on job openings with the Lucas County Board of DD, follow this link.
Manahan/Josina Lott Residential & Community Services is currently hiring 2nd and 3rd shift DSP’s (full time) and a 2nd and 3rd shift Direct Care Manager. Click here to apply.
This alert provides important information about safety precautions that ensure people with disabilities can manage seasonal challenges, such as travel and dangerous temperatures. Read the alert.
5. Critical need identified for victims of crime
Ohio’s newly formed Adult Advocacy Centers (AACs) have released a report that outlines the critical need for services, supports and protocols to help victims of crime with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) in the state. The report, entitled Needs Assessment: Fall 2019, summarizes a survey the AACs sent to 88 county boards of developmental disabilities over the summer, asking about crime victims and the services currently provided to adults with I/DD in their area. A total of 35 surveys were returned, representing all regions of the state.
The results indicate that once the county board has reported the crime to law enforcement, law enforcement becomes the lead agency. It is rare that those crimes are sent to a grand jury, and a collaborative infrastructure does not currently exist to help different agencies work together to improve those outcomes. There is also a lack of services that are focused on the unique trauma needs that often exist for crime victims with disabilities.
The report highlights these additional statistics:
- Only 17% of respondents reported that crimes against people with disabilities are fairly regularly taken to a grand jury in their county;
- Only 31% of respondents indicated that they are invited to participate in a Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) that works together to coordinate care and services for individuals who are victims of physical or sexual abuse;
- No respondents had support groups available specifically for crime victims with disabilities; and
- A full 51% of respondents indicated lack of resources as the biggest barrier to providing crime victim services to people with disabilities in their county.
Although these problems have long been suspected, the AAC survey is the first to try to better understand how they play out in Ohio. The resulting report makes it clear that Ohio needs a regional Multi-Disciplinary Team (MDT) model that focuses solely on adult crime victims with disabilities – a model the AACs are creating and will implement in its 10 regionally located centers.
Each center will provide space and coordination for an MDT that will include law enforcement, prosecutors, medical staff, victim advocates, mental health specialists, forensic interviewers and representatives from each of Ohio’s disability-specific agencies. An RV mobile unit with medical and a forensic interview room will also allow for the flexibility to serve people who need help, no matter where they are.
Those who are interested in learning more about the AACs’ plans and current work can click here.
6. Special Recognition Award presented to Assured Health Services
At the November 25th meeting, the Lucas County Board of DD presented its Special Recognition Award to Assured Health Services for its commitment to quality services. Assured Health’s main focus is to provide supports that are meaningful to their individuals by having a stellar and engaging environment at their day services setting.
Assured Health has instituted a monthly photo contest that challenges staff to submit pictures of how they are supporting people on their outcomes and desires. Regularly, individuals are seen at sporting events such as, Mud Hens Baseball and Walleye Hockey events. The individuals also enjoy other community venues such as parks, bowling, playing pool, mini race tracks, and the Zoo.
The County Board and Provider Supports Department want to thank Assured Health Services for top notch services provided to the individuals being served.
7. Board recognizes Miss Cue for inclusive activities
At its November 25th meeting, the Lucas County Board of Developmental Disabilities was pleased to recognize Miss-Cue Sports Cafe as a community partner, especially noting the Inclusive Pool League program.
For the past 10 years, Miss-Cues Sports Café has operated the Community Inclusive Pool League on Thursday nights. Owner Dan Martin says the inclusion league was started in February 2009 as an eleven week trial. Thanks to large turnouts and enthusiasm for the initial league, Dan decided to keep it going for a second session. Miss-Cue now operates three eleven week sessions with an award night on the last week. Participants are awarded prizes ranging from pool cues to participation certificates dependent upon their participation levels.
Dan Martin reports over the years, many of his regular customers have developed friendships with our participants.
This year Miss-Cue Sports Cafe was a Gold Sponsor for the Special Olympics Golf Outing in May.
Lucas County Special Olympics has nominated Juice Williams to play in the NBA Cares Special Olympics Unified Basketball Game in 2020. If selected, Juice would represent the state of Ohio. A short video about Juice was submitted as part of the nomination process. View the video here.
9. Fair Housing Center to conduct focus groups
The Fair Housing Center will be conducting two focus group sessions to seek community input on the factors that prevent members of our community from accessing safe, affordable, decent housing in neighborhoods of opportunity. This information will be included in the City of Toledo’s 2020 Analysis of Impediments that identifies barriers to fair housing choice.
Community leaders, service providers, and advocates are invited to join one of the following sessions:
Wednesday, December 4
1:30 – 3 p.m.
Kent Branch Library
Wednesday, December 4
5:30 – 7 p.m.
The next Why Work Benefits You class will be December 14 and includes lunch! You’ll learn, among other things, about keeping your SSI/SSDI while working and about keeping your health benefits. Click here for registration information.
11. Upcoming Events
December 10 – Friend Blend
December 19 – Guys and Gals Night Out
12. Worth Repeating
“To be good, and to do good, is all we have to do.” -John Adams