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Marin CIL Blog:
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Federal Court Rules NYC Must Make Intersections Accessible, Opportunities for Youth, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 28, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters,
I hope you all are doing well today. Today I woke up before Reveille (meaning way before my alarm). Today was a two cup of coffee day to get my motor running……and I’m not talking about my powerchair motor. Enjoy this blog read. There are several opportunities for you to get involved. Feel free to reach out to me anytime if I can be of assistance to you. Sending you a smile!

County of Marin Update
Weekly Blueprint Update: Marin Moves to Tier 3 Status
With improving COVID-19 figures, Marin County graduated from “red” to “orange” status within the State of California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy, allowing some businesses to reopen for the first time while others can expand their operating capacity.
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) moved the county from Tier 2 or “substantial risk” status to the less restrictive Tier 3 or “moderate risk” level. Fewer daily cases, a reduction in the proportion of positive tests among those who are tested, and progress in addressing the County’s lowest-income communities factored in to the state’s determination. Marin’s high rate of testing combined with a measured approach to reopening has contributed to the orange status achievement.
Current Tier 3 business sector guidelines are available Marin Recovers website. All open businesses must complete a COVID-19 Site-Specific Protection Plan prior to reopening under Tier 3 restrictions. Guidance for the plan also is found on the Marin Recovers website.
See the news release for an explanation about what the means for local businesses.
 
VIDEO: Message from the Public Health Officer
Today, Dr. Willis provides a special message about Marin’s Tier 3 achievement and an overview of what that means for our businesses, some of the factors that led to our success, details about our new “Risk Reduction Order” and more.
WATCH ON YOUTUBE
 
In Other News… (Non-COVID Updates)
While the following is not related to COVID, it is news from Marin County's Emergency Operations Center that we thought you should know about.
‘Red Flag’ Warning in Marin Concludes at 5 PM Tuesday
The National Weather Service’s Red Flag Warning for Marin ends at 5:00 PM Tuesday, although dry conditions are expected to remain at least until Thursday. A Red Flag Warning means critical fire weather conditions are expected during the time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. The chance of rain increases on Friday, October 30, but residents should still exercise extreme caution because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire.
Community Conversation
Community Conversation with Public Health on Thursday, October 29th from 1:30-2:30PM. The conversation will center on the release of the School Status Dashboard and the implications of the Tiered System for our schools. A Q&A with Public Health will follow as well.
 Please pass this onto your school communities sharing far and wide. Questions can be submitted to superintendentsoffice@marinschools.org.
 Link to join the webinar: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87282219625?pwd=SUNVZzByZWc1S24zOCt0WDRZV3p0dz09
Dial In: +1 669 900 6833 | Webinar ID: 872 8221 9625 | Passcode: 913910
Presented in English with Live Spanish Translation. Session will be recorded in English and Spanish.
 Information also on our Rethinking Schools Website.

Sharing from the Marin Volunteer Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD)

Marin Community Clinic Covid-19 Testing
Beginning November 2nd,  for the month of November, drop-in COVID testing at Marin Community Clinics in San Rafael will be on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1:00 - 3:00pm. MCC will also be doing testing by appointment for MCC registered patients. Please see attached flyer for more information.


Vivalon Caring Calls
Vivalon (formerly Whistlestop) led a successful CaringCalls program during the shelter in place with high school students calling older adults all over Marin County. This was a very successful program of weekly social phone visits that reduced the feelings of social isolation for both groups during this unprecedented time of physical isolation. The program was a pilot that ended two months ago and it received high marks from both the older adult and student participants.
 Vivalon has redesigned and refined the program and will be launching the new program in 2 weeks. They are looking for older adults who wish to participate. This does not detract from any city, town, or NRG efforts that you may already be implementing. This simply adds to the connections a socially isolated older adult and teenager may be needing. 
Caring Calls: Join our Intergenerational Social Phone Visiting Program! And help a caring high school student earn volunteer hours. Share your experiences, stories, and insights. Create a vital social connection during this time of isolation. Call 415-456-9062 to learn more or sign up
Vivalon: 930 Tamalpais Ave San Rafael, CA (415) 456-9062. Vivalon.org
Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal
Marin’s coronavirus rules eased as county moves to ‘orange’ reopening tier
By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |
PUBLISHED: October 27, 2020 at 3:08 p.m. | UPDATED: October 28, 2020 at 7:11 a.m.
Marin health officials on Tuesday loosened the county’s COVID-19 public health order, easing restrictions on businesses as Marin advanced to the next phase in California’s economic reopening system.
Beginning immediately, retail stores, indoor malls, libraries and offices can open indoors at full capacity, county health officials said.
Restaurants, museums, churches and movie theaters can open indoors up to 50% capacity or 200 people, whichever is fewer. Gyms, family entertainment centers, wineries and card rooms can open indoors at 25% capacity or up to 100 people. Bars and breweries are allowed to open outdoors.
Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer, said he has downgraded the “shelter-in-place” order that has been in place since March 17 to a “risk reduction” order. The announcement followed Marin’s move into the state’s “orange” tier, indicating coronavirus risk is “moderate.”
“Along with the shift into orange, we’re shifting our approach to the order, because it doesn’t make much sense to call it shelter-in-place when so many activities are allowable,” Willis said. “Instead of policies, it’s going to be more and more up to individual judgement and behavior.”
Source: Marin’s coronavirus rules eased as county moves to ‘orange’ reopening tier

Thousands in Marin see the light as power returns countywide
By ADRIAN RODRIGUEZ | arodriguez@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal
PUBLISHED: October 27, 2020 at 8:43 a.m. | UPDATED: October 28, 2020 at 7:12 a.m.
Part of Tuesday was another day in the dark for about 3,500 Marin customers who remained offline amid Pacific Gas and Electric Co.’s latest round of planned shutdowns.
The utility said Tuesday morning about 90 meters around Woodacre, Lagunitas and San Geronimo, 3,035 in Fairfax, 219 in Mill Valley and 147 in Sausalito were still off the grid. PG&E was set to turn lights back for remaining Marin customers by late Monday.
Once PG&E crews received word that the weather had passed, two helicopters and ground crews were dispatched to patrol the county for wind-related damage, said Deanna Contreras, spokeswoman for the utility.
Power to all of Marin County was restored by early Tuesday afternoon.
At its height, approximately 14,000 PG&E customers in Marin were in the dark Sunday as severe weather swept through Northern California, raising the fire risk for the region.
Approximately 900 customers in West Marin, including 822 in Stinson Beach, who were not supposed to be included in the public safety power shutoff mistakenly had their power cut, too, the utility said.
Source: Thousands in Marin see the light as power returns countywide

Sharing from the California State Independent Living Council (SILC)
The California Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities (CCEPD) staff office is now accepting applications for the 2021 Virtual Youth Leadership Forum for Students with Disabilities (YLF).
YLF is a six-day summer self-advocacy and leadership development program for students with disabilities, which includes post-YLF workshops after the weeklong event (workshop dates and times to be determined). The 2021 YLF is tentatively on July 11 –16 virtually using the Zoom platform. If it is safe to do so, and pending budget availability, part of the YLF may be in-person in Sacramento. All selected delegate’s expenses are sponsored through a public-private partnership.
 Students must complete an application, write an essay and provide letters of recommendations. Students will also be interviewed by a YLF partner team in their local communities. This is a competitive process and not all students will be selected. Applicants must be sophomores, juniors or seniors during the 2020-21 school year ending by June 30 to be eligible to apply.
 YLF applications must be completed electronically and emailed to ylf@dor.ca.govThe deadline to apply is December 18, 2020.
 The 2021 application and related documents, including an outreach flyer, can be found at https://www.dor.ca.gov/Home/YLF
 For other questions, please call the CCEPD office at 855-894-3436 or email us at YLF@dor.ca.gov.

A Tidbit from Me: I am privileged to serve on the California Committee on the Employment of People with Disabilities through my role as Chair of the California State Independent Living Council. YLF is a fabulous program.

Sharing from Disability Rights California
Making Vote-by-Mail More Accessible: How to Vote from Home Privately and Independently
When: October 29, 2020
Learn how to vote privately and independently safely from your home using your own computer, or other personal electronic device, with your own accessible technology and a printer.
Register Here
 
Achieve A Better Life Experience (ABLE) Through A CalABLE Account
When: November 3, 2020
If you want to buy a car or a house and you receive SSI benefits, now you can! The California ABLE Act now allows you to save up to $100,000 without impacting your monthly SSI payments. Join us to learn how you can get your own CalABLE account and start saving for your future.
Register Here

Another Tidbit from Me for Transparency: The California State Independent Living Council is one of the member agencies that serves on the CalABLE Board.

Sharing from Disability Rights Advocates

Federal Court Rules NYC Discriminates Against Blind and Low Vision Pedestrians by Failing to Make Crosswalk Signals Accessible
Click here for case documents
Court Decision will Dramatically Remake NYC’s Streetscape by Making Pedestrian Safety Accessible to People with Disabilities
Read the decision here
New York, NY – In a decision that will remake the streetscape of New York City and improve safety and accessibility for all New Yorkers, a federal court ruled today that New York City’s failure  to provide accessible pedestrian signals (APS) at 96.6 % of its signalized intersections violates the civil rights of people with disabilities. APS are push-button devices attached to crosswalks that convey visual crossing information in audible and vibro-tactile formats accessible to blind, low vision, and Deafblind pedestrians.
New York City has over 13,200 signalized intersections with signals for sighted pedestrians that convey critical safety information: WALK or DON’T WALK. Yet only 443 of those 13,200 intersections—less than 4%—have APS that convey this information to blind people. Blind and low vision pedestrians are put in danger every time they must cross a street without APS, because they may cross against the light, in the path of cars. Additionally, the lack of APS denies them their independence and dignity. Plaintiffs have been grabbed by well-meaning strangers attempting to help them across the street and forced to cross only in crowds and wait several lights—sometimes as long as twenty minutes—to make sure they are crossing with others. Some have avoided walking altogether by taking buses and getting out a stop early or a stop late in order to avoid particularly unsafe intersections or taking longer routes.
Disability Rights Advocates (DRA) filed this class action lawsuit, American Council of the Blind of New York, et al. v. New York City, in June 2018 because this unlawful system denies blind and low vision pedestrians their independence to navigate city streets safely: to visit friends and family; go to work, school, or home; or shop or do business. On July 22, 2019, the Court certified a class of blind and low vision pedestrians harmed by these practices.
“For decades New York City has ignored the needs of blind and low vision pedestrians, while simultaneously touting its Vision Zero commitments to pedestrian safety,” said Torie Atkinson, Staff Attorney at Disability Rights Advocates. “The city has spent millions on pedestrian safety improvements, and now for the first time those improvements will be accessible to all New Yorkers. With accessible pedestrian signals, blind and low vision pedestrians can cross the street confidently, and we are thrilled with the dramatic changes that this victory will mean not only for those who are blind or low vision, but for all New Yorkers who want safer streets.”
“ACBNY has tirelessly advocated for decades to fix New York City’s widespread inaccessibility to blind and Deafblind pedestrians,” said Lori Scharff of the American Council of the Blind of New York, plaintiff in this case. “We are pleased that the Court’s ruling will help ensure that our blind and Deafblind constituents have equal access to the same information available to sighted pedestrians.”
“As someone who is Deafblind and requires tactile information to cross streets safely, I am thrilled by the Court’s ruling,” said plaintiff Christina Curry. “Up until now, at least once a day I almost get hit by a car because there is no APS telling me when it is safe to cross. This victory means that finally the city will have to install APS so that I and tens of thousands of Deafblind New Yorkers will have access to street crossing information and be able to travel safely, freely, and independently throughout the city.”
Plaintiffs do not seek money damages. They seek only that New York City’s street crossings be accessible to and safer for blind and low vision pedestrians.
Another Tidbit from Me: I am a person who uses a power wheelchair and has been struck by vehicles, often while utilizing the crosswalk. Thankfully all my injuries have been minor. While this case talks about pedestrian crossings in the city of New York it is important to know that this is a key access issue in California and throughout our nation.

DRC’s 2020 Virtual Gala
Join us for our first ever virtual gala on Thursday October 29th 2020 at 5PM PT/ 8PM ET for an inspiring celebration of DRA’s high-impact work and the 30th anniversary of the ADA.
This year our event is virtual and FREE to all. Registration recommended for exclusive event updates.
Visit us back here to watch the live program.
DRA 2020 VIRTUAL GALA 
Thursday, October 29th, 2020 
5 PM PT/ 8 PM ET 
Accessibility information: All audio will be captioned and have ASL interpretation. 
Please get in touch if you have accessibility questions or requests at gala@dralegal.org
DRA 2020 Virtual Gala



Another tidbit from Me for Transparency: I have been a client of DRA a few times over the years. They are one of my favorite “Freedom Fighters”.

About Disability Rights Advocates: With offices in New York and California, Disability Rights Advocates is the leading nonprofit disability rights legal center in the nation. Its mission is to advance equal rights and opportunity for people with all types of disabilities nationwide. DRA represents people with all types of disabilities in complex, system-changing, class action cases. DRA is proud to have upheld the promise of the ADA since our inception. Thanks to DRA’s precedent-setting work, people with disabilities across the country have dramatically improved access to education, health care, employment, transportation, disaster preparedness planning, voting, and housing. For more information, visit dralegal.org.

Sharing from the Department of Rehabilitation (DOR)
The Department of Rehabilitation is seeking applications and nominations for its Assistive Technology Advisory Council (ATAC).
C A L I F O R N I A ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY ADVISORY COUNCIL
The Department of Rehabilitation is seeking applications and nominations to
serve on the Assistive Technology Advisory Council.
About the Assistive Technology Advisory Council:
The Assistive Technology Advisory Council (ATAC) is established pursuant to Section
4(c)(2) of the Assistive Technology Act of 2004 (AT Act). AT Act programs all have a
public agency that serves as the Lead Entity. The Department of Rehabilitation (DOR)
was designated by the governor as the Lead Entity and controls and administers the
funds, submits the application, and implements other duties required of AT Act
programs.
The AT Act describes the requirement to establish an advisory council “to provide
consumer-responsive, consumer-driven advice to the State for, planning of,
implementation of, and evaluation of the activities carried out through the grant,
including setting the measurable goals described in subsection (d)(3).”
The primary functions of the ATAC are:
• To serve as ambassadors of the AT Act Program
• To assist with the development of the three-year State Plan for Assistive
Technology (SPAT) submitted to the Administration on Community Living, US
Department of Health and Human Services
• To assist the program with implementing and evaluating the activities
identified in the SPAT and suggesting amendments, if needed, based on the
Annual Progress Report (APR)
• To provide a stakeholder voice about issues related to access to, and
acquisition of, assistive technology in California
• To provide input to other agencies and or partners in order to improve AT
services within California
Composition:
In accordance with Section 4(c)(2) of the AT Act, the advisory council is to be a
consumer-majority body, that is, with at least 51 percent individuals who are people
with disabilities who are users of assistive technology devices and services. The AT
Act prescribes a set of representatives from agencies and organizations, including:
• A representative of the designated State agency as defined in section 7 of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (e.g. the vocational rehabilitation (VR) agency);
• A representative of the State agency for individuals who are blind, if such an agency
is separate;
• A representative of a State center for independent living under title VII of the
Rehabilitation Act of 1973;
• A representative of the State workforce investment board established under section
111 of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; and
• A representative of the State educational agency as defined in section 9101 of the
Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
Members of the ATAC shall reflect the diversity of California “with respect to race,
ethnicity, types of disabilities across the age span,” as well as the types of AT devices
and services used by its citizens with disabilities.
Responsibilities of members include:
• Attend and actively participate in all Assistive Technology Advisory Council (ATAC)
meetings;
• Serve as a liaison between the State’s AT Act program and entity they represent
(including state agencies and the community as a whole), promoting and sharing
the State’s AT programs' mission and resources;
• Participate in identification and exploration of new opportunities to increase access
to, and acquisition of, assistive technology devices and services, especially those
involving partnerships with diverse stakeholders;
• Assist in educating others about AT devices and services through the state AT Act
program (and other resources as appropriate);
• Participate in reviewing the State program's efforts and achievements of its goals;
and,
• Support the establishment/maintenance/improvement of state and federal laws and
policies that promote access to and acquisition of assistive technology
Would you like to serve?
The DOR Director-appointed ATAC consists of a diverse membership interested in,
and representative of, Californians who are persons with disabilities who use assistive
technology or are family members of persons with disabilities who use assistive
technology. The DOR Director appoints representatives of specified entities to a threeyear term.
All qualified applicants are urged to apply. If interested, please see the instructions
below and complete the attached application.
There are multiple ATAC consumer vacancies. This recruitment will strive to select
individuals representing the following populations of people who utilize assistive
technology:
• Blind and visually impaired
• Deaf and hard of hearing
• Developmental disabilities
• Physical disabilities
• Other disabilities
• Representative of people aged 60 and older
• Representative of people aged 14 to 23
• Representative of a person with a disability, such as a family member or guardian
of a person with a disability, who uses assistive technology
How to apply for appointment by the DOR Director to serve on the ATAC:
1. Complete the application and provide your resumé.
2. E-mail the application and your resumé to Karl Ortega at
Karl.Ortega@dor.ca.gov.
3. Sign and mail your application and resumé to:
Department of Rehabilitation
Attn: AT Program, Karl Ortega
721 Capitol Mall
Fourth Floor
Sacramento, CA 95814
Questions? Please email Karl.Ortega@dor.ca.gov.

Another Tidbit from Me for Transparency: I was recently honored to be appointed by Governor Newsom to represent the California SILC on the State Rehabilitation Council. The SRC, in collaboration with the DOR and other community partners, reviews and analyzes policies, programs and services, and advises DOR on the quality and performance in meeting the Department’s mission.
 

Today its about PSPS, Voting, EVV, Legislative Hearings, Equity in Aging Webinar, Upholding Rights


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 27, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters,
There is a lot to cover in today’s PM Morning Report. So here we go on this crisp Tuesday…
Have a wonderful day!

County of Marin Update
Plan for Safe Halloween and Día de los Muertos Celebrations
Halloween and Dia de los Muertos are upon us.  Celebrations are going to look differently this year, as California Department of Public Health is discouraging trick-or-treating, indoor parties, and large outdoor gatherings.  However, there are plenty of safe alternatives to ensure you have a FUN and safe celebration.
Whether planning a virtual costume party, touring your neighborhood in search of the best decorated home, visiting Marin Center’s Spooktacular Halloween Food Drive-Thru event, or participating in some other alternative, keep it safe by following Marin Public Health’s guidance for Halloween and Dia de los Muertos.
Marin County District Attorney, Lori Frugoli, issued a statement today with some additional tips for safely walking or driving around your neighborhood this weekend:

  • If you are doing car-based tours of decorations, be extra alert for other vehicles backing out of driveways or leaving parking spaces.
  • The days are getting shorter. Be visible and carry a flashlight or reflective vest if you are out at dusk or at night so drivers can see you.
  • Stick to familiar, well-lit routes.
  • Only cross the street at crosswalks or corners where it is safe. Always look left, right, then left again before crossing.
  • Watch for pedestrians and yield to them at all crosswalks.
 
Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin power outages persist into night
By ADRIAN RODRIGUEZ | arodriguez@marinij.com, LORENZO MOROTTI | lmorotti@marinij.com and KERI BRENNER | kbrenner@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal PUBLISHED: October 26, 2020 at 10:47 a.m. | UPDATED: October 27, 2020 at 6:55 a.m.

Many Marin County residents who woke up without electricity on Monday morning remained without power well into the night.
Nearly 14,000 meters in the county were deactivated Sunday night during the massive regional outage engineered by Pacific Gas and Electric Co. The utility cut power to tens of thousands of meters across Northern California to reduce the wildfire risk as violent winds whipped across the severely parched state.
Large sections of Marin still had the power shut off until at least 9 p.m. Monday, according to the utility’s website.
The outages included 2,325 customers in Mill Valley; 2,960 in Fairfax; one in Novato, 595 in Ross; 810 in San Anselmo and 72 in Sausalito. There were also some 7,046 customers affected in unincorporated communities, including 10 in Kentfield and two in Muir Beach, according to PG&E.
Approximately 900 customers in West Marin, including 822 in Stinson Beach, who were not supposed to be included in the public safety power shutoff mistakenly had their power cut, too, the utility said.
“We know how important it is to have access to reliable power during these times, and we apologize for the confusion and the inconvenience,” said Deanna Contreras, a spokeswoman for PG&E. “We are looking into how this happened to improve our processes in the future.”
PG&E was set to turn lights back for remaining Marin customers by 10 p.m. Monday, Contreras said.
Late last week, in anticipation of winds that could bring the worst fire conditions of the season, the utility warned it would turn off power to some 500,000 customers to limit the threat of fires sparked by power lines.
By Sunday, the plan was scaled back to about 360,000 customers across 36 counties and 17 tribal communities, sparing some 100,000 homes and businesses in Northern California.
Citing hazardous winds and extremely low humidity, the National Weather Service extended a “red flag warning” for Marin County from 5 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday. A separate warning was in effect for the North Bay mountains, which included Marin County peaks, through 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Source: Marin power outages persist into night
Another Tidbit from Me: I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere thanks and gratitude to the entire Marin CIL team for such a stupendous job not only through Covid-19 but with this past PSPS response in support of our communities. Marin CIL staff reached out to community members with disabilities and older adults who depend on power. Our staff reached out to hotels to check on the availability of rooms for those who rely on sustainable power and require more than a battery to be safe during a PSPS.  We also assisted community members in picking up batteries and for those who could not pick up the batteries we delivered batteries to their homes.  Marin CIL staff answered questions and did a little hand holding though an encouraging word their work was stellar; I am really proud of our team! Marin CIL has distributed 148 batteries including 54 batteries in preparation for this past PSPS. If you don’t mind me saying: We Rocked!

Sharing from Disability Rights California
Federal Court Rules that Lawsuit by Deaf Californians with Developmental Disabilities Can Move Forward
Oct 26, 2020
(San Francisco, CA) A federal judge has ruled that a lawsuit challenging discrimination against deaf Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities (“I/DD”) can go forward. The California Department of Developmental Services (DDS) had asked the court to dismiss the case. Click here to read the court’s order denying the motion to dismiss.
Deaf people who depend on critical regional center services that DDS funds and administers filed the lawsuit. Regional centers provide services and supports to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD). DDS oversees and funds these centers. The plaintiffs say that DDS discriminates against them because the state agency has not made sure that their programs provide effective communication, including interpreters and staff who use sign language. As a result, many deaf regional center consumers are isolated and cannot communicate with their staff or peers in their group homes, day programs, and other settings.  This lawsuit seeks system-wide change and an end to discrimination against deaf people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
In asking to dismiss the lawsuit, DDS argued that it was not responsible for any discrimination by local regional centers. U.S. District Court Judge Susan Illston disagreed with DDS and said that “DDS is charged with ensuring ‘the regional centers operate in compliance with federal and state law and regulation,’ including by ‘tak[ing] all necessary actions’ to secure compliance.”
“The Court’s order recognizes that DDS has a clear responsibility under the law to protect the rights of all regional center consumers, including those who are deaf,” said DRA staff attorney Meredith Weaver. “We hope that DDS accepts that responsibility and makes the changes necessary to end the discrimination that our clients and other deaf Californians with I/DD experience on a daily basis.” 
“Our clients have lived in isolation for years without access to people who can communicate with them,” said Melinda Bird, Senior Litigation Counsel at Disability Rights California. “The Court’s order demonstrates that DDS cannot continue to shirk its responsibility to our clients by hiding behind its contracted regional centers.”
The case is McCullough, et al. v. Cal. Dept. of Developmental Servs., et al., Civ. No. 3:20-cv-02958-SI (N.D. Cal.) and was filed on April 30, 2020.
Source: Federal Court Rules that Lawsuit by Deaf Californians with Developmental Disabilities Can Move Forward

Another Tidbit from me: I am a person who receives Regional Center Services in order to access Long-Term Services and Supports that keep me independent and doing all the things I do. While I honor both the individuals and agencies that make is possible for me to be me the fact that my Deaf brothers and sisters with Intellectual/ Developmental Disabilities have to go to federal court to compel Regional Centers to provide interpreters in order to have equitable access to Regional Center Services makes me both sad and angry. This hard fought RIGHT was won years ago. This illustrates once again that even though there are laws that are suppose to protect the rights of people with disabilities often agencies do not follow the law. We often have no other choice but to utilize the court process to enforce both equal and equitable access.

Sharing from the California Department of Aging:

The CA Department of Aging is pleased to announce our upcoming Ensuring Equity in Aging webinar series! We invite state and local departments and agencies, CBO’s, and other service providers to attend and would appreciate it if you could share this information with your service provider networks.  Our first webinar, Culturally Informed Care: Honoring Native Elders, will feature April McGill of the California Consortium for Urban Indian Health and Kori Novak of Toiyabe Indian Health Project who will discuss policies impacting the health and well-being of California's Native peoples and best practices for providing culturally informed services and care, both in rural and urban environments, to Native elders. Time will be reserved for Q&A.
 Register in advance for the Nov 4th Honoring Native Elders webinar:
https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_JiDH5NFYSMmE2WQkYzkvdA
 This is a peer-led series, so it is by and for providers. Presentations will cover a range of topics, including the value of cultural traditions and harnessing community strengths and assets, as well as how historic and systemic discrimination and internal biases harm the wellbeing of Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC); LGBTQ; disabled adults, and in different ways, all Californians. Speakers will address how we can work together to address the resulting inequities through culturally responsive policy, program, and service planning and delivery.
 
Anticipated Webinar Outcomes
 
  1. Increased understanding of how historical and systemic discrimination and internal biases impact the wellbeing of older adults and people with disabilities.
  2. Improved self-efficacy regarding ability to positively impact the wellbeing of older adults, people with disabilities, and community members through culturally responsive service delivery.
  3. Increased awareness of potential organizational improvements that would result in a more inclusive, diverse, and culturally responsive workplace.
  4. Knowledge of tools and resources promoting equity in aging through program and policy planning and service delivery.
 
Join us every first Wednesday (10-11am) through July 2021. Let's learn together how we can help make our communities more just places to live and build a California for ALL Ages. More information on these webinars, as well as equity in aging resources, can be found in CDA’s recent Together We Engage newsletter.

Sharing from the County of Marin
Elections Department Open this Weekend
Residents can register and vote from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday
San Rafael, CA – The Marin County Elections Department will be ready to assist residents with registering and voting on Saturday and Sunday, October 31 and November 1, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Voters may come to the Civic Center office in San Rafael to drop off their vote-by-mail ballot as well.
“The response to this election has been considerable, and we want to ensure residents have every opportunity to register and vote in the office,” said Registrar of Voters Lynda Roberts. “We want every vote to count.”
Roberts said ballots for the November 3 General Election have been coming in steadily and she has a few reminders.
In addition to signing the ballot return envelope, remember that it must be postmarked on or before November 3, Election Day.
If a voter decides not to mail a ballot, there are other return options:
  • Return a filled-out ballot in the signed envelope to the Elections Department drop box available weekdays during regular business hours, available this coming weekend, or on Election Day between 7 a.m. and 8 p.m.
  • Return a filled-out ballot in the signed envelope to any polling location in Marin during the early voting days starting October 31 or before 8 p.m. on Election Day. Locations and hours of operation are posted on the Elections Department website.
  • Use one of the convenient and secure drop boxes found throughout the county by 8 p.m. Election Day.
Voters can track their ballot by signing up for Where’s My Ballot on the Secretary of State’s website.
The Elections Department is in Suite 121, Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael. For more information, call the Elections Department at 415-473-6441.
You have subscribed to News Releases & Advisories for Marin County. This information has recently been updated.
Visit the Newsroom to view all County news releases.
A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL participates on the Marin County Elections Advisory Committee. To get involved in Marin CIL’s civic engagement initiatives including voting. Feel free to reach out to Marin CIL.
  

Sharing from CFILC
Election 2020: Educate and Activate Voters with Disabilities
The DOnetwork is harnessing the power of the disability community in California to educate and activate disabled voters. We are engaging people with disabilities and our allies to increase participation in 2020 Primary Elections. This election may be one of the most important in our lives with the future of healthcare, transportation funding, education and access to jobs at stake for people with disabilities.
People with disabilities with disabilities make up almost a quarter of all voters, and when you add our family members our voting block accounts for half of all voting households nationwide. We are a powerful voting group with the ability to affect the outcome of many elections if we all turnout to vote.
Whether you are a person with a disability, a family member, caregiver or an ally, you are an important part of the disability community and voting bloc. This page will provide you with the resources you need to vote and help others to turn out and vote on Election Day, Tuesday November 3, 2020.
VIDEO: Vote Centers and Accessibility

Sharing from the Autistic Self Advocacy Work: Plain Language Voting
How to Vote by Mail
This year, voting by mail is more important than ever. It keeps us safe from the pandemic and lets us make our voices heard! But it can be confusing. There are lots of different steps. That’s why we’re excited to announce a new plain language toolkit, all about voting by mail! We explain the basics of mail-in voting in plain language. Plus, the 50 state guide will give you everything you need to know about your state’s requirements and deadlines for mail-in voting. This toolkit covers many important topics about mail-in voting, including:
  • How to request your ballot
  • Important election dates in your state
  • Who has to sign your ballot
  • How to make sure your ballot is accepted
This plain language guide has two parts. The first part, “How to Vote by Mail“, gives an overview of how voting by mail works and answers many common questions about voting by mail. The information in this part of the guide applies broadly to every state, no matter where you live. The second part, “How to Vote by Mail: A State-by-State Guide“, has everything you need to know in order to vote by mail in your state.
How to Vote: In Plain Language
Sharing from the Department of Social Services
Make Your Voice Heard!
The California Department of Social Services invites you to participate in an upcoming stakeholder conference call:
EVV Stakeholder Meeting – Live In Provider Update
Date: Monday November 2, 2020
Time:  2:00-3:30 pm
Conference Line:  888-946-7603 
Participant Code: 7752374
 
To sign up and attend the webinar broadcast you must register ahead of time:
 Click the webinar link below, or copy into your web browser, and follow the steps to register.   https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4260625560377157136
You will receive a confirmation email with a link to the webinar once you have registered.
 On the day of your webinar broadcast do the following:
 Go to your confirmation email and select the link to join the webinar.
  • Call the phone number listed on your confirmation email 15 minutes before the start of the webinar broadcast.
 We look forward to continuing our productive discussions with the stakeholder community.

Sharing from CDCAN
DETAILS OF THE UPCOMING LEGISLATIVE INFORMATIONAL HEARINGS
The following, compiled by CDCAN, is the current information - including links - for the upcoming scheduled legislative hearings: (states in relevant part)

WHEN: OCTOBER 27, 2020 - TUESDAY  ***TODAY***
TIME: 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM (Pacific Time)
WHO: ASSEMBLY BUDGET SUBCOMMITTEE #2 ON EDUCATION FINANCE
WHAT: INFORMATIONAL HEARING 
SUBJECT: "THE SAFE REOPENING OF SCHOOLS: WHAT IS THE STATE’S ROLE?"
WHERE: State Capitol - State Senate Chamber
LIVESTREAM LINK: https://www.assembly.ca.gov/todaysevents
  Step 1: Scroll down to "Committee Hearings"
  Step 2: Scroll down to "Assembly Budget Subcommittee #2 on Education Finance"
  Step 3: Click on "Watch Hearing" for livestream video or "Listen" if you want audio only
  Note: to make public comments remotely please see below to make public comments by phone.
RECORDED VIDEO OF HEARING (usually posted for download within a day or so) - scroll down to hearing date :
https://www.assembly.ca.gov/media-archive
PUBLIC COMMENT TAKEN?: Yes. Normally public comments are taken at the end of the hearing - the subcommittee chair will announce when the subcommittee willl take up public comments.
PUBLIC COMMENTS - IN WRITING: According to the subcommittee the public is encouraged to provide written testimony before the hearing.  Please send your written testimony to:  BudgetSub2@asm.ca.gov  
Please note that any written testimony submitted to the committee is considered public comment and may be read in the record or reprinted, according to the subcommittee.
HELP OR QUESTIONS REGARDING PUBLIC COMMENTS:   For questions or assistance, please contact the Assembly Budget Committee at (916) 319-2099 and a staff member will assist you.
HEARING DOCUMENTS
  AGENDA - PDF Document (5 pages):  
https://abgt.assembly.ca.gov/sites/abgt.assembly.ca.gov/files/Sub%202%20Oct%2027%20Agenda.pdf
FOR MORE INFORMATION - SUBCOMMITTEE INFORMATION
  SUBCOMMITTEE ADDRESS:   
  Assembly Budget Subcommittee #2 on Education Finance
  State Capitol, Room 6026
  Sacramento, California 95814
  SUBCOMMITTEE OFFICE PHONE: 916-319-2099
  SUBCOMMITTEE WEBPAGE: https://abgt.assembly.ca.gov/sub2educationfinance

WHEN: OCTOBER 27, 2020 - TUESDAY  ***TODAY***
TIME: 1:30 - 5:00 PM (Pacific Time)
WHO: ASSEMBLY HEALTH COMMITTEE 
SUBJECT: "HEALTH CARE AFFORDABILITY: HOW TO CONTROL COSTS IN CALIFORNIA?"
WHERE: State Capitol - Room 437
LIVESTREAM LINK: https://www.assembly.ca.gov/todaysevents
  Step 1: Scroll down to "Committee Hearings"
  Step 2: Scroll down to "Assembly Budget Subcommittee #2 on Education Finance"
  Step 3: Click on "Watch Hearing" for livestream video or "Listen" if you want audio only
  Note: to make public comments remotely please see below to make public comments by phone.
RECORDED VIDEO OF HEARING (usually posted for download within a day or so) - scroll down to hearing date :
https://www.assembly.ca.gov/media-archive
PUBLIC COMMENT TAKEN?: Yes. Normally public comments are taken at the end of the hearing - the subcommittee chair will announce when the subcommittee willl take up public comments.
PUBLIC COMMENTS - IN WRITING: According to the subcommittee the public is encouraged to provide written testimony before the hearing.  Please send your written testimony to: 
Please note that any written testimony submitted to the committee is considered public comment and may be read in the record or reprinted, according to the subcommittee.
HELP OR QUESTIONS REGARDING PUBLIC COMMENTS:   For questions or assistance, please contact the Assembly Budget Committee at (916) 319-2099 and a staff member will assist you.
HEARING DOCUMENTS - BUDGET SUBCOMMITTEE #6
  AGENDA - PDF Document (1 page):  
https://ahea.assembly.ca.gov/sites/ahea.assembly.ca.gov/files/FINAL%20Health%20Care%20Affordability%20Agenda.pdf
 FOR MORE INFORMATION - COMMITTEE INFORMATION Cheryl Damberg
Principal Senior Researcher
  COMMITTEE ADDRESS:   
  Assembly Health Committee
  State Capitol, Room 6005
  Sacramento, California 95814
  COMMITTEE OFFICE PHONE: 916-319-2097
  COMMITTEE WEBPAGE: https://ahea.assembly.ca.gov/

WHEN: OCTOBER 28, 2020 - WEDNESDAY  
TIME: 1:30 PM (Pacific Time)
WHO: ASSEMBLY BUDGET SUBCOMMITTEE #6 ON BUDGET PROCESS, OVERSIGHT AND PROGRAM EVALUATION
WHAT: INFORMATIONAL HEARING 
SUBJECT: "COVID-19 IN SKILLED NURSING FACILITIES"
WHERE: State Capitol - Room 4202
LIVESTREAM LINK: https://www.assembly.ca.gov/todaysevents
  Step 1: Scroll down to "Committee Hearings"
  Step 2: Scroll down to "Assembly Budget Subcommittee #2 on Education Finance"
  Step 3: Click on "Watch Hearing" for livestream video or "Listen" if you want audio only
  Note: to make public comments remotely please see below to make public comments by phone.
RECORDED VIDEO OF HEARING (usually posted for download within a day or so) - scroll down to hearing date :
https://www.assembly.ca.gov/media-archive
PUBLIC COMMENT TAKEN?: Yes. Normally public comments are taken at the end of the hearing - the subcommittee chair will announce when the subcommittee willl take up public comments.
PUBLIC COMMENTS - IN WRITING: According to the subcommittee the public is encouraged to provide written testimony before the hearing.  Please send your written testimony to: BudgetSub6@asm.ca.gov.
Please note that any written testimony submitted to the committee is considered public comment and may be read in the record or reprinted, according to the subcommittee.
PUBLIC COMMENTS - IN PERSON: State Capitol does allow people to attend hearings (if held in-person) but under very strict physical distancing guidelines. Due to the statewide stay-at-home order and guidance on physical distancing, seating for this hearing will be very limited for press and for the public.
PUBLIC COMMENTS - REMOTE SITES: According to the subcommittee., the State Capitol will be open for attendance of this hearing, but the public is strongly encouraged to participate via the web portal, or one of the Remote Testimony Stations (RTS) available for testimony outside of the Capitol.
PUBLIC COMMENTS BY PHONE: No phone number posted  Does not appear that the subcommittee will take comments by phone. 
HELP OR QUESTIONS REGARDING PUBLIC COMMENTS:   For questions or assistance, please contact the Assembly Budget Committee at (916) 319-2099 and a staff member will assist you.
HEARING DOCUMENTS - BUDGET SUBCOMMITTEE #6
  AGENDA - PDF Document (22 pages):  
https://abgt.assembly.ca.gov/sites/abgt.assembly.ca.gov/files/Sub%206%20Oct%2028%20Agenda.pdf
FOR MORE INFORMATION - SUBCOMMITTEE INFORMATION
  SUBCOMMITTEE ADDRESS:   
  Assembly Budget Subcommittee #6 on Budget Process, Oversight and Program Evaluation
  State Capitol, Room 6026
  Sacramento, California 95814
  SUBCOMMITTEE OFFICE PHONE: 916-319-2099
  SUBCOMMITTEE WEBPAGE: https://abgt.assembly.ca.gov/sub6budgetprocessoversightprogramevaluation
CDCAN NOTE: The issue of COVID-19 and skilled nursing facilities was the focus of several informational or oversight hearings by the California Legislature in the past several months, including  a June 9, 2020,  Joint Oversight Hearing by the Assembly Health Committee and the Assembly Aging and Long Term Care Committee on the subject of "The COVID-19 Outbreak in Skilled Nursing Facilities and the State's Response: A discussion of what has worked, what has not, and what are plans for the future?"


To Receive the free CDCAN Reports send email request to: Marty Omoto  martyomoto@att.net
PLEASE CONSIDER HELPING AND SUPPORTING THE CONTINUING WORK OF CDCAN - YOUR HELP IS NEEDED!

 

PSPS and much More.....Wishing you all the best


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 26, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters, 
There is alot happening today. PSPS impacting a large part of Marin County. Please stay safe. Reach out to Marin CIL if you need support. There is much more in the news so let's get to it.....Wishing you all the very best.



Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin power outages activated as winds sweep state  
By BAY AREA NEWS GROUP |
PUBLISHED: October 25, 2020 at 11:24 a.m. | UPDATED: October 25, 2020 at 9:23 p.m.

As violent winds began whipping across a severely parched Northern California on Sunday, PG&E started cutting off power to tens of thousands of customers in Marin County and elsewhere.
The utility reported it had shut off electricity to broad sections of Marin on Sunday evening. Earlier, it announced it had identified about 15,000 meters for shutdown in Marin.
The meters on the list included 5,560 in Mill Valley; 3,927 in Fairfax; 1,956 in San Anselmo; 263 in San Geronimo; 822 in Stinson Beach; 627 in Woodacre; 401 in Forest Knolls; 666 in Kentfield; 274 in Lagunitas; 178 in Muir Beach; 322 in Nicasio; 15 in Olema; 6 in Point Reyes Station; 605 in Ross; 5 in Bolinas; 164 in Sausalito; 8 in San Rafael; and one in Novato.
In anticipation of winds that could bring the “most critical” fire conditions of the season, the utility company had warned earlier this week that it would turn off power to some 500,000 customers in an effort to limit the threat of fires sparked by power lines. By Sunday, the plan had been scaled back to about 360,000 customers across 36 counties and 17 tribal communities, sparing some 100,000 homes and businesses in Northern California.
PG&E incident commander Mark Quinlan called the planned power shut off the utility’s “last resort option” and said that the company tried to make it “as small as possible” based on the most up-to-date weather forecasts. 
 For full article: Marin power outages activated as winds sweep state
Marin CIL is fully engaged supporting people with disabilities and older adults impacted by this PSPS event. On Friday we switched to a modified operational status to allow for 24hr coverage during this event. Marin CIL opened our 24hr Community Assistance Line to support people with disabilities and older adults. If you have questions or need assistance in connecting to resources, please call (415) 234-3840. Please remember, Marin CIL is not an emergency service. If you are experiencing a medical or life threatening emergency, please reach out to 911. 
Marin CIL is contracting with the California Foundation of Independent Living Centers as part of the Disability Disaster Access and Resources Project. Disability Disaster Access & Resources assists individuals with disabilities and older adults in disaster readiness and recovery. This program provides individuals with information & assistance, disaster readiness training, backup electricity support, personal preparedness planning assistance, public awareness, and Assistive Technology and Durable Medical Equipment reuse and loan closet referrals; before, during and after a disaster or electricity shut-off. In the past year we have distributed batteries to community based organizations who also serve people with disabilities and older adults. Over this weekend we distributed 54 batteries directly to consumers who depend on power for life safety or independent living support and who were at risk of being impacted by this event. Marin CIL has been partnering with the County of Marin and the Marin Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters. If you need PSPS support please reach out to Marin CIL https://www.marincil.org/psps/

Marin treatments for coronavirus similar to Trump’s
By RICHARD HALSTEAD | Marin Independent Journal
PUBLISHED: October 25, 2020 at 11:47 a.m. | UPDATED: October 26, 2020 at 3:31 a.m.
Two of the three coronavirus treatments that President Donald Trump reportedly received are among the therapies that patients get at Marin hospitals.
Trump’s positive diagnosis was confirmed on Oct. 1. The next day, the president received two monoclonal antibodies and the first of five doses of remdesivir, an antiviral. Then, late on Oct. 3, Trump was given the steroid dexamethasone.
“The monoclonal antibodies were definitely an experimental treatment,” said Dr. Gregg Tolliver, medical director of infection control at MarinHealth Medical Center. “The other treatments are pretty standard care that we have been using at the hospital since they became available.”
Dr. Shilpa Marwaha, chief of infectious diseases at Kaiser Permanente San Rafael Medical Center, wrote in an email that Kaiser’s treatment regime includes “using high flow oxygen, dexamethasone for patients requiring high levels of oxygen, remdesivir based on current national guidance, and proning techniques if a patient requires mechanical ventilation.”
Source: Marin treatments for coronavirus similar to Trump’s
 
Marin County racial equity project enters new phase
By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal
PUBLISHED: October 24, 2020 at 10:53 a.m. | UPDATED: October 24, 2020 at 10:54 a.m.
 
Marin County is gearing to update its 2017 racial equity plan as it nears its goal to have every county employee receive several hours of anti-bias training.
 
“The cultural competence work has been huge,” said Angela Nicholson, an assistant county administrator overseeing much of the project. She said she had 37 people in a training Oct. 15.
 
The county is accepting applications to serve on a committee to revise the 2017 plan. County supervisors have authorized spending $2.7 million on racial equity initiatives this year despite a $16 million budget shortfall and uncertainty about coronavirus emergency funding.
 
Supervisors reallocated $1.7 million from the sheriff’s budget to equity initiatives in response to activists who called for funding cuts after the death of George Floyd during an arrest in Minnesota. Nicholson said the county hasn’t decided how it will spend most of the money, but a portion will be used to pay for guest speakers on equity issues.
Source: Marin County racial equity project enters new phase
 
Sharing from The ARC of California
 
The Affordable Care Act: What’s At Risk?
October 20, 2020/in AdvocacyFeatured PostsFrom the FrontlinesNewsPublic Policy/by Pam Katz
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) made significant progress in expanding access to health care for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD). Access to consistent and reliable healthcare is critical for individuals with IDD, and the ACA created much-needed reforms to health insurance, addressed systemic discrimination, and expanded coverage. Yet it will all be at risk on November 10 when the U.S. Supreme Court hears a case seeking to overturn the law. Leading up to the ACA’s day in court, here is a primer on what the ACA does for people with IDD, and what’s at stake if the law goes away.
The ACA:
Helps people get health insurance
Requires that plans can’t exclude you or charge you more based on preexisting conditions
Bans benefits caps (annual and lifetime caps)
Requires all plans to cover “essential benefits”
Provides financial assistance for low-income people to access healthcare 
Loss of Health Coverage: Without the ACA, millions of adults and children may lose their health coverage, or it may become unaffordable. Millions of families may be left with limited and expensive options, with inadequate coverage. 
Pre-existing Conditions: We are concerned about the possible loss of protections for people with pre-existing medical conditions, including people with IDD. Millions of Americans have “pre-existing” medical conditions that could disqualify them from buying a health insurance policy if the ACA is dismantled. A “pre-existing condition” is any health problem a person has before new health coverage starts. It includes a broad range of common conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or seizure disorders, including all types of disabilities. 
Without the protections of the ACA, any “pre-existing condition” could mean a person or family buying insurance would pay much more for a policy, if they could get one at all. Before the ACA, an insurer could outright deny people coverage for a specific pre-existing condition, charge them more, cancel a policy after the fact for utilizing needed health care, or deny health insurance coverage overall. Without the ACA, employers could drop coverage for any or all of the conditions they are now required to cover. The Trump Administration publicly committed to “protecting individuals with pre-existing conditions” but there are no specifics on how this would be accomplished.  
Source: The Affordable Care Act: What’s At Risk? 


Sharing my Perspective: This hits home for me. Older adults and people with disabilities like myself cannot live without healthcare. I would not be where I am today if it wasn't for healthcare. As a person with a disability who uses a power wheelchair and has limited use of my extremities I depend on others to assist me with all activities of daily living. Additionally, as a cancer survivor I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for my doctors and nurses and others who were instrumental in my now being cancer-free. I am getting older and healthcare is still important. While we may argue about the way that healthcare is provided. I think we can all agree that everyone deserves accessible and affordable healthcare.
  
Miss the Voter Registration Deadline or Misplace Your Ballot? You Can Still Vote!

California allows voters to register to vote on the same day that they cast their ballots any time before polls close on election day. This is called conditional or same day voter registration. If you are eligible to vote but not yet registered, you can still vote in the presidential election this year. You will need to go to your county elections office, polling place, or vote center in person to register and vote conditionally. This plain language guide from Disability Vote California explains the process and includes links to find locations where you can register and vote. This guide is also available in Spanish.
If you have misplaced your ballot you can vote in person. It is likely that you will vote using a provisional ballot. A provisional ballot is the same as a regular ballot, but it is not counted until after your county elections officials have made sure that you haven’t already voted. This plain language guide from Disability Vote California explains provisional voting in detail and includes information on how to check the status of your provisional ballot after you have voted. This guide is also available in Spanish.
Source: Miss the Voter Registration Deadline or Misplace Your Ballot? You Can Still Vote!
 
Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition
Please join us on October 26 for a national call on coronavirus, disasters, housing, and homelessness, at 2:30-4 pm ET. We will be discussing landlord intimidation of renters, the increased eviction filings by corporate landlords, updates to the Framework for an Equitable COVID-19 Homelessness Response, the latest developments in the coronavirus relief negotiations on Capitol Hill, and updates from the field. Register for the call at:
Register Here
 
The agenda for today's call is:
Welcome, Updates
Diane Yentel, National Low Income Housing Coalition
Framework for an Equitable COVID-19 Homelessness Response
Nan Roman, National Alliance to End Homelessness
Landlord Intimidation of Renters
Max Weinstein, Office of Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey
Increased Eviction Filings by Corporate Landlords
Jim Baker, Private Equity Stakeholder Project
Field Updates
Ariadna Michelle Godreau-Aubert, Ayuda Legal, Puerto Rico
Pam Atwood, North Carolina Housing Coalition
Matthew Cavanaugh, Nebraska Housing Developers Association
Phyllis Chamberlain, Housing Alliance of Pennsylvania
Latest from Capitol Hill on COVID-19 Relief and Disaster Supplemental Bills
Sarah Saadian, NLIHC
 
Sharing from Disability Rights California
 
California Department of Education (CDE) Ruled in Favor of Students with Disabilities Denied Educational Services by the Bakersfield City School District Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
Oct 23, 2020
(Bakersfield, CA) - On October 6th, the California Department of Education (CDE) ruled in favor of students with disabilities, declaring that the Bakersfield City School District (BCSD) failed to implement students’ Individualized Education Programs (IEP) to the “greatest extent possible” since distance learning began amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
The CDE ruled BCSD violated the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and ordered the District to make up services missed during distance learning and report monthly on services delivered to students going forward.
 
On August 7, 2020, DRC filed a state compliance complaint on behalf of Antonio Armas, a 10-year-old student with a disability, and all similarly situated students, alleging that BCSD did not provide their IEP services for nearly five months.
 
At the start of the pandemic, the CDE and the U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) made it clear that the IDEA remained in effect. Both agencies emphasized that school districts must continue to provide a Free and Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) to students with disabilities and implement IEPs consistent with the need to protect the health and safety of students and service providers.
Source: California Department of Education (CDE) Ruled in Favor of Students with Disabilities Denied Educational Services by the Bakersfield City School District Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
 
Sharing from the New York Post
 
Texas allows social workers to turn away LGBTQ and disabled clients
By Associated Press
October 17, 2020 | 1:28am
AUSTIN, Texas — Texas officials are facing backlash after deciding to allow social workers to turn away clients on the basis of their disability, sexual orientation or gender identity.
At the direction of the governor’s office, the Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners voted unanimously to eliminate disability, sexual orientation and gender identity from the nondiscrimination clause of the code of conduct. The board made the decision during a joint meeting Monday with the Texas Behavioral Health Executive Council, which oversees regulatory agencies for professions related to mental health.
The National Association of Social Workers criticized the board’s decision to follow the governor’s recommendation rather than seek public comment.
Will Francis, director of the association’s Texas chapter, told the board during public comments that their decision was “incredibly disheartening.”
Abbott’s office said the change was made simply to align the rules with the state’s Occupations Code, which determines how and when the state may discipline social workers.
Source: Texas allows social workers to turn away LGBTQ and disabled clients
 
Sharing from the SILC


Good morning SILC members! I'm very excited to announce our two latest appointments to the SILC.  We are very honored to welcome 2 great new members to the IL Network!
Eric Harris, 33, of Sacramento, has been appointed to the State Independent Living Council. Harris has been a Special Advisor for Strategic Partnerships and Community Engagement at Disability Rights California since 2020. He was a Legislative Advocate for Disability Rights California from 2019 to 2020 and a Legislative Advocate for the California State Conference of the NAACP from 2017 to 2019. He was an Office Manager for Barbara Lee for Congress in 2016, a Council Office Staff for Sacramento City Councilmember Allen Wayne Warren from 2015 to 2017 and an intern for the American Institutes for Research in 2013. Harris was an Associate for Disability Power and Pride from 2012 to 2013, an intern for the Democratic National Committee in 2012 and a Summer Associate for the Law Offices of John L. Burris in 2012. Harris earned a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Oregon School of Law. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Harris is a Democrat.
Maya Mendez, 23, of Riverside, has been appointed to the State Independent Living Council. Mendez has been an Instruction Assistant for Special Education for the Riverside Unified School District since 2019 and a Youth Development Specialist for the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Redlands-Riverside since 2019. She was a Tutor for California Teaching Fellows from 2018 to 2019. Mendez is a member of the California Youth Leadership Forum Alumni. This position does not require Senate confirmation and there is no compensation. Mendez is a Democrat.
SILC Announcement Ends


The SILC is a 18-member council, appointed by the Governor, which serves to maximize opportunities for people with disabilities who desire to live independently. The SILC membership represents a cross-section of the independent living movement in California and, by law, the majority of the volunteer council members are people with disabilities. Council members are appointed to three-year terms.
In collaboration with the State Network of Independent Living Centers (ILCs) and the State Designated Entity (California Department of Rehabilitation), the SILC prepares a State Plan for Independent Living which sets the policy and funding levels for the state’s network of ILCs and services. To help guide this policy, the SILC solicits continual public feedback on the effectiveness of independent living services and the changing needs of the community.

In addition to preparing and updating the State Plan for Independent Living, the SILC monitors the implementation of it. The SILC also coordinates with similar agencies and councils at the state and federal levels to increase communication and help assure that services to people with disabilities are delivered effectively.
Peter’s Note: I have had the privilege of knowing Eric for several years. Most recently he was instrumental in the success of Disability Capital Action Day.

“California’s Disability Action Coalition (DAC) is made up of people with all types of disabilities, organizations, families and allies. Our mission is to organize people with disabilities and allies to protect and advance our civil rights, self-determination and life opportunities. We pursue our mission through education, community building, and advocacy – which culminates in an annual day of Disability community action at the Capitol.”
Peter’s Note: Maya was also a volunteer with YO Disabled and Proud!
What is YO Disabled and Proud? Youth Organizing! Disabled & Proud is a program of the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC). YO! Disabled & Proud connects, organizes and educates youth with disabilities.
Youth Organizing (YO!) develops community organizing activities to build a power base among youth with disabilities so that we can effectively work for change. We engage youth to learn about our history, the disability rights movement, disability pride, organizing and advocacy. Youth with disabilities build community with each other, develop a sense of leadership, a positive disability identity and organize and mobilize each other on issues that affect our lives.

 

Marin County is Preparing for a Potential PSPS . Marin CIL Has Established Community Assistance Line


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 24, 2020

Good afternoon, my brothers and sisters, and welcome to  the Saturday PSPS Edition of the PM Report.
Please share far and wide. 

Sharing an important Press release on behalf of the County Of Marin from the County Of Marin please share far and Wide! For Immediate Release
October 23, 2020
County Warns of Potential Power Shutoff
PG&E notifies County staff of possible temporary service disruption
SAN RAFAEL, CA – The County of Marin is working with local jurisdictions to prepare for a potential shutoff of PG&E power to areas of Marin County because of extreme weather and wildfire conditions.
Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) has notified the Marin County Office of Emergency Services that Marin County is under a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) “Watch Alert” in response to dry conditions, widespread strong and gusty winds, and a Red Flag Warning issued by the National Weather Service.
The “Watch Alert” is in affect for approximately 20,000 customers in coastal and higher elevation communities for the afternoon of Sunday, October 25 through Tuesday, October 27. Residents should prepare for the possibility of losing power during that time frame. The exact time and location(s) of the potential power outages is unknown and will be determined by PG&E, which plans to issue initial potential outage maps by Friday evening, 8:00pm.
PG&E is monitoring weather patterns and said it will provide updates to customers and the County of Marin as additional information is available. Residents and businesses can access updated PSPS information from PG&E online at www.pge.com/pspsupdates.
The Marin County Sheriff’s Office of Emergency Services is putting into motion its Electrical System De-energization Response Plan. Additionally, it is coordinating with nearby response partners in monitoring the power situation at Marin’s Emergency Operations Center. Fire agencies in Marin, including the Marin County Fire Department, have increased staffing resources during the heightened threat.
All questions regarding PSPS events and extended outages should be directed to PG&E via their website and (800) 743-5002. Residents should only call 9-1-1 if experiencing a medical or life-threatening emergency.
Neighbors are encouraged to check on other neighbors-- especially older adults, individuals with disabilities, or individuals dependent on powered medical equipment-- to ensure they are aware of and prepared for a potential power outage.
Emergency Management officials remind residents and visitors that it is important to have a plan to adjust daily routines to one without PG&E power. FEMA recommends the following steps:
Stay informed
• Sign-up for PSPS Zip Code Alerts by texting ENROLL to 97633 or by calling 1-877-9000-PGE.
• Update contact information with PG&E at www.pge.com/mywildfirealerts or by calling 1-866-743-6589.
• Sign up to receive safety information on Nixle.com by texting your ZIP code to 888-777.
• Sign up for AlertMarin notifications to receive information on immediate threats to personal safety or property, tailored to an address of your choosing.
• Watch for wireless emergency alerts if evacuations are ordered, intended to reach all cell phones in the area.
Review plans
• Take inventory and ensure an appropriate supply of food, water, clothing, flashlights, flashlight batteries, and a battery powered or hand crank radio.
• Keep mobile phones and other electric equipment charged.
• Have some cash available in case retail point-of-sale devices are unable to accept credit cards during an outage.
• Know how to manually open electric garage doors and gates.
• Talk to a medical provider about a power outage plan for medical devices powered by electricity and refrigerated medicines. Take stock of batteries and other alternatives to meet your needs when the power goes out.
• Ensure your refrigerator and freezer have a thermometer: during an outage, you should avoid eating and dispose of perishable food if the appliance thermometer reaches 40 degrees or higher for extended periods of time.
• Ensure your household is ready for a wildfire or evacuation event:
o Identify several evacuation routes for your location in case roads are blocked.
o Keep vehicles fueled and ready in case of an evacuation.
o Make a list of what you’ll want to take with you if you leave your home quickly. Consider the Five P’s of Evacuation: People/Pets; Prescriptions; Papers; Personal Needs; Priceless Items.
• For more information, including what to do during a power outage, visit www.readymarin.org, www.ready.gov, or watch PG&E’s “Preparing for Public Safety Shutoffs” video.
The County will continue to share information updates as they become available via its website and on social media via Facebook and Twitter.
End of Press Release/ media advisory
Marin CIL is here for you.! Marin CIL is activating a 24 hour community assistance line to support people with disabilities and older adults. If you have questions or need assistance in connecting to resources, please call (415)234-3840.
Please remember, Marin CIL is not an emergency service. If you are experiencing a medical or life threatening emergency, please reach out to 911.

Stay Safe!  

Celebrating National Learning Disabilities Month, Sad milestone in Marin regarding Covid and more


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 23, 2020

Good Morning my Extraordinary Marin CIL Family, and my brothers and sisters in community,
Happy Friday! Here is my update for you today. Did you know that October is "learning disability awareness month"? I am also honoring the 50th anniversary of the establishment of the Developmental Disabilities Councils. Today I am saddened by a very somber milestone Marin reached 100 deaths related to Covid-19.  
 
County of Marin Update:
RECAP: Community Conversation - COVID-19: A Safer Return to School
In case you missed it, Marin Public Health and Marin Office of Education held a panel discussion earlier today regarding the protocols and best practices for returning to on-site, in-classroom learning. The panel featured:
  • Matt Willis (Public Health Officer)
  • Lisa Santora (Deputy Public Health Officer)
  • Mary Jane Burke (Marin County Superintendent of Schools)
  • Itoco Garcia, Ed.D. (Superintendent, Sausalito Marin City School District)
  • Chris Valdez (Principal, Marin Catholic)
You can watch a recap of the event online:
YouTube Thumbnail
YouTube (English) (Spanish)
Facebook (English only – Facebook account not required to view)

 

Resources shared during the event:

 
.
 

 


 Sharing from our friends and wonderful CIL partrners at the County of Marin:

NEW Red Flag Warning Issued for Wednesday through Friday

Fire season isn’t over just yet, Marin. The National Weather Service has issued another Red Flag Warning for higher elevation areas of Marin County from 10 p.m. Wednesday, October 21 to 8 a.m. Friday, October 23. A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution during the Red Flag Warning because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire, including the use of equipment and machinery as well as smoking.
            Red Flag Warning & Wildfire Preparedness Information Resources
 
Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal
 
Marin County hits 100 coronavirus deaths
Despite recent success, county health officer calls milestone ‘important reminder’

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |PUBLISHED: October 22, 2020 at 5:10 p.m. | UPDATED: October 23, 2020 at 7:36 a.m.
 
Another grim milestone in the coronavirus pandemic came for Marin this week as health officials announced that the county has reached 100 deaths from COVID-19.
“We’ve had a lot of success in our response over the past month, but I think this is an important reminder of how serious COVID-19 is in our community,” said Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer.
According to Willis, a coronavirus fatality is recorded when COVID-19 is determined to be “a contributing factor” in a person’s death.
Marin’s first coronavirus death was reported nearly seven months ago, on March 27. The patient was a man in his 70s. He had been the first Marin resident to test positive for the virus on March 9 after he returned from a cruise to Mexico, according to health officials.  

For Full Article: Marin County hits 100 coronavirus deaths

From this bloggers Perspective: This milestone truly saddens me. Behind every statistic is always a person....a mother, father, sister, brother. Eight-one percent of the deaths in Marin were people living in residential facilities. In the Independent Living Movement, which first and foremost is considered a social justice movement, people living in residential facilities are considered our Brothers and Sisters. One of the core services Marin CIL provides is assisting people who reside in care facilities transition back into their community. We must do better and address the health disparities that still exist in our healthcare system that negatively impact people with disabilities and older adults and disproportionately affect Black Indigeonous People of Color. It is my hope we can find a way to honor our family.  
 
Sharing from the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD)
 
The National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD) is the national association for the 56 Councils on Developmental Disabilities (DD Councils) across the United States and its territories.  The DD Councils receive federal funding to support programs that promote self-determination, integration, and inclusion for all people in the United States with developmental disabilities.  
 
NACDD COMMEMORATES 50 YEARS OF DD COUNCIL SUCCESS
Congress amended the Mental Retardation Facilities and Community Mental Health Centers Construction Act of 1963 in the Developmental Disabilities Services and Facilities Construction Amendments of 1970,[6] a law that introduced the term “developmental disability” and expanded the population covered under the law beyond individuals with mental retardation to include individuals with cerebral palsy, epilepsy, and certain other neurological conditions that originate before the age of 18.
On October 30th, 1970 President Richard Nixon signed the Mental Retardation Facilities and Community Mental Health Centers Construction Act of 1963 Amendments establishing for the first time the State Planning and Advisory Councils, better known today as Councils on Developmental Disabilities (DD Councils). The Act went on to eventually be known as the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act and is more commonly referred to as the DD Act. While the name changed several times over the years, we are pleased and proud to celebrate the amazing achievement of the inclusion of the DD Councils into law in 1970. This October 30th marks the 50th Anniversary of the establishment of the DD Councils.
For 50 years the DD Councils have worked tirelessly to improve systems in their states and territories helping people with Intellectual and developmental disabilities to lives their best life in the community. By identifying gaps in the system and creating innovative solutions to problems that keep people with I/DD from fully accessing the community, DD Councils make communities more inclusive and improve opportunities for people with I/DD to live, learn, work and play alongside their peers.
“Looking back in history it is amazing to me that in 1963 we were building bricks and mortar learning and research centers to study intellectual disabilities. Only a few short years later we passed a bill that instructed Governors to appoint people with lived experience to guide the way in their own states and territories. With federal money in hand people with I/DD were advising governors and legislators on how to build inclusive communities,” said Donna Meltzer, CEO of the NACDD. “that was a real game-changer.”
NACDD is excited to celebrate this anniversary and all the benefits and opportunities it has created for people and families with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.

 
 
NACDD ON LEARNING DISABILITIES AWARENESS MONTH
October is Learning Disabilities Awareness Month. Learning Disabilities Awareness Month aims to educate, raise awareness, and celebrate the unique differences of various learning disabilities including dyslexia, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), dysgraphia, dyscalculia, and other executive functioning difficulties. According to the U.S. Department of Education, approximately 2.5 million students have dyslexia, dysgraphia, and dyscalculia and approximately 6 million students have ADHD. Often a student has several or more of these disabilities.  
LDAM was established in 1985 when Congress created House Joint Resolution 287 requesting the designation of the month of October to be “Learning Disabilities Awareness Month”. On October 11, 1985, President Ronald Reagan signed Proclamation 5385 officially honoring Learning Disabilities Awareness Month. In his proclamation he articulately states, “Awareness of learning disabilities is one of the most important advances in education in recent years. As more and more Americans become aware, our citizens with learning disabilities will have even greater opportunity to lead full and productive lives and to make a contribution to our society”.  
NACDD is joining in marking Learning Disabilities Awareness Month to better inform educators, students, parents, and the greater American community about the diversity of learning processes and the potential that those with learning disabilities hold.  
“As a parent of a now young adult who struggled in school with learning disabilities, I know how important it is that educators, parents and learning specialists take these disabilities seriously and act early. With early intervention and the right supports, these students can succeed in their education and become adults who will equally succeed in the workplace,” said Donna Meltzer, CEO of the NACDD.    
To learn more about learning disabilities please visit the Department of Education’s Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services. To check out all events held this month, click here. 


Source: National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities

 
Sharing from State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD): 
 
The State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD) is established by state and federal law as an independent state agency to ensure that people with developmental disabilities and their families receive the services and supports they need. 
 
 
In 1970, Congress established the State Councils on Developmental Disabilities as part of the Federal Developmental Disabilities Services and Facilities Construction Act. This Act is now known as the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act, or DD Act for short. This year marks 50 years since the Councils were created!
 
The Council and our national association, the National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD) are celebrating our 50th anniversary and we want to hear from you! We would love to share your story on our social media platforms to celebrate this historic event next month.
 
If you would like to participate by sharing your story with us, please answer the below questions and email them to Charlotte Endres by November 1st. We will then highlight different stories throughout November in celebration on social media.
  
• Full Name:
• Region:
• Role/Title (when involved with the Council):
• Email:
• In 270 words or less, please describe your experience working with and being a part of the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities and why you believe the Council is valuable.
  
Thank you all for everything you do daily to ensure that Californians with developmental disabilities can live inclusive lives in the community!

A personal note from me, about my own learning disability
I very seldom talk about my own learning disability. When I was young I didn't test well. I don't think they knew how to test children with severe disabilities. I am unable to write with pencil and paper because of my physical disability. Conventional wisdom when I was young was that I wouldn't get very far and I was told I would never have a job, be independent, have a family, or the wonderful life that I have now.
 
People dismissed my ability to learn. In the work setting I have had people laugh and refer to me using the "R" word behind my back. People have made fun of me because of my speech. I have struggled. My ideas are often dismissed.  Technology is a great equalizer. For example, with my two iPad's on my wheelchair I am able to write like nobody's business, read documents and communicate proficiently, and be the impactful person I am today. I have learned over time, with a lot of help along the way, to develop work arounds to accommodate my disabilities. As I honor Learning Disability Awareness Month and my Brothers and Sisters with learning disabilities, I take pride in everything we have accomplished. There are still disparities in our educational system that affect our community. We must pledge to do better so everyone can live their best life.


Sharing from CalABLE
CalABLE is a savings and investment plan offered by the state of California to individuals with disabilities.
Eligible individuals, family, friends and employers can contribute up to $15,000 a year without affecting the account beneficiary's public disability benefits. CalABLE account owners who work can contribute even more to their accounts. Best of all, earnings on qualified withdrawals from a CalABLE account are federal and California state tax-free.


Maximize Your CalABLE Account Contributions for 2020
Date: Thursday, November 12, 2020
Time: 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM (PT)
CalABLE Account holders can maximize their CalABLE account contributions by year end. Learn year end tips:

Rollover a current ABLE account into a CalABLE account;
Take advantage of the 529 College Savings Plan rollover option; and
Establish an eGift event before the holidays.

This webinar is for the seasoned account holder and will not include the basics of the CalABLE Program.
If you would like to join us via computer and submit questions during the webinar, please Register to receive a confirmation email and login information.
There is an audio only option available as well. Please note that in using the audio only option, you will not be able to submit questions during the broadcast. To join via telephone:

Call +1 (669) 900-6833
Enter Webinar ID: 963 3128 4113

For those who are unable to make the live broadcast, a replay of the webinar will be made available on CalABLE's YouTube channel.
If you have not had a chance to attend a presentation on the fundamentals of the CalABLE program, we recommend that you listen to the replay of our CalABLE 101 webinar available on YouTube at  https://youtu.be/kmZvXudyV1w. This replay can help answer some of the questions you may already have and provides a good foundation.

If you have any questions, please contact us at calable@treasurer.ca.gov.
 
To open a CalABLE Account: https://www.calable.ca.gov/open

There is much on my docket today followed by a fun weekend. My family and I are going to sit down together to watch the 3:30 showing on Sunday of  Sins Invalid  We Love Like Barnacles: Crip Lives in Climate Chaos
Here is a bit about Sins Invalid from their website:
Sins Invalid is a disability justice based performance project that incubates and celebrates artists with disabilities, centralizing artists of color and LGBTQ / gender-variant artists as communities who have been historically marginalized. Led by disabled people of color, Sins Invalid’s performance work explores the themes of sexuality, embodiment and the disabled body, developing provocative work where paradigms of “normal” and “sexy” are challenged, offering instead a vision of beauty and sexuality inclusive of all bodies and communities.
We define disability broadly to include people with physical impairments, people who belong to a sensory minority, people with emotional disabilities, people with cognitive challenges, and those with chronic/severe illness. We understand the experience of disability to occur within any and all walks of life, with deeply felt connections to all communities impacted by the medicalization of their bodies, including trans, gender variant and intersex people, and others whose bodies do not conform to our culture(s)' notions of "normal" or "functional."
It is sure to be a good show. Tickets are still available, and no one will be turned away due to lack of funds. Here is a link for more information. 
https://www.sinsinvalid.org/
*please note, this performance contains adult themes and may not be suitable for all audiences. 

I really appreciate the work of Sins Invalid. They show the full spectrum and lived experiences of people with disabilities. As I watch the show, I will be celebrating with my peers their expression of living their lives as they choose. 

Have a great weekend, everybody. 
 

Freestyle Thursday: Red Flag Warning, Students Develop App for Contact Tracing, and much more


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 22, 2020

Good Morning Brothers and Sisters in Community,

I hope you are having a wonderful Thursday. I am having my second Mocha....having a difficult time getting the motor going this morning. Sharing with you today

Red Flag Warning in Effect for Marin County
Critical wildfire conditions expected into Friday morning and through the weekend
 Marin County, CA -- The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for the North Bay mountains and other parts of the San Francisco Bay Area from 10 p.m. Wednesday, October 21st, to 8 a.m. Friday, October 23rd.
A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. The affected area includes higher terrain areas of Marin, Napa, Sonoma, and East Bay counties. The concerns of the weather system are that wildfires that develop will likely spread rapidly. Erratic gusty outflow winds may result in dangerous and unpredictable fire behavior. Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution during the Red Flag Warning because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire, including the use of equipment and machinery as well as smoking.
All National Park Service beaches in Marin will remain open, but the following land-use restrictions will be in effect for the Marin Municipal Water District (MMWD), Mount Tamalpais State Park, and Marin County Open Space District preserves during the Red Flag conditions.

  • MMWD closures at Sky Oaks, Natalie Coffin Green Park (Ross), Leo Cronin Parking Lot,
  • Mount Vision Road in Inverness
  • Closure of Fairfax Bolinas Road
  • All open burning and burn permits are suspended on public lands
  • Closures of Mount Tamalpais State Park; roads north of Panoramic Highway are closed to motor vehicle traffic on Pantoll Road and Ridgecrest Boulevard.  All park use permits north of Panoramic Highway are suspended, including filming.
Helpful phone numbers:
  • Mount Tamalpais State Park, (415) 388-2070
  • Marin Municipal Water District, (415) 945-1195
  • Marin County Fire Information Hotline, (415) 473-7191
Defensible space is essential to improve a home’s chance of surviving a wildfire. 
To register for emergency alerts, visit www.alertmarin.org. To learn more about preparing for wildfire, visit www.firesafemarin.org.

Marin CIL encourages everyone to sign up for these important alerts. Knowledge is Power. Planning is the key to make it through a disaster or local emergency. Remember Marin CIL is here for you. If you need assistance in planning or identifying resources available during an emergency, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. www.marincil.org/psps/





Disability Rights California Announces their 2020 Advocacy Platform: Meeting the Moment & Growing the Movement
Disability Rights California (DRC) is the agency designated under federal law to protect and advocate for the rights of Californians with disabilities. Disability Rights California advocates, educates, investigates, and litigates to advance the rights, dignity, equal opportunities, and choices for all people with disabilities.
The COVID-19 pandemic radically changed our lives over the course of mere weeks.  The government response and the economic devastation that followed the pandemic have exposed deep flaws in our systems that disproportionately harm Californians with disabilities, including:
  • Unsafe, segregated, institutional care for older adults and disabled people;
  • High rates of unemployment and underemployment among people with disabilities;
  •  Long standing inequities in healthcare, mental health services, housing and education for disabled people, especially those who are part of the Black, Latino, Native American, Asian Pacific Islander, immigrant, and LGBTQIA2S+1 communities;
  • Government programs and private businesses that discriminate against disabled people and refuse to ensure physical and communication accessibility for all;
  • A lack of affordable, accessible, healthy, and stable housing that is integrated into all communities; and
  • An underpaid direct support workforce, a digital divide, and a growing wealth gap.
The pandemic has also highlighted structural problems in our healthcare, housing, and justice systems that have led to disproportionate harm to California’s Black, Latino, Native American, and Asian Pacific Islander communities in the past several months.  In order to be effective advocates for all Californians with disabilities, we must address systemic racism, ableism, homophobia, sexism, and structural barriers that deny us equal access to services, systems, and legal protections that all people deserve and require. Moving forward in this moment, DRC will be proactive in ensuring that our advocacy seeks out and responds to the voices of people of color with disabilities and members of the LGBTQIA2S+ community with disabilities.
 
DRC’s Commitment & Accountability to the Movement
As California works to address the pandemic, the economic downturn, and social unrest around racial justice, DRC will hold itself accountable for bold, progressive advocacy that pushes society toward more inclusion, equality and full participation for all people by:
  1. Reaching out to and deepening our engagement with California’s diverse disability leaders and growing the capacity of disability-led and family-led organizations in our state; and
  2. Amplifying the work of civil rights activists who fight for dignity and equality for Black, Latino, Native American, Asian Pacific Islander, immigrant, and LGBTQIA2S+ communities, and for people with disabilities who are members of these communities.
 
Actions that DRC Will Take
DRC will push for equal opportunities, physical and communication access in housing, physical and mental healthcare, education, voting, and employment for ALL people with disabilities by advocating for:
  1. Safe, affordable, and individually accessible housing that includes services for communication accessibility, physical and mental health, addiction, job re-entry, accommodations in shelters and permanent housing, with the goal of preventing homelessness;
  2. Services and supports for unhoused people that are responsive and accessible to each individual’s needs;
  3. Freedom from abuse and neglect for people with disabilities and older adults;
  4. Stronger support for community integration through expanded access to Medi-Cal services and community-based mental healthcare;
  5. Inclusive education that prepares children and youth with disabilities for independent living, higher education, and employment opportunities in the competitive labor market;
  6. Individually accessible polling locations, and barrier free voting for disabled people, including people living in institutions;
  7. Affirmative action, reasonable accommodations, vocational education and training, and opportunities for internships and work experience that promote professional development and career advancement without discrimination and stigma;
  8. Equitable access to government benefits, and modernized approaches to disability benefits that do not punish people for working or saving money;
  9. Policies that reduce or eliminate negative law enforcement interactions with people with disabilities;
  10. Educating people with disabilities about their legal rights so they can advocate for themselves or another person; and
  11. Improved emergency preparedness and response policies and practices that protect the health, safety, and dignity of California’s disability community and older adults during disasters.
 
Independence and Self-determination
DRC will advocate for expressed interest, self-determination, and independence for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities through:
  1. Expanded access to In-Home Supportive Services, Social Security disability benefits, and regional center services;
  2. Equitable funding of regional center services for Black, Latino, Native American and Asian Pacific Islander consumers with developmental disabilities and their families; and
  3. Protecting home and community-based services from budget cuts during the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.
 
Language Access and Culturally Responsive Services
DRC will advocate for language accessibility and cultural literacy in information and services to achieve a more inclusive society by:
  1. Ending systematic discrimination against Deaf, Hard of Hearing, Blind, Low Vision, or Deaf-Blind people who have been denied the accommodations they need for effective communication, such as interpreters, staff fluent in American Sign Language (ASL), captioning, audio description, braille, large print, other accessible formats, as well as other communication tools and methods for people who are not fluent in ASL;
  2.  Providing information and services for people who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing, Blind or Deaf-Blind in languages and formats they can understand and in a manner that supports full participation; and
  3. Advocating for information and services that are culturally and disability competent and delivered in the recipient’s preferred language, including American Sign Language or other forms of communication.
 
Robust Community-based Mental Health Services
DRC will secure services in the community to help people with mental health disabilities avoid state hospitals and incarceration by advocating for:
  1. Enhanced intensive community-based mental health services that are provided in a manner that is trauma-informed, culturally congruent and responsive in order to address racial and ethnic disparities in accessing community-based mental health care;
  2. Physical and communication access to self-advocacy tools and peer support;
  3. Diverting funds from law enforcement, jails, and institutions and investing in community-based mental health and social welfare services; and
  4. Timely discharge of people living in state hospitals and placement in appropriate programs to support successful transition to living in the community.
 
Advocacy Recognizing the Whole Person:  Disability, Race, Ethnicity, Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation
DRC will expand the impact of our work by advocating for people with disabilities through an intersectional2 identity lens by:
  1. Addressing longstanding discrimination and systemic racism in the criminal legal system, housing, education, public benefits, and healthcare that disproportionately harms Black, Latino, and Native American people with disabilities;
  2. Advocating for equitable supports and services for people of color with disabilities to improve health, educational, and employment outcomes;
  3. Ending the exclusion of disabled people from supports and services based on immigration status;
  4. Advocating to end abusive practices in jails, juvenile halls, and detention centers, which disproportionately harm Black and Latino people with disabilities; and
  5. Opposing dehumanizing hate speech and acts of violence against Black, Latino, Native American, Asian Pacific Islander, and LGBTQIA2S+ people with disabilities.
 Source: https://www.disabilityrightsca.org/post/disability-rights-california-releases-new-advocacy-platform

Your Feelings are Valid: Sharing from Marin HHS/ Behavioral Health Recovery and Support Services

BHRS provides many community events throughout the year, including awareness events, training opportunities, and town halls. We invite everyone to attend. Please check this page often, as events will be updated regularly!
Lean on Me, November 5th, 2020 at 12pm(link is external)
Facilitators: Maria Rea, LMFT and Kara Connors, MPH, BHRS. Let’s build community and a sense of connection that extends our important social supports. Held monthly, first Thursday at 12:00 pm.
MCOE Parent Conversation: Suicide Prevention(link is external) - October 13, 2020 at 12pm
Facilitators: Junita Zuniga, PsyD and Kara Connors, MPH, BHRS. Held monthly, first Tuesday at 12:00 pm.
Marin County Suicide Prevention Collaborative Meeting(link is external)
Held first Wednesday of every month. Next meeting: November 4 at 2:00 pm.
SOS Allies for Hope. Survivors of Suicide Bereavement Support Group 
Contact 415-492-0614 to get a Zoom link or SOSinfo@Buckelew.org(link sends e-mail). Held monthly, second Wednesday at 7:00 pm.
Radio Show on Suggestions & Solutions for Health, Safety, Satisfaction & Serenity
Weekly. Wednesdays at 11:00 am (Spanish). Live thru KBBF 89.1 FM, KWMR 90.5, 89.9, 92.3 FM and on Facebook on “Cuerpo, Corazon, Comunidad”. Visit: www.cuerpocorazoncomunidad.org(link is external)
Parenting Support in Stressful Times
A space for parents to express their challenges, fears and/or questions. Weekly, every Thursday at 4 pm (English) and Wednesday at 5 pm (Spanish). To register for the class in English: call Leticia McCoy at 415-716-2746 and for the class in Spanish: call Maria Rea at 415-755-3317.


Sharing from the County of Marin

Learn Cybersecurity Tricks from County Experts
Public online session October 28 designed to share best practices
 San Rafael, CA – Whether at work or at home, County of Marin employees learn to make sure it’s not a trick before they click. That’s especially true during the tricky month of October, which each year is National Cybersecurity Awareness Month.
Now, good habits from the County will be shared publicly so getting information through electronic means is more of a treat and less of a trick.
On October 28, the County’s Information Services & Technology Department will host a videoconference to share information about the County’s Information Security Program and provide examples of security best practices that can be used at home and at work. The session will start at 6:30 p.m. and will be closed captioned. Viewers may watch the webcast live on the County’s main Facebook page. Video of the session will later be placed on the The County's YouTube Page.
The session will feature the following presentations and demonstrations.
  • Jason Balderama, Chief Information Security Officer and session moderator - Storytelling and lessons learned from a previous County cybersecurity incident; high-level overview of the County’s Information Security Program; how to secure a home router
  • Ava Rassouli, Lead Information Security Engineer – Security best practices for distance learning and working from home
  • Nathan LaForce, Information Security Manager – E-mail security best practices
After the presentations and demonstrations, the panelists will answer questions. E-mail security questions by 5 p.m. October 26 or ask live via Zoom during the event.
To participate in the session, take the following steps:
  • visit www.zoom.us/join or call (669) 900-6833
  • Meeting ID: 963 3429 6915
  • Password:  655037
Use the “raise hand” button if joined by computer or mobile device, or press *9 if joined by phone, to inform the moderator that you would like to ask a question.
The Marin County Board of Supervisors proclaimed October as National Cybersecurity Awareness Month in Marin County as the County registered as a Champion Organization, joining a growing global effort to promote the awareness of online safety and privacy. The Cybersecurity Awareness Month Champions Program is a collaboration among businesses, government agencies, colleges and universities, associations, nonprofits, and individuals committed to this year’s Cybersecurity Awareness Month theme of Do Your Part. #BeCyberSmart. The program aims to empower individuals and organizations to own their role in protecting their part of cyberspace.

Hat's off to our Youth Keeping us Safe During Covid-19: Sharing from Marin Independent Journal

Marin students create coronavirus contact tracing app  
By KERI BRENNER | kbrenner@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal PUBLISHED: October 21, 2020 at 6:45 p.m. | UPDATED: October 22, 2020 at 7:25 a.m.

Branson School in Ross will run a pilot test next month of a new contact tracing app designed to allow high schools to have a safer return to campus after many months of distance learning.
About 15 faculty members and 50 students will test MarinTrace, a cellphone and website app created by Branson senior Amrit Paveja and Beck Lorsch, a senior at Marin Academy in San Rafael.
MarinTrace, which the two 17-year-olds created in about 350 hours combined over the summer, allows high schoolers to self-report any COVID-19 symptoms or positive test results in a secure and private manner.
Once symptoms or a positive test are reported, the app emails the school’s COVID coordinator or top administrator, who can then notify parents with instructions to keep the student home or get tested.  From there, the app will show a list of likely student and faculty contacts within the reporting student’s orbit. All classes, schedules and students in the reporting student’s cohort are already logged into the app’s encrypted and secure algorithm. 
For full article: Marin students create coronavirus contact tracing app

Feel free to reach out to Marin CIL anytime we can be of service to you. Have a wonderful Thursday. Be good to yourself. 

Marin Planning to Move into Tier 3: What This Means to You and We All Need Someone to Talk to


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 21, 2020

Good Morning Brothers and Sisters in Community,

I hope you are doing well today. Alot happening in our world. Good news: Marin County may be moving to Tier 3 soon!

Wishing you the very best today

Today's County of Marin Covid-19 Update and my Friends from the Marin Independent Journal

What this means to you: 

According to the Marin Independent Journal, a graduation to tier 3 (orange) allows Marin restaurants to expand their indoor service from 25% to 50% capacity, and non-essential offices would be allowed to reopen. Other businesses such as movie theaters and gyms would be permitted to increase indoor service as well.

On August 28, 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom announced a new “Blueprint for a Safer Economy”, a statewide four-tiered system for reopening business sectors based on individual countywide COVID-19 data. The Blueprint for a Safer Economy has a more stringent criteria than previous state monitoring systems and counties will move between tiers based on meeting and maintaining each tier’s criteria.
Each of the four tiers is assigned a color and risk level based on test positivity and adjusted case rate:

Tier Status

Daily New Cases per 100k

Testing Positivity Rate

Tier 1, Purple – Widespread Risk

Many non-essential indoor business operations are closed

More than 7

8%

Tier 2, Red – Substantial Risk

Some non-essential indoor business operations are closed

4-7

5-8%

Tier 3, Orange – Moderate Risk

Some indoor business operations are open with modifications

1-3.9

2-4.9%

Tier 4, Yellow – Minimal Risk

Most indoor business operations are open with modifications

Less than 1

Less than 2%


For a County to advance to a less restrictive tier, it must (1) have been in the current tier for a minimum of three weeks; and (2) meet criteria for the next less restrictive tier for two consecutive weeks. Marin County has been in Tier 2 for five weeks and has met the Tier 3 threshold for seven consecutive days, halfway through the two-week requirement.

A graduation to tier 3 (orange) allows Marin restaurants to expand their indoor service from 25% to 50% capacity, and non-essential offices would be allowed to reopen. Other businesses such as movie theaters and gyms would be permitted to increase indoor service as well.  For Full Marin Independent Journal Article: Marin one step away from next COVID-19 tier

Marin COVID-19 Update to the Board of Supervisors: Dr. Matt Willis

From Yours Truly's Perspective: I am excited that Marin may be moving to Tier 3. This is a wonderful milestone. However, I feel a word of caution is appropriate. It is important that we all follow social distancing guidelines and remember stopping the spread is everyone's responsibility. I am looking forward to a time when we will be able to be together again in person. For those of you who know me I am definitely an extrovert and I love to be in community. I love to be close to people, sharing conversation, a hug, and of course coffee lol. However, if we don't follow guidelines we are putting all of us, as a community, at risk. People with disabilities and older adults are suceptible to Covid-19. Please wear a mask, stay safe. I am reminded many people including people with disabilities and older adults are expericing isolation. They often don't have assistive technology and have difficulty reaching out. This is a perfect time to reach out to your friends and family and let them know they are cared for and loved. 
 

All of Us (including myself) Need to Reach Out to Someone for Help During Times of Stress:
Marin County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services provides a complete range of mental health services for children, adults, and older adults. Our multilingual, culturally competent staff provides on-site treatment for acute and chronic mental disorders, life crises, and other disabilities that occur concurrently with mental disorders. In some instances, we provide clients with referrals to private practitioners and agencies. We work closely with county educational, medical, criminal justice, and social service systems to make sure every client receives comprehensive care. We encourage client feedback so we can provide the best possible service. All residents of Marin County are eligible for mental health services. Fees are assessed on a sliding scale, based on a person's ability to pay. Marin County Mental Health services are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Please do not hesitate to call. We are here to help, and our services are completely confidential. Mental Health Substance Use Services: (888) 818-1115, Crisis Stabilization Unit: (415) 473-6666, National Suicide Prevention Hotline : (800) 273-8255. If you are seeking information and resources for older adults, persons with disabilities, or family caregivers, please email us at 473-INFO@marincounty.org(link sends e-mail) or call 415-473-INFO Monday-Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm.

Don't forget to reach out to Marin CIL. Remember WE are here for YOU! Yes, we have switched to remote operation. However all of our programs and services are engaged. Marin CIL has been very active in supporting our communities during this COVID-19 pandemic. If you'd like to reach out to me please call: (415) 234-3840. If you want to reach another staff member of department please feel free to call: (415) 459-6245 or email: https://www.marincil.org/who-we-are/contact-us.php

Are you Prepared for a PSPS? and A New Initiative Opening Doors for People with Disabilities


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 20, 2020

Good Morning my Marin CIL Brothers and Sisters,
I hope you are all doing well today. As I am writing this here on the home front: working remotely, family getting ready, dogs barking…. there is a lot to do so here we go. Wishing everyone a wonderful Tuesday!

Sharing from PG&E
Potential Midweek PSPS Event: Forecasted High Winds and Dry Conditions Mean PG&E May Need to Proactively Turn Off Power for Safety in Targeted Portions of 19 Counties and Two Tribal Communities on Wednesday
 
About 50,000 customers who might be affected by the Public Safety Power Shutoff are receiving initial notifications today, two days ahead of the potential event
 
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has notified customers in targeted portions of 19 counties and two tribal communities about a potential Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) as early as Wednesday evening. Hot and dry conditions combined with expected high wind gusts pose an increased risk for damage to the electric system that has the potential to ignite fires in areas with dry vegetation.
 
High fire-risk conditions are expected to arrive Wednesday evening in Northern California and continue through Friday morning primarily in the following areas:

  • Northern Sacramento Valley and adjacent elevated terrain;
  • The Northern Sierra Nevada generally north of I-80;
  • The North Bay mountains; and
  • Mt. Diablo in the East Bay.
 
When high risk weather subsides, PG&E will inspect the de-energized lines to ensure they were not damaged during the wind event. PG&E will then safely restore power as quickly as possible, with the goal of restoring most customers within 12 daylight hours, based on current weather conditions.
 
While there is still uncertainty regarding the strength and timing of this weather wind event, the shutoff is forecasted to affect about 50,000 customers in targeted portions of 19 counties, including Alameda, Butte, Colusa, Contra Costa, Glenn, Humboldt, Lake, Lassen, Napa, Plumas, Santa Clara, Shasta, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Tehama, Trinity, Yolo and Yuba. A small number of customers in two tribal communities may also be affected.

Peter’s Note: Marin is not identified for a potential PSPS at this time. However, areas impacted by PSPS can change based on weather conditions at any time. We all must be ready. Prepare.
How Marin CIL Can Help: If you are a person with a disability or an older adult with a health condition that depends on power for life safety or to maintain your independence reach out to Marin CIL’s Disability Disaster Access and Resources Program.

Potential Public Safety Power Shutoff: What People Should Know
 
The potential PSPS event is still two days away. PG&E in-house meteorologists as well as staff in its Wildfire Safety Operation Center and Emergency Operation Center will continue to monitor conditions closely, and additional customer notifications will be issued as we move closer to the potential event.
 
Customer notifications—via text, email and automated phone call—began late this afternoon, approximately two days prior to the potential shutoff. Customers enrolled in the company’s Medical Baseline program who do not verify that they have received these important safety communications will be individually visited by a PG&E employee with a knock on their door when possible. A primary focus will be given to customers who rely on electricity for critical life-sustaining equipment.
 
Why PG&E Calls a PSPS Event
 
Due to forecasted severe weather conditions, PG&E is considering proactively turning off power for safety. Windy conditions, like those being forecast, increase the potential for damage and hazards to the electric infrastructure, which could cause sparks if lines are energized. These conditions also increase the potential for rapid fire spread.
 
State officials classify more than half of PG&E’s 70,000-square-mile service area in Northern and Central California as having a high fire threat, given dry grasses and the high volume of dead and dying trees. The state’s high-risk areas have tripled in size in seven years.
No single factor drives a PSPS, as each situation is unique. PG&E carefully reviews a combination of many criteria when determining if power should be turned off for safety. These factors generally include, but are not limited to:
 
  • Low humidity levels, generally 20 percent and below
  • Forecasted sustained winds generally above 25 mph and wind gusts in excess of approximately 45 mph, depending on location and site-specific conditions such as temperature, terrain and local climate
  • A Red Flag Warning declared by the National Weather Service
  • Condition of dry fuel on the ground and live vegetation (moisture content)
  • On-the-ground, real-time observations from PG&E’s Wildfire Safety Operations Center and observations from PG&E field crews
 
New for 2020: Improved Watch and Warning Notifications
 
In response to customer feedback requesting more information as soon as possible to ensure they have time to prepare for and plan in advance of a potential PSPS event, PG&E will provide improved Watch and Warning notifications this year.  
 
Whenever possible, an initial Watch notification will be sent two days in advance of a potential PSPS event. This is what is being sent to customers. One day before the potential PSPS event, an additional Watch notification will go out, notifying customers of the possibility of a PSPS event in their area based on forecasted conditions.
 
A PSPS Watch will be upgraded to a Warning when forecasted conditions show that a safety shutoff will be needed. Whenever possible, Warning notifications will be sent approximately four to 12 hours in advance of the power being shut off. 
 Both Watch and Warning notifications are directly tied to the weather forecast, which can change rapidly.
As an example of how notifications have been improved for 2020, customers will see the date and time when power is estimated to be shut off as well as the estimated time when their power will be restored, all provided two days before the power goes out. Last year, the estimated time of restoration was not provided until the power had been turned off.
 
Here’s Where to Go to Learn More
 
  • PG&E’s emergency website (pge.com/pspsupdates) is now available in 13 languages. Currently, the website is available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Russian, Vietnamese, Korean, Farsi, Arabic, Hmong, Khmer, Punjabi and Japanese. Customers will have the opportunity to choose their language of preference for viewing the information when visiting the website.
  • Customers are encouraged to update their contact information and indicate their preferred language for notifications by visiting www.pge.com/mywildfirealerts or by calling 1-800-742-5000, where in-language support is available.
  • Tenants and non-account holders can sign up to receive PSPS ZIP Code Alerts for any area where you do not have a PG&E account by visiting pge.com/pspszipcodealerts.
  • PG&E has launched a new tool at its online Safety Action Center (safetyactioncenter.pge.com) to help customers prepare. By using the "Make Your Own Emergency Plan" tool and answering a few short questions, visitors to the website can compile and organize the important information needed for a personalized family emergency plan. This includes phone numbers, escape routes and a family meeting location if an evacuation is necessary.
 
Smaller, Shorter, Smarter PSPS events
 
PG&E is learning from past PSPS events, and this year will be making events smaller in size, shorter in length and smarter for customers.
 
  • Smaller in Size: This year, PG&E expects to cut restoration times in half compared to 2019, restoring power to nearly all customers within 12 daylight hours after severe weather has passed, by: 
  • Installing approximately 600 devices that limit the size of outages so fewer communities are without power.
  • Installing microgrids that use generators to keep the electricity on.
  • Placing lines underground in targeted locations.
  • Using better weather monitoring technology and installing new weather stations.
 
  • Shorter in Length: To make events shorter, PG&E expects to restore customers twice as fast by:
  • Expanding its helicopter fleet and using new airplanes with infrared equipment to inspect at night.
  • Deploying more PG&E and contractor crews to inspect equipment and restore service.
 
  • Smarter for Customers: In order to make events smarter for customers, PG&E is:
  • Providing more information and resources by improving the website bandwidth and customer notifications, opening Community Resource Centers and working with local agencies and critical service providers.
  • Providing more assistance before, during and after a PSPS event by working with community-based organizations to support customers with medical needs making it easier for eligible customers to join and stay in the Medical Baseline program.
 
Due to better weather technology and mitigation efforts such as sectionalizing devices and temporary generation, the Sept. 7-10 PSPS event affected 54% fewer customers than a comparable event would have in 2019.
 
Community Resource Centers Reflect COVID-Safety Protocols
 
PG&E will open Community Resource Centers (CRCs) to support our customers. The sole purpose of a PSPS is to reduce the risk of major wildfires during severe weather. While a PSPS is an important wildfire safety tool, PG&E understands that losing power disrupts lives, especially for customers sheltering-at-home in response to COVID-19. These temporary CRCs will be open to customers when power is out at their homes and will provide ADA-accessible restrooms and hand-washing stations; medical-equipment charging; Wi-Fi; bottled water; and non-perishable snacks.
 
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, all CRCs will follow important health and safety protocols including:
 
  • Facial coverings and maintaining a physical distance of at least six feet from those who are not part of the same household will be required at all CRCs.
  • Temperature checks will be administered before entering CRCs that are located indoors.
  • CRC staff will be trained in COVID-19 precautions and will regularly sanitize surfaces and use Plexiglass barriers at check-in.
  • All CRCs will follow county and state requirements regarding COVID-19, including limits on the number of customers permitted indoors at any time.
 
Besides these health protocols, customers visiting a CRC in 2020 will experience further changes, including a different look and feel. In addition to using existing indoor facilities, PG&E is planning to open CRCs at outdoor, open-air sites in some locations and use large commercial vans as CRCs in other locations. The CRC to be used will depend on a number of factors, including input from local and tribal leaders. Supplies also will be handed out in grab-and-go bags at outdoor CRCs so most customers can be on their way quickly.
 
How Customers Can Prepare for a PSPS
 
As part of PSPS preparedness efforts, PG&E suggests customers:
 
  • Plan for medical needs like medications that require refrigeration or devices that need power.
  • Identify backup charging methods for phones and keep hard copies of emergency numbers.
  • Build or restock your emergency kit with flashlights, fresh batteries, first aid supplies and cash.
  • Keep in mind family members who are elderly, younger children and pets.
 
To stay up to date on this potential PSPS, visit pge.com/pspsupdates.
 About PG&E
Pacific Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation (NYSE:PCG), is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric energy companies in the United States. Based in San Francisco, with more than 23,000 employees, the company delivers some of the nation's cleanest energy to 16 million people in Northern and Central California. For more information, visit pge.com and pge.com/news.

One of the ways that people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of everyday life and achieve economic opportunity and independence is through education. However, our community still is often subject to barriers. Sharing an exciting, innovative program:

UC Davis To Launch Program For Students With Intellectual Disabilities
By Elisabeth Smith October 12, 2020 at 10:05 pm
DAVIS (CBS13) — UC Davis is launching a new four-year residential college program for students with intellectual disabilities.
The Supported Education to Elevate Diversity (SEED) Scholar program will be for students with autism, Down syndrome, traumatic brain injury and other neurodevelopmental disabilities. The program will be the first of its kind in California.
Its co-director, Beth Foraker, has a son with Down syndrome who was going through a similar program at a university in Virginia. Her son’s program inspired her to start one at UC Davis.
“I, of course, was very emotional and thrilled for my son, but I would fly home to California and be devastated cause I would just think of all these kids here who had nothing,” Foraker said. 
For full report: UC Davis To Launch Program For Students With Intellectual Disabilities

 

Voting is a Right That Should Never be Taken for Granted


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 19, 2020

Good morning my brothers and sisters! Happy Monday. 
I started a little slow this morning, but I am getting in to the groove and getting it done. 
Today is the last day to register to vote online
By: Veronica Morley (from the Marin Independent Journal) 
Posted at 8:22 AM, Oct 19, 2020 and last updated 8:22 AM, Oct 19, 2020
  SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Today marks the last day to register to vote online in the upcoming election in the state of California.
To register to vote online, you will need a driver's license or identification card, the last four digits of your social security, and your date of birth. Start your application here. If English is not your first language there are forms in other languages.
You can also sign and return your paper registration forms at any available post offices, public libraries and election offices.
If you prefer to send it by mail, make sure your registration form is postmarked February 18 in order for it to be accepted.
Source: Today is the last day to register to vote online



Key Dates and Deadlines in California
Mon, Oct. 5 - Nov. 2: Early Voting Begins: Dates and hours may vary based on where you live
Mon, Oct. 19: Online Voter Registration Deadline
Mon, Oct. 19: By Mail Voter Registration Postmarked By Date
Tue, Oct. 27: Request Mail-In Ballot Deadline
Tue, Nov. 3: In-Person Voter Registration Deadline
Tue, Nov. 3: Mail-In Postmarked By Date
Tue, Nov. 3: Mail-In Return in Person Deadline 8:00 PM


People with disabilities and older adults are a powerful voting block. Show your Power! VOTE! VOTE! VOTE!

For questions about voting or developing an accessible plan to vote reach out to Marin CIL. If you have questions we have answers!


 Join the DOnetwork Voting Access and Advocacy team! www.DisabilityOrganizing.net disabilityorganizing@cfilc.org  

The Election During a Pandemic: Practice Safe Voting
Marin County Public Health and the Marin County Elections Department are in perfect harmony on their most timely message: If you haven’t voted in the November 3 General Election yet, voting by mail is the safest option during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Municipal governments are helping residents exercise their right to vote and taking steps to make voting before and on Election Day as safe as possible – not just for voters but for those working at polling stations and in the Elections Department.
The voter registration deadline is Monday, October 19. Registering to vote online through the State of California website is the safest way to do it under the public health sheltering order. After that day, conditional registration and voting must be in person at the Elections Department in Suite 121 of the Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael. Residents may also conditionally register and vote at one of early voting sites that open in Marin on October 31. Anyone may check the state website to confirm that they are registered to vote.
Voting by mail and registering online limits contact with others outside of a voter's household, and that’s the key to reducing the spread of COVID-19 and flattening the curve. Every registered voter in California has been mailed a mail-in ballot with an envelope that includes first-class return postage already paid. Any registered voter who did not receive a ballot in the mail should contact or stop by the Elections Department.
Continue reading the news release for details about official ballot drop box locations, Elections Department office hours, ballot submission deadlines, and protective measures that will be enforced at in-person polling places. Additional election information can be found at MarinVotes.org.
 
A few thoughts from yours truly:
The right to vote should never be taken for granted. This year we celebrate the 100th year anniversary of women gaining the right to vote. Black people gained the right to vote in 1870 with the 15th Amendment, however, there were many legal challenges of this right. It wasn’t until the adoption of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, signed into law by President Johnson, that Black people’s full right to vote was guaranteed under the 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

People with intellectual and developmental disabilities ofte encounter barriers to voting. They are not encoutaged to vote and  often mistakenly told they don’t have the right to vote because they are under conservatorship. In California, SB 589 grants people with intellectual and developmental disabilities the right to vote unless a judge specifically prohibits that right. .
My first opportunity to vote was in 1984. I remember being so proud that I had this right. However, back in the day many polling places were not accessible. On one occasion, when I arrived at a polling place, there were many stairs leading to the voting entrance. I had to ask someone to find a poll worker that could bring a ballot up to me so I could exercise my right to vote. I have difficulty writing and there were no accessible voting machines so the poll worker had to assist me in completing my ballot. I was not happy and I felt humiliated and definitely discriminated against. In those days there were other barriers as well. I want to honor everyone who fought for their right to vote. While things relating to voting are much better today we should never take this right for granted. Voter suppression still exists and we all must work harder to ensure that everyone has the opportunity to vote.   


Sharing From the CalifoaniaState Council on Devbelopmental Disabilities
 

October 16, 2020
 
 
State Council’s Work on Employment Initiates the Governor to Call for Access, Equity and Opportunity for People with Disabilities
 
In celebration of the 75th Anniversary of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, California Governor Gavin Newsom released a letter recognizing the importance of hiring and retaining people with disabilities in building a stronger and more inclusive economy. In this letter, the Governor calls on “employers, schools and other community organizations in California to redouble their efforts to ensure access, equity and opportunity for people with disabilities.”
 
This recognition results from advocacy by the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD). SCDD requested the Governor to use the month of October that is National Disability Employment Awareness Month to both raise awareness of the employment barriers and challenges experienced by people with disabilities, but also as an opportunity for a call of action to address those barriers and challenges.
 
Data from SCDD’s 2019 Report of the Employment First Committee was highlighted in the Governor’s letter to illustrate the need for reducing the disparity and improving employment outcomes for people with disabilities.
 
SCDD’s Chair Maria Marquez stated, “Despite the success stories of people with disabilities in the workforce, we still have a lot of work to do to increase access and opportunity for people with disabilities including those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.” She continued, “I am grateful that Governor Newsom is encouraging everyone to take action to make the future of disability employment better, and I look forward to finding ways for the State Council to partner with the Governor and stakeholders to address this issue.”
 
The full letter is available at www.gov.ca.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/2020-Disability-Employment-Awareness-Month-.pdf.
Hats off to the SCDD and the Governor for this great work. 



 

Voting, Halloween, and Happy Friday!


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 16, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters, 

I hope you are all doing well today. Halloween has always been my favorite time of year. My choices for costmes were superheroes (Superman, Batman), I was very much in to Star Trek (so Mr. Spock was a favorite). This year Halloween is going to be different because of Covid-19. Stay safe. 

Marin County Update
Halloween & Día de los Muertos: Tips to Celebrate Safely
Marin’s COVID-19 picture continues to improve, but California Health and Human Services Agency Secretary, Dr. Mark Ghaly, announced earlier this week that the state is discouraging normal Halloween and Día de los Muertos activities this year. Dr. Ghaly indicated that Halloween parties and door-to-door trick or treating are risky activities for coronavirus transmission and urged Californians to keep Día de los Muertos remembrances and other gatherings small.
The Marin County Public Health team has put together some helpful guidance on which activities should be modified or avoided altogether - along with some ideas for fun alternatives to help keep our spirits up.
YouTube Thumbnail
Watch Overview Video On YouTube (English) (Spanish)
Review Guidance & Suggested Alternatives (English) (Spanish)
 
 
Bay Area Health Officials #FightFlu, Urge Flu Shots
Today, Health officials from across the Bay Area issued a statement, asking the public to fight the flu by getting the annual vaccination for influenza right now. Each winter, people sick with flu crowd hospitals and urgent care clinics, resources that may be strained due to COVID-19. Early and timely flu shots can prevent a disease that hospitalizes 200,000 Americans every year.
It is important to get a new flu vaccine each year. The flu vaccine offers protection for many months, but not forever. Also, the strains of influenza circulating in the community change over time, and the current vaccine offers protection against those strains.
To keep yourself and your family out of the hospital, doctors recommend an annual flu shot for everyone age 6 months or older. The flu shot is a safe, effective way to reduce your chance of missing work or ending up in the hospital due to severe flu. Symptoms of the flu can be similar to early symptoms of COVID-19, meaning that this year, people with flu symptoms may require a COVID-19 test and may need to stay home from work and isolate away from their families while awaiting results.
In the Bay Area, as is the case across the state and the country, the percentage of children up to date on immunizations has fallen as parents delay routine visits to their pediatricians, which is a serious concern. An annual flu shot visit is a great time for kids to catch up on all vaccinations. For those with insurance, under the Affordable Care Act, a flu shot is available without cost as a preventive service from your regular doctor or most pharmacies. For those without health insurance, or anyone who finds it more convenient, there are many opportunities to get a free flu shot at community clinics, COVID-19 test sites, or mass vaccination events.
Flu is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. Flu is not COVID-19, which is caused by a different virus. Flu is not the same as the common cold, which is caused by different viruses. It takes about two weeks for the flu vaccine to become effective after you get the shot, so getting vaccinated in advance of the arrival of severe flu in the Bay Area offers the best protection.
While the flu vaccine is recommended for everyone 6 months and older, it is especially important for pregnant women, children younger than 5, adults 65 and older, and those with chronic medical conditions, such as heart disease, asthma, and diabetes. People who live in the same household with someone at high risk can help protect that person from severe flu by getting a flu shot.
Health officials advise individuals to take the following steps to protect themselves and loved ones from flu:
  • Get the flu vaccine every year.
  • Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and warm water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your cough and sneezes.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick and keep your children home when they are sick.
  • Symptoms of the flu include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headaches, and fatigue.
  • Wear a face covering and maintain at least a six-foot distance from others in public settings.
For more information about flu, visit flu.marinhhs.org. Find more locations near you that offer flu vaccine using the Vaccine Finder.
 

Red Flag Warning Issued Through Friday

National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for higher elevation areas of Marin County from Wednesday morning (5am) to Friday morning (11am). A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution during the Red Flag Warning because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire, including the use of equipment and machinery as well as smoking.
            Red Flag Warning & Wildfire Preparedness Information Resources  

Beware of Hot Temperatures this Week

With high temperatures expected this week, here are a few tips to be prepared. Heat affects everyone differently. Extremely high or unusually hot temperatures can affect a person’s health, especially when outdoors for long periods of time. Those most vulnerable to extreme heat include older adults, people with chronic medical conditions or mental health conditions and the socially isolated.
During a heat wave, residents should take the necessary precautions to prevent serious health effects for heat-related illnesses. View some of the resources below for tips to stay cool during warm weather.
            Warm Weather Safety Resources

 

Take the Time to Prepare for a Future Public Safety Power Shutoff

Fall is Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) season. PSPS events are called during times of dry, hot weather with strong winds that pose significant fire risk. Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) will proactively turn off power in these areas to prevent any electrical infrastructure -caused fires. Currently a PSPS event is forecast for the Northern California region: Marin County is NOT within the scope of this PSPS event.  However, as many of us know fire season is far from over, so this first PSPS event is a reminder to prepare for a future extended outage.
            PSPS Preparation Resources If you are a person with a disability or older adult who relies on power for life safety or independence; please remember to reach out to Marin CIL's Disability Disaster Access and Resource Program (AKA: Marin CIL's Power Squad) www.marincil.org/psps/

 
Sharing from the Office of the Secretary of State 
Voting is for everyone! Hat's off to the Secretary of State
 
How to fill out a California Voter Registration Card (ASL): A step by step guide to filling out a California Voter Registration Card in American Sign Language (ASL)
 
If you have questions about voting or want help developing an accessible plan to vote please reach out to Marin CIL. We are here to help. 

Have a great weekend. See you Monday!
 

On a Roll this Morning: Let's Talk "Great Shakeout", Emergency Preparedness, Your Census Matters


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 15, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters in Community, 

My day started early....it was a multiple coffee day! My drink is a Mocha with a couple extra shots and whipped cream is a MUST. I hope you are doing well.....Here's to YOU! Living life on a roll...sending you a smile. 

Sharing some important information from my friends from the County of Marin

COVID-19 Testing Options Expand Across Marin County

The testing landscape has changed in Marin County and more COVID-19 testing options are available through medical providers, self-referral sites and at-home testing options.
COVID-19 testing is an important tool for maintaining the health of our broader community. Marin County Public Health, the California Department of Public Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend you be tested for COVID-19 if you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19, including fever, chills, cough, congestion, sore throat, difficulty breathing, headache, fatigue, vomiting, diarrhea, or new loss of taste or smell;
  • You were notified by Marin Public Health as being high risk or a "close contact" to a person confirmed to have COVID-19;
  • You work in a high-risk setting, such as a hospital or medical clinic, long-term care facility, homeless shelter or prison; OR
  • You work in an occupation where you experience frequent contact with the public on a daily basis, including jobs as first responders, teachers, personal caregivers, housekeepers, construction workers, food service / restaurant workers, gas station and grocery store workers.
If you are experiencing symptoms or meet the criteria above, your first stop for testing should be your medical/healthcare provider, primary physician or local medical clinic. Our COVID-19 Testing Information webpage offers a detailed list of providers, self-referral sites and at-home test options available.
 
What about testing required for travel?
Some states and countries now require a negative COVID-19 viral test before entry. Often, these tests must have been completed within 24-72 hours before arrival. Conditions for entry vary by destination: be sure to research the latest travel and health restrictions for your planned destination (or verify requirements with your airline) prior to scheduling your COVID-19 test.
In addition, some destinations – such as Hawaii – will only accept test results from select providers.  Before scheduling your COVID-19 test, check with your COVID-19 test provider to ensure they can accommodate your specific travel requirements, including test result certification.
Marin County Public Health does not provide travel-related testing. However, many primary care medical providers and travel clinics provide COVID-19 testing for travel.  In addition, Oakland AirportUnited Airlines, and Hawaiian Airlines have announced COVID-19 testing options, with more airports and airlines planning to unveil COVID-19 testing options in the near future.
 
What about medical procedure-related testing?
Some healthcare facilities require a negative COVID-19 viral test before undergoing a medical, dental or surgical procedure. This is because most procedures involve close contact between you and your practitioner. The time in which your COVID-19 test must be completed before your procedure varies by provider and the procedure prescribed for you. Confirm testing and test result reporting requirements before scheduling your COVID-19 test.
Marin County Public Health does not provide testing for medical/dental procedure purposes. Discuss COVID-19 testing options with your primary care medical provider or consider a self-referral or at-home test option if allowed by your procedure provider.  
 
Dont forget about the "Great Shakeout " happening today

“The Great ShakeOut” International Earthquake Drill
Drop. Cover. And hold on! The Great ShakeOut is, October 15 at 10:15am. Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills, a worldwide earthquake safety movement, are involving 17.1 million people throughout 2020 (and counting). Most participate in ShakeOut by registering to practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” and many do much more. If you participate, be sure to take a #ShakeOut selfie and post it on social media! [Continue reading news release]

Emergency Preparedness is about Full Inclusion of all Communities

Key Earthquake Safety Tips for People with Disabilities and Others with Access and Functional Needs

Earthquake Safety Tips for People with Disabilities/AFN © Earthquake Country Alliance
 
During earthquake shaking, protect yourself from falling objects.
IF POSSIBLE: DROP where you are, onto your hands and knees. This position protects you from being knocked down and also allows you to stay low and crawl to shelter if nearby.
COVER your head and neck with one arm and hand • If a sturdy table or desk is nearby, crawl underneath it • If no shelter is nearby, crawl next to an interior wall • Stay on your knees; bend over to protect vital organs
HOLD ON until the shaking stops. • Under shelter: hold on to it with one hand; be ready to move with your shelter if it shifts • No shelter: hold on to your head and neck with both arms and hands.
OR ADAPT FOR YOUR SITUATION: If you have difficulty getting onto the ground, or cannot get back up again without the help of a caregiver, then follow these recommendations:
• If you are in a recliner or bed: Cover your head and neck with your arms or a pillow until the shaking stops.
• If you use a cane: Drop, Cover, and Hold On or sit on a chair, bed, etc. and cover your head and neck with both hands. Keep your cane near you so it can be used when the shaking stops.
 • If you use a walker or wheelchair: LOCK your wheels (if applicable).
If using a walker carefully get as low as possible. Bend over and COVER your head/neck with your arms, a book, or a pillow. Then HOLD ON until shaking stops.
Learn more at www.EarthquakeCountry.org/step5.
Earthquake Safety Tips For People with Disabilities/AFN © Earthquake Country Alliance People who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing:
Prior to an earthquake, identify and test multiple ways to receive warnings and evacuation information. People who are Blind or have Low Vision: Earthquakes can cause items to fall and furniture to shift. Regular sound clues may not be available afterwards. Move with caution.
People with Developmental/Cognitive/Intellectual Disabilities: If you have difficulty understanding, remembering, or learning, keep a simple list of what to do and important information with you and in your kits. Practice your plan in advance. If you use augmentative communication supports, include these in your planning.
Additional Disaster Preparedness Recommendations:
• Develop or update your individual and family plans, including your communication plans and important contacts.
• Make emergency go kits for your home, car, and office. Remember to make kits for service animals and pets too. Store extra batteries and any needed supplies in your kits.
• Label adaptive equipment or other devices with your contact information in case they are separated from you.
• Create safe spaces by securing heavy furniture and other items that could fall, injure you, or block your way out.
• Build a Personal Support Team (PST) to check on you in case you need assistance. Include them in all phases of your planning.
• Get involved! Volunteer with your local Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) or similar organizations in your area.
 • If you live near or visit the beach, be aware of tsunami evacuation routes and learn what to do to protect yourself. Practice tsunami evacuations with your care provider or support team.
• Hold drills at home, work, and in your community regularly. Invite your PST and care providers to join you. Learn more at www.EarthquakeCountry.org/disability.
https://www.earthquakecountry.org/disability/ 

Be Prepared and Stay Safe

Red Flag Warning Issued Through Friday
National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for higher elevation areas of Marin County from Wednesday morning (5am) to Friday morning (11am). A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution during the Red Flag Warning because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire, including the use of equipment and machinery as well as smoking.
    
 Red Flag Warning & Wildfire Preparedness Information Resources Sharing from my friends at the Marin Independent Journal

 Flex Alert could add to number without electricity as PG&E begins public safety power shutoff
Customers statewide are being urged to conserve electricity from 3 to 10 p.m. Thursday
By JASON GREEN |PUBLISHED: October 14, 2020 at 7:43 p.m. | UPDATED: October 15, 2020 at 6:48 a.m.
FOLSOM — As Pacific Gas & Electric Co. moved forward with a public safety power shutoff Wednesday, the California Independent System Operator called for a statewide Flex Alert on Thursday, warning that high temperatures could force further outages.
The alert will run from 3 to 10 p.m., the ISO said in a news release. Consumers are being urged to conserve electricity, especially during the late afternoon and early evening, when the grid is most stressed due to higher demand and solar energy production falling.
PG&E on Wednesday started de-energizing electrical lines in response to forecasted critical fire weather conditions. The power shutoff is expected to affect up to 53,000 customers in targeted portions of 24 counties, including thousands in the Bay Area.
The National Weather Service has issued heat and wind advisories, as well as a red flag warning for much of the region. Inland areas are expected to see temperatures in the upper 90s to low 100s, or 15 to 25 degrees above normal. At the same time, elevations ranging from 1,000 to 2,500 feet are forecast to see 10 to 20 mph winds with 35 to 40 mph gusts. Gusts up to 55 mph are possible at the highest mountain peaks.
For Full Article: Flex Alert could add to number without electricity as PG&E begins public safety power shutoff

Beware of Hot Temperatures this Week
With high temperatures expected this week, here are a few tips to be prepared. Heat affects everyone differently. Extremely high or unusually hot temperatures can affect a person’s health, especially when outdoors for long periods of time. Those most vulnerable to extreme heat include older adults, people with chronic medical conditions or mental health conditions and the socially isolated.
During a heat wave, residents should take the necessary precautions to prevent serious health effects for heat-related illnesses. View some of the resources below for tips to stay cool during warm weather.
    
Warm Weather Safety Resources Remember if you want support preparing for an emergency, creating a disaster plan, and much more... Marin CIL is all things emergency preparedness. Reach out to us today! 

Census Count Ending Today: Remember...Get Counted! 
2020 Census Data Collection Ends on October 15
All data collecting operations for the 2020 Census will conclude on October 15, 2020. If you are reading this before the deadline, you can still be counted!

Here are three different options for you to choose from:
 
  • Internet self-response will be available across the nation through October 15, 2020 through 11:59 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time (through 2:59 a.m. in California on October 16, 2020). Visit 2020Census.gov to respond now.
  
  • Paper responses must be postmarked by October 15, 2020.

Health Care Still Largest U.S. Employer
Which industry had the highest employment and annual payroll in 2018?
According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s County Business Patterns (CBP), the 907,426 businesses in the Health Care and Social Assistance sector topped all others with 20 million employees and over $1.0 trillion in annual payroll in 2018.
And the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects this sector will grow 14% from 2018 to 2028, due largely to an aging population with increased health care needs. Read More

Continue reading to learn more about:
  • Sectors that saw the highest increases in employment between 2017 and 2018
  • The largest increases in annual payroll
  • The fast-growing industries in the Health Care and Social Assistance sector
  • Non-employer Statistics (NES) economic data for businesses with no paid employees

 

Wow A lot Happening: Supreme Court Issues Census Decision and much more


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 14, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters in Community,

I hope you are all doing well today. Once again we have got alot of ground to cover. Please share far and wide with your communities. Have a wonderful day. Stay safe. 


Breaking News: Census Count Ending Tomorrow. We still have much to do!

The U.S. Supreme Court has stopped the once-a-decade head count of every U.S. resident from continuing through the end of October.

By Associated Press  Oct 13, 2020, 4:15pm CDT
Mike Schneider
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday stopped the once-a-decade head count of every U.S. resident from continuing through the end of October.
President Donald Trump’s administration had asked the nation’s high court to suspend a district court’s order permitting the 2020 census to continue through the end of the month. The Trump administration argued that the head count needed to end immediately so the U.S. Census Bureau had enough time to crunch the numbers before a congressionally mandated year-end deadline for turning in figures used for deciding how many congressional seats each state gets.
A coalition of local governments and civil rights groups had sued the Trump administration, arguing that minorities and others in hard-to-count communities would be missed if the count ended early. They said the census schedule was cut short to accommodate a July order from Trump that would exclude people in the country illegally from the numbers used to decide how many congressional seats each state gets.
Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented.
“Moreover, meeting the deadline at the expense of the accuracy of the census is not a cost worth paying, especially when the Government has failed to show why it could not bear the lesser cost of expending more resources to meet the deadline or continuing its prior efforts to seek an extension from Congress,” Sotomayor wrote.
Last month, U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California sided with the plaintiffs and issued an injunction which suspended a Sept. 30 deadline for finishing the 2020 census and a Dec. 31 deadline for submitting numbers used to determine how many congressional seats each state gets — a process known as apportionment. That caused the deadlines to revert back to a previous Census Bureau plan that had field operations ending Oct. 31 and the reporting of apportionment figures at the end of April 2021.
https://chicago.suntimes.com/2020/10/13/21515056/supreme-court-stops-2020-census

Census Bureau Statement on 2020 Census Data Collection Ending
OCT. 13, 2020 — As of today, well over 99.9% of housing units have been accounted for in the 2020 Census. Self-response and field data collection operations for the 2020 Census will conclude on October 15, 2020.
Learn More
Specifically:

  • Internet self-response will be available across the nation through October 15, 2020 until 11:59 pm Hawaii Standard Time (HST), (6:00 am Eastern Daylight Time on October 16, 2020) Visit gov to respond today.
  • Phone response will be available for its regularly scheduled time on October 15, 2020. Click here for schedule and a list of numbers.
  • Paper responses must be postmarked by October 15, 2020.
  • Nonresponse Followup census takers will continue resolving nonresponding addresses through the end of the day on October 15, 2020.
The U.S. Census Bureau is currently updating 2020Census.gov, Census.gov, as well as all external and internal guidance to reflect the schedule update.

Supreme Court halts census in latest twist of 2020 count


From the California Census 2020 Director:

Census Family,
The census count is a process so important it is enshrined in our constitution.
Today’s decision is disappointing and could have grave consequences for the next decade. Understanding what is at stake, California has made historic investments in making sure everyone is counted so we can receive our fair share of funding from and representation in Washington.
California will continue to stand up for the integrity of the census and support the ongoing litigation to ensure that all Californians count in the apportionment process.

Sincerely,
Ditas Katague
Director, California Complete Count-Census 2020

Marin CIL Census Hotline will remain available to answer questions regarding the census. Reach out to us (415) 234-3840 Your census matters. Take it today!

Red Flag Warning Issued Through Friday

National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for higher elevation areas of Marin County from Wednesday morning (5am) to Friday morning (11am). A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are expected during this time frame for strong wind gusts and hot, dry conditions. Residents are advised to exercise extreme caution during the Red Flag Warning because a simple spark could cause a major wildfire, including the use of equipment and machinery as well as smoking.
Red Flag Warning & Wildfire Preparedness Information Resources Marin CIL encourages our communities to stay informed. Information is power and it may also keep you and your family safe. 

 Alert Marin: If you live, work or go to school in Marin County, you may now register your cell phone or VoIP (voice over internet protocol) phone to receive emergency alerts sent by call, text, email, or smartphone application from the County of Marin.
Nixle:Nixle keeps you up-to-date with relevant information from your local public safety departments & schools

Sharing more from the County of Marin

Beware of Hot Temperatures this Week
With high temperatures expected this week, here are a few tips to be prepared. Heat affects everyone differently. Extremely high or unusually hot temperatures can affect a person’s health, especially when outdoors for long periods of time. Those most vulnerable to extreme heat include older adults, people with chronic medical conditions or mental health conditions and the socially isolated.
During a heat wave, residents should take the necessary precautions to prevent serious health effects for heat-related illnesses. View some of the resources below for tips to stay cool during warm weather.
Warm Weather Safety Resources  
Take the Time to Prepare for a Future Public Safety Power Shutoff
Fall is Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) season. PSPS events are called during times of dry, hot weather with strong winds that pose significant fire risk. Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) will proactively turn off power in these areas to prevent any electrical infrastructure -caused fires. Currently a PSPS event is forecast for the Northern California region: Marin County is NOT within the scope of this PSPS event.  However, as many of us know fire season is far from over, so this first PSPS event is a reminder to prepare for a future extended outage.
            PSPS Preparation Resources Marin CIL is here for you:
For people with disabilities and older adults who rely on power for life safety or independence please feel free to reach out to Marin CIL's Disability Disaster Access and Resources Program: https://www.marincil.org/psps/


Your Health Matters: Sharing Important Information from the County of Marin

Help Marin Avoid the Flu-COVID ‘Twindemic’

Doctors strongly recommend seasonal influenza vaccination soon
San Rafael, CA – Marin County Public Health officials are urging Marin residents to get a flu shot this season. There is no vaccination for the COVID-19 coronavirus yet, but there is one for the seasonal influenza. Doctors with Marin County Public Health are working to prevent a local “twindemic” of COVID-19 and regular flu cases by urging everyone to take necessary precautions and get vaccinated.
“Every flu season, intensive care units across Marin are substantially impacted by people seriously ill with influenza,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer. “If you’re eager to put the pandemic behind us, we urge you to get a flu shot to reduce the chances of influenza crossing paths with COVID-19. Managing surges in both illnesses would over-burden an already taxed healthcare system.”
The flu shot recommendation is more urgent than in past years – especially as Marin and other Bay Area counties settle into gradual and cautious reopening plans that result in more human mingling.
The typical flu season is between October and May. Marin County Public Health tracks flu activity by analyzing laboratory testing data and visits to local emergency departments for flu-like illness. The team produces a monthly influenza surveillance report that summarizes local activity and has links to statewide and national flu activity.
“With more Marin schools reopening campuses soon for in-person learning, it’s imperative to immunize children before in-classroom instruction begins,” Willis said.
This year the percentage of children up-to-date on immunizations has fallen statewide as parents delay routine visits to pediatricians during the pandemic. Marin County Public Health regularly communicates with parents of school-aged children about keeping students current with immunizations, which are required for school attendance. As for COVID-19 and classroom instruction, Marin County Public Health offers more guidance and resources online.
“Your child’s annual flu shot visit is the perfect time to catch up on other required vaccinations.” Willis said. “This is not the year to skip or delay immunizations.”
Flu activity usually increases in late November and December in California. It takes a couple of weeks after a flu shot for the body to build an immunity, which is why September through early November is a critical period for seasonal flu vaccinations.
The seasonal flu and COVID-19 can exhibit some of the same symptoms, including fever, cough, body aches, chills. Besides getting immunized, residents should take the following preventive actions to stop the spread of germs:
·        Wear a face covering.
·        Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
·        Stay away from people who are sick.
·        Stay home when you or your child are sick for at least 24 hours after symptoms go away.
·        Wash hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water.
·        When washing hands isn’t an option, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
·        Cough or sneeze into a tissue or, if one isn’t available, into your elbow.
·        Use hand sanitizer or wash hands after coughing or sneezing.
For those with medical insurance, flu shots are free as a preventive service at doctor’s offices and most retail pharmacies (e.g., CostcoCVSRiteAidSafewayWalgreens). Those without health insurance can obtain free or low-cost flu shots through local community clinics.
You have subscribed to News Releases & Advisories for Marin County. This information has recently been updated.
Visit the Newsroom to view all County news releases.

An Important Community Forum

Oct. 17 Discussion on Confronting Racism in Marin
Marin Shakespeare Company logo
On Saturday, October 17, the Marin Shakespeare Company is hosting a discussion featuring six young Black, Latinx, and Native American men and women raised in Marin County who will share their experiences with racism right here in our community.

They'll share their views on how a county that prides itself on being welcoming, smart, and action-oriented is often oblivious to the racism and many structural societal issues that perpetuate bias, racism, and ultimately significant social injustice.

The event will be moderated by Teveia Barnes, Marin resident and Executive Director of Lawyers For One America. Marin Shakespeare Company is partnering with American Association of University Women, Lawyers for One America, the Gaynes-Jones Education Foundation, and Dominican University’s Women’s Leadership Philanthropy Council to bring this event to our community.

Register by October 15 for this free event. You will receive a link to the webinar after registration.

Community Engagement

Nov. 6 Deadline - Diverse Volunteers Encouraged to Apply for County Race Equity Planning Committee
Race Equity Planning Committee
The County of Marin is recruiting 15-20 community members to serve on its new Race Equity Planning Committee, which will provide recommendations to the County on how to build an anti-racist community and revise the community-facing elements of the County’s 2017 Race Equity Plan.

The County is committed to forming a diverse stakeholder group, and as such, committee applicants must be a current Marin County resident AND identify as at least one of the following:

A community member who is Black, Indigenous or a person of color
A community member who identifies as a woman
A community member who is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans*, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual (LGBTQQIA+)
A community member who is between the ages of 15 and 25
A community member who is 60 years of age or older
A community member who is facing chronic illnesses, mental health challenges, or disabilities
A community member who is undocumented or underdocumented
Race Equity Planning Committee flyer
Committee members are asked to make a one-year commitment of no more than six hours per month. The deadline for applications is 5:00pm on Friday, November 6.

If you are interested in being considered for the committee, apply online or obtain a paper application at 3501 Civic Center Drive, Suite 325, San Rafael. Phone applications are being taken weekdays from 3:00-5:00pm at (415) 473-3149. Applications are available in Spanish and Vietnamese, and can be translated into other languages as needed. For translation services or other inquiries, please contact the Marin County Office of Equity via e-mail or by calling (415) 473-3149.
 

There is much in today's report: Make your Vote Count and 21 Counties Preparing for a Possible PSPS


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 13, 2020

Good Morning, My brothers and sisters in community! I hope each of you had a wonderful Indigenous People's Day.  Today's blog is a bit lengthy, as there is much going on in our world.  Buckle up, here we go!


Disability Vote Matters. Make your Voice Heard
 

Press Release: Registrar Reminds Voters to Use Official Drop Boxes to Cast Ballots
Instances of unofficial collection receptacles reported across state
San Rafael, CA – Registrars of Voters at county governments throughout California are alerting voters about fraudulent ballot collection receptacles being placed by unauthorized individuals around California.
On Sunday, the office of California Secretary of State Alex Padilla issued a memo telling registrars the unofficial boxes were illegal and ballots must be mailed or brought to official voting locations. “In short, providing unauthorized, non-official vote-by-mail ballot drop boxes is prohibited by state law,” Padilla wrote. “Never hand your ballot over to someone you don’t trust. Official county drop boxes are built with specific security protections, and ballots are retrieved only by designated county personnel.” 
In Marin County, Registrar Lynda Roberts said October 12 that no such incidents had been identified in Marin County. “If a registered voter wants to place a signed mail-in ballot into a drop box, they need to make sure it’s a box installed by our Elections Department staff,” Roberts said. “If a voter is unable to return their own ballot, we recommend they designate someone they know and trust by completing the form at the top of the ballot return envelope.”
Voting is taking place at the Elections Department inside Suite 121 of the Marin County Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive, San Rafael. A drop box is in the hallway just outside the office door. In addition, there are two secure outdoor drop boxes at the Civic Center archways at which drivers can conveniently deposit the envelope:
· Vera Schultz Drive (North Archway)
· Peter Behr Drive (South Archway)
Other official drop boxes can be found at the following locations around Marin County (additional sites may be added to the list, which can be confirmed online):
· Albert J. Boro Community Center, 50 Canal St, San Rafael
· Bolinas Community Center, 14 Wharf Road, Bolinas
· Corte Madera Recreation Center, 498 Tamalpais Drive, Corte Madera
· Fairfax Town Hall, 142 Bolinas Road, Fairfax
· Marin City Library, 164 Donahue Street, Sausalito
· Marin Health and Wellness Campus, 3240 Kerner Boulevard, San Rafael
· Mill Valley City Hall, 26 Corte Madera Avenue, Mill Valley
· Novato Library, 1720 Novato Boulevard, Novato
· San Anselmo Town Hall, 525 San Anselmo Avenue, San Anselmo
· West Marin Health and Human Services Center, 1 Sixth Street, Point Reyes
· Whistlestop (now known as Vivalon), 930 Tamalpais Avenue, San Rafael
Elections Department hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays or until 8 p.m. on Election Day. The department will be open the weekend before the election — October 31 and November 1 – from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist voters with registration and voting.
In addition to dropping off ballots atone of the drop boxes listed above or using the U.S. mail, voters may use a ballot drop box at one of 29 polling stations that will be open October 31 through November 3. The list of polling stations and hours of operation are found on www.marinvotes.org.
Voters were assigned to a specific location for in-person voting and should refer to their Voter Information Guide/Sample Ballot for more information.
California laws allow Roberts’ staff to process returned ballots before Election Day, which helps produce final results faster after Election Day. Signature verification on vote-by-mail ballot envelopes takes time to ensure security and accuracy, so waiting until Election Day to drop off a ballot at a polling place delays certification of the election. Rest assured, however, that every eligible and timely vote will be counted. 
You have subscribed to News Releases & Advisories for Marin County. This information has recently been updated.
Visit the Newsroom to view all County news releases. (End of press release) 
 
A Note from Marin CIL
Marin CIL participates in the Marin County Election Advisory Committee​ which​ was established by the Registrar of Voters to act as a link between the voting public and the Registrar. The committee provides feedback and advice on issues that affect voters, such as voter participation and election integrity, and learns about election processes and laws that impact the procedures of the Elections Department. More information can be found at Marin County Election Advisory Committee   

Sharing from our Friends and Partners the Disability Organizing Network
 
 Make your plan to VOTE! Voters with disabilities in California have a choice this November! 
Options for in person voting vary by county. Contact your county elections office by calling the Secretary of State’s Voter Hotline: 800-345-8683. If you feel you have been denied the right to vote, contact Disability Rights California’s Voter Hotline: 888-569-7955.  
 
 This November you can vote: 
 
By Mail: All Californians who register to vote by October 19, 2020, will receive a ballot in the mail this year. All Californians can use Remote Accessible Vote-by-Mail, a specially designed website to allow you to complete a printed ballot using your computer’s assistive technology. (I.E. screen reading software) You can return your ballot by mail or in person, at a drop box or vote center/polling place. 
 
In Person: (in most counties) CDC Health Guidelines regarding COVID-19 will be followed at all voting locations, to protect your health and safety. Curbside voting will be available at all vote centers/polling places. Vote centers/polling places will have accessible voting machines available. 
 
  Join the DOnetwork Voting Access and Advocacy team! www.DisabilityOrganizing.net disabilityorganizing@cfilc.org 

Sharing from our Friends at the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities

Questions about Voting? Disability Vote California Voter Office Hours are Here to Help
Join members of Disability Vote California online for virtual Voter Office Hours each Tuesday from 3:00 – 4:00 PM from now through election day. Voting experts from The Arc of California, California Foundation for Independent Living Centers | Disability Organization Network, Disability Rights California, and the State Council on Developmental Disabilities will be available each week to answer any questions you might have about voting in the election. If you have questions about voting by mail, drop boxes, voting in person, voting accessibility, or anything else please drop by!
Anyone with a question about voting can join. Traducción en español esta disponible.
Join the Voter Office Hours to ask your questions by visiting bit.ly/votersca or watch live on the following Facebook pages The Arc of CaliforniaSCDD, or CFILC.


Bay Area Counties and Northern California Preparing for a Possible PSPS Event 
What is a Public Safety Power Shutoff?


Great question. High temperatures, extreme dryness and record-high winds have created conditions where any spark at the wrong time and place can lead to a major wildfire. If severe weather threatens a portion of the electric system, it may be necessary for PG&E to turn off electricity in the interest of public safety. This is known as a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS).
Marin CIL is joining with the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC), MCE, and the PG&E service area to begin a new initiative to support people with disabilities and older adults during the activation of a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) event or other emergency. This program is referred to as Disability Disaster Access and Resources. The goal is to enable you to remain safe while independent in your residences and communities. We are coordinating various programs for those who depend on power for durable medical equipment or for their livelihood.
 
To find out if your area is affected by a PSPS click here  https://pgealerts.alerts.pge.com/updates/ 
 
Public Safety Power Shutoff: PSPS Outage Watch Courtesy Notification
Due to current weather forecasts, the majority of the Bay Area counties and Sacramento region are currently under a Watch for a Public Safety Power Shutoff. It's Marin CIL's understanding that as of today Marin is not on the list for a potential PSPS event.  

ESTIMATED SHUTOFF:  Wednesday, 10/14 at 18:00
Counties: Alameda, Butte, Contra Costa, Lake, Napa, Nevada, Plumas, Solano, Sonoma, Yuba
 
ESTIMATED SHUTOFF:  Wednesday, 10/14 at 19:00
Counties:  Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Placer, Santa Clara, Shasta, Sierra, Tehama
 
ESTIMATED SHUTOFF:  Wednesday, 10/14 at 20:00
Counties: San Mateo, Santa Cruz
 
ESTIMATED SHUTOFF:  Wednesday, 10/14 at 21:00
Counties: Monterey
   
Shutoff times may be delayed if winds arrive later than forecast. 
               
We expect weather to improve by: Thursday, 10/15 at 0600-1000
Counties: Alameda, Amador, Calaveras, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Lake, Monterey, Napa, Placer, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Sierra, Solano, Sonoma
               
We expect weather to improve by: Friday, 10/16 at 10:00
                Counties: Butte, Plumas, Shasta, Tehama, Yuba
 
After weather has improved, we will inspect equipment before restoring power. 
 
ESTIMATED RESTORATION: Thursday, 10/15 at 22:00
Counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Napa, Solano, Sonoma, Amador, Calaveras, El Dorado, Placer, Santa Clara, Sierra, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Monterey
 
ESTIMATED RESTORATION: Friday, 10/16 at 15:00
Counties: Butte, Nevada, Plumas, Yuba, Shasta, Tehama 
  
Restoration time may change depending on weather and equipment damage. 
 
We recommend all customers plan for an extended outage. We will provide daily updates until the weather risk has passed or power has been restored. This will include a Warning alert if we have determined it is necessary to turn off power. Weather forecasts change frequently. Shutoff forecasts will be most accurate the day of the potential outage. 
 
 
RESOURCES TO HELP YOU PREPARE 

 
Infographics about PSPS in 13 languages for your use on social media can be downloaded at  https://pgemarketing.app.box.com/s/ews736tse8xs9yxz9oz46o8exgoskukj 

 

Marin CIL is available to assist in these major ways:
  •  MEDICAL BASELINE ENROLLMENT
Marin CIL can assist you in enrolling in the PG&E Medical Baseline Program. This is not an income-based program. If you or someone in your community requires the use of a medical or life support device due to a disability or health condition, we can help you apply for PG&E's Medical Baseline Program. If approved, you will receive a lower rate on your monthly energy bill as well as extra notifications in advance of a Public Safety Power Shutoff.
  •  DISASTER KITS & TRAINING
Marin CIL can also help you put together a personalized disaster plan. Emergencies, including power shutoffs, can interrupt your normal routine and support systems. Planning ahead will increase your safety.
  •  PORTABLE BATTERY PROGRAM
The program will enable Marin CIL to provide access to backup portable batteries to qualifying customers who use electrical medical devices. Individuals who use life-sustaining electrical support will be our highest priority and supplies are limited. Marin CIL has received a high volume of requests for batteries and there is currently a waiting list. However, don't worry. Marin CIL is in the process of obtaining additional batteries to fill this need. 
  •  OTHER EMERGENCY RESOURCES
If you rely on power to operate life-sustaining medical devices, Marin CIL may be able to assist in covering the costs associated with accessible transportation, lodging and food during an emergency during a PSPS event. 
  •  IMPROVE HOME HEALTH & ENERGY EFFICIENCY
Marin CIL can assist in connecting you with other local programs to increase the comfort of your home while reducing your utility bills, like PG&E and MCE's offerings that improve the energy efficiency, health, and safety of your home.
What You Need to Do:
  • The first step to enroll is apply for Marin CIL's PSPS Program: WWW.MARINCIL.ORG/PSPS
If you have any additional questions or need any assistance to enroll in this important program please reach out to Ellie Agustín at psps@marincil.org or 415-754-3518. ¡Se habla español!

As I close this blog, I just wanted to make a personal note. I type my blog using voice activated software, as I find it quicker than typing with my one finger that moves as I ask. Sometimes this makes formatting difficult, and occasionally I make an error in grammer or syntax. I may miss them because I also have a bit of a vision issue. Thank you for reading my blog. Your patronage is very much appreciated. 

Good Morning Happy Friday! It's About Full Participation and Nothing About Us Without Us!


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 9, 2020

Good Morning my Brothers and Sisters,

I hope each of you is doing well today. As I mentioned previously, October is Disability Employment Awareness Month. One of the best ways for people with disabilities to achiece economic oppertunity is employment. I love my job at Marin CIL and consider myself very blessed to work with such great people. However, approximately 25 percent of Californians have a disability, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Yet, only 50 percent of individuals with disabilities are employed across the nation. Thirty years after the passage of the American's with Disabilities Act we need to do better. Here are some great events happening to raise awareness about this economic justice issue. 

In this report I am sharing important information and resources relating to housing, voting, an opportunity to share your story about the importance of Long-Term Services and Supports...and much more!

 

National Disability Employment Awareness Month Event Calendar shared from our Friends at California State Council on Developmental Disabilities

Jobtoberfest
Tuesday, October 13
8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.

Jobtoberfest is an annual job fair held to help members of the disability community find jobs. This event is sponsored by SCDD.  SCDD's San Diego Imperial Regional Office plays a big role in the planning process. There will be morning and afternoon sessions that allow jobseekers to freely browse employers and resources tables. There will also be two workshop opportunities: CalABLE and Goowill Job Readiness.

Event website: https://sdjobtoberfest.org/

DOR Student Services & Career Exploration
Tuesday, October 13
10:00 A.M. to 11:30 A.M.

Jose Garcia, Senior Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor-Service Coordinator at the Department of Rehabilitation (DOR) will discuss DOR Student Services which help students prepare for workplace success by exploring options, getting ready to work, and creating careers.

Jessica Conant, MS, Disability Resource Coordinator with Golden Sierra Job Training Agency will discuss Career Exploration. Golden Sierra Job Training Agency offers an integrated workforce system that capitalizes on the expertise of industry and workforce partners. Golden Sierra offers no-cost employment services and resources to job seekers and employers in Placer, El Dorado and Alpine counties.

This event is organized by SCDD’s Sacramento Regional Office & Alta California Regional Center. If you have a question or need an accommodations, please contact Sonya Bingaman at least 5 days in advance of the training at sonya.bingaman@scdd.ca.gov or 916-715-7057.

Register in advance at: https://bit.ly/35Nhk4I

Recruiting People with Disabilities into Your Workforce
Wednesday, October 14
9:00 A.M. to 10:30 A.M.

Join the Business Advisory Council’s free webinar to learn how you could get a paid intern at no cost to your business, how to make your workforce more inclusive and efficient, and how employees with disabilities are able to work in all sectors from IT to patient care to clerical support. This event features Franklin Templeton, and you can find one of its recruitment stories here: https://youtu.be/br8l00dWC_E.

Registration: https://bit.ly/3dcgccF

Let’s Work! Documentary Premiere
Saturday, October 17
Documentary Screening: 3:30 P.M.
Q&A with the director, some of the stars, SCDD's Executive Director Aaron Carruthers and other leaders: 5:00 P.M.

Funded by SCDD’s Program Development Grant, Let’s Work! by Inclusion Films and the California Transition Alliance documents the stories of eight adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities and the successful journeys they have taken to find and maintain employment. 2/3 of the film crew consists of students from our film training program who have developmental disabilities.

San Diego International Film Festival: https://sdfilmfest.com/
Documentary Trailer: https://youtu.be/eCYwC63zy8M

Building a Future that Works Virtual Celebration
Tuesday, October 20
11:00 A.M. to 12:00 P.M.

Join the U.S. Department of Labor to explore the crucial role of accessible technology in relation to this year’s NDEAM theme of “Increasing Access and Opportunity” for people with disabilities and the Labor Department’s work to ensure that emerging technologies are accessible to all in the workplace.

The event will feature insightful dialogues with thoughtful leaders and a video showcase of the latest innovations in communications, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, and more.

Registration: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ndeam-2020-building-a-future-that-works-tickets-123717758145

Business Outreach & Benefits Counseling
Tuesday, October 20
2:00 P.M. to 3:30 P.M.

Steve Ruder, Program Coordinator at the UC Davis MIND Institute, will discuss the Business Advisory Council and the process and benefits of hiring people with disabilities who receive assistance from supported employment agencies, American Job Centers, and the Department of Rehabilitation. Businesses will share their experiences and talk about the work their employees do. Attendees will learn how to hire quality employees with disabilities and connect with the agencies that support them. We will also discuss employment services available to people who are and are not clients of the regional center.

Dee Gavaldon, Program Manager and Benefits Counselor, Crossroads, a Pride Industries company, will discuss Benefits Counseling including the transition from work activity to community employment and how changes can affect your benefits. 

This event is organized by SCDD’s Sacramento Regional Office & Alta California Regional Center. If you have a question or need an accommodations, please contact Sonya Bingaman at least 5 days in advance of the training at sonya.bingaman@scdd.ca.gov or 916-715-7057.

Register in advance at: https://bit.ly/3ktWmfC

Let’s Celebrate Our Stories!
Tuesday, October 27
10:00 A.M. to 11:30 A.M.

A panel of transition aged youth & adults with developmental disabilities, a parent, and job coaches from several supported employment agencies share their experiences working before and during COVID-19. What supports did they receive that helped them prepare for and get a job, what challenges did they face, what have they learned on the job, how was their job affected during COVID, and what new jobs have they found? What advice do they have for others seeking employment?

This event is organized by SCDD’s Sacramento Regional Office & Alta California Regional Center. If you have a question or need an accommodations, please contact Sonya Bingaman at least 5 days in advance of the training at sonya.bingaman@scdd.ca.gov or 916-715-7057.

Register in advance at: https://bit.ly/2RC6Vkf

Employment Innovation: Improving Work for People with Disabilities
Wednesday, October 28
9:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.

A Hallmark Event Highlighting the Past, Present, and Future of Work for People with Disabilities from the Perspective of Administration for Community Living (ACL)/National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) Research. This event is available through Zoom. Additional information to be announced.

Sharing from Legal Aid at Work

DISABILITY RIGHTS

Legal Aid at Work advances the civil rights of people with disabilities in employment, education, and public services through brief services, information, individual litigation, and class actions.  Our Workers’ Rights Disability Law Clinic and Disability Rights Helpline provide free, confidential legal advice and referrals for workers and job seekers with disabilities. We protect the civil rights of people with all types of disabilities by educating employers and promoting equality and reasonable accommodation in the workplace. And we ensure that people with disabilities in California have equal access to public facilities and to educational opportunities at public schools.


Legal Aid Marin helpline

877-350-5441 Toll-free helpline
415-864-8848 Workers' Rights Disability Law Clinic appts

 

Disability Rights Clinic
Workers’ Rights Disability Law Clinic
3075 Adeline St, Berkeley, CA 94703
Every OTHER TUESDAY, by appointment ONLY, starting 6:30 p.m.
Due to the Coronavirus situation, all Workers’ Rights Clinics will be operated “virtually,” meaning that clinical services will be provided by phone rather than in-person. Call 877-350-5441 to schedule an appointment.

 

Sharing from the National Low-Income Housing Coalition

 

Tenant Talk Volume 11 Issue 2 Housing is Built with Ballots

Tenant Talk connects with residents on the housing policy issues affecting their lives. This quarterly newsletter is for tenants, residents and other low income renters, and was created to engage low income people in housing advocacy. Tenant Talk covers issues of importance to low-income residents, like Section 3 work requirements, the budget and appropriations process, and disaster housing.   

 

 

COVID-19 and Housing Stability: State and Local Eviction Prevention Strategies Webinar
October 22, 2020 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM

The Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) temporary halt of evictions protects up to 45 million households from being evicted through December 31, 2020, because of a lack of income. However, this merely delays repayment of rent, and it is unclear how many households will owe rental arrears or how much they will owe. It is imperative that states and localities implement programs and policies that address this unmet need in order to prevent a potential wave of evictions at the end of the year. These evictions would likely exacerbate existing disparities: Research from before the pandemic exposed that women of color living in poverty face the highest risk of eviction, and research from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia found that renters, householders of color, and single women are the most vulnerable to experiencing income deficits following COVID-related job losses.

Join the Federal Reserve Banks of Philadelphia and Cleveland and housing policy experts from across the country to discuss how states and localities can support vulnerable renters and address the root causes of the looming eviction crisis. This webinar will feature a federal housing policy update, research presentations that measure evictions during the COVID-19 crisis and estimate the amount of arrears owed by renters, and a panel discussion that explores state and local eviction prevention strategies.

Welcome
Theresa Singleton, Senior Vice President, and Community Affairs Officer, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia (bio)

Federal Update
Diane Yentel, President and CEO, National Low Income Housing Coalition (bio)

Research Presentations
Hal Martin, Policy Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (bio)
Davin Reed, Community Development Economic Advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia (bio)

Panel Discussion
Emily Benfer, Visiting Professor of Law, Wake Forest School of Law (bio)
Ingrid Gould Ellen, Paulette Goddard Professor of Urban Policy and Planning, NYU Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service (bio)
Stockton Williams, Executive Director, National Council of State Housing Agencies (bio)
Moderator: Monique King-Viehland, Director, State and Local Housing Policy, Urban Institute (bio)

Closing Remarks
Ken Surratt, Community Development Outreach Manager, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (bio)
REGISTER HERE  

 

Sharing from Disability Rights California

 

Your Vote Matters!
Be Ready for the November 2020 Election

October 8, 2020

The general election is coming up on November 3, 2020, where elected officials and important matters are voted on.  With 1 in 4 people between the ages of 18-64 living in the United States with a disability, according to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), your voice matters!
Voting allows you the opportunity to voice your concerns, beliefs and how you want to be represented! It is critical to get involved, become aware of the issues and vote.
“If people with disabilities voted as the same rate as people without disabilities, there would be roughly 2.35 million more voters,” based on a report from RUTGERS School of Management and Labor.
There are many accessible voting options for individuals with disabilities, so we encourage you to make sure your voice is heard.
Register to vote, become informed about the issues, encourage your friends and family to register, know your rights as a voter, and vote. Spread voting facts and stories online. Make sure to use #CripTheVote #DisabilityVoting


Sharing from the Disability Organizing Network (DOnetwork)

Please spread the word! Many people with disabilitieze, including myself, utilize Long Term Services and Supports to live, work and participate in every day life. This is an excellent opportunity for people with disabilities and older adults to share their lived experience using Long Term Services and Supports (LTSS). If anyone needs assistance telling their LTSS story or has questions about Long Term Services and Supports please feel free to reach out to me (peter@marincil.org or (415) 234-3840 


The Disability Organizing Network wants to hear your story!

California has the opportunity to improve long term services and supports (LTSS)! Share your story and join a network of people using their lived experience to create real change in California.

Join DoNetwork's LTSS for All Campaign!

The PM Morning report will take a pause on Monday in honor of Indigenous People's Day.  Enjoy the long weekend!

What's Happening in Our World: Sharing Important Info and Opportunities for Community Engagement


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 8, 2020

Good Morning Brothers and Sisters in Community,

I hope you are all doing well today. If you have questions about this report feel free to reach out to me (Peter@marincil.org). Wishing you all a fabulous day.

Don't Forget About Marin CIL's Twitter Chat Happening Today

Marin CIL will be hosting a Twitter Chat to talk about voting, the disability vote, and the census today Thursday October 8th 4-5:30 pm. We will be using the hashtags #cripthevote and #disabilitycounts2020. This will be my first time moderating a twitter chat. All are welcome to participate. 
 
Sharing from the County of Marin
 
 Researchers Look to Sewage and Wastewater to Monitor COVID-19
It’s no secret: everybody poops. Marin County Public Health has partnered with local sanitary agencies and University of California Berkeley to do regular sampling of wastewater supplies in Marin County as part of broader COVID-19 outbreak surveillance. Anyone that is infected with COVID-19 is emitting the virus in their bodily fluids, which ends up passing as waste in the toilet. UC Berkeley scientists can detect RNA for the virus in wastewater. Dr. Matt Willis explains more about how the research project works and why its an important tool for the long-term response to COVID-19.
YouTube Thumbnail
WATCH ON YOUTUBE
 
Get Involved
Diverse Volunteers Needed for Race Equity Planning Committee
Community experience needed to update County’s 2017 Race Equity Plan
San Rafael, CA – The County of Marin is recruiting 15-20 community members to serve on its new Race Equity Planning Committee, which will revise the community-facing elements of the County’s 2017 Race Equity Plan.
Convened by the County Administrator's Office, this diverse committee will provide recommendations to the County on how to build an anti-racist community. Committee members are asked to make a one-year commitment of six or less hours per month. The deadline for applications is 5 p.m., Friday, November 6.
Many of the initiatives laid out in the 2017 Race Equity Plan have been initiated, but there is more work to be completed. This committee will review the plan and make recommendations on necessary changes in light of urgent calls for civil rights, social justice, inclusivity, diversity, and equity within Marin County.
“When we adopted the 2017 Race Equity Plan, we acknowledged structural inequities within our County government,” said County Administrator Matthew Hymel. “This Race Equity Planning Committee gives us an opportunity to collaborate with community to ensure that we are proactively addressing structural racism.” With the County committed to a diverse stakeholder group, committee applicants must meet the following requirements. They include being a current Marin County resident AND identifying as at least one of the following:
  • A community member who is Black, Indigenous or a person of color
  • A community member who identifies as a woman
  • A community member who is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans*, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, Asexual (LGBTQQIA+)
  • A community member who is between the ages of 15 and 25
  • A community member who is 60 years of age or older
  • A community member who is facing chronic illnesses, mental health challenges, or disabilities
  • A community member who is undocumented or underdocumented
Only two committee members will be selected to represent nonprofit organizations in Marin to ensure broad inclusion of voices. The committee will be led by an outside facilitator, and final recommendations will be made to the County Administrator. The County will offer a stipend of $30 for each session in which a committee member participates, based on financial need.
Apply online or learn more about the application process by contacting the Marin County Office of Equity. Paper applications are available for pick up at 3501 Civic Center Drive, Suite 325, San Rafael. Phone applications are being taken weekdays from 3-5 p.m. at (415) 473-3149. Application can be translated into a language other than Spanish or Vietnamese. For translation services or other inquiries, please contact the Marin County Office of Equity via e-mail or (415) 473-3149.
You have subscribed to News Releases & Advisories for Marin County. This information has recently been updated.
Visit the Newsroom to view all County news releases.
 

Participate in the Great Shake Out: COVID-19 Style.

Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drills, a worldwide earthquake safety movement, are involving 17.1 million people throughout 2020 (and counting). Most participate in ShakeOut by registering to practice “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” and many do much more. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, participants are adapting their ShakeOut activities through video-conferencing, choosing staggered or alternative dates, and following local health and safety guidelines (see ShakeOut.org/covid19).
There is still time to join ShakeOut this year: register to participate on any day that works for you at ShakeOut.org. Most take action on International ShakeOut Day each third Thursday of October, this year being October 15.  [Continue reading news release]
 

Spare the Air Alert extended through Thursday.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District is extending the Spare the Air Alert due to wildfire smoke from the Glass Fire in Napa and Sonoma counties through Thursday, October 8, which bans burning wood, manufactured fire logs or any other solid fuel, both indoors and outdoors.
Wildfire smoke from the Glass Fire in the North Bay, in addition to smoke from other northern California fires, will continue to impact the region. While onshore winds will continue to blow smoke out of much the Bay Area, localized impacts near the Glass Fire and intermittent impacts in the broader Bay Area will continue. Expect Marin County’s AQI levels to reach Orange or “Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups” during this time.
Smoke from wildfires can affect health. The most common symptoms are eye and throat irritation, coughing, and difficulty breathing. Those with health problems, especially heart or respiratory conditions, should take extra caution.
Follow these precautions to protect your health:
  • Minimize outdoor activities. Postpone/Reschedule intense outdoor cardio activities.
  • Stay indoors with windows and doors closed as much as possible.
  • Do not run fans that bring smoky outdoor air inside.
  • Run your air-conditioner only if it does not bring smoke in from the outdoors.
  • Avoid activities that create more indoor and outdoor air pollution, such as frying foods, sweeping, vacuuming, and using gas-powered appliances.
  • Consider leaving the area until smoke conditions improve if you experience symptoms related to smoke exposure.
  • Check on family, friends, and neighbors who may be sensitive to poor air quality and who spend much of their time alone.
Marin County Coronavirus Information
 
Sharing from Allie Cannington (The Kelsey)
 About Allie
 Allie is  an incredible advocate and a Member of Marin CIL's Extended Family.  Marin CIL was blessed to have Allie as one of our interns. She went on to intern with the National Council on Independent Living as a Youth Transitions Fellow and most recently was a Statewide Community Organizer for the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers. One of Allie's many attributes is a strong desire to empower those who live in the margins. She understands that disability is intersectional and crosses many communities. 

Empowering our Brothers and Sisters who Reside in Care Facilities' Right to Vote!
Please spread far and wide! This will focus on California but will provide information for people all over the U.S. 
 
Online Teach-In: Voting in Care Facilities
Tuesday, October 13, 2 pm PDT
 
Residents in nursing homes and other care facilities have been cut off and isolated during the COVID-19 pandemic, and huge numbers have died. Residents must have the right to vote in this important upcoming election.
 
This event will provide information on the rights of people in long-term care facilities to get assistance with voting, along with guidance to facility staff, friends, family members, ombudsmen, county elections officials, and more, on what you can do to help.
 
Sign up at www.sdaction.org
 
Sponsored by the California Care Rationing Coalition
 
About The Kelsey

The Kelsey accelerates and advocates for housing that is inclusive of people with and without disabilities of all incomes. We are an impact-driven affordable housing startup working to execute new housing models, effectively deploy capital, shorten timelines, design high-quality housing that is fully inclusive to people of all abilities and incomes, and advance our field to make more possible.   The Kelsey

 
 
Continuing Resolution 
As we sent out on September 24, the House passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) to extend federal funding through December 11. On September 30, the Senate passed the bill, and the President signed it very early October 1. The government is now funded through December 11, before which point Congress will have to negotiate a longer-term spending deal or decide to pass another CR. 
Most programs, including the Independent Living program, are level funded. this means they will be funded at the same level as their Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 levels. The IL program was funded at $116,183,000 ($25,387,000 for Part B; $90,805,000 for Part C) for 2020. The final package also included the very short-term extension of the Money Follows the Person* program and Spousal Impoverishment protections** (which were set to expire on November 30, 2020, and now expire on December 11, 2020). 
* Money Follows the Person is a federal Medicaid program designed to move elderly nursing homes residents out of nursing homes and back into their own homes or into the homes of their loved ones. In some states, the program also extends to help persons in immediate risk of nursing home placement.
** California has applied The Spousal Impoverishment Protection Act since 1990, to protect an. at- home spouse from impoverishment due to the high costs of skilled nursing care (which can range from $8,000 - $12,000 per month).
 
News from the Hill: House COVID-19 Relief Bill
Last week, the House of Representatives passed a revised version of their HEROES Act, which is being called HEROES 2.0. HEROES 2.0 is a scaled-back version of the original bill, and while it does not address all of the disability community’s needs, it includes many important things we have been advocating for, including targeted funding for home and community based services (HCBS); additional Medicaid funding (through a 14% FMAP bump); significant housing funding and a 12-month eviction moratorium; additional funding for ACL; and funding for the US Postal Service. 
We do not expect the Senate to pass this bill, and at this time House and Senate negotiations have stalled. That said, the House and the White House have still been negotiating - but there are several sticking points, and it is unclear whether a compromise will be reached. It is also unclear how the President’s COVID-19 diagnosis will impact these negotiations. House members have returned home to their districts but House leadership has said members may be called back for a vote if an agreement is reached. 
About NCIL
The National Council on Independent Living is the longest-running national cross-disability, grassroots organization run by and for people with disabilities. Founded in 1982, NCIL represents thousands of organizations and individuals including: individuals with disabilities, Centers for Independent Living (CILs), Statewide Independent Living Councils (SILCs), and other organizations that advocate for the human and civil rights of people with disabilities throughout the United States.

In Today's Report: Marin Moving from Tier One to Tier Two and Changes to California's EVV Program


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 7, 2020

Good Morning Marin CIL Friends, 

Welcome to today's PM Morning Report. Yesterday during the Marin Board of Supervisors Meeting Dr. Matt Willis, Marin's Public Health Officer, shared some good news relating to Covid-19. Marin is now in Tier two ( SUBSTANTIAL: Some non-essential indoor business operations are closed). Marin is expected to move into Tier Three (MODERATE:Some indoor business operations are open with modifications) in the next couple weeks. While this is positive news for our community Dr. Willis also warned against complacency and explained that Marin is vulnerable to slipping back to Tier one.

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal
Marin virus chief sees ‘significant progress’ toward looser restrictions 
 By  | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal PUBLISHED: October 6, 2020 at 5:58 p.m. | UPDATED: October 7, 2020 at 7:13 a.m.

Marin’s improving coronavirus numbers could get the county to the next tier of easing restrictions “in a matter of weeks,” the public health officer said Tuesday.
“We’re seeing significant progress,” Dr. Matt Willis told the Board of Supervisors. “Our case counts, hospitalizations and percent positivity rate are the lowest they’ve been in about four months.”
With his next breath, however, Willis warned against complacency. “There is no guarantee that is the direction in which we are going,” he said. “We are vulnerable to slipping back.”
Willis briefed the supervisors on Marin’s latest performance metrics for controlling spread of the virus and explained a new “equity metric” that state health officials have introduced to help determine when a county is ready to move up in the state’s four-tiered system.
On Sept. 14, the state moved Marin from “tier 1,” signifying “widespread” risk, to “tier 2,” or “substantial” risk. Counties are allowed to ease public restrictions more as they progress through the tiers.
For Full Article: Marin virus chief sees ‘significant progress’ toward looser restrictions
Blueprint for a Safer Economy: Tier Information

Sharing Perspectives

At Marin CIL, we encourage following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control as well as State and County recommendations.  Follow social distancing and wear a mask when out in public. I am also offering my perspective as a person with a disability. I have Cerebral Palsy, which affects my movement in my extremities and it also affects my lungs and my ability to breath and speak, making me highly susceptible to Covid-19. With Covid-19, public safety is our collective responsibility. People with disabilities, like myself, older adults, and others with pre-existing health conditions are considered more susceptible. We depend on each other to remain healthy and safe during this pandemic. As a community, we must all act in unison and follow the guidelines, working together to stop the spread! 

Sharing an Important Advocacy Opportunity from the Department of Social Services

I wanted to take a moment to let you know about an important advocacy opportunity. The California Department of Social Services is hosting a Listening Session on proposed changes to California's Implementation of the Electronic Visit Verification Program

Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) Phase I

Electronic visit verification (EVV) is an electronic-based system that collects information through a secure website, a mobile application (“app”) or a telephone. Federal law, Subsection l of Section 1903 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1396b) , requires all states to implement EVV for Medicaid-funded personal care services by January 2020 and home health care services by January 2023. Otherwise, the state is subject to incremental Federal Medical Assistance Percentages (FMAP) reductions up to 1% unless the state has both made a “good faith effort” to comply and has encountered “unavoidable delays.” ​​​​​​​States can select and implement their own EVV design. However, the EVV system must verify: type of service performed; individual receiving the service; date of the service; location of service delivery; individual providing the services and time the service begins and ends. California working collaboratively with input from the disability community, Centers for Independent Living (including Marin CIL), and other stakeholders developed guiding principles which were incorporated in California's development of EVV. 

EVV is guided by the following principles:

  1. California’s approach to EVV will be consistent with federal law.
  2. EVV will be developed through a collaborative stakeholder process.
  3. EVV will be developed in a manner that respects recipients and providers, does not alter their Olmstead protections and is minimally burdensome.
  4. EVV will not change the number of service hours, nor how or where services are delivered.
  5. Use of geo-tracking or global positioning system capabilities (GPS) will not be required.
  6. Existing electronic and telephonic timesheet systems will be leveraged for EVV.
  7. Providers, recipients and other stakeholders will be trained on the use of the EVV system.
Which programs will be impacted by EVV in California?

EVV will impact all personal care services and home health care services provided under the state plan and various waivers. In California, personal care services are delivered to eligible aged, blind and disabled individuals through multiple programs managed by California Department of Social Services (CDSS) and Department of Health Care Services (DHCS).

Most publicly funded personal care services are managed by CDSS through the following four programs collectively known as the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Program:

  • Personal Care Services Program (PCSP)
  • IHSS Plus Option (IPO)
  • Community First Choice Option (CFCO)
  • IHSS Residual (IHSS-R)
CDSS has Received Positive Feedback Regarding the Rollout of EVV

As of October 4, 2020, CDSS reports 95% of In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) and Waiver Personal Care Services (WPCS) providers and recipients have begun to use an electronic method to submit and approve timesheets and are enrolled in the Electronic Visit Verification system. California Department of Social Services (CDSS) reports the majority of the feedback has has been positive, with most providers and recipients finding the system easy to use and over time providers have received their paychecks much faster. During this time CDSS reports that they have remained in communication with State and Federal agencies who are charged with the responsibility of oversight of California's implementation of EVV. As a result of ongoing communications CDSS has received guidance that some changes must be made to the EVV system to become compliant with federal law and avoid having to pay penalties. 

Your Input is Needed

CDSS is scheduling a public meeting on Wednesday, October 14th from 2:00 – 3:30 pm to discuss the updated direction with our stakeholders. We look forward to hearing your thoughts and feedback.
 

Reach out to Marin CIL

If you need more information on how to participate in the stakeholder event or for any questions regarding California's EVV progam and how it may affect you, your family, or friends feel free to reach out to Marin CIL (peter@marincil.org). 

Alot Happening in Our World Today Including Celebrating a Civil Rights Milestone


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 6, 2020

Good Morning Wonderful Marin CIL Community, 

Welcome to the PM Morning Report. Wishing you all the very best today!

 

Sharing from the County of Marin

Voting Underway for November 3 Election

There’s time to register and get a ballot by mail

San Rafael, CA – Ballots for the November 3 General Election have been sent to all active registered voters in Marin County as required by California Assembly Bill 860, and mail ballot voting is taking place at the Elections Department in San Rafael.

Registered voters may come to the Elections Department (Marin Civic Center, 3501 Civic Center Drive, Suite 121) and vote on a mail ballot between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. weekdays or until 8 p.m. on Election Day. An accessible ballot marking device is also available. The department will be open the weekend before the election — October 31 and November 1 – from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to assist voters with registration and voting.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of people allowed in the Elections Department at one time is limited to four, and visitors are expected to wear a face covering and practice safe physical distancing.

Those eligible to vote can still register by October 19 and automatically receive a ballot in the mail. After the deadline, eligible persons will have to register and vote at the Elections Department or register online at www.registertovote.ca.gov. During the late registration period from October 20 through 8 p.m. on Election Day, voters will have to fill out ballots in the Elections Department or visit their polling place to register and vote a provisional ballot when early voting starts on October 31.

Polling place voting will be different for the November election. There will be fewer locations that are open three days before Election Day for eight hours and on Election Day from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. as outlined in Senate Bill 423. Voters are assigned to a specific location and should contact the Elections Department if they have questions. 

The assigned polling place is printed on the back cover of the voter information guide that was mailed to all voters on September 24-25, and hours of operation for early voting are posted at www.marinvotes.org.  Voters may access their information guide by signing in to the Voter Information Portal on the Elections Department website.

Safety measures will be practiced at polling places as they are elsewhere — physical distancing, masks required, and a limited number of voters in the polling place at one time.

Vote-by-mail ballots must be postmarked on or before Election Day. Instead of mailing, voters may drop their ballot at one of several drop boxes located throughout the county or at any polling place starting October 31. The list of drop boxes is printed in the voter information guide, is included with the ballot packet, and is posted at www.marinvotes.org.

Registrar of Voters Lynda Roberts said a voter unable to return a vote-by-mail ballot may designate someone to return it for them by filling out the form on the back of the return envelope. “I strongly encourage voters to only designate someone they know and trust,” Roberts said. 

Those ballots must be returned within 72 hours. Voters may call (415) 473-6456 if they have questions or concerns.

Roberts reminds voters to sign their return envelope or the Elections Department cannot process the ballot. Voters will receive a letter if their signature is missing or doesn’t match their voter registration form so they can fix the problem.

If you’re not sure if you are registered to vote but plan to vote in this election, check the Voter Information Portal to find out, or call (415) 473-6456.

Follow the Elections Department on Facebook.

You have subscribed to News Releases & Advisories for Marin County. This information has recently been updated.

Visit the Newsroom to view all County news releases.

 

Please join Marin CIL 

Marin CIL will be hosting a Twitter Chat to talk about voting, the disability vote, and the census this Thursday October 8th 4-5:30 pm. We will be using the hashtags #cripthevote and #disabilitycounts2020. Marin CIL's Twitter handle is: @MarinCIL.In my 50's this will be my first time moderating a twitter chat so please be gentle in your critique. All are welcome to participate. 

An Important Milestone for Civil Rights

Newsom nominates Oakland man to serve as California Supreme Court’s first openly gay justice

If appointed, Martin Jenkins would be third Black man to ever sit on state's highest court

By  | mangst@bayareanewsgroup.com | Bay Area News Group

PUBLISHED: October 5, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. | UPDATED: October 6, 2020 at 6:48 a.m.

Gov. Gavin Newsom on Monday introduced Oakland resident Justice Martin Jenkins as his nominee to become the California Supreme Court’s first openly gay justice, calling him a champion of equality across racial and gender divides.

If appointed, Jenkins also would be the third Black man ever to serve on the state’s highest court.

“Martin Jenkins is both a product and a protector of the California dream,” Newsom said during a news briefing on Monday, adding that Jenkins has “spent a lifetime overcoming odds, breaking down barriers and blazing new trails.”

“As a lawyer and a judge, he’s built an irreproachable reputation as a person of fortitude and fairness, a man of inner strength, grace and compassion who knows that despite what the Declaration says — life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are not simply inalienable,” the governor added. “They must be relentlessly protected and defended.”

For full article: Newsom nominates Oakland man to serve as California Supreme Court’s first openly gay justice

 

Sharing from the California State Independent Living Council (SILC)

September 21, 2020 

The California State Independent Living Council (SILC) mourns the passing and honors the life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.  

 

Justice Ginsburg, who sadly passed away this last Friday (September 18, 2020) spent her life fighting for those who were oppressed. In American society she was a fearless advocate for women’s rights, racial equality, and of course disability rights.  

 

Justice Ginsburg wrote the majority opinion affirming the right of people with disabilities to live in community which acknowledged one of the primary tenets of the Disability Rights/ Independent living movement making this tenet the law of the land (also known as the integration mandate).  

 

The Olmstead lawsuit started with two women from Georgia named Lois Curtis and Elaine Wilson who both had diagnoses of mental health conditions and intellectual disabilities. 

 

Olmstead, or Olmstead v. LC, is the name of the most important civil rights decision for people with disabilities in our country's history. This 1999 United States Supreme Court decision was based on the Americans with Disabilities Act.  The Supreme Court decision states in relevant part that people with disabilities have a qualified right to receive state funded supports and services in the community rather than institutions. 

 

Justice Ginsburg knew how to get things done. In her dissent of the 2007 Ledbetter vs Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co Supreme Court decision Ginsburg was able to prevail by bringing the issue of gender pay discrimination from the Supreme Court to Congress. President Obama signed the historic Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act.  

 

Justice Ginsburg will forever be known as “the Notorious RBG”. She will also be remembered as a woman of power who worked for justice for those who were traditionally marginalized. She was a role-model and a hero.   

 

Justice Ginsburg was a person with great vision. “We live in an age in which the fundamental principles to which we subscribe - liberty, equality and justice for all - are encountering extraordinary challenges, ... But it is also an age in which we can join hands with others who hold to those principles and face similar challenges,” she said. These wise words are even more true today.  

 

In keeping with the tradition of her Jewish faith let us say, “May her memory be a blessing.” Let this tragedy be a catalyst for positive change. The California State Independent Living Council offers our deepest condolences to Justice Ginsburg’s family, friends, and community and challenges YOU to continue RBG’s fight for equity and equality in our community. The SILC is ready to “join hands”. 

 

Rest in Power.  

About the California State Independent Living Council: In collaboration with the State Network of Independent Living Centers (ILCs) and the State Designated Entity (California Department of Rehabilitation), the SILC prepares a State Plan for Independent Living which sets the policy and funding levels for the state’s network of ILCs and services. To help guide this policy, the SILC solicits continual public feedback on the effectiveness of independent living services and the changing needs of the community.

In addition to preparing and updating the State Plan for Independent Living, the SILC monitors the implementation of it. The SILC also coordinates with similar agencies and councils at the state and federal levels to increase communication and help assure that services to people with disabilities are delivered effectively.

*For transparency I should mention I (Peter Mendoza) am the Chair of the SILC. To learn more or to possibly become a member check out their website: www.calsilc.ca.gov

 

 

Celebrating National Disability Employment Month and the 30th Anniversary of the ADA


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on October 5, 2020

Good Morning Marin CIL Friends,

I hope you are doing well today. Welcome to the PM Morning Report.

Celebrating 30 years after the passage of the American's with Disabilities Act

A brief disclaimer: there is much more that needs to be said about the American's with Disabilities Act than can be covered in this issue. The ADA is about Civil Rights. People with disabilities want respect, dignity, and autonomy not pity. The mission of the ADA as it was then and is now is to boldly go where everyone else has gone before. All of us are stewards of our proud history and legacy of rights. Those who believe in freedom can not rest until all people who are oppressed and suffer discrimination in its many forms are free to move about the world with dignity, without fear, and with the ability to thrive in their communities.

 

On July 26th, 2020 the Disability Rights/ Independent Living Movement paused briefly to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the signing of the American's with Disabilities Act by George HW Bush the 41st President of the United States. Prior to the ADA people with disabilities, like myself, had the right to vote however it was common for polling places to be inaccessible. Often we were unable to vote. We were also not expected to succeed in school, get an education, live independently, or go to work. Many things have changed in the past 30 years that have truly opened many doors for people with disabilities. However, there is still much more work to do. The promise of the ADA will not be fully realized until every person with a disability is able to truly participate in all aspects of community life and achieve economic opportunity. The ADA was the first comprehensive Civil Rights law that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in several areas, including employment, transportation, public and private accommodations, communications and access to state and local government' programs and services. It was a heavy lift that almost didn't happen. 

 

As with all Civil Rights Movements in our history people were concerned about the cost of making public and private accommodations accessible. Government was concerned that making their facilities and programs accessible for our communities would slow down efficiency and be over-burdensome, too expensive, and inconvenient to the general public. For example, the public bus has always played a key role in the Civil Rights movement of the 1950's and 60's. When Rosa Parks the "mother of the Civil Rights movement" refused to give up her seat for a white passenger the simple act of defiance served as the impetus for one of the most pivotal events of the Civil Rights movement and triggered a large number of bus boycotts. The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a civil rights protest during which African Americans refused to ride city buses in Montgomery, Alabama, to protest segregated seating. The boycott took place from December 5, 1955, to December 20, 1956, and is regarded as the first large-scale U.S. demonstration against segregation. 

 

For people with disabilities the public bus once again became a focal point in the fight for disability rights and the passage of the ADA. Here in California and in Marin transit agencies started purchasing Wheelchair accessible buses in the early 80's in response to a new law that required every bus purchased after 1982 be accessible. Victory? Yes! However, public transit agencies only purchase buses every few years and accessible routes were phased in over time. Advocates would often find themselves in the position of answering the age old  question " How many people actually ride this bus route?" We would answer "if it's accessible we will ride". Many bus stops were not accessible. Bus operators did not want to pick us up and would often say it will take too long for me to board, or they're running late, or.....this is one of my favorites "Oops the wheelchair lift went out". The early wheelchair lifts were not always safe. Wheelchair securement equipment was very archaic and would often malfunction during transport causing many of us to be injured, some of our brothers and sisters lost their lives.

 

I was invited by President Bush to witness the signing of the American's with Disabilities Act, in those days we only had snail mail. It took me a few days to get this exciting news.The California Governor had proposed a significant cut to In Home Support Services which included a large funding deduction to Independent Living Centers. For about four days many of us participated in a statewide action which included multiple sit-ins at the Governor's offices throughout the State. I joined approximately 25 of my brothers and sisters sitting-in at the San Francisco Governor's office and did a few overnights at the San Francisco jail. Eventually we won and the cuts to In Home Support Services were greatly reduced and Independent LIving funding was restored. When the Novato Advance covered my story (both the sit-ins and being invited to the White House) the headline in the weekly paper was "From Jail to the White House" with my picture front and center. Going to Washington DC was a pivotal moment for me. To be on the lawn of the White House with 3,000 of my brothers and sisters to watch this historic event. However, travelling to Washington DC was not without some barriers.

 

 In 1990, when I arrived in Washington DC I quickly learned there was no accessible transportation between the airport and my hotel which was near the White House. Growing up I was always told to be resourceful, I was travelling with the Board President from an agency called Careers Abound, where I worked at the time as a Job Developer and Career Counselor. All of the sudden I saw an inaccessible MCI bus, which is one of the large over the load coaches with a large luggage compartment. I quickly without giving my board president prior notice, asked two police officers to lift me onto the bus and put my power wheelchair in the luggage compart....and we were on the road. He was a little bit shocked. He was glad that I didn't tell him what I was going to do prior as he would have most likely said no. Well....either way we got to the White House. It was a hot day and I was in my best suit. We all cheered loudly when President Bush signed the ADA. People with disabilities finally had our Civil Rights acknowledged. On that day I thought my work was done and we were finally free as a people. Well.....not so fast. One of the provisions of the ADA is that it was phased in over time. Our work had just begun and the rest is part of our proud history. 

It's National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Sharing from Disability Rights California 

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month: Increasing Access and Opportunity

October 1, 2020

This October marks the 75th anniversary of National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). This is a significant year as we also just celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Both milestones being celebrated with the theme "Increasing Access and Opportunity."

Approximately 25 percent of Californians have a disability, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). However, only 50 percent of individuals with disabilities are employed across the nation. With national unemployment rates at an all-time high, it’s important, now more than ever, to increase access and opportunity so everyone in our communities has equal opportunity to live their lives!

Disability Rights California works to ensure people with disabilities can work in competitive integrated employment and make informed decisions about their jobs. DRC helps people with disabilities access education and training to prepare for employment, obtain services and supports needed to participate in meaningful careers, and remove barriers to work for our community.

“Work gives individuals a sense of purpose and self-worth. For many, it defines who we are and is a source of justifiable pride. Work helps improve individual and family finances, and it helps us connect socially. All individuals, regardless of disability, deserve the opportunity to be full members of their community where they can live, learn, work and play through all stages of life.”
- National Association of County Behavioral Health & Developmental Disability Directors

People with Disabilities make Fabulous Employees

Did you know:

  • People with disabilities are reliable employees and have an overall higher job retention rate.
  • Employees with disabilities are less likely to get into work related accidents.
  • Businesses that hire people with disabilities may receive tax credits or other incentives.
  • Workers with disabilities will increase diversity in the workplace.
  • People with disabilities are as capable as anyone else!

To learn more about hiring people with disabilities reach out to Marin CIL (415) 459-6245 or marincil.org

Reminder:

Register for Inform & Connect: Home Modifications

Monday, October 5, 2-3pm

The Marin Aging Action Initiative's Inform & Connect Academy delivers the newest information on resources available to older adults in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. Inform & Connect is a free training designed for help-desk, information hotline, front-line volunteers and staff who work with the public to provide information about programs and services for older adults in Marin. Specialists share their expertise and resources through presentations and audience Q&A.

This week's Inform & Connect event will feature two dynamic panelists. Marin CIL's own Assistive Technology Advocate Tonique McNair and Jesse Johnson from the Hearing and Speech Center will be talking about home modifications for people with disabilities and older adults.

This hour-long academy will be held through Zoom. Please register to receive the link to join.

To register for this Inform & Connect Event

 

S​haring from Marin Aging Action Initiative 

Candidate Forums

Ross Valley
Monday, October 5, 4-5:30pm
With candidates for San Anselmo Town Council and Fairfax Town Council
Watch here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2WZ5qOcH9CkS4eeDYhobzw/live
The public is invited to submit questions in advance of the forum to AAIRoss@marinlwv.org by October 3.

San Rafael
Thursday, October 6, 4-5:30pm
With candidates for San Rafael City Council, district 4, and San Rafael mayor
Watch here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2WZ5qOcH9CkS4eeDYhobzw/live
The public is invited to submit questions in advance of the forum to AAISanRafael@marinlwv.org by October 4.

Feel free to reach out to Marin CIL if there is anything you need. We are here for you. Sending a smile your way today!

Aging Action Initiative Hosting Important Candidate Forums and a Fabulous Inform & Connect Event about Home Access Modifications


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on September 30, 2020

AAI's Fall Candidate Forums

Red, white, and blue pin with stars and the words LWV League of Women Voters of Marin County Candidate Forums: Meet the Candidates

 

Good Evening Fabulous Marin CIL Friends,

The 2020 election is right around the corner. I wanted to share some exciting voter engagement events beginning October 1st. 

 

Three important candidates forums beginning tomorrow hosted by the Marin Aging Action Initiative and the League of Women Voters of Marin County. These important forums will be moderated by the League of Women Voters and will be an opportunity to hear from the candidates directly about issues that are important to you. Tomorrow (October 1st, 2020 4-5:30pm) the first candidate forum will feature candidates running for election to the Sausalito and Belvedere City Councils. The next forum will be on October 5th, 2020 4-5:30pm it will feature candidates running for both the San Anselmo and Fairfax Town Councils. The final forum will be held on October 6th 4-5:30 pm and will include candidates from San Rafael District 4 (Terra Linda community) and San Rafael Mayor. Marin CIL is a proud member of the Marin Aging Action Initiative. 

Watch the forums here: www.youtube.com/channel/UC2WZ5qOcH9CkS4eeDYhobzw/live

For more information, including how to submit questions in advance of the forums, visit www.agingactioninitiative.org/candidates.

 

 Marin County Elections Department Offers Some Excellent Advice on Planning to Vote for the 2020 Election

Planning to Vote? Mitigating Public Health Risks at the Polls

Anxious about the November 3 General Election? There are a number of ways voters can help to ensure a smooth election, mitigate public health risks, and reduce lines at Marin County polling places.

Marin County Registrar of Voters, Lynda Roberts, said one way to put voters at ease is to vote by mail because it will be the safest way to vote during the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, state laws have changed this year to require all active registered voters in California to receive a ballot by mail. Typically, at least 75% of Marin’s voters have voted by mail in recent years. 

Marin County Public Health is discouraging people from gathering in numbers without stringent social distancing in place. Precautions will be in place at all Marin polling stations, including mask wearing, but voting by mail will best mitigate interactions and speed up the vote tabulation process. And mailing or dropping off your completed ballot as early as possible will ensure your ballot is received on time. throughout the county. Ballot drop boxes will be available starting October 6 and a location list will be posted at www.marinvotes.org

Continue reading the news release for more suggestions on how Marin County voters can take to prepare for election day. In addition, you can browse the California Secretary of State’s guidance for administering elections under COVID-19 for detailed information about the safety measures being implemented by election departments across California.

For transparency one of my favorite roles at Marin CIL is serving on the Marin County Election Advisory Committe. The Marin County Election Advisory Committee was established by the Registrar of Voters in 2006 to act as a link between the voting public and the Registrar. The committee provides feedback and advice on issues that affect voters, such as voter participation and election integrity, and learns about election processes and laws that impact the procedures of the Elections Department. The committee is interested in helping ensure that every eligible resident of Marin County has the opportunity to vote, and that all valid ballots are counted accurately and securely. Marin CIL provides technical assistance and advice to ensure that the voting process is accessible to people with disabilities.

 

Here's some important advice for voting in person from the ARC and Disability Vote California 

You can vote in person. Each county will have polling places set up at least 3 days before Election Day on November 3rd. You can vote at your local polling place any of these days. November 3rd is the last day you can vote. It may be less crowded if you vote before November 3rd. You can vote at your polling place if you prefer to vote in person, if you did not get your ballot in the mail, or if you have lost or messed up your ballot. It is your right to vote in person. Polling places are changing to keep voters safe from COVID-19. Check to make sure that you go to the right polling place before you leave home. Your polling place may not be the same place as it has been before. Check with your county elections office to find out where you should go to vote in person. Each polling place has accessible voting equipment. Some people with disabilities might need to vote in person to use accessible voting equipment.

The mission of Disability Vote California is to engage and inform voters with disabilities and empower members of our community to facilitate access to voting for ourselves and our friends and neighbors with disabilities. 

Disability Vote California is a non-partisan campaign to eliminate barriers to voting, promote accessibility of voting technology and polling places; educate voters about issues and candidates; promote turnout of voters across the state; engage candidates and the media on disability issues, and protect eligible voters’ right to participate in elections. Disability Vote California

Marin CIL has been very active through our collaboration with the Disability Organization Network which is a program of our membership organization California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC). The California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC), through community organizing, works to build and expand capacity of the Disability Organizing Network to educate and organize California’s Disability Community. The Disability Organizing Network works to ensure that all people with disabilities are empowered and able to participate fully in all aspects of everyday life through advancing equity, equality, and the ability to thrive in our communities. The Disability Organizing Network recognizes that disability is intersectional and part of every community and works for a day when every community can live without discrimination including BIPOC, undocumented people, and other marginalized communities. Areas the Disability Organizing Network has been focusing on include but are not limited to: Voter Education, Olmstead, Housing & Transportation, and Schools. Feel free to reach out to Marin CIL if you have questions about voter accessibility or to learn more about the Disability Organizing Network. I invite you to consider joining the network and support advancing Disability Rights and social justice in our communities. Disability Organizing Network

Register for Inform & Connect: Home Modifications

Monday, October 5, 2-3pm

The Marin Aging Action Initiative's Inform & Connect Academy delivers the newest information on resources available to older adults in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. Inform & Connect is a free training designed for help-desk, information hotline, front-line volunteers and staff who work with the public to provide information about programs and services for older adults in Marin. Specialists share their expertise and resources through presentations and audience Q&A.

This week's Inform & Connect event will feature two dynamic panelists. Marin CIL's own Assistive Technology Advocate Tonique McNair and Jesse Johnson from the Hearing and Speech Center will be talking about home modifications for people with disabilities and older adults.

This hour-long academy will be held through Zoom. Please register to receive the link to join.

To register for this Inform & Connect Event

 

Network News

Another excellent advocacy opportunity happening tomorrow:

Commission on Aging monthly meeting

Thursday, October 1, 10am-noon

The Commission promotes the dignity, independence and quality of life of older persons through advocacy, information, programs and services. View the agenda.

That's it for now. The PM Report wishes everyone a wonderful evening. 

 

09/28/2020 PM Report -Today's Topic: Preparing for a Utility Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS)


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on September 28, 2020

In this Issue: Are you Ready for a PSPS? 

What is a Public Safety Power Shutoff?

Great question. High temperatures, extreme dryness and record-high winds have created conditions where any spark at the wrong time and place can lead to a major wildfire. If severe weather threatens a portion of the electric system, it may be necessary for PG&E to turn off electricity in the interest of public safety. This is known as a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS).

Marin CIL is joining with the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC), MCE, and the PG&E service area to begin a new initiative to support people with disabilities and older adults during the activation of a Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) event or other emergency. This program is referred to as Disability Disaster Access and Resources. The goal is to enable you to remain safe while independent in your residences and communities. We are coordinating various programs for those who depend on power for durable medical equipment or for their livelihood.

Marin CIL is available to assist in these major ways:

  •  MEDICAL BASELINE ENROLLMENT

Marin CIL can assist you in enrolling in the PG&E Medical Baseline Program. This is not an income-based program. If you or someone in your community requires the use of a medical or life support device due to a disability or health condition, we can help you apply for PG&E's Medical Baseline Program. If approved, you will receive a lower rate on your monthly energy bill as well as extra notifications in advance of a Public Safety Power Shutoff.

  •  DISASTER KITS & TRAINING

Marin CIL can also help you put together a personalized disaster plan. Emergencies, including power shutoffs, can interrupt your normal routine and support systems. Planning ahead will increase your safety.

  •  PORTABLE BATTERY PROGRAM

The program will enable Marin CIL to provide access to backup portable batteries to qualifying customers who use electrical medical devices. Individuals who use life-sustaining electrical support will be our highest priority and supplies are limited. Marin CIL has received a high volume of requests for batteries and there is currently a waiting list. However, don't worry. Marin CIL is in the process of obtaining additional batteries to fill this need. 

  •  OTHER EMERGENCY RESOURCES

If you rely on power to operate life-sustaining medical devices, Marin CIL may be able to assist in covering the costs associated with accessible transportation, lodging and food during an emergency during a PSPS event. 

  •  IMPROVE HOME HEALTH & ENERGY EFFICIENCY

Marin CIL can assist in connecting you with other local programs to increase the comfort of your home while reducing your utility bills, like PG&E and MCE's offerings that improve the energy efficiency, health, and safety of your home.

What You Need to Do:

  • The first step to enroll is apply for Marin CIL's PSPS Program: WWW.MARINCIL.ORG/PSPS
  • If you have any additional questions or need any assistance to enroll in this important program please reach out to Ellie Agustín at psps@marincil.org or 415-754-3518. ¡Se habla español!

 

DISABILITY DISASTER ACCESS AND RESOURCES PROGRAM:

Here's a Great Story that was featured on CBS 13 Sacramento showcasing the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers Disability Disaster Access and Resources Program and their integral role in empowering a family to remain independent and safe during a PSPS event or other emergency. 

California Foundation Offers Lifeline For Placerville Family Impacted By Power Shutoffs

By Steve LargeSeptember 27, 2020 at 10:40 pm

VIDEO: California Foundation Offers Lifeline For Placerville Family Impacted By Power Shutoffs

PLACERVILLE (CBS13) – For people who rely on their power to keep life-saving equipment in their home running, Public Safety Power Shutoffs can be especially stressful. For some, there are now lifelines available for people to count on during extreme fire conditions.

Deborah Kurtti is her sister  Valerie’s caretaker. Valerie uses a dialysis machine, a CPAP, and an oxygen machine every day. When a Pacific Gas and Electric’s power safety shutdowns go into effect, power becomes a big problem in their home.

“We have used a generator in the past, and we’re lucky if we get four hours power using propane,” Kurtti said.

After scrambling during last year’s first preventative power shutdowns, Kurtti found a group called the California Foundation For Independent Living Centers, which was able to lend two massive batteries to her, for as long as she’d like.

The 60 pound, $3,000 batteries make for dependable, and effortless backups.

“It takes less stress off of me, off of her, just to be able to know that she can still breathe at night, she can still get her oxygen at night, she can do her dialysis at night,” Kurtti said.

Besides high-end batteries, the Independent Living Centers also help PG&E medical baseline customers with hotel and gas vouchers they can use during power shutoffs. For this family, it’s had a powerful impact.

“In the end, her safety and being able to use her medical equipment is the most important to me,” Kurtti said.

Deborah and her sister live in Placerville. They have been told they will be allowed to take those batteries with them if they ever needed to move.

Source: California Foundation Offers Lifeline For Placerville Family Impacted By Power Shutoffs

 

The PM Report Want to Hear From YOU

The goal of the PM Report is to share information that is relevant and meaningful to our communities in support of enhancing full participation through community engagement and advocacy opportunities. Please feel free to send Peter Mendoza (Marin CIL's Director of Advocacy and Special Projects) any announcements or updates that you feel would be beneficial to our communities and I will be happy to include it in the blog. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to reach out to me at: peter@marincil.org or (415) 234-3840.

09/25/2020 PM Report


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on September 25, 2020

Good Morning Marin CIL Friends,

Welcome to the latest edition of the PM Report

 

BREAKING NEWS: California U.S. District Judge extends Census

Court Orders Census Counting To Continue Through Oct. 31; Appeal Expected

September 24, 202011:58 PM ET

A federal court has ordered the Trump administration to abandon last-minute changes to the 2020 census schedule and extend the time for counting for an additional month.

The preliminary injunction issued Thursday by U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh in the Northern District of California requires the Census Bureau to keep trying to tally the country's residents through Oct. 31.

The ruling is the latest development in a federal lawsuit over the administration's decision to shorten the timeline for the national head count. The Justice Department, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, is expected to appeal the order, further complicating what could be the final days of counting for this year's census.

Koh found that the administration's truncated census schedule is likely to produce inaccurate numbers about historically undercounted groups, including people of color and immigrants. That, in turn, would harm the constitutional purpose of the count — to redistribute the seats in the House of Representatives among the states based on their latest populations.

The judge also found that the challengers in the lawsuit — a coalition of groups led by the National Urban League — are ultimately likely to succeed in the lawsuit by arguing that the administration's decision was arbitrary and capricious.

In response to disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the administration had previously called for more time for the once-a-decade census and asked Congress to pass four-month extensions to the legal deadlines for reporting results.

But in July, the administration changed its position with no public explanation. The Census Bureau's director, Steven Dillingham, later confirmed that Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who oversees the bureau, had directed it to speed up all counting efforts to end by Sept. 30 — a month earlier than the bureau had planned — in order to deliver the first set of results to President Trump, as federal law requires, by the end of this year.

Congress has yet to pass any laws to extend the census reporting deadlines, although a bipartisan group of senators recently introduced a bill with extensions.

Justice Department attorneys have attempted to present speeding up the count as a way for the Census Bureau to meet the Dec. 31 legal deadline for reporting results in light of Congress not giving the bureau more time.

Koh noted, however, that explanation "runs counter to the facts."

"Those facts show not only that the Bureau could not meet the statutory deadline, but also that the Bureau had received pressure from the Commerce Department to cease seeking an extension of the deadline," the judge wrote in the order, which cites multiple internal emails and other documents the administration was required to release for the lawsuit.

Top career officials at the bureau warned as early as May that because of COVID-19, the bureau could no longer meet the Dec. 31 reporting deadline for the latest state population counts.

According to the bureau's own internal analysis, truncating the time for the census increases the risk of serious errors in the results, which are also used to guide the distribution of an estimated $1.5 trillion a year in federal money to local communities for Medicare, Medicaid and other public services.

Recently released internal documents show that officials tried to warn the administration in July that shortening the schedule would lead to "fatal data quality flaws that are unacceptable for a Constitutionally-mandated national activity" and risked the perception of "politically-manipulated results."

"As the Court recognized, the Census Bureau has itself repeatedly recognized that a full, fair, and accurate count takes time, especially when faced with a historic pandemic," said Melissa Arbus Sherry, a partner at the law firm Latham & Watkins who helped represent the challengers.

While the case continues playing out in court, plaintiffs are hoping the extra time for counting will improve the accuracy of the count.

"The coronavirus pandemic has set all of us back and created many challenges to get people counted, especially for rural areas such as the Navajo Nation," Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said in a statement. "Today's ruling should be respected to allow the census count to continue without disruption."

"For the Black community, this decision means we have extra time to claim the governmental resources and representation that we've been denied," said Nana Gyamfi, executive director of the Black Alliance for Just Immigration, another plaintiff in the lawsuit.

In Maryland, the bureau is facing a similar legal challenge over the shortened timeline. The federal court there is expected to issue a ruling soon on a separate request to extend the census schedule.

Before ending a virtual hearing on Tuesday, Koh noted that the administration had already signaled it was preparing to appeal even before the judge issued her latest ruling. When DOJ attorney Aleks Sverdlov attempted to push back in the hearing's last minutes, the judge had heard enough.

"Go ahead and appeal me," Koh said.

Source: Court Orders Census Counting To Continue Through Oct. 31; Appeal Expected

 

Why this is Important to You

While people with disabilities and older adults make up 42% of the American public according to figures released by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in August 2018, we remain largely a neglected sizeable minority in terms of recognition and participation in the census. Responding to the census is not only our civic duty; it also affects the amount of funding our community receives, how our community plans for the future, and our representation in government. It’s important to have an accurate census count. The U.S. Census plays a key role in how much funding is available for programs and services for people with disabilities and older adults. Additionally, the information collected from the 2020 Census is used to: Ensure public services and funding for schools, hospitals, and fire departments; plan new homes and businesses and improve neighborhoods; and determine how many seats California is allocated in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The population of Marin is aging rapidly. Today, 27% of Marin residents are over 60 years old. It is estimated that the population of older adults will increase to 34% by the year 2030.

According to Disability Rights California (DRC), Census data helps direct more than $800 billion a year in federal funding, including funding for key programs that support and protect the rights of people with disabilities. 

Several laws exist to protect an individual’s information after completing the Census: Data collected for the census is used for statistical purposes ONLY. It is illegal to use this data for any nonstatistical purpose, such as immigration regulation. Census workers are sworn to secrecy under the threat of criminal punishment. It is illegal for anyone BUT census workers to see someone’s census information. It is illegal for the US Census to disclose individual census responses that will in any way allow someone to be identified. It is illegal for the US Census to share individual responses with other government agencies. And, it is illegal for the Census Bureau or any other government agency to use the census information provided against the person who provided it.

According to the US Census Bureau, the online questionnaire conforms with the latest web accessibility guidelines. There is also a video available in American Sign Language to guide you through responding online. The Census Beureau also make help available by phone in those same languages.

You can respond by phone or online in English, Spanish, Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese) Vietnamese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Polish, French, Haitian Creole, Portuguese and Japanese. The paper form can be completed in English or Spanish.

Source: Responding by Phone

When you take the 2020 Census you will be asked how many people are living or staying at each address. For each person, the Census asks about name, sex, age, date of birth, relationship, Hispanic origin, and race. The Census will also ask whether the housing unit, such as the house, apartment, or mobile home, is owned or rented, and for contact information in case additional information is needed.

If you are on social media use:  #2020Census and #disabilitycounts2020 

Marin CIL has been working with the Marin Complete Count Committee. Additionally, we are partnering with The California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC), The Disability Organizing Network (DOnet), and the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF) to help ensure people with disabilities and older adults are counted in the 2020 Census. MarinCIL has opened our virtual Questionnaire Assistance Center. What is a Questionnaire Assistance Center you ask? Great question. Questionnaire Assistance Centers are available to answer questions about completing the U.S. Census. To reach Marin CIL’s Questionnaire Assistance Center please call our Census Hotline: (415) 234-3840.

Source: Why the Census Matters for People with Disabilities: A Guide to the 2020 Census Operations & Challenges

Your Census Matters! Complete It Today!

 

The PM Report Want to Hear From YOU

The goal of the PM Report is to share information that is relevant and meaningful to our communities in support of enhancing full participation through community engagement and advocacy opportunities. Please feel free to send Peter Mendoza (Marin CIL's Director of Advocacy and Special Projects) any announcements or updates that you feel would be beneficial to our communities and I will be happy to include it in the blog. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to reach out to me at: peter@marincil.org or (415) 234-3840.

 

 

County of Marin Update


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on September 22, 2020

Good Morning my Marin CIL Family,

I hope you are all doing well today. The air quality in Marin and beyond is very poor today according to social media posts this morning. Today is the 19th anniversary of 9/11. Today's PM report is dedicated to everyone who lost their lives, were injured, or impacted by the events of that tragic day. 

I look forward to seeing many of you during today's Happy Hour. Sending you a smile today. 

Update from State: Expect Confirmation of Tier Status by Monday

Marin Public Health has been in close communication with the California Department of Public Health regarding its original decision to hold Marin County in Tier One of the State’s “Blueprint for a Safer Economy” monitoring framework, despite earlier communication that Marin would move to Tier 2 on September 8. Several conversations have taken place with top officials including Dr. Eric Pan, Acting State Health Officer, Dr. Mark Ghlay, Secretary of the California Health and Human Services and our state senators.

Currently, the State continuing to hold Marin County in Tier 1 while ongoing data analysis continues through Sunday. Marin Public Health expects a final decision and announcement on Monday, September 14.  If Marin is announced as entering Tier 2 (“red” status), that status will be effective Tuesday, September 15. 

RECAP: Community Conversation – “COVID-19: Where are we now?”

In case you missed it, Dr. Matt Willis (Public Health Officer) and Benita McLarin (Director, Marin Health and Human Services) participated in today’s Community Conversation event, themed “COVID-19: Where are we now?”  Thanks to everyone who submitted questions for the event.  Topics covered during the event included local COVID-19 data and the “Blueprint for a safer economy” framework; how Marin is making progress in flattening the curve; mental health concerns; reopening progress and more.

Thumbnail of the video for the BOS strategy meeting for COVID-19.

PM Morning Report


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on September 21, 2020

Good Morning my Resolute Marin CIL Family, 

I hope everyone is doing well today. Yesterday Julia Hale (our one-door administrator) and I ( as a Long Term Services and Supports Subcommittee Member)  participated in a panel discussion which provided an overview of the Master Plan for Aging. The panel was moderated by Eli and was hosted by Marin Aging Action Initiative. The panel also included Jodi Reid (Executive DIrector of California Alliance for Retired Americans and a member of the Master Plan on Aging Stakeholder Advisory Committee) and Dr Wynn Canio (a member of the Alzheimer and Dementia task force,a geriatrician and psychiatrist with Kaiser Permanente who created Northern California’s first program to support patients who suffer memory loss and their caregivers).

From the Sac Bee: "Friday morning a team of heavy-hitting scientists, politicians, innovators and industry leaders will join the state’s former first lady, Maria Shriver, on a task force addressing the challenges that Alzheimer’s disease poses for a graying California. Former Secretary of State George Schultz will act as a strategic adviser to the group, and former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has agreed to work as a member of the task force. Newsom also has selected a number of leading physicians and researchers whose words carry weight with other scientists and medical professionals in the field."

Alot of information was shared. The Q and A session covered these focus areas:

  1. Master Plan 101 - high level overview of Committee responsibilities, objectives & activities
  2. Evolution of the California Master Plan in Aging during COVID-19; Racial Equity; Climate Change & Natural Disasters
  3. Moving from Engagement to Activativation: Making the MPA Real
    1. Posts-its (your top priorities in the plan);
    2. Educating ourselves (what can we do to learn more?) 
    3. Advocating together
    4. What gives you concern and what gives you hope.

The feedback on the discussion was very well received. I wanted to give a shout out to our entire team who are working on many initiatives supporting people with disabilities and older adults and doing a stellar job adapting and making everything come together even through Covid-19. You make Marin CIL proud! 

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