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CDC Removes Mask Mandate for People Who are Vaccinated, Mental Health Awareness Month, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 13, 2021

Good Afternoon my Family in Community,

Welcome to the afternoon edition of the PM Morning Report. Many meetings for me and a lot happening today. I hope you are having a fabulous day. Sending an elbow bump and a smile

 

Breaking News from the Centers for Disease Control

 Choosing Safer Activities

  • If you are fully vaccinated, you can resume activities that you did prior to the pandemic.
  • Fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.
  • If you haven’t been vaccinated yet, find a vaccine.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

 

County of Marin Update

Funding Available for Food-Related Businesses  

Operators of restaurants, bars, food trucks, caterers, and related businesses can apply for funds from the new Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) set up by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The American Rescue Plan Act established the RRF to provide such businesses with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per brick-and-mortar location. Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses no later than March 11, 2023. Details are on the SBA website.  

 

Join Our Vaccine Q&As   

If you have questions about the vaccine, Marin County Public Health offer webinars that cover all the facts and figures plus the truth about some myths and misinformation. The webinars are offered in English and Spanish through May 27.   

  

Q&A in English:  Every Tuesday & Thursday, 9 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View Event flyer  

  

Q&A in Spanish: Every Thursday, 11 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Or call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View event flyer  

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from the Marin Community Foundation

On May 25, the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC) will virtually hold its 25th Immigrant Day of Action. For a limited time, through MCF’s sponsorship, there are unlimited registrations available to Marin advocates to participate.

 

For more information: https://caimmigrant.org/event/immigrant-day-2021/

You can register directly here: https://whova.com/portal/registration/ida_202105/

Registrations must be received by May 18. Use code marinleader to bypass registration fees.

Contact Andre Barrios with questions: abarrios@caimmigrant.org

 

 “CIPC is a constituent-based statewide immigrant rights organization that has played a central and essential role in advancing a progressive statewide immigrant justice agenda. CIPC and statewide partners use Immigrant Day of Action to work towards a thriving California for all individuals and families.

 

This year, efforts are focused on the advancement of Health4All and Food4All, campaigns to cover all those eligible under Medi-Cal regardless of status; expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit that recognizes the work of all families; and comprehensive defense of the California Values Act.

 

On May 25, make the power of immigrant voices heard in Sacramento when elected officials are making decisions that affect individuals and our communities’ lived realities. Grassroots leaders will be introduced to elected representatives in their districts, the state capital, and human rights advocates paving the way to protect, defend, and expand immigrant rights. Expert panel sessions on pressing issues affecting immigrants in California; an afternoon of entertainment and celebration, and  a resource fair of community partners ensure that the day has something for everyone.”

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL is in solidarity with our brothers and sisters from immigrant communities. We are honored to serve people with disabilities and older adults from all communities regardless of citizenship status.

 

Sharing from CDCAN

MAY 12, 2021 - STATE CAPITOL UPDATE
GOVERNOR NEWSOM ANNOUNCES ADDITIONAL $14.5 BILLION FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS CALLING IT INVESTMENTS TO MAKE SCHOOLS "GATEWAYS TO EQUITY AND OPPORTUNITY" - PROPOSAL PART OF GOVERNOR'S $100 BILLION "CALIFORNIA COMEBACK PLAN"

  • Proposes Universal Pre-Kindergarten by 2024-2025
  • Proposes College Savings Accounts for 3.7 Million Kids to go toward Higher Education or to Start a Business
  • Proposes Additional $2 billion to implement health and safety measures, including improved ventilation and measures to expand access to vaccines and testing
  • Major Proposals for Incentives to Teachers and Staff Targeted for Low-Income Students, English Learners and Children in Foster Care
  • Total amount in additional public education spending totals over $20 billion though some of the spending would be over several budget years
  • Follows $6.6 Billion that Legislature approved and Governor signed into law March 5, 2021 to help public schools re-open safely
  • New Public School proposal is one of several announcements this week ahead of May 14th Release of Governor's Budget Revisions known as "May Revise" 

SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 05/12/2021 06:55 PM (PACIFIC TIME] - Governor Gavin Newsom today (May 12th) proposed $14.5 billion in additional funding to public schools as part of his massive $100 billion "California Comeback Plan" with sweeping proposals that include implementing universal pre-kindergarten to all four-year olds, regardless of income or immigrations status, and establishment of college savings accounts for 3.7 million low-income children that he says are "investments to make public schools gateways to equity and opportunity."
    The Governor's "California Comeback Plan" also adds 100,000 child care slots and subsidies to bring down the cost of child care. 
    The Governor's plan has potential major impact to students with disabilities (including developmental), mental health needs, behavioral health needs and other special needs, depending on the details and how each proposal is implemented and ultimately funded.
    The total amount in additional public education spending totals over $20 billion, though some of that spending will be spent over multiple budget years. The new spending package follows the $6.6 billion in additional funding to help public schools re-open safely, that the Legislature approved and the Governor signed into law on March 5, 2021. 
    "We talk about an 'achievement gap' - it's a readiness gap, as much or more than it is an achievement gap," the Governor said at a media conference held at Elkhorn Elementary School in Castroville in Monterey County. "People aren't left behind as often as they start behind, and that's why that investment is so foundational and so important."
    The Governor's proposal for schools also includes an additional $2 billion - on top of the $6 billion the Governor proposed and Legislature approved earlier this year - to provide resources to local public schools with costs toward improved ventilation and measures to expand access to vaccines and COVID-19 testing, to help in the safe re-opening of all public schools in California.
    “We’re doing more than just fully reopening for the upcoming school year, we’re proposing historic investments in public schools to create new opportunities for every student, especially for our neediest students, so that every child can thrive, regardless of their race or zip code,” said Governor Newsom. “To achieve this goal, we’re going big – targeting $20 billion of investments to transform our public schools, including the creation of universal Pre-K and the establishment of college savings accounts for 3.7 million disadvantaged kids for higher education pursuits or to start their own business.”
    “California kids and young adults need new investments and supports to make up for the burdens they faced over the past year – and even before the pandemic – and Governor Newsom’s California Comeback Plan goes above and beyond to put our students first,” said California Health and Human Services (CHHS Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly. “By prioritizing the behavioral health needs of our young people – through before- and after-school instruction, behavioral health, social and family services – we can provide the younger generation with unparalleled opportunities to thrive.”
    The Governor said that the goals of the proposed investments are meant to "...center our education, health and social systems on meeting the needs of children holistically. We must invest early and pave a path from cradle to career."
    The Governor, in a media conference held in the Bay Area  on Monday (May 10th), announced that California will have a record-breaking $75.7 billion one-time surplus for the 2021-2022 State Budget year that begins July 1st, and announced the first of several major budget proposals this week - ahead of the May 14th budget revisions, referred to as the "May Revise" -  to provide more direct help to Californians. The one-time surplus is addition to about $26 billion in new federal COVID-19 related one-time funding that California is expected to receive, according to the Governor.
     The enormous one-time surplus means California will have $93.7 billion to spend on public education this year, according to state officials - money calculated by a voter-approved formula required in the 1988 voter approved Proposition 98. According to the Governor's office, that is approximately $36 billion more than the state had to spend last year, and it is $17.7 billion more than the governor's initial estimate in his proposed 2021-2022 State Budget released January 10th..
    The proposals announced today and earlier this week - including those announced earlier this year - are part of the Governor's $100 billion "California Comeback Plan" - what he touts as the biggest economic recovery package in California history -  as the state moves to re-opening the economy by the target date of June 15th. 
    “California’s recovery is well underway, but we can’t be satisfied with simply going back to the way things were,” said Governor Newsom on Monday (May 10th). “We are tripling the Golden State Stimulus to get money in the hands of more middle-class Californians who have been hit hard by this pandemic. Two in three Californians will receive a check from the state and more than $5 billion in aid will be made available to those who need help paying their rent or utility bills.”
    Details of the Governor's public education proposal will emerge in the coming days and weeks, with advocates of children and adults with disabilities (including developmental), mental health needs and other special needs, especially interested on how the massive infusion of funding will impact special education and also paths to employment, including how universal pre-Kindergarten and the college savings accounts will be implemented to include children with disabilities and special needs. . 
    The Governor made his announcements this week - with reportedly more coming tomorrow - as he faces a recall election, likely to be scheduled in November. When questioned on Monday (May 10th) by a reporter if his announcements playing out over the next several days was part of his campaign to fight the recall, he dismissed it saying for the past three state budgets as governor, he has announced previews of the state budget or budget revisions. 
    CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request to Marty Omoto (with "CDCAN Reports Subscribe" in the subject line) to: martyomoto@att.net

 

Sharing from the Marin VOAD

The BHRS Prevention and Outreach Team is pleased to announce a series of events in honor of May Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental Health Awareness Month was established in 1949 to increase understanding of the importance of mental health and wellness, and to celebrate recovery and hope.  Please join us and our community partners as we build our collective understanding of mental health and well being in our community. Mental well being demands we challenge stigma in all places where we live, work, play, learn and pray. Together, we can support one another and fully recognize that mental health *is* health.

 

THIS WEEK!  Join us for a special event: “Breaking the Silence: A Conversation with Men and Boys About MENtal Health.” May 13, 2021 at 5:00-6:00 pm. Moderator: Lorenzo Cordova, Senior Aide to Marin County Supervisor Dennis Rodoni, and Jei Africa, PsyD, Director-Marin County BHRS, Mark Parker, Marin County Peer Counselor, Zach Lee, student mental health advocate and Pastor Leggett, First Missionary Baptist Church.

 

Some event highlights:

 

In addition, we are pleased to provide several other educational events taking place that promote cultural humility, equity and change in our community!

 Please join us by registering, inviting a friend/colleague, and sharing the attached announcement widely.

 We look forward to seeing you!

 ~ The BHRS Prevention and Outreach Team

A Tidbit from Me: Mental Health affects many families including my own. It is so important that we raise awareness and get rid of the stigma around mental health. I am a wheelchair user with Cerebral Palsy. Most people accept and are willing to accommodate my disability. Unfortunately, often people who experience mental health related disabilities are not feeling accepted by the community. Their disability is just as valid as mine. They need to be treated with dignity and respect and have access to services and supports they need to live, work, play, and thrive in their community. At Marin CIL we work on abolishing the stigma and raise awareness about the value of all people with disabilities including those living with mental health related conditions. We must all do better.

 

 

Sharing from Senior Disability Action

Job Announcement: Housing Organizer Full-time (could be part-time if needed)

Who We Are: Senior and Disability Action (SDA) is a citywide nonprofit organization. We mobilize and educate seniors and people with disabilities to fight for individual rights and social justice. Through individual support and collective action, we work together to create a city and world in which seniors and people with disabilities can live well and safely. SDA has six programs, which include education and empowerment classes, computer training, and community organizing and advocacy in health care, home care, and housing.

The Opportunity: SDA’s Housing Organizer will bring together seniors and people with disabilities to advocate for deeply affordable and accessible housing, prevent displacement, improve SRO conditions, and build the senior and disability movements. This position includes conducting outreach, recruiting members, meeting with members one on one to develop leadership, working on policy, participating in housing coalitions, and planning and implementing actions and campaigns with members. The Organizer will collaborate with one other Housing Organizer. The organizer will also build and grow SDA as a whole, support one’s co-workers, and take on a variety of tasks as needed. The ideal candidate will be passionate about community organizing with the senior and disability communities. The person will be flexible, confident in one’s beliefs but open to hearing those of others, good at working with people, and comfortable learning on the job.

Full job announcement and instructions on how to apply: Job Announcement: Housing Organizer

A Tidbit from Me: SDA does phenomenal work serving and advocating for people who are often low low-income including those with disabilities and older adults. They have over the past thirty years worked to raise awareness about the importance of equity in all aspects of community life for the many marginalized communities they serve. They have several focus areas including advancing affordable and accessible housing, transportation, and food security. A few years ago they were instrumental in establishing free transportation on MUNI (busses and their light rail system) around San Francisco for those who are low income. The program is known as Free MUNI.

 

Sharing from NCIL

Information Alert: COVID-19 and Vaccine Survey Project Findings

May 12, 2021 By theadvocacymonitor 

The American Association on Health and Disability (AAHD) has released two research products that resulted from the AAHD Vaccine Hesitancy Survey Among Adults with Disabilities, a rapid, real-time online study of the perspectives of adults with disabilities on the COVID-19 Vaccine. Visit aahd.us/dissemination/covid-19-and-vaccine-survey-project to view the Vaccine Hesitancy Summary of Findings Report and the COVID-19 Vaccine and Disability Survey Vaccine Hesitancy Among Adults with Disabilities Research Report.


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ADA Notification Law Introduced, Covid-19 Update, More Funding for Project Homekey, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 12, 2021

Good Morning my Fabulously Wonderful Marin CIL Family,

 

I hope you are doing well today. Once again I got up before the rooster crowed down the street. Wishing you all a wonderful day. Sending you love and hugs. Raising my mug. Here is your PM Morning Report. Enjoy the read.

 

 

County of Marin Update

Helping COVID-Vulnerable Homeless Population  

While Marin County can be proud of its progress getting residents vaccinated against the coronavirus, it recognizes another crisis brewing. There is still a strong local emergency response effort to help to those who remain at the highest risk of contracting COVID-19, including those experiencing homelessness

 

The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) continues to take advantage of a statewide program that helps reduce community spread of COVID-19. The program is called Project Roomkey, a state-driven initiative to provide COVID-vulnerable individuals experiencing homelessness with a safe place to temporarily reside and reduce risk of virus exposure. Locally, the program provides funding for 40 rooms at a Marin motel plus case management support and connections to health care coordination. The program recently reached full capacity of 40 individuals and will remain in place until funding ends September 30. Learn more in the County’s full news release

 

In a related item, the County is looking for local property owners who might be interested in selling an existing building or parcel so it can be converted to support programs to address homelessness, especially those impacted by COVID-19. 

 

Project Homekey is the newer iteration of Roomkey. It is also part of the state’s response to protecting Californians experiencing homelessness who are at high risk for serious illness and are impacted by the pandemic. The release of information about the property offer, along with a question form and submission information, are available on the HHS website. For priority consideration, submissions are requested by May 14. Learn more in the County’s full news release

 

COVID-19 Data Update:  

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us

 

Looking for daily data trends? Our Marin Data & Surveillance webpage  uses Tableau dashboards to visualize the impact of COVID-19 in Marin County. Under each dashboard are links to datasets available on Marin County's Open Data Portal

 

 

COVID-19 Case Data 

Today’s Report 

Change from Yesterday 

Total Confirmed Cumulative Cases 

11,812 

+ 14 

“Active Cases” (Confirmed in Past 14 Days) 

104 

+ 2 

Total Cumulative Deaths 

183 

+ 1 

Cumulative COVID-19 Hospitalizations 

385 

+ 1 

Current COVID-19 Hospitalizations 

Current COVID-19 ICU Patient Census 

Tests Conducted Among Marin Residents 

461,512 

+ 4,164 

 

COVID-19 Vaccination Data  

Today’s Report 

Change from Last Status Update 

Marin residents vaccinated with at least one dose 

179,709 

+ 154 

Percent of Marin population age 16+ who have received at least one dose 

85.7% 

+ 0.0% 

 

Residential Care & Skilled Nursing Facility COVID-19 data: 

Today’s Report 

Change from Yesterday 

Positive Patients at Facilities cumulative 

714 

Positive Patients at Facilities current  

Positive Staff at Facilities current 

Facility Patient Deaths 

134 

Facility Patient Deaths as percentage of all COVID+ deaths 

73.6% 

0% 

 

State COVID-19 data: 

Today’s Report 

Change from Yesterday 

California Confirmed Cases 

3,656,967 

+ 1,045 

California Deaths 

61,246 

+ 5 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Stay Informed 

Follow the County of Marin on FacebookTwitterNextdoor or subscribe to our status updates. Visit MarinHHS.org/coronavirus for resources to stay connected on the issue.  

 

Helpful Links and Online Resources: 

...

 

Sharing from the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL)

New ADA Notification Bill Introduced in the 117th Congress

May 11, 2021 By theadvocacymonitor Leave a Comment

An Update from the NCIL ADA / Civil Rights Subcommittee

On January 14, 2021, Representative Ken Calvert (R-CA), along with Representative Tom Rice (R-SC), introduced the ADA Compliance for Customer Entry to Stores and Services Act (H.R. 77), deceptively referred to as the ACCESS Act. This bill is essentially the same as previous Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) notification bills, like H.R. 4099 and H.R. 620. H.R. 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act, passed the House in February 2018, and resembled many of the previous versions. H.R. 4099 was introduced in 2019 with an additional provision (Section 6) regarding Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 standards. This section is again included in H.R. 77.

Like the ADA notification bills before it, H.R. 77 would create additional barriers that would weaken our protected civil rights enforced under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Specifically, H.R. 77 would amend Section 308 of the ADA as it pertains to architectural barrier violations outlined in Sections 302 and 303, requiring that anyone who has been discriminated against (based on the failure to remove an architectural barrier to access an existing public accommodation) complete a cumbersome series of steps before commencing a civil action, detailed below.

First, the person with a disability must provide the business owner / operator with a specific written notice detailing how they are being discriminated against; they then must wait 60 days for the business to provide a written description outlining improvements they plan to make; the business must then be given an additional 60 days to make “substantial progress” in removing the barrier. Only after those 120 days, if the business fails to make “substantial progress,” can a lawsuit move forward. Business owners have already been allowed significant notice of more than 30 years since passage of the ADA first laid out requirements to provide physical accessibility for customers – why must we continue waiting? As the legal maxim goes, “Justice delayed is justice denied.”

For Full Article: New ADA Notification Bill Introduced in the 117th Congress

A Tidbit from Me: Disability Rights/Independent Living movement has raised many serious concerns over these types of ADA Notification bills. It is important to note that the physical access standards within the ADA are minimum standards for access. While much has been discussed about the litigation aspects of ADA related complaint it is important to note that the ADA is a complaint driven law. Which means a person with a disability must file a formal complaint to enforce the ADA. The ADA has opened up and expanded many opportunities for people with disabilities to be able to live, work, and play, and fully participate in their communities. Disability related access complaints are just a small fraction of the overall complaints filed in the court system. People with disabilities need and deserve stronger ADA enforcement. We need to advocate for regulations that truly provide accessibility for all to keep the promise of the ADA. It has been 30 years and our work continues.

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin left out of Newsom’s drought emergency proclamation

By WILL HOUSTON | whouston@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: May 11, 2021 at 5:34 p.m. | UPDATED: May 11, 2021 at 5:37 p.m.

Local water managers were caught off guard this week when Marin – the first in the Bay Area to adopt mandatory water restrictions amid record low rainfall – was not included in the governor’s drought emergency declaration.

“I was absolutely shocked,” said Jack Gibson, longtime board member of Marin Municipal Water District after learning Gov. Gavin Newsom did not include Marin among the 41 counties in his latest declaration on Monday.

“The thought that crossed my mind is you should give them a free subscription to the IJ because he’s clearly not in tune with what’s going on up here,” he said.

Gibson and others expressed concern that Marin being left out of the declaration sends mixed messages to their ratepayers who now are required to restrict water use such as limiting outdoor lawn watering to two days per week.

District General Manager Ben Horenstein said he is unsure why Marin was not included, but he and others expressed confidence that the state will act soon.

“This has become our drought of record,” Horenstein said Tuesday. “If not now, when?”

The short answer is as to why is Marin County’s government hasn’t declared a local drought emergency and water suppliers have not requested any changes to water rights or flow releases that would require emergency action by the state.

For full article: Marin left out of Newsom’s drought emergency proclamation


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Vaccine Equity, Other Covid-19 News, Honoring Direct Support Staff, News from NCIL, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 11, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are doing well today. The Marin CIL advocacy department was on the job early. There is quite a bit in your PM Morning Report so let’s get to it. Enjoy the read! Have a wonderful day.

 

County of Marin Update

Coming Soon: Vaccinating More Youngsters 

COVID-19 vaccine shots for 12- to 15-year-olds could begin as soon as two vaccine advisory committees issue recommendations for using the two-dose vaccine manufactured by Pfizer. On Monday, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) declared that the Pfizer vaccine is safe and offers strong protection for younger teens based on testing of more than 2,000 U.S. volunteers ages 12 to 15. More announcements could come in the next few days. 

 

Marin County Public Health was preparing to vaccinate this next age group and is poised to get underway if the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) give approval in United States and then Western States Scientific Advisory Group gives final approval for use in California.  

 

There are approximately 14,000 Marin County residents aged 12 to 15. If approvals are provided, May 14 would be the first day the younger group is eligible to receive doses. Read more about the process in the County’s news release

 

Online Town Hall May 11 about Adolescent Vaccinations 

An online discussion about COVID-19 vaccinations for kids aged 12-15 is set for 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 11. It will be a great chance to hear about safety, efficacy, and possible side effects of the shots once they are available for this age group. Here is the lineup of scheduled speakers:  

  • Dr. Matt Willis, Public Health Officer, Marin Health and Human Services (HHS) 
  • Dr. Lisa Santora, Deputy Public Health Officer, Marin HHS 
  • Dr.Shilpa Marwaha, Kaiser Permanente, Infectious Diseases 
  • Mary Jane Burke, Marin County Superintendent of Schools 

Register to participate on Zoom (webinar ID 880 1161 3451, passcode 024965), dial in at (408) 638-0968, or watch on Facebook live. Call (415) 499-5803 for more information. 

 

Reminder on Guidelines for Face Coverings 

As of May 3, face coverings are not required outdoors for fully vaccinated people except when attending outdoor events such as live performances, parades, fairs, festivals, sports events, or other similar settings. The guidelines are different for the unvaccinated; they must wear face coverings outdoors any time physical distancing cannot be maintained, including when attending outdoor events such as those listed above.  

 

In indoor settings outside of one's home, including while riding public transportation, face coverings continue to be required regardless of vaccination status.  

 

See the California Department of Public Health’s webpage for details. Don’t forget: It’s best to keep a copy of your COVID-19 vaccine card with you at all times. 

  

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing from the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF)

 

 

Californians Can Arrange an In-Home Vaccination or Transportation to a Vaccine Site!

May 11, 2021

DID YOU KNOW...  California residents can now request in-home vaccinations and/or transit assistance to get vaccinated by registering at MyTurn.‍ca.‍gov or by calling the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) COVID-19 Call Center at 1-833-422-4255.

Currently, CDPH does not require medical documentation to request in-home vaccination. No one will ask you about your immigration status. Transportation can be requested for next day appointments. Unfortunately, transportation for same-day appointments is not available.

Here's how you can arrange an in-home vaccination or transportation to a vaccine site:

1. Call the CDPH COVID-19 Call Center at 1-833-422-4255

  • If you need transportation, the CDPH Call Center:
     
    • Can assist with booking medical transportation for individuals who need specialized assistance to get to their vaccine appointments;
       
    • Can schedule and arrange non-medical transportation for any California resident who needs assistance getting to their vaccine appointments.
       
  • If you need an in-home vaccination, the CDPH Call Center will confirm the need for in-home vaccination and gather relevant information (address, number of people in the household needing vaccinations, etc.) and share it with your Local Health Jurisdiction (the agency that provides public health services in your city or county).
     
    • Your Local Health Jurisdiction will create a "Walk-in" clinic appointment for you using the My Turn portal.
       
    • If necessary, your participating local health agency will then request ambulance assistance through the Medical and Health Operational Area Coordinator and the Emergency Medical Services Authority to coordinate and administer the vaccination(s) to you at your home.

2. Register Online Using MyTurn.ca.gov

Source: Californians Can Arrange an In-Home Vaccination

 

Collaborating for COVID Equity for Disabled People

Please join DREDF on Friday, May 14, 2021, from 12:00 – 12:45pm PDT to hear from Suzanna Gámez and Tanesha Morris of Resources for Independence Central Valley (RICV).

Suzy and Tanesha will talk about their ongoing work as a partner in the Disability Equity Coalition. As a Coalition partner, RICV provides COVID education and supports, and advocates for vaccines for disabled people.

Please register and submit questions for the
Zoom Question and Answers by using the button below:

 

REGISTER AND SUBMIT QUESTIONS

 

ASL, Spanish Interpretation and Real Time Captioning will be provided.

 

Sharing from State Council on Developmental Disabilities (SCDD)

We are collaborating with Alta California Regional Center and other community providers to offer this Oral Health Workshop for consumers of the Regional Center and family member/caregivers/staff.

  • Home based behavioral strategies to increase routine preventive oral health and increase strategies to access treatment in the dental office
  • How to access your dental plan, what treatments they cover, and what to do if you need help accessing care
  • The role of Alta California Regional Center in supporting your access to oral health care
  • Strategies to navigate managed care from self-advocates & family members

 

Bring your questions and join us for this important discussion!

 

Wednesday, June 16, 2021    6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Please click on this Zoom link to pre-register: https://bit.ly/3d4OdMx

You will then receive an email with your personalized link to the Zoom workshop

 

We hope this to be the first of an ongoing series of workshops on accessing oral health care for individuals with developmental disabilities. Please join us and bring your questions and concerns.

 

Sharing from CDCAN

GOVERNOR NEWSOM SAYS CALIFORNIA WILL HAVE RECORD-BREAKING $75.7 BILLION ONE-TIME SURPLUS FOR 2021-2022 STATE BUDGET YEAR 
Announces Largest State Tax Rebate in American History - $12 Billion - First of Several Announcements this Week Ahead of May 14th Release of Governor's Budget Revisions Known as "May Revise" - Proposals Part of Governor's $100 Billion "California Comeback Plan"


SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 05/010/2021 10:55 AM (PACIFIC TIME] - Governor Gavin Newsom, in a media conference held in the Bay Area this morning, said that California will have a record-breaking $75.7 billion one-time surplus for the 2021-2022 State Budget year that begins July 1st, and announced the first of several major budget proposals this week - ahead of the May 14th budget revisions, referred to as the "May Revise" -  to provide more direct help to Californians. The one-time surplus is addition to about $26 billion in new federal COVID-19 related one-time funding that California is expected to receive, according to the Governor.

The proposals announced today are massive and sweeping in scope, that include what his office is asserting is the largest state tax rebate in US history of $12 billion - that he says is "above and beyond" whatever rebate may be required in the State Constitution next year by what is known as the "Gann Limit"; $5.6 billion in additional funding for the state's rental assistance program to help renters pay off 100% of their back rent from April 2020; and $2 billion in direct relief to help Californians pay off water, gas and electric bills. The Governor said more proposals - and details - will be announced today and throughout the week, including more funding for re-opening of California schools that address health and safety concerns of both families and school staff.
    The proposals - including those announced earlier this year - are part of the Governor's $100 billion "California Comeback Plan" - what he touts as the biggest economic recovery package in California history -  as the state moves to re-opening the economy by the target date of June 15th.

“California’s recovery is well underway, but we can’t be satisfied with simply going back to the way things were,” said Governor Newsom. “We are tripling the Golden State Stimulus to get money in the hands of more middle-class Californians who have been hit hard by this pandemic. Two in three Californians will receive a check from the state and more than $5 billion in aid will be made available to those who need help paying their rent or utility bills.”
    The Governor made the announcements today - with more coming in the coming days - as he faces a recall election, likely to be scheduled in November. When questioned by a reporter if his announcements playing out over the next several days was part of his campaign to fight the recall, he dismissed it saying for the past three state budgets as governor, he has announced previews of the state budget or budget revisions. 
    The Legislature will review the Governor's proposals - all included in his proposed budget revisions known as the "May revise" in budget subcommittee and full budget committee hearings at the end of May and early June - but are certain to approve all of his proposals. 
    The Governor, with details to follow later today and this week, announced the following sweeping proposals:

 

  • GOLDEN STATE STIMULUS EXPANSION - Proposes additional $12 billion in a major expansion to the existing Golden State Stimulus payments, proposing additional direct payments to middle-class families that make up to $75,000. Under the Governor's proposal, two-thirds of Californians will benefit from the additional $600 direct payments. Qualified families with dependents, including undocumented families, will also now be eligible for an additional $500. The plan triples California’s previous investment, reaching more people and giving bigger benefits. (CDCAN Note: the state is expected to post information soon on how people on SSI/SSP will receive their initial $600 Golden Stimulus grant payments). More details of this expansion will be announced either later today or this week.

 

  • STATE RENTAL ASSISTANCE - ADDITIONAL FUNDING: Under Governor Newsom’s California Comeback Plan proposal, the state would also offer the largest renter assistance package of any state in America, with an additional proposed $5.2 billion (building on previous $2.6 billion in funding) that is meant to help low-income Californians pay back 100% (instead of the current 80%) of their back-rent, their rent for the months to come dating back to April 2020

 

UTILITY ASSISTANCE - Governor proposes $2 billion in direct relief to help eligible low-income Californians pay overdue utility bills including electric and water, with $1 billion set aside, according to the Governor, to address the issues related to water. Details on this proposal will be announced either later today or in the coming days this week.

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL hears from our community members we serve about the difficulties they are experiencing paying rent or their utility bills. People with disabilities and older adults are often the most impacted in any economic downturn. Marin CIL has been working every day with out community members, decision makers/appointed and elected officials, and our community-based organization partners to maintain important safety net services. We are appreciative of Governor Newsom’s budget priority which will greatly enhance funding for these initiatives.

 

Sharing from CalABLE

Join us for a discussion of an important piece of legislation designed to empower millions of people with disabilities.

ABLE Age Adjustment Act, A Virtual Town Hall Discussion

Date: Thursday, May 20, 2021

Time: 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM (PT)

Join California State Treasurer Fiona Ma, in collaboration with CalABLE, Disability Rights of California, and U.S. Congressman Tony Cardenas for an informative town hall discussion on the ABLE Age Adjustment Act.  

Topics Include:

  • The ABLE Age Adjustment Act (S. 331 and H.R. 1219)
  • How you can help get this law passed

This online event will conclude with a Q&A session to give participants an opportunity to ask additional questions.

If you would like to join us via computer and submit questions, please Register to receive a confirmation email and login information.

There is an audio only option available as well. To join via telephone:

  1. Call +1 (669) 900-6833
  2. Enter Webinar ID: 975 3756 5090   (Note: this ID number has been updated.)

For those who are unable to make the live broadcast, a replay will be made available via our YouTube channel at a later date.

If you have any questions, please contact us at calable@treasurer.ca.gov

A Tidbit from Me: ABLE Age Adjustment Act

This bill increases from 26 to 46 the age threshold for tax-favored ABLE (Achieving a Better Life Experience) accounts. ABLE accounts are designed to enable individuals with disabilities to save for and pay for disability-related expenses. To establish an account, an individual must have a qualifying impairment that began before the age of 26 under current law.- Source

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

ACR 41 – COVID-19 Direct Support Professionals

Next week ACR 41 will be heard during the Assembly Floor Session. We are so grateful to Assembly Member Holden for recognizing the heroic work of all the DSPs in California who have gone above and beyond to support individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their families, throughout the pandemic. We are asking everyone to call your local Assembly Member and ask them to rise on the floor and speak in support of this important Resolution. You can find your Assembly Member’s contact information here: https://thearcca.org/advocacy/find-your-legislator/

Assembly Concurrent Resolution 41 – COVID-19 Direct Support Professionals

ACR 41, as introduced, Holden. COVID-19 direct support professionals appreciation.

This measure would recognize the skills and dedication of direct support professionals, and show appreciation for the direct support professionals who have faithfully served Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities during the COVID-19 public health crisis.

WHEREAS, The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting stay-at-home orders and other safety measures began one year ago; and

WHEREAS, March is recognized nationwide as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month; and

WHEREAS, More than 350,000 Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) receive regional center services; and

WHEREAS, The COVID-19 pandemic has a disproportionate impact on people with IDD, who are especially vulnerable to complications and mortality due to the coronavirus; and

WHEREAS, During this pandemic, direct support professionals throughout the state prioritized the health and safety of people with IDD, often placing the needs of people in their care over their own personal interests; and

WHEREAS, Direct support professionals showed flexibility, consistently responding to changing public health conditions and state guidelines for health and safety, while also addressing the changing needs of the people they serve; and

WHEREAS, Direct support professionals were guided by person-centered philosophy to meet the support needs of people with IDD during a historic pandemic that changed every aspect of their life; and

WHEREAS, Direct support professionals demonstrated innovation in creating new programs to safely support individuals with IDD during the pandemic and mitigate the isolating impact of health and safety measures; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature values the heroism and commitment of direct support professionals in the service of Californians with IDD; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Legislature, having acknowledged the rights of Californians with IDD and the state’s responsibility to them through the Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act, finds that direct support professionals are essential to carrying out this responsibility; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Legislature recognizes the skills and dedication of direct support professionals; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Legislature appreciates all direct support professionals who have faithfully served Californians with IDD during the COVID-19 public health crisis; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.

Source: ACR 41 – COVID-19 Direct Support Professionals

 A Tidbit from Me: I am so happy that this resolution honoring Direst Support workers for people with developmental disabilities is happening. Direct Support staff including people who work as in home support service providers played a key role in supporting people with disabilities and older adults maintain independence. This past year has been very difficult for our communities. Sharing my own lived experience, I had to do a tremendous amount juggling to ensure that I had enough care team staff to assist me with activities of daily living. I am blessed to have a great team and every one worked together to cover service gaps. During Covid-19 our safety-net was tested, we heard stories of people with disabilities going without care. There is a significant shortage of home care providers. Right now there are people with disabilities and older adults who don’t have enough home care providers. This causes these valued community members to rely on friends and family and other supports to at least get there basic needs met. I have one friend who has been in bed for two months. Yes, it is important to honor those who support our community. We need to remember there is much work to do.

 

Sharing from the California SILC

U.S. children ages 12 to 15 could begin COVID-19 vaccinations Thursday

Mon, May 10, 2021, 2:24 PM·

By Michael Erman

(Reuters) U.S. regulators authorized Pfizer and BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine for use in children as young as 12 and said they could begin receiving shots as soon as Thursday, widening the country's inoculation program as vaccination rates have slowed significantly.

This is the first COVID-19 vaccine to be authorized in the United States for ages 12 to 15. Vaccinating younger ages is considered an important step for getting children back into schools safely. U.S. President Joe Biden has asked states to make the vaccine available to younger adolescents immediately.

Biden issued a statement hailing the authorization as "a promising development in our fight against the virus."

"If you are a parent who wants to protect your child, or a teenager who is interested in getting vaccinated, today’s decision is a step closer to that goal," he said.

The vaccine has been available under an emergency use authorization to people as young as 16 in the United States. The vaccine makers said they had started seeking full approval for the immunization in people 16 and older last week.

Peter Marks, director of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research, told reporters that states will likely be able to begin vaccinating 12- to 15-year-olds after an advisory committee of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers the expansion on Wednesday.

For full article: U.S. children ages 12 to 15 could begin COVID-19 vaccinations Thursday

 

Sharing from the National Council on Independent Living

The Importance of Disability Cultural Centers in Higher Education

May 10, 2021 By theadvocacymonitor Leave a Comment

By Zane Landin, NCIL Policy Intern

19.4% of students attending higher education institutions identify as someone with a disability. Students with disabilities in higher education often experience ableism, discrimination, and invalidation, from microagressions to institutional barriers. Graduation rates for students with disabilities are as low as 13% compared to 30% among their non-disabled counterparts. The identity of disability is an aspect of diversity that is integral to our communities, society, and higher education, but is predominantly excluded from social justice initiatives and conversations. 

In higher education, to support different marginalized groups, many universities have developed and implemented cultural centers for different cultural groups of the campus community to feel empowered, celebrated, and interconnected. These cultural centers provide students with a physical / virtual space to feel celebrated while offering professional and personal development resources such as networking events, identity exploratory workshops, and educational conferences. These cultural centers challenge and mitigate some of the barriers these cultural groups experience in higher education. Through their efforts, they are also accelerating the success rates of these cultural groups. Student involvement in cultural activities enhance student success, retention rates, well-being, and the college experience by driving cultural community, relationships, familiarity, expression, and validation.

For full article: The Importance of Disability Cultural Centers in Higher Education


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Red Flag Warning, Covid-19, HCBS Advocacy, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 10, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are all had a wonderful weekend and Mother’s Day. Happy Monday! Raising my mug to you this morning. Here is the PM Morning Report for you today. Enjoy the read.

 

County of Marin Update (May 7th, 2021)

Marin Poised to Vaccinate 12- to 15-year-olds 

Marin County Public Health is preparing to hit the ground running and launch a COVID-19 vaccine outreach effort for youths aged 12-15 once a vaccine is authorized for use for that age group. 

 

Public health departments across the U.S. are anticipating a decision from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as early as Wednesday, May 12, making Pfizer the first vaccine available for adolescents. Once the FDA grants emergency use authorization, the Western States Scientific Advisory Group will convene to render an independent recommendation to authorize use in California. 

 

There are approximately 14,000 Marin residents aged 12 to 15. Public Health has set a goal to vaccinate at least half of the group within a week of receiving authorization. 

 

See the full news release

 

Online Town Hall May 11 about Adolescent Vaccinations 

An online discussion about COVID-19 vaccinations for kids aged 12-15 is set for 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 11. It will be a great chance to hear about safety, efficacy, and possible side effects of the shots once they are available for this age group. Here is the lineup of scheduled speakers:  

  • Dr. Matt Willis, Public Health Officer, Marin Health and Human Services (HHS) 
  • Dr. Lisa Santora, Deputy Public Health Officer, Marin HHS 
  • Dr.Shilpa Marwaha, Kaiser Permanente, Infectious Diseases 
  • Mary Jane Burke, Marin County Superintendent of Schools 

Register to participate on Zoom (webinar ID 880 1161 3451, passcode 024965), dial in at (408) 638-0968, or watch on Facebook live. Call (415) 499-5803 for more information. 

 

COVID-19 Data Update:  

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us

  

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from KTVU Fox 2

Dry and windy conditions signal peak wildfire season is ahead of schedule

By Emma Goss Published 4 hours ago

KTVU FOX 2

SAN JOSE, Calif. - A weekend red flag warning for parts of the North and East Bay Area has been extended through 6pm on Tuesday due to dry and breezy conditions, the National Weather Service reported.

Red flag warnings are unusual this early in the year, but because California is in a drought, and water levels are below average, the bigger fires Northern California routinely sees in the months of August and September could spark as early as July.

The extended red flag warning "means we expect more fires, we expect to keep our increased staffing on duty," Jonathan Cox, deputy fire chief with the San Mateo division of Cal Fire, said.

 

For full article: Dry and windy conditions signal peak wildfire season is ahead of schedule

 

 

 

Sharing from the National Disability Rights Network

Each year P&A/CAP staff, board members, PAIMI Council members, colleagues, disability advocates, attorneys, and our federal partners gather together for intense training, hard work, collaboration…. and a bit of fun! Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are again offering our Annual Conference as a virtual event over three weeks: May 17-21, May 24-28, and June 7-11, 2021.

 

With more than 115 exciting sessions and institutes, #NDRN2021 is a wonderful opportunity for you to build skills, renew and deepen your commitment to equality for people with disabilities, and meet, network with, and learn from experts from around the country.

 

Explore this event website to learn about everything the conference has to offer, including a session catalog with over 115 sessions covering a wide variety of topics, information about our mobile app to enhance your conference experience, and technology instructions to help you make the most of our virtual gathering!

 

We will be offering continuing education credits for many of our sessions this year - click here for more information regarding our CEU opportunities, including CLE, CRC and PAL credits. Registration fees for this year's conference may be charged as an organization level subscription fee or as an individual. NDRN Allies are invited to attend as part of their annual membership. If you are not affiliated with the P&A Network (such as someone from a Federal agency that does not directly fund the P&A system, a student, or a member of the general public), you will be charged a per session registration fee, as follows:

  • Students - $25 per session
  • Person with a Disability - $25 per session
  • General Public - $40 per session
  • Other Federal Agency - $40 per session

If you are a P&A/CAP staff person, PAIMI Council Member, P&A Board Member, or an NDRN Associate Member, your organization will be charged a subscription fee that will enable everyone at the organization to participate in as many sessions as they are authorized to attend for one flat fee. Click here to browse our catalog of available sessions.

 

Fees are payable by credit card online or by mailing a check to NDRN after completing the registration form. Please note that a 3% processing fee will be added to any registrations paid by credit card.

Cancellation Policy

As we have limited capacity for each session, NDRN asks that anyone who will not be able to attend a session for which they registered cancel their registration for that session. Attendees may remove a session from their schedule at any time prior to the session by logging into their registration form via this website and clicking the Remove from Schedule button for that session. Attendees whose organizations are paying a subscription fee for this event may drop a session from their schedule at any time at no charge. Attendees who are paying to attend individual sessions will incur a $10 cancellation fee for any session they drop from their schedule after registering initially. NDRN will only refund CLE credit purchases should NDRN not be able to become a provider in your state and your state bar does not accept reciprocity credits for states in which NDRN becomes a CLE provider. No other CLE package purchases are eligible for refund. For questions about cancellations or refunds, please email registration@ndrn.org

About NDRN: The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) is the nonprofit membership organization for the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Systems and the Client Assistance Programs (CAP) for individuals with disabilities. -National Disability Rights Network

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

DREDF Supports Discussion Draft of Legislation Making Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services Mandatory

April 27, 2021
Senators Hassan, Brown and Casey, and Representative Dingell, released a discussion draft of the Home and Community-Based Services Access Act (HAA) in mid-March, seeking broad stakeholder comment. The federal HAA is in an early form but addresses a long-sought goal of the disability community to require states to offer home and community-based services and not only institutional nursing home care under Medicaid. This requirement would help eliminate the waiting lists and patchwork of eligibility and services that Medicaid beneficiaries with long-term care needs currently have to navigate. The HAA also tries to establish living wages and working conditions for the HCBS workforce that will help ensure stable HCBS for all eligible Medicaid enrollees who want HCBS. DREDF worked with the Consortium of Citizens for Disabilities to submit a detailed set of joint comments and also a shorter DREDF set of specific additional comments.

Source: DREDF Supports Discussion Draft of Legislation Making Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services Mandatory

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL has been working with our community members, Statewide and National Independent Living Networks, and organizations affiliated with the National Disability Rights Network to make Home and Community Based Services mandatory. In Independent Living this is considered a matter of rights. To learn more about these efforts and to join Marin CIL is this effort please feel free to reach out to us.  

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

Join today’s (May 10) national HoUSed campaign call from 2:30-4:00 pm ET. White House American Rescue Plan Coordinator and Senior Advisor to the President Gene Sperling will discuss the administration’s new guidance on the Emergency Rental Assistance Program. We will also hear about the latest on the CDC eviction moratorium court rulings; new information on NLIHC’s tracking of emergency rental assistance (ERA) programs around the country; updates on advancing the HoUSed campaign’s priorities; the latest from Capitol Hill and from the field; and more. Register for the call at: https://bit.ly/3ub2sWM

 

 

Sharing from the State Independent Living Council (SILC)

California Caregiver Resource Centers Budget Request of $12M for Next Three Years

COVID-19 has increased family caregiver responsibilities and amplified caregiving burdens. Added stressors have hit all caregivers hard and hit Black and Latino communities even harder. Extending the CRCs augmentation of $12M per year for the next three years (to June 2024) will allow them to continue expanding personalized, compassionate, and evidence-based services to family caregivers, more than half of whom work outside the home in addition to working as unpaid caregivers at home.
The request will allow the CRCs to increase the number of family caregivers receiving services and expand their capacities to develop and implement a statewide diversity and inclusion corps to focus on underserved caregiver groups (English language limited, ethnically diverse, young, LGBTQ and those who provide complex care).
As California continues to promote home- and community-based care through the Master Plan for Aging and waiver programs, the importance and needs of family caregivers will only continue to expand. Alzheimer’s and other dementias that increase in an aging society require healthy and capable caregivers to provide competent care.

Source: California Caregiver Resource Centers Budget Request of $12M for Next Three Years

About California Caregiver Resource Centers: Founded in 1984, the California Caregiver Resource Centers are a network of 11 centers throughout California which serve family caregivers who are providing support for someone affected by chronic and debilitating health conditions including dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, cerebrovascular diseases (such as stroke or aneurysms), degenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s, Huntington’s and multiple sclerosis, or traumatic brain injury (TBI), among many others. - Source


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Marin Covid-19 Update and New York Times Article Discussing LTSS vs Facilities During Covid


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 7, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well this morning. Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful Mothers. A lot on my docket today. Here is the PM Morning Report for you today. Enjoy the read. Have a great weekend!

 

County of Marin Update

 

Helping Hands Await for Rental Assistance 

Pop-up events on Wednesday, May 19, and Sunday, May 23, will allow local residents experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic to get in-person help with federal rental assistance.

Both events will take place at Exhibit Hall, in the back of the Marin County Fairgrounds at 20 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. The May 19 event will be from 4-8 p.m., and the May 23 event will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. No appointments will be necessary to receive assistance, and language translation services will be provided. Visitors only need to bring required documents. Assistance will be available for both landlords and tenants. Free tacos will be provided for those receiving services.

In this session of federal economic hardship relief, there is $16 million to distribute as part of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, intended to prevent evictions and homelessness. The applications for tenants and landlords are available on the County’s rental assistance website in a variety of languages.   

 

Marin Communications Forum on COVID-19 Stress

COVID-19 fatigue is real. May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so the Marin Communications Forum is bringing in some experts for a public online session May 27. Representatives will be on hand from the County’s Behavioral Health Division, Marin Community Clinics, Wiggins Family Daycare, and the Sausalito-Marin City School District. The session will run from 10 a.m. to noon on Zoom.

The Marin Communications Forum produces monthly public policy forums for First 5 Marin Children and Families Commission, provided at no cost to its community partners. Email for more information.

 

Federal Funds Available for COVID-related Funerals

The federal government is assisting families with funeral expenses for COVID-19-related deaths that took place after January 20, 2020. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is accepting applications to receive up to $9,000 in reimbursements. Eligible applicants may apply by calling (844) 684-6333 or TTY (800) 462-7585 weekdays from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time. Applicants must provide FEMA with a copy of a death certificate, proof of funeral expenses incurred, and proof of funeral assistance received from any other source. 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

Sharing from the New York Times

 

Covid Forces Families to Rethink Nursing Home Care

Even with vaccines, many older people and their relatives are weighing how to manage at-home care for those who can no longer live independently.

By Reed Abelson

May 6, 2021

At 86, Diane Nixon, living in an apartment at the back of a daughter’s house, no longer drives and has trouble getting around.

When her health worsened last year before the coronavirus pandemic, she and all four of her daughters talked about whether a nursing home would be the next step. She worried that she had become a burden to her children.

“She was very adamant about not wanting her daughters to be caregivers,” said Jill Cooper, one of her daughters, who lives nearby in the Pittsburgh area.

But as infections began to tear through nursing homes across the country, killing tens of thousands of residents last year, Ms. Nixon and her family realized a group home was no longer a viable choice. Especially after most of them barred visitors to help contain outbreaks.

For full article: Covid Forces Families to Rethink Nursing Home Care

*To read the full article you will need to log in and create a free account.


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Marin Covid-19 Update and New York Times Article Discussing LTSS vs Facilities During Covid


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 7, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well this morning. Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful Mothers. A lot on my docket today. Here is the PM Morning Report for you today. Enjoy the read. Have a great weekend!

 

County of Marin Update

 

Helping Hands Await for Rental Assistance 

Pop-up events on Wednesday, May 19, and Sunday, May 23, will allow local residents experiencing financial hardship because of the pandemic to get in-person help with federal rental assistance.

Both events will take place at Exhibit Hall, in the back of the Marin County Fairgrounds at 20 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael. The May 19 event will be from 4-8 p.m., and the May 23 event will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. No appointments will be necessary to receive assistance, and language translation services will be provided. Visitors only need to bring required documents. Assistance will be available for both landlords and tenants. Free tacos will be provided for those receiving services.

In this session of federal economic hardship relief, there is $16 million to distribute as part of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, intended to prevent evictions and homelessness. The applications for tenants and landlords are available on the County’s rental assistance website in a variety of languages.   

 

Marin Communications Forum on COVID-19 Stress

COVID-19 fatigue is real. May is Mental Health Awareness Month, so the Marin Communications Forum is bringing in some experts for a public online session May 27. Representatives will be on hand from the County’s Behavioral Health Division, Marin Community Clinics, Wiggins Family Daycare, and the Sausalito-Marin City School District. The session will run from 10 a.m. to noon on Zoom.

The Marin Communications Forum produces monthly public policy forums for First 5 Marin Children and Families Commission, provided at no cost to its community partners. Email for more information.

 

Federal Funds Available for COVID-related Funerals

The federal government is assisting families with funeral expenses for COVID-19-related deaths that took place after January 20, 2020. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is accepting applications to receive up to $9,000 in reimbursements. Eligible applicants may apply by calling (844) 684-6333 or TTY (800) 462-7585 weekdays from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time. Applicants must provide FEMA with a copy of a death certificate, proof of funeral expenses incurred, and proof of funeral assistance received from any other source. 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

Sharing from the New York Times

 

Covid Forces Families to Rethink Nursing Home Care

Even with vaccines, many older people and their relatives are weighing how to manage at-home care for those who can no longer live independently.

By Reed Abelson

May 6, 2021

At 86, Diane Nixon, living in an apartment at the back of a daughter’s house, no longer drives and has trouble getting around.

When her health worsened last year before the coronavirus pandemic, she and all four of her daughters talked about whether a nursing home would be the next step. She worried that she had become a burden to her children.

“She was very adamant about not wanting her daughters to be caregivers,” said Jill Cooper, one of her daughters, who lives nearby in the Pittsburgh area.

But as infections began to tear through nursing homes across the country, killing tens of thousands of residents last year, Ms. Nixon and her family realized a group home was no longer a viable choice. Especially after most of them barred visitors to help contain outbreaks.

For full article: Covid Forces Families to Rethink Nursing Home Care

*To read the full article you will need to log in and create a free account.


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Marin Rental Assistance Opens, Covid-19 News and Resources, Marin Can't Escape Orange


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 5, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are doing well today. I want to wish everyone a Happy Cinco De Mayo!  In today’s morning report there is some helpful news and updates for you. Enjoy the read. Have a fabulous day. Raising my mug of coffee to you today. Sending a hug and a smile.

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: May 4, 2021 

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.  

 

Video: COVID-19 Update to the Board of Supervisors 

Earlier today, Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis provided a COVID-19 response update to the Marin County Board of Supervisors. In his talk, he reviewed the current coronavirus and vaccination data, the affect on travel and social gatherings on the data, progress on herd immunity, and future vaccinations for kids under age 16. 

 

WATCH VIDEO 

 

Blueprint Update: Marin Remains in Orange Tier 3 

Today, California Department of Public Health (CDPH) provided another update on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for reducing COVID-19 and keeping Californians healthy and safe. 

 Marin was eligible to advance to yellow Tier 4, further opening the economy and taking another step toward prepandemic normalcy. However, The County did not advance from the “moderate risk” to the more open “minimal risk” tier. The adjusted virus rate needs to be below 2.0 per 100,000 residents to advance, but Marin’s rate on May 3 was 2.5. 

 

The following table outlines the requirements for case rates, test positivity rates, and quartile test positivity rates for each tier status, as well as CDPH’s May 4 assessment for Marin: 

 

 

Tier 1 (Widespread) 

Tier 2 (Substantial) 

Tier 3 (Moderate) 

Tier 4 (Minimal) 

Marin County 

Adjusted Case Rate per 100,000 

> 10 

6 to 10 

2 to 5.9 

< 2 

2.5 

Overall Test Positivity Rate 

> 8% 

5% to 8% 

2% to 4.9% 

< 2% 

0.9% 

Equity Quartile Test Positivity Rate 

> 8.0% 

≤ 8.0% 

≤ 5.2% 

≤ 2.1% 

1.1% 

(Table updated to reflect CDPH's 4 Million Vaccine Equity Metric Goal adjustment of April 6) 

 

Recent cases attributable to travel and social gatherings have impacted local cases rates, and the vast majority are among residents who are unvaccinated. In addition, the B.1.1.7 (UK) variant of the coronavirus is showing up more often in Bay Area, and it is more susceptible to spreading than the original strain of COVID-19. 

 

In addition, Marin County Public Health is seeing a correlation between new COVID-19 cases and lack of vaccination. Of the 324 cases that have been diagnosed over the past month, 87% are among people who have received no vaccine. 

 

Continue reading the news release

 

Do You Need Relief with Property Taxes? 

The State of California allows the County Tax Collector to consider financial hardships caused by the pandemic in their penalty review process. May 6 is the final day for property owners with delinquent property taxes to file a Request for Penalty Cancellation based on circumstances arising from COVID-19. In Marin, there were about 4,8000 properties with unpaid taxes.  Property owners can file a COVID-19 Request for Penalty Cancellation online, by mail, or in-person. Learn more on the County Newsroom

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin stays stuck in orange COVID-19 safety tier

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: May 4, 2021 at 5:42 p.m. | UPDATED: May 4, 2021 at 5:51 p.m.

Marin will remain in the orange tier for now, just missing the mark this week on a less-restrictive status in the state’s COVID-19 safety rating system.

The county has been flirting with entering the yellow tier for five weeks. To move up, Marin needs to keep its adjusted case rate below 2 cases per 100,000 residents per day for two consecutive weeks. Twice now the county has met that requirement for one week without being able to maintain it for a second week.

Last week, Marin had an unadjusted case rate of 2.5 cases per 100,000 residents per day that dropped to 1.5 cases per 100,000 residents after it was adjusted for other factors.

This week, however, the county’s unadjusted case rate inched up to 2.8 cases per 100,000 residents per day.

“Only 0.3 above what it was last week, but that adjusts to a case rate of 2.5, so that puts us back in the orange tier,” Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer, told county supervisors Tuesday.

For full article: Marin stays stuck in orange COVID-19 safety tier

 

Sharing from County of Marin

Marin County Emergency Rental Assistance Program

The Marin County Rental Assistance online application is open. If you already received rental assistance from our program you will need to re-apply. 

La aplicación electronica para el programa de Asistencia con la Renta del Condado de Marin ahora esta aceptando solicitudes. Si ya ha recibido asistencia con la renta a través de este programa, usted necesitará hacer otra solicitud.

 Landlord Information Session. Sesión de información para propietarios.

  • Meeting/Reunión[External]
  • Thursday April 15, 2021: 6 PM PST. / Jueves 15 de abril 2021: 6 PM PST.
  • Meeting ID: 997 1252 0989
  • Passcode: 214134
  • Dial by your location: +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)

 

For More Information and To Apply: Marin County Emergency Rental Assistance Program

 

Sharing from California Department of Aging

Alzheimer’s Disease & Other Dementias:
Culturally Responsive Services, Support, and Care

 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021, 10-11 am: The next Ensuring Equity in Aging webinar will focus on responsive services, supports, and care for older adults with Alzheimer's Disease and other dementias. Our panelists will share resources and best practices for ensuring that patients and clients, as well as their loved ones and caregivers, receive culturally responsive and sensitive support and care.
 

Register for this webinar here.


This webinar will feature the following panelists: 

We will also hear directly from two Alzheimer’s Association volunteer advocates on their experiences navigating care and services:

  • Yolanda Rogers, San Diego
  • Florence Lam, Dublin

Time will be reserved for Q&A. Closed captioning and ASL interpreting will be available.

 

Missed a webinar? All webinar recordings, presentations, and transcripts are posted to CDA's Equity in Aging Resource Center

 

 

 

Disability & Aging Community Living
Advisory Committee: 

4/30 Meeting Materials Posted, Share Your Input

 

The Disability & Aging Community Living Advisory Committeewhich builds on the work of the Olmstead Advisory Committee, met for the first time on April 30th.

The purpose of this committee is to advance community living, inclusion, and integration across California. The committee will advise the California Health and Human Services Agency, in addition to other state entities, on community living policies and programs, including but not limited to long-term services and supports, transportation and housing, and employment opportunities.

 Additional Committee and meeting information and materials, including slides and the meeting recording, can be found on the CHHS Community Living webpage.

You can provide your input to the Committee via an online survey Spanish and Chinese translations of survey coming soon!
 

 

 

The Master Plan for Aging Team is Hiring!
MPA Project Coordinator Position Posted at CalCareers

 

 
 

 

Are you, or is someone you know, passionate about building age- and disability- friendly environments, policies, and systems? CDA is hiring a Project Coordinator (Health Program Specialist I) to join the Master Plan for Aging team! This is an exciting opportunity to advance equity in aging through work across State, Local, and private organizations and sectors. 

For more information and the application materials, please visit CalCareers. Filing deadline is Thursday, May 6th. 

 

Sharing from the National Center on Law and Elder Right

SSI Recipients and Economic Impact Payments

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients who do not typically file a tax return should have received their third economic impact payment (EIP) automatically in April 2021. Those who receive their SSI benefits electronically by direct deposit or Direct Express Card should have received their EIP in the same way around April 7. Those who receive their monthly SSI benefits by check in the mail were mailed paper check EIPs beginning April 9.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) will not count any of the EIPs as income for SSI recipients, and the payments are excluded from resources for 12 months after receipt. Many SSI recipients received their first EIP under the CARES Act in May 2020. They are now approaching the end of the 12-month exclusion period for the first EIPs starting on June 1, 2021, when any remaining CARES Act EIP funds they still have which puts them over the $2,000 resource limit ($3,000 for an eligible couple) will be counted as a resource, and they will lose their eligibility for SSI for that month. SSI recipients and their payees must take care to be sure they have spent down their CARES Act EIP funds before 12 months have passed since they received the payment. Since EIP funds are not the same as SSI benefits, individuals are not limited in what they can spend these funds on and can spend down on whatever they wish, including on gifts and charitable contributions.

On April 17, 2020, SSA issued EM-20014 SENEffect of Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Recovery Rebates* on SSI Income and Resources. These instructions for SSA employees state:

Income

Accept the individual’s allegation regarding any recovery rebates. Document the allegation in the SSI Claim system (i.e. DROC or Person Statement).  

Resources

Develop and exclude the rebate from resources only when an individual alleges receiving and retaining an amount that may affect eligibility.

When development is needed, document the rebate according to the following:

  • Accept the individual’s allegation regarding any retained recovery rebate amounts. Document the allegation in the SSI Claim system (i.e. DROC or Person Statement).  
  • For rebates retained in financial institution accounts, document the SSI Claim system (i.e. DROC or Person Statement) with the individual’s statement as to the date and amount of rebate-related deposits. Take action to exclude retained rebate amounts from the account balance for up to 12 months. When rebates are commingled with other countable funds in an account, always assume that non-excluded funds are withdrawn first, leaving as much of the excluded funds in the account as possible per SI 01130.700.
  • When readily available, bank records reflecting transaction details may also be used to document receipt and retention of recovery rebates

Access to Financial Institutions (AFI) Considerations

AFI responses may include recovery rebates in first of the month balances. When processing initial claims or post entitlement events involving AFI verifications, pay special attention to months in which reported balances contribute to a determination of excess resources. Just as you would screen these months for early-deposited payments, tax returns, or any other excludable funds, you must now also consider retained recovery rebates as a potential exclusion subject to the instructions section above.

 

The same instructions are applicable to the subsequent EIPs as well. Advocates may find that SSA employees in local offices are not following these instructions. Please contact us for technical assistance if you have encountered an SSI recipient who has erroneously received a Notice of Overpayment or a Notice of Planned Action suspending their benefits because SSA has incorrectly counted an EIP as a resource, at ConsultNCLER@acl.hhs.gov.

 

“Recovery rebate” is the statutory term used in the CARES Act for the economic impact payments.

Sharing from the Marin VOAD

Want to tell your neighbor what to expect after the Covid-19 vaccine? https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/sites/default/files/2021-01/postvaxfactsheetfinal.pdf

 

Don’t know what to tell your staff member about their Covid-19 vaccine concerns? https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/sites/default/files/2021-03/covid-mythbusters-english.pdf

 

Each of these fact sheets (and many more) are available in multiple languages. Check out the Communications Toolkit for links to flyers, videos and more: https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/covid-19-communications-toolkit

 

Want to schedule a Covid-19 vaccine appointment? https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/vaccine

 

Looking for the latest school information about travel, sports or graduation? You will also find information about upcoming public health community meetings: https://marinschools.org/mcoerethinkingschools/home

 

Need to know the latest about reopenings in our current tier? https://marinrecovers.com/reopening-status/ Or do you need Industry Specific Guidelines? https://marinrecovers.com/industry-specific-guidelines/

 

Other: Covid-19 Data, Testing, Key Phone Numbers, Subscribe to Public Health Updates:

·       General HHS Number: 415-473-7191

·       Access Services Call Center: 833-641-1988

·       Subscribe to Public Health Updates: https://coronavirus.marinhhs.org/subscribe

 


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News from Marin VOAD, Marin Honoring AAPI at Board of Supervisors, DREDF Webinar, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 4, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope each of you is doing well today. As I am writing to you today I am nursing ever so slowly my last cup of coffee for the morning. My calendar is packed. Lot’s to do. It’s going to be a good day. Sending a smile and raising my mug to you today.

 

County of Marin Update:

Missed Your Second Shot? Public Health can Help   

Marin County continues to make great vaccination progress and is the top county in the state in terms of the percentage of eligible residents receiving at least one dose of the vaccine (82.9%). However, new data reveals that out of nearly 174,000 local people who have received at least one dose of the vaccine, 5,418 (or 3%) have missed their second shot with more than six weeks passing since the initial dose.  

 

It may be obvious, but a two dose vaccine regimen is most effected when both doses are administered. The Pfizer vaccine is only 50% effective after one dose, but is nearly 95% effective two weeks after the second dose is given. Skipping the second dose of a COVID-19 vaccination series reduces efficacy and, potentially, the lifespan of your immunity.  

 

Anyone who missed their second vaccine can obtain a second dose shot at any of Marin County Public Health’s mass vaccine sites, regardless of where they obtained their first dose.  No appointment required, just bring your vaccination card:  

  • Tuesday – Saturday, 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM:  Marin Center (20 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael) 
  • Wednesday – Friday, 4:00 PM to 7:45 PM: Marin Health and Wellness Center (3240 Kerner Blvd, San Rafael) 

In addition, many commercial pharmacies provide second doses, even if you obtained your first dose from a different provider. Review available vaccine sites in Marin by visiting GetVaccinatedMarin.org.  

 A Tidbit from Me: Sharing my personal perspective. It is so important to receive the Covid vaccine. It protects the entire community. Everyone in my bubble are people who are susceptible to covid. Getting the vaccine was important to me because I wanted to do my part in protecting the health of my community. Getting a shot in the arm, and in some cases two shots, can go a long way to eradicate the Covid virus. The virus has harmed and taken the lives of many. Let’s keep everyone safe. Get your shot today!

Do Your Handwashing Skills Pass the Test? 

Handwashing is a fundamental task to help stop COVID-19, so specialists the Environmental Health Division of our Marin County Community Development Agency used bluelight technology to demonstrate how a typical, quick, “do it with your eyes closed” handwashing session just doesn’t cut it. Check out how much bacteria remains on the hands during this demonstration and challenge yourself to become a world-class handwashing champion.   

 

Join Our Vaccine Q&As   

If you have questions about the vaccine, we offer webinars that cover all the facts and figures plus the truth about some myths and misinformation. The webinars are offered in English and Spanish through May 27.   

  

Q&A in English:  Every Tuesday & Thursday, 9 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View Event flyer  

  

Q&A in Spanish: Every Thursday, 11 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Or call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View event flyer  

 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing from the Marin VOAD

May is Mental Health Awareness

BHRS is offering a series of events in honor of May Mental Health Awareness Month. Mental Health Awareness Month was established in 1949 to increase understanding of the importance of mental health and wellness, and to celebrate recovery and hope.  Please join us and our community partners as we build our collective understanding of mental health and well being in our community. Mental well being demands we challenge stigma in all places where we live, work, play, learn and pray. Together, we can support one another and fully recognize that mental health *is* health. 

 

 

Mobile Crisis Response Team

We would like to introduce to you the Mobile Crisis Response Team. The Mobile Crisis Response Team responds to mental health and substance abuse crises and psychiatric emergencies in the community throughout Marin County. They work collaboratively with the citizens of Marin County, community based mental health and substance abuse agencies, hospitals and local law enforcement to increase the safety of individuals in a crisis. Please click on the link below to view  a video for further details of their services.

Mobile Crisis Response Team Video:  https://vimeo.com/535723012     

 

 

Workshop: Confronting Racism at Work

Sunday, May 16th from 3-6pm EST / 12-3pm PST 

This free workshop, facilitated by Yeijin Lee, “is a space for people of color to gain tools, skills, and a strategic framework to more safely and deliberately respond to workplace racism.”

Note: “The event will be recorded and available (for two weeks) for folks who register.”

 

Confronting Racism at Work: A Workshop for People of Color on Strategic Self-Advocacy
The complement to “Unfiltering the Fury,” I’ll be offering people of color a tangible strategic framework to more safely respond to experiences of racism in the workplace. It is the worst that BIPOC folks are the ones burdened with the work of being deliberate, measured, and strategic after experiencing racism. And, I hope to support my melanated comrades by sharing tools, skills, analyses, and this framework. This event is free, and is being subsidized by the white managers and institutions paying for the Unfiltered the Fury event.”

 

 

Event: The Gateway Film and Panel Discussion

Monday, May 17 at 6:30pm

RXSafe and Marin Community Based Prevention Action Team are showing a virtual screening of The Gateway: A story of how surgery and opioids transformed the lives of three families and panel discussion after the event.  And we would also ask that you please help us spread the word!

 

The topic is very relevant - the opioid crisis remains a top public health concern. Preliminary data from the CDC estimates over 90,000 of our family, friends, neighbors, co-workers died from an opioid drug overdose in the US in 2020 - the largest single-year percentage increase in the past 20 years.

 

 We will have live translation services during the event. 

Sign up link: The Gateway Film and Panel Discussion Tickets, Mon, May 17, 2021 at 6:30 PM | Eventbrite

 

 

Position Available: RFP Group Facilitator 

Submission deadline: Friday June 4, 2021

Marin County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services (BHRS) has released an RFP in pursuit of an anti-oppressive, trauma-informed, and culturally responsive consultant / group facilitator who can facilitate workplace groups and consultative spaces on how to respond to and confront racism in both working relationships between team members and relations between recipients of BHRS services and BHRS staff. This project will include facilitating 3 monthly groups for BHRS employees, including groups for BHRS supervisors, groups for BHRS management and leadership, groups for BHRS direct-care staff, and any requested / needed one-on-one support. For additional information, visit https://www.marinhhs.org/rfp/2021-10.

 

Please share this funding opportunity with your networks. Questions from potential applicants may be submitted using the webform on the website above to ensure transparency.

 

 

Event: CA Health Equity Summit

Thursday June 10 - Friday June 11

You are invited to attend the 2021 California Health Equity Summit (CHES) “Healing Communities Beyond 2020, Our Health, Our Culture, Our Climate” which will take place virtually, June 10-11, 2021.

 

The Summit will feature the following keynote presenters:

- Corrina Gould (Lisjan Ohlone) is the chair and spokesperson for the Confederated Villages of Lisjan — she was born and raised in Oakland, CA, the village of Huichin.

- Stacy Abrams, political leader, voting rights activist and New York Times bestselling author.

 

A variety of workshops will be offered and you can view the draft agenda here. The conference will focus on highlighting innovative programs to reduce stigma and increase behavioral health services and substance use services to underserved communities.

A Tidbit from Me: For transparency yours truly is currently the Vice Chair of the VOAD. I do want to take a moment to honor Elaine Tokolahi (our Chairperson), Adriana Rabkin (our VOAD Director), and the all of the VOAD membership organizations for providing ongoing support to the County of Marin as part of the ongoing Covid-19 response.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

Q&A: COVID-19 and Congregate Living

Please join DREDF on Friday, May 7, 2021, from 12:00 – 1:00pm PDT to hear from Debbie Toth, CEO of Choice in Aging.

Most eligible Californians (everyone 16 and older) seeking a COVID-19 vaccination are able to find appointments. That doesn't mean that all eligible people are getting vaccinated. Debbie will talk about congregate living during the pandemic, vaccine hesitancy and what it might mean as the pandemic lingers for people living in, working in, or visiting congregate living facilities.

Please register and submit questions for the
Zoom Question and Answers by using the button below:

 

REGISTER AND SUBMIT QUESTIONS

 

ASL, Spanish Interpretation and Real Time Captioning will be provided.

 

Sharing from Marin County Board of Supervisors happening at Today’s Meeting:

Standing in Solidarity

Beginning at 9 am

Request from Supervisor Connolly to adopt resolution proclaiming May as Asian American Heritage Month.
Recommended action: Adopt Resolution

05/04/2021 Agenda

A Tidbit from Me: This is such an important event. It is always important to support communities Asian American Heritage Month is especially meaningful now. It is time to stand in solidarity with the AAPI community and recognizing their important contributions to so many communities.

 

Marin poised to expand youth COVID vaccination bracket

By KERI BRENNER | kbrenner@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: May 3, 2021 at 6:23 p.m. | UPDATED: May 3, 2021 at 9:02 p.m.

Marin is ready to vaccinate 12- to 15-year-olds as soon as federal and state approvals are issued, possibly by next week, the county’s top health official said Monday.

“This will be the most powerful strategy, and the single most important way to restore some sense of normalcy to our schools, long-term,” Dr. Matt Willis, Marin public health officer, said in a community webinar.

The federal Food and Drug Administration is set to authorize the Pfizer vaccine for the younger recipients by early next week. The vaccine proved 100% effective in clinical trials of more than 2,000 teens, Willis said.

Other federal recommendations are expected from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice.

After that, the Western States Scientific Safety Review and the California Department of Public Health are expected to weigh in, Willis said.

As soon as the state gives the green light, Marin will open appointments at its main mass vaccination sites at the Marin Civic Center, Kerner Boulevard in San Rafael and the Larkspur Ferry Terminal.

A series of mobile clinics around the county also will offer vaccine shots, but only those that have the Pfizer vaccine will be available for 12- to 15-year-olds. Drugs stores and supermarkets also might offer the vaccine.

Marin has about 14,000 residents in that age category, Willis said. Parents and students may register to be notified about appointment availability at MyTurn.ca.gov. The county also will conduct an online forum at 6 p.m. on May 11 or May 18 to discuss the process and answer questions.

Being able to vaccinate an “entire middle school or high school” will give administrators more flexibility to plan curriculum or sports, Willis said.

For full article: Marin poised to expand youth COVID vaccination bracket


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Are You Ready for Fire Season? Restaurant Manager Prosecuted for Abusing Black Disabled Man & More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on May 3, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

Happy Monday! Lots to cover in today’s PM Morning Report. Sending a smile and a virtual elbow bump to you today.

 

County of Marin Update:

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 30, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.  

 

New Dashboard Launched to Illustrate Community Immunity

Many Marin Residents are eager to resume pre-pandemic activities, especially now that vaccination supply is widely available in the Bay Area.  Unfortunately, some who have only had the first of a two-shot series may see themselves as “vaccinated” and be quick to throw caution (and their masks!) to the wind, thinking that our community is now largely immune due to high vaccination rates.

To help us understand the complete picture of “community immunity” in Marin, our epidemiologists created the “Marin County COVID-19 Immunization Progress” dashboard. This is a new tool to help us measure our immunization progress when ALL of our community members are taken into account, including those not yet eligible to receive the vaccine (e.g., youth below the age of 16).

This dashboard differs from our existing vaccination progress dashboard because it considers the timeline for vaccines to reach their maximum immunity potential. For example, more than 60,000 Marin residents have been vaccinated in the past six weeks but have not yet crossed the immunity threshold to be considered “fully vaccinated.”

CDC and California Department of Public Health define a person as “fully vaccinated” when they have surpassed 14 days after their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna (or 14 days after their first dose of Johnson and Johnson). This new dashboard outlines the proportion of the population that meets CDC’s definition, versus those who are partially vaccinated or unvaccinated.

Understanding community immunity and full vaccination rates is especially important as public health officials continue to dictate activity guidance for people who are fully vaccinated versus unvaccinated.

 

Find a Pop-Up, Walk-In Vaccine Location Near You 

Our "pop-up" vaccine clinics calendar for the week of May 3 is now available! Walk-ins are allowed at all locations on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no need to schedule an appointment. Shots are free to everyone regardless of immigration or insurance status. Simply bring an identification card. 

Walk-in vaccination options: 

  • May 1: Canal Alliance – 91 Larkspur Street, San Rafael (8:00am 1:30pm)
  • May 3: Shoreline Shopping Center – 103 Shoreline Parkway, San Rafael (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 3: St Vincent’s – 820 B Street, San Rafael, (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 4: Coastal Health Alliance – 3 6th Street, Point Reyes Station (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 4: Mini of Marin – 5880 Paradise Drive, Corte Madera (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 5: North Marin Community Services – 1907 Novato Blvd, Novato (10:00am to 5:30pm)
  • May 5: San Pedro Elementary – 498 Point San Pedro Road, San Rafael (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 6: Northgate Shopping Center – 5800 Northgate Drive, San Rafael (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 6: Ritter Center – 16 Ritter Street, San Rafael (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 6: The Village at Corte Madera – 1618 Redwood Highway, Corte Madera (10:00am to 6:00pm)
  • May 7: Marin City Health and Wellness – 630 Drake Avenue, Marin City (9:30am to 2:30pm)
  • May 7: Hamilton Community Center – 503 South Palm Drive, Novato (8:00am to 1:30pm)
  • May 7: Venetia Valley School – 177 N. San Pedro Road, San Rafael (9:30am to 2:30pm)

The vaccine sites webpage also includes a list of pharmacies, hospitals, and out-of-county options to receive shots.  

 

Online Session Monday about Students, Vaccines and Graduation

Marin County Public Health and the Marin County Office of Education are hosting a virtual session at from 1-2 p.m. Monday, May 3, to go over vaccine distribution for children under age 16, graduation ceremony guidelines, and other COVID-19-related information for students and their families.

All Marin County Students and Parents/Guardians are welcome to join the webinar. Dial In: 1-408-638-0968 | Webinar ID: 810 1338 0958 | Passcode: 132596. 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

Sharing from Blavity News

White Ex-Restaurant Manager Imprisoned For Enslaving Mentally Disabled Black Man, Finally Ordered To Pay Up

And he'll be paying double in restitution.

by Tomas Kassahun

May 02, 2021 at 2:47 pm

Bobby Paul Edwards, a former South Carolina restaurant manager who's serving a 10-year prison sentence for forcing a Black man with intellectual disabilities to work more than 100 hours a week without pay, is now ordered to pay $546,000 in restitution. 

According to The Post and Courier, Edwards was initially told to pay $273,000 during his sentencing in 2019. But he is now required to provide double the amount to John Christopher Smith, the man he abused. The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals made the ruling this month, citing a federal labor law which allows Smith to receive compensation for the overtime he worked. 

The former manager of the J&J Cafeteria in Conway, South Carolina pleaded guilty for failing to pay any wages to Smith from 2009 to 2014, as Blavity previously reported. Prosecutors said the white manager also forced the Black employee to work seven days a week and subjected him to racial epithets. 

Adding to the harrowing details, the 53-year-old is accused of beating Smith with a belt, punching him, hitting him with pots and pans, as well as burning his neck with hot tongs. Authorities arrested the manager and charged him with assault and battery after social workers heard about the abuse in 2014.

Federal prosecutors appealed the initial restitution decision, saying Smith is entitled to a larger amount because of the delay in getting his pay under federal labor laws. The court cited the federal labor law while agreeing with prosecutors.

″(W)hen an employer fails to pay those amounts (regular and overtime pay), the employee suffers losses, which includes the loss of the use of that money during the period of delay,” the ruling states.

For full article: White Ex-Restaurant Manager Imprisoned For Enslaving Mentally Disabled Black Man, Finally Ordered To Pay Up

A Tidbit from Me: This story makes me angry. It is hard to believe this could happen without anyone raising the alarm for so many years. I think the managers sentence was far too lenient. This is a reminder even though people with disabilities in many ways have come a long way in the recognition of rights we must be ever vigilant. The PM Morning Report honors John Christopher Smith and everyone who supported removing him from this situation and prosecuting the perpetrator. May each of us pledge to work to ensure that this never happens again.

Marin Independent Journal

 

Marin COVID-19 vaccine campaign shifts focus to hesitant residents

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: May 2, 2021 at 3:31 p.m. | UPDATED: May 2, 2021 at 8:54 p.m.

Marin’s COVID-19 vaccine campaign is shifting from gatekeeping to advocacy, with a focus on convincing reluctant people to get shots, the county’s public health officer said.

“We are at a pivoting point in our vaccine distribution plan, and are shifting our strategy,” Dr. Matt Willis told county supervisors on Tuesday.

Willis said that until recently the number of Marin residents seeking access to a COVID-19 vaccine exceeded the supply. During that time, one of his department’s central roles was to operate mass vaccination sites, ensuring that only people authorized under the state’s tiered system of prioritization were allowed in. Special emphasis was given to guaranteeing that non-White residents received equal access to vaccines.

Now, the tables have turned.

“We are for the first time seeing hundreds if not thousands of unfilled appointments over the next week in Marin,” Willis said.

A recent survey completed by 5,594 people in Marin found that 95.21% were open to being vaccinated; 2.76% were unsure; and 2.03% said they were not open to being vaccinated.

Only 0.64% of Asian American residents who took the survey said they were not open to being vaccinated, compared with 1.01% of White residents; 3.25% of Latino residents; and 16.25% of Black residents.

About 81% of Marin residents age 16 or older have received at least one vaccine dose, and just over 60% are fully immunized after receiving either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or a single shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Only 4% of Marin residents age 65 and older have received no vaccine doses. Among residents ages 50 to 64, 18% remain unvaccinated, and among residents ages 16 to 49, 26% have received no doses.

For full article: Marin COVID-19 vaccine campaign shifts focus to hesitant residents

 

Marin drought brings echoes of 1976-77 water crisis

By WILL HOUSTON | whouston@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: May 1, 2021 at 5:04 p.m. | UPDATED: May 2, 2021 at 7:04 a.m.

Swap this year and the period of Marin County’s worst-ever drought in 1976-77 and it might be hard to tell the difference.

Water suppliers restricting use to conserve reservoirs. Ranchers preparing to truck in water as creeks and wells dry up. Talks of a potential water pipeline. And questions about the resiliency of the county’s water supply.

During the 1976-77 drought, the Marin Municipal Water District was within 120 days of running out of water. The county’s savior was a 6-mile pipeline over the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge to pump in water from the East Bay.

Jack Gibson, who has been on the district’s board of directors since 1994, was in his early 30s in 1977, living in Sleepy Hollow and commuting to a law firm in San Francisco. The crisis was a wake-up call to the county, he said, and one that prompted his interest in Marin’s water system and a greater collective focus on conservation.

“The water district, at that time a generation ago, simply had not done much preparation for a drought — in fact, quite the reverse,” Gibson said. “The attitude was more water means more growth. So for years before the drought, there had been a reluctance to tap into any other sources.”

For full article: Marin drought brings echoes of 1976-77 water crisis

 

Red flag warning in May? Fire season arrives early in Northern California

While crews battle small blazes in region officials on lookout as offshore winds pick up

Last year’s devastating wildfire season was barely in the rear-view mirror when the red flag warning hit Sunday for a large swath of Northern California.

In another example of the Golden State’s new normal, the National Weather Service issued a surprisingly early-in-the-year fire alert for the area from Shasta Dam to just north of Los Banos, touching on the eastern fringes of the Bay Area.

By Sunday afternoon, an eerie reminder of the potential danger could be found inside Big Basin Redwoods State Park, where crews battled a small blaze. Big Basin remains closed after 97% of California’s oldest state park was charred last August during the CZU Lightning Complex fire.

The state’s persistent drought, combined with low humidity and strong northeasterly winds Sunday, signaled an early start to the fire season even without the triple-digit temperatures of late summer.

“It’s crazy, May and a red-flag warning,” said Craig Clements, director of the Wildfire Interdisciplinary Research Center at San Jose State University.

For full article: Red flag warning in May? Fire season arrives early in Northern California

A Tidbit from Me: With fire season now arriving it is important for everyone to take action to make sure they are safe and prepared for emergencies including wildfires. If you are a person with a disability or older adult who wants assistance in creating a disaster plan to keep you safe during an emergency please reach out to us. As a first step Marin CIL urges you to sign up forAlert 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.

Are you ready for a Public Safety Power Shutoff?  Marin CIL is joining with the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC) 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. The goal is to enable them to remain safe while independent in their residences and communities. We are coordinating various programs for those who depend on power for durable medical equipment or for their livelihood. Marin CIL PSPS Resources Application. If you have any questions or need any more information please reach out to Peter Mendoza peter@marincil.org or 415-234-3840

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

Join today’s (May 3) national HoUSed campaign call from 2:30-4:00 pm ET. We will hear about a new report on U.S. eviction filing patterns in 2020 and the efficacy of eviction moratoriums; new guidance for state and local officials developing and implementing equitable emergency rental assistance (ERA) programs; a new racial/gender analysis of housing insecurity; updates on advancing the HoUSed campaign’s priorities; the latest from Capitol Hill and from the field; and more. Register for the call at: https://bit.ly/3ub2sWM

 

Sharing from the Department of Health Care Services

California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM) Waiver Public Comments/Hearings

As a reminder, DHCS is conducting a 30-day public comment period for the proposed CalAIM Section 1115 demonstration. CalAIM is a multi-year initiative by DHCS to improve the quality of life and health outcomes of Californians by implementing broad delivery system, program, and payment reform across Medi-Cal.

Stakeholders have the opportunity to submit comments via email and written correspondence, as well as during public webinars. The final public hearing is scheduled for May 3.

Additional information, including the proposed CalAIM Section 1115 demonstration renewal application and Section 1915(b) overview, how to submit public comments, and how to participate in the final public hearing, is available on the CalAIM 1115 Demonstration & 1915(b) Waiver webpage. The public comment period concludes on May 6 at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time.

Grant Funding Opportunity for Health Center Program Look-Alikes

The Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) recently announced $145 million in one-time grant funding available to eligible Health Center Program look-alikes (LALs). Made available under the American Rescue Plan, the funding will support designated LALs in responding to and mitigating the spread of COVID-19, strengthening vaccination efforts, and enhancing health care services and infrastructure in communities across the country. LALs are community-based health care providers that provide essential primary care services to underserved communities and vulnerable populations, but are not Health Center Program grantees. More information is available on the HRSA website.

 

Sharing from DOR State Rehabilitation Council

Subminimum Wage Report. The U.S. Government Accountability Office published a report on March 4, 2021 about the Factors Influencing the Transition of Individuals with Disabilities to Competitive Integrated Employment https://www.gao.gov/products/gao-21-260

 

Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4CP). i4cp provides insights that help organizations better anticipate, adapt, and act in a constantly changing business environment. Their website has research resources and focuses on improving business productivity. https://www.i4cp.com/

 

Parent Training and Information Centers (PTI). PTIs serve families of children and young adults from birth to age 26 with all disabilities: physical, cognitive, emotional, and learning. They help families: obtain appropriate education and services for their children with disabilities; work to improve education results for all children; train and inform parents and professionals; and connect children with disabilities to community resources that address their needs.

https://dredf.org/special-education/parent-training-and-information-center/

 

State Independent Living Council (SILC) Meeting. The next SILC full council meeting is on May 25 and 26. All meetings are open to the public. The SILC is charged with determining the allocation of federal funds for independent living; advising the Governor and Legislature about issues impacting persons with disabilities in California; creating projects and moving forward ideas that will enhance the ability of people with disabilities to live independently; and assuring compliance with state and federal laws governing independent living.

https://www.calsilc.ca.gov/meeting-notices/

 

WorkAbility I Advisory Committee Meeting. The WAI program is funded and administered by the CDE. The WAI program provides comprehensive pre-employment skills training, employment placement and follow-up for high school students in special education who are making the transition from school to work, independent living, and postsecondary education or training.

 

Advisory Committee on Special Education Meeting. The ACSE provides recommendations and advice to the State Board of Education, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, the Legislature, and the Governor in new or continuing areas of research, program development and evaluation in California special education.

 

News Release: U.S. Dept of Education Approves CA Assessment Plan. April 7, 2021 - The U.S. Department of Education notified California this week that the state’s request for relief from certain federal testing, accountability, and reporting requirements has been granted. https://www.cde.ca.gov/nr/ne/yr21/yr21rel26.asp

 

News Release: Legislation to Diversify the Teaching Workforce. New legislation designed to help support male educators of color and diversify the teaching workforce received unanimous approval from the California State Assembly Committee on Education https://www.cde.ca.gov/nr/ne/yr21/yr21rel25.asp

 

State Board of Education (SBE) Meeting. The SBE is California’s K-12 policy-making body for academic standards, curriculum, instructional materials, assessments and accountability.

 

New CDE web page, providing information for English Learners - Information regarding support for educators’ identification, assessment, differentiation of instruction, and reclassification of English learners with disabilities https://www.cde.ca.gov/sp/se/sr/elpracguideswd.asp

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Community Foundation

Advocacy Opportunities

  • ON Lok and the Center for Elders’ Independence will host a virtual event on May 12, 1-3:30 PM entitled Mobilizing Your County and Community where participants can learn from local leaders about initiatives addressing aging and disability challenges, housing, health, caregiving, economic security. 

Join us for a special session focused on the state’s Master Plan for Aging and the impact to the North Bay!

Join advocates, policymakers and community leaders from Marin, Napa, Solano and Sonoma counties for a special session focused on California's Master Plan for Aging and the impact to the North Bay! You will hear from local leaders about initiatives addressing aging and disability challenges, participate in breakout sessions on housing, health, caregiving and economic security, and find out how to leverage this statewide initiative to achieve change in your community. Closed Captioning will be provided. This event is led by the Bay Area Senior Health Policy Coalition.

To register (MPA North Bay).

 

Mental Health

 

  • The San Diego State University Student Success Fee sponsored project is hosting a virtual event titled “Together We Can Change the World” that will be held May 8th from 9am – 4pm. This is a trauma informed workshop for immigrants, refugee communities, and service providers. Click here to learn more and to register.

 

Racial Equity

 

  • A free 3-hour workshop entitled Confronting Racism at Work will be held on May 16 from 3 – 6 pm and will be facilitated by Yeijin Lee. The workshop will provide “a space for people of color to gain tools, skills, and a strategic framework to more safely and deliberately respond to workplace racism.” The event will be recorded and available for two weeks to registrants. Click here for more information and to register. 

 

  • Listen4Good offers training opportunities aimed at teaching nonprofits to make direct client feedback a key part of an organization’s practices and culture. Listen4Good offers two programs described in the attached brochure and here.

 

Funding Opportunities

 

Other

 

  • Unite Us has recently launched a coordinated care network of social health providers serving Marin and Sonoma counties.  Participating organizations can begin sending and receiving electronic social service referrals on behalf of community members through Unite Us network.  All organizations that provide health care and/or social services are invited to join and participate in this free network for community-based organizations, Federally Qualified Health Centers, and most community health centers. Click here to learn about becoming a partner.  Click here to register for one of several upcoming information seminars.  Contact Ellen Dektar at Ellen.Dektar@uniteus.com with questions.

 

 

Sharing from SCDD

Join us for a series of Healthcare Workshops for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities.

You do not need to be a member of Anthem Blue Cross to participate. All are welcome!

Register for the workshops that interest you.

 

Bring your questions and share your experiences. Let’s learn together!

Each session is from

1:00 pm to 2:00 pm

 

Hear from Anthem health educators and self-advocates at each session

 

Pre-register at this Zoom link You will then receive an email with your link

 

May 3, 2021 Nutrition & Exercise during the Pandemic https://bit.ly/2QIC8Fn

June 7, 2021 Coping with Stress during the Pandemic

July 12, 2021 Let’s Learn to Manage Diabetes https://bit.ly/3smCqQ8

August 2, 2021 Keep Your Heart Healthy https://bit.ly/3tRVrdq

September 13, 2021 Let’s Smile – Oral/Dental Health https://bit.ly/31wL42N

October 4, 2021 Accessing Your Health Care Plan – How to call your doctor or get medical care!

https://bit.ly/3w2u568

 

Workshop will be offered in English with simultaneous Spanish translation and Closed Captioning will be available. If you have a question or need an accommodation, please contact Sonya Bingaman at least 5 days in advance of the training at sonya.bingaman@scdd.ca.gov or 916-715-7057.

A collaboration between Anthem Blue Cross and the North State, North Coast, and Sacramento Regional Offices of the State Council on Developmental Disabilities.


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California IL Director Appointed Deputy Director over IL Programs at DOR and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 29, 2021

Good Afternoon my Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well today. This is a special afternoon edition of the PM Morning Report. There is a lot to cover in today’s issue and to do it justice it took a little longer to put together. Enjoy the read. Have a wonderful day. Sending a smile your way.

 

BREAKING NEWS: IL’s own Ana Acton Appointed to Key IL Post Sharing from the Office of Governor Gavin Newsom

Ana Acton, 45, of Nevada City, has been appointed Deputy Director of the Independent Living and Community Access Division at the California Department of Rehabilitation. Acton has been Executive Director at FREED Center for Independent Living since 2013, Organic Farm Product Sales and Customer Service Representative for OLALA Farms since 1995, an Independent Contractor for the Cal Poly Corporation since 2019 and a Partner at Dunlap Enterprise LLC since 2019. She was Chief of the Independent Living and Assistive Technology Section at the California Department of Rehabilitation from 2010 to 2012 and Executive Director of FREED Center for Independent Living from 2007 to 2010, where she was Program Manager and Systems Change Advocate from 2004 to 2007. Acton was a Specialty Instructor for Twin Ridges Elementary School District from 2000 to 2003. She is a member of the Anthem Medi-Cal Managed Care Advisory Board, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services Access and Functional Needs Advisory Committee, the California Aging and Disability Resource Connection Advisory Committee and the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers. This position does not require Senate confirmation and the compensation is $121,044. Acton is a Democrat.

Source: Governor Newsom Announces Appointments 4.28.21

A Tidbit from Me: Ana Acton is an incredible disability rights/independent living member. I am thrilled that she was tapped in this important role. I have known Ana for several years she has played a key role in advocating for expanding long term services and supports and the expansion of Aging and Disability Resource Connections’ Programs in California.

Aging and Disability Resource Connections’ California’s ADRCs are led by a core partnership between Independent Living Centers (ILC) and Area Agencies on Aging (AAA), and includes a wide array of extended partner organizations.

The Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC) initiative began as a collaborative effort between the State of California, the federal Administration for Community Living (ACL), the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Veterans Administration (VA). The ADRC’s purpose is to provide a single more coordinated system for people seeking reliable information and access to Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS). This purpose is achieved by building community partnerships, providing services using a person-centered approach, and reducing the number of barriers for accessing services.

ADRCs are intended to act as a “No Wrong Door” system which enables people of all ages, incomes, and disabilities to connect with any one ADRC partner organization for accessing a wide array of Long-Term Services and Support options in the community. ADRCs support the needs of caregivers and respect the diversity of families and cultures that make up their local communities. Source

Marin’s ADRC Program is a collaboration between Marin CIL and Marin Aging and Adult Services. To learn more about Marin’s ADRC and how it may be able to support you or someone you care about; please feel free to reach out to Marin CIL’s own ADRC/One-door Administrator Julia Hales 415-459-6245 x21

 

Sharing from the California Department of Aging

Disability & Aging Community Living Advisory Committee meets THIS Friday

 

April 30th, 9:00am - 12:00pm: Disability & Aging Community Living Advisory Committeewhich builds on the work of the Olmstead Advisory Committee, will convene for the first time.

The purpose of this committee is to advance community living, inclusion, and integration across California. The committee will advise the California Health and Human Services Agency, in addition to other state entities, on community living policies and programs, including but not limited to long-term services and supports, transportation and housing, and employment opportunities.

ASL interpretation and closed captioning will be available. Thirty minutes have been reserved for public comment and there is an online survey for public input posted through May 6th.  Additional Committee and meeting information and materials can be found on the CHHS Community Living webpage.

Source and More Information: Disability & Aging Community Living Advisory Committee

A Tidbit from Me: For transparency I have the honor of being appointed to this committee by Health and Human Services Secretary Mark Ghaly. I serve as a consumer member. As I mentioned previously, I am a lifetime recipient of long-term services and supports and a strong advocate for advancing transportation opportunities and employment for people with disabilities. It is my hope through this committee that we will continue to work to expand the availability of long-term services and supports to people with disabilities and older adults, advance many of the initiatives included within Governor Newsom’s Master Plan on Aging including implementing a one-door system throughout California and expanding the ADRC network throughout California. Additionally, there is a lot to do to ensure equity for people with disabilities and older adults. California’s LTSS system makes it possible for many of us to live independent and full lives. However, the committee will need to focus on some program deficiencies. The difficulty in finding direct care staff to support the independence of our communities. This exists in a variety of programs. In IHSS many valued members of our community have reported throughout the state having difficulty in finding IHSS providers. This is forcing many people to go without necessary care and support from a few hours to several days…even weeks. Many of these valued members have had to rely on friends or family to get at least some home care to just get by with very basic needs. We need to value those who support us by working towards a living wage and benefits. Many direct care providers cannot afford to live in Marin and the Bay Area. Some care providers are even on the verge of being without housing. Our community deserves better. Marin CIL has been advocating on these initiatives to ensure access and equity and economic justice for our communities.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights California

Settlement Reached to Eliminate the Proration of In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Protective Supervision

Impacting adults and children across California and providing additional IHSS services

Apr 29, 2021 (Sacramento, CA)

On April 21, 2021, Disability Rights California (DRC) reached a settlement agreement with the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) and Department of Social Services (CDSS) to eliminate the proration of In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) protective supervision of multiple recipients living in the same home.

The settlement includes full restoration of protective supervision services for the 17 individuals represented by DRC. In addition, the settlement also provides around $36,000,000 in additional IHSS services that will impact over 5000 children and adults across California.

Protective supervision is an IHSS service for people who, due to a mental impairment or mental illness, need to be observed and monitored for 24 hours to protect them from injury, hazard, or accidents. It is only available for recipients who require this service 24 hours per day to remain living safely at home.

Before this agreement, when two or more protective supervision recipients lived in the same home, the need for protective supervision was considered to be met in common and the hours were automatically prorated. Because of this process, multiple children and adults living in the same household who needed protective supervision were placed at risk of unnecessary institutionalization.

One example is I.P., an 11-year-old boy with multiple disabilities, including developmental delay, Pierre Robin Syndrome, and hearing and speech impairments. Due to the severity of his disabilities, I.P. needs 24-hour protective supervision to remain living safely at home.  I.P. lives with three siblings who also require protective supervision. After applying proration, I.P. and his siblings were left with zero hours of protective supervision.  At the time the family contacted DRC for assistance, one sibling had already been moved to an out-of-home placement.        

“This agreement remedies a terribly unfair and illegal problem with the calculation of IHSS protective supervision services and ensures individuals can receive the support they need to remain living safely at home,” said Nicholas Levenhagen, Senior Attorney with Disability Rights California. 

The settlement agreement was reached following months of negotiations. In accordance with these negotiations, CDSS released All County Letter 20-111, instructing counties to stop the proration of protective supervision services.    

The final settlement also requires CDSS to submit a regulations package to the Office of Administrative Law to officially repeal the proration regulation. The CDSS State Hearings Division must also continue to accept rehearing requests from DRC for any individuals whose IHSS protective supervision services are still being prorated, as long as it has been less than a year since the hearing decision.

If you or someone you know is having a problem with IHSS protective supervision, please contact DRC at 1-800-776-5746 or TTY 1-800-719-5798.

Additional details of the final settlement agreement can be viewed here

Source: Settlement Reached to Eliminate the Proration of In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) Protective Supervision

A Tidbit from Me: This is such an important decision and is a matter of rights. The IHSS program is pivotal in supporting people with disabilities and older adults in maintaining their independence. It assists people with disabilities in activities of daily living including but limited to bathing, dressing, meal preparation or assistance, transportation to appointments or other activities, house cleaning, and much more. For transparency I was a recipient of this program for many years. Now I receive these supports through the Regional Center system.

 

County of Marin Update

Find a Pop-Up, Walk-In Vaccine Location 

Marin County Public Health partners with organizations and providers to provide free "pop-up" vaccine clinics around the county. Walk-ins are allowed at all locations on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no need to schedule an appointment. Shots are free to everyone regardless of immigration or insurance status. Simply bring an identification card. 

 

Walk-in vaccination options: 

  • Thursday, 4/29 - 9:30 AM to 2:00 PM - 100 Cutlass Drive, Novato 
  • Thursday, 4/29 - 9:30 AM to 2:30 PM - 16 Ritter Street, San Rafael 
  • Thursday, 4/29 - 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM - 1618 Redwood Highway, Corte Madera 
  • Friday, 4/30 - 9:30 AM to 2:00 PM - 1145 Elm Drive, Novato 
  • Friday, 4/30 - 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM - 503 South Palm Drive, Hamilton 
  • Thursday-Friday, 4/29-4/30 - 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM - 3240 Kerner Blvd, San Rafael 
  • Thursday-Saturday, 4/29-5/1 - 8:00 AM to 2:00 PM - 20 Avenue of the Flags, San Rafael 
  • Saturday, 5/1 - 8:00 AM to 1:30 PM - 91 Larkspur Street, San Rafael 
  • Saturday, 5/1, 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM - 3240 Kerner Blvd, San Rafael 

The vaccine sites webpage also includes a list of pharmacies, hospitals, and out-of-county options to receive shots.  

 

Discussion on Post-COVID Economic Development 

Those involved in Marin County’s business community who are moving toward a post-COVID-19 world are invited to take part in a free online discussion about collaborative city-making and restaurant trends May 4. 

 The session, part of a roundtable series on post-coronavirus economic development, will feature perspectives from an urban designer, a local restaurateur and a restaurant investor. The session is hosted by civic representatives from San Rafael, San Anselmo. The session is from 9-11 a.m. Registration is open now

 

Rental Assistance Remains Available 

Hundreds of thousands of federal dollars are trickling down to Marin County landlords as relief for COVID-19-related economic hardship. In this session of economic hardship relief, there is $16 million to distribute as part of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, intended to prevent evictions and homelessness. Landlord meetings take place every other Thursday evening. The applications for tenants and landlords are available on the County’s rental assistance website in a variety of languages.    

  

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

 

 

 

**URGENT**

Support Needed for AB 1007: Compensation for Survivors of Forced or Involuntary Sterilization Act

AB 1007 would provide reparations to survivors of forced sterilization in State institutions and prisons, who were overwhelmingly people with disabilities, Black people, Latina/os, women, and poor people.

Background: California forcibly sterilized over 20,000 people under its eugenics laws. Disabled people of color and disabled women were primarily targeted. While the State's eugenics laws were formally repealed in 1979, it continued its sterilization abuses until as recently as 2015. At least 250 additional women were sterilized in State prisons without their consent, and sometimes even without their knowledge. AB 1007 would provide monetary compensation to survivors and raise awareness about the harms they endured. Learn more about the bill.

WE NEED YOUR HELP!

AB 1007 will be heard in the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Thursday, May 20. For the past three years, this bill has died in this committee. It is critical that reparations are passed NOW, as eugenics survivors are aging and soon there will be no one left to compensate.

Here's how you can help:

  1. Submit a Letter of Support
     
  2. Sign the Petition
     
  3. Uplift AB 1007 on Social Media
     
  4. Call Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez to Voice Your Support
     

 

Sharing from CDCAN

APRIL 29TH (THURSDAY) 1:00 PM -  2:30 PM: DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES (DS) TASK FORCE ZOOM PUBLIC MEETING AND CALL - NEED TO REGISTER (VIA ZOOM)

APRIL 30TH (FRIDAY) 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM: CALIFORNIA HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES (CHHS) DISABILITY AND AGING COMMUNITY LIVING ADVISORY COMMITTEE ZOOM PUBLIC MEETING

    Renamed & Revamped Advisory Committee Will Include Members of Previous Olmstead Advisory Committee
    Includes Secretaries of Major State Agencies Overseeing Health and Human Services (Including Medi-Cal, Health Care Services, Public Health, IHSS, SSI/SSP, Aging, Developmental Services, Rehabilitation), Workforce, Employment, Housing, Transportation, Veteran Affairs, Office of Emergency Services 
 

SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED  04/28/2021 08:10 PM PACIFIC TIME] - With California largely on track to re-open the state's economy by the target date of June 15th, as announced earlier this month by Governor Newsom, the full 43 member Developmental Services (DS) Task Force is scheduled to hold its April "check-in" public meeting on April 29th (Thursday) at 1:00 to 2:30 PM (Pacific Time) (via Zoom).
    Also meeting this week, on Friday (April 30th) at 09:00 AM to 12:00 PM (Pacific Time), is the first meeting (by Zoom) of the California Health and Human Services (CHHS) Disability and Aging Community Living Advisory Committee - the newly renamed and restructure of the agency's previous Olmstead Advisory Committee. (See below for links to both meetings including agenda and meeting materials).

Developmental Services Task Force Meeting
    The Developmental Services (DS) Task Force meeting on Thursday will cover, according to the agenda the following:

    Updates Workgroups on the meetings of the various Developmental Services (DS) Task Force

  • Service Access & Equity Workgroup (met April 26th)
  • Safety Net Workgroup (met April 19th)
  • Oversight, Accountability and Transparency Workgroup (met March 29th)
  • Community Resources Workgroup - focus on Community Placement Plan (CPP) and the Community Resource Development Plan (CRDP) (met March 11th)
  • Community Resources Workgroup - focus on Employment (met February 22nd)
  • Developmental Services (DS) Task Force recommendation discussions in June 2021

    Updates from the Department Focus: Implementation and recommendations to reduce barriers and improve access to the Self Determination Program (SDP)on the series of recent  Self-Determination Stakeholder Meetings - 

  •  Local Volunteer Advisory Committee (LVAC) members
  • Financial Management Service (FMS) providers
  • Self-advocates and family members
  • Independent Facilitators

    Recommendations and input  from the series of stakeholder meetings held earlier this month included: 

  • Improve Self Determination Program (SDP) orientation – shorter, plain language, short videos
  • Person-centered planning and transition funds should continue
  • Independent Facilitators - Bilingual and bicultural needed
  • Establish program enrollment timelines
  • Establish spending plan flexibility to meet Self Determination Program participant’s changing needs
  • Importance of Local Volunteer Advisory Committee (LVAC)

    Update on COVID-19 & Vaccines     Updates from Partners of the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) as follows:      

  • Disability Thrive Initiative  (Amber Carey Navarrete, Easter Seals Southern California; Lendy Ruano, Easter Seals Southern California; Barry Jardini, California Disability Services Association; Lauren Dow, California Disability Services Association)
  • California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Community Vaccine Advisory Committee (Aaron Carruthers, State Council on Developmental Disabilities)
  • Building Back Better for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Transforming California’s Approach to Disability Employment (Andy Imparato, Disability Rights California)

    Not specifically on the agenda, but almost certain to be raised, are the issues connected to how the re-opening of the state's economy will impact the eventual re-opening of site-based programs under the Department of Developmental Services (DDS), including transportation services. Major concerns toward any re-opening of site based program include whether there is sufficient numbers of people who receive services and people who provide those services (workers) willing to return; health and safety issues including how will the department handle people who are vaccinated and people who are not.   
    According to the department, the 43 member Developmental Services (DS) Task Force "...provides guidance on the delivery of services to Californians who have intellectual and developmental disabilities". Forty-two individuals will serve on the Task Force, and an additional 115 people will serve on the Task Force’s five workgroups. In the past, 21 individuals served on the Task Force and workgroups combined.
    An agenda, presentation and handouts were released. See below for links to those meeting materials. 
    CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request, with "Subscribe CDCAN" in the subject line, to Marty Omoto at: martyomoto@att.net

 

 

Sharing from the National Low-Income Housing Coalition

President Biden released today the American Families Plan, a $1.8 trillion companion bill to the $2.5 trillion American Jobs Plan. While the American Families Plan does not propose housing investments, the American Jobs Plan includes a historic $213 billion investment in the country’s affordable housing infrastructure. Join us in tweeting during the president’s address tonight at 9 pm ET, thanking him for including robust housing resources in the American Jobs Plan, urging Congress to pass the Housing is Infrastructure Act as part of this package, and calling on policymakers to go further to also expand rental assistance to all eligible households! Find sample tweets here.

NLIHC and the Center for Law and Social Policy released a new report, “Prioritization in Emergency Rental Assistance Programs: A Framework of Strategies, Policies, and Procedures to Better Serve Priority Populations,” outlining how ERA programs can better prioritize renters most impacted by COVID-19 and at greatest risk of housing instability. Check out the report at https://bit.ly/3aLQFHn!

 

 

Sharing from Marin Independent Journal

Marin, North Bay rental discrimination persists, housing advocates report

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 28, 2021 at 5:41 p.m. | UPDATED: April 28, 2021 at 6:00 p.m.

Landlords in Marin and elsewhere in the North Bay are continuing to discriminate against prospective tenants who receive housing subsidies and who are Latino, according to a new report by Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California.

Fair Housing examined 63 properties, 21 each in Marin, Sonoma and Solano counties, and found differences in treatment favoring White applicants and/or problematic responses to applicants using housing vouchers at 52, or 83%, of the properties. Only 11 housing providers tested showed no significant differential treatment or discriminatory policy, according to the report.

“The investigation shows that it’s still very difficult for someone with a housing subsidy to find a place to live, and it becomes that much harder for a voucher holder who is Latinx,” said Caroline Peattie, Fair Housing’s executive director, in a statement.

Peattie said Fair Housing focused its attention on the experience of Latinos in this investigation. A similar survey conducted by the nonprofit in 2019 found evidence of discrimination against renters who are Black and who are Section 8 voucher holders.

“What is particularly problematic about this result is the high rate of discrimination against voucher holders that occurred even after the passage of SB 329,” Peattie said.

Senate Bill 329, which became effective in January 2020, expanded protections against discrimination based on renters’ source of income to include Section 8 federal housing assistance vouchers.

Holders of Section 8 vouchers pay about a third of their income towards rent, and the federal government pays the rest.

Fair Housing investigators, one who is Latino using a housing voucher and the other who is White and non-Latino using a housing voucher, contacted landlords by email, phone or site visits. Each property was contacted by two or three different means.

Results that were interpreted as clear differential treatment or discrimination included: refusal to rent or negotiate; making a false representation about availability; offering different terms, conditions, or privileges and making discriminatory remarks.

For full articles: Marin, North Bay rental discrimination persists, housing advocates report

A Tidbit from Me: This article once again raises awareness about a very troubling and inexcusable form of discrimination. Marin CIL works every day to expand housing opportunities for our community. We have worked in partnership with our community members, housing providers, Legal Aid of Marin, Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California to advance initiatives and housing opportunities for the people we serve everyday. For many years I was a recipient of the Housing Choice Voucher Program formally known as Section 8. This very important program made it possible for me to live independently, work, volunteer, and thrive in my community. People who are recipients of this important program are valued members of their community and just like me are working hard to make their way in community. It saddens me whenever I hear about this type of discrimination everyone deserves a place to call home.


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People with Disabilities still Subject to Shock Treatment, Covid-19 Update, Marin City Incorporating


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 28, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope you are all doing well today. A lot going on today. I wanted to take a moment to take draw your attention to and NBC News story. People with disabilities are still subject to shock treatment. I am thankful for each of you. Sending a hug this morning.

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 27, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.  

 

Video: COVID-19 Update to the Board of Supervisors 

Earlier today, Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis provided a COVID-19 response update to the Marin County Board of Supervisors. In his talk, he reviewed current COVID-19 data, Marin’s progress to toward the yellow Tier 4 in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, vaccination progress, Marin’s shifting vaccination strategy, new locations to obtain vaccination, our COVID-19 toolkit, and what can still go wrong.

WATCH ON YOUTUBE

 

New Guidelines for Outdoor Mask Use Among Fully Vaccinated People

Today, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released updated outdoor mask and face covering guidance for fully vaccinated individuals, signaling that COVID-19 vaccines are effective at reducing the risk of catching the virus or experiencing severe symptoms.

“Fully vaccinated” means at least two weeks have passed since a person has completed their vaccine series (e.g, receiving the second shot of a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or one dose of Johnson & Johnson). The new guidelines allow fully vaccinated people the freedom to be without masks outdoors unless they are in a crowded environment, such as a sporting event or parade. Mask-free activities include exercising outside, dining outside, or gathering with small groups outdoors.

People who are unvaccinated or partially vaccinated must continue to wear masks outdoors when around other unvaccinated people, dining outdoors and at crowded events. All people – vaccinated or not – must continue to wear masks indoors when around other people they do not live with, regardless of the activity. Comparison of indoor versus outdoor activities (PDF).

Both Governor Gavin Newsom and State Public Health Officer, Dr. Tomás Aragón, have approved of the CDC’s recommendations and the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is planning to align the state’s mask mandate with the new federal guidelines. Marin County Public Health will align with CDPH’s new guidance.

 

Blueprint Update: Marin Inches Closer to Yellow Tier

Today, California Department of Public Health (CDPH) provided another update on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for reducing COVID-19 and keeping Californians healthy and safe.

Marin achieved the first of two required weeks -worth of Tier 4 data. 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 all measures for the prior two consecutive weeks. If Marin maintains its current progress, it will be able to move into Tier 4 as early as May 4.

The following table outlines the requirements for case rates, test positivity rates, and quartile test positivity rates for each tier status, as well as CDPH’s April 27 assessment for Marin:

You can track Marin’s progress online. Data is updated each Tuesday afternoon to reflect CDPH’s calculations.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

 

DATA CORRECTION: April 26 Status Update Data

The April 26 Status Update sent to email and text message subscribers contained incorrect data in the “COVID-19 Case Data” and “COVID-19 Vaccination Data” charts. All other charts were correct. The incorrect charts have been updated in our online archive of our status updates. View the updated April 26 Status Update online.

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

 

Marin backs easing of COVID-19 mask mandate

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 27, 2021 at 8:01 p.m. | UPDATED: April 27, 2021 at 8:42 p.m.

Marin County’s public health officer said Tuesday that it is safe for people who have been fully immunized for COVID-19 to venture outside without a mask, as long as they avoid crowds.

Dr. Matt Willis followed the lead of the Centers for Disease Control and the California Department of Public Health, which made announcements earlier in the day.

“The governor just in the last hour issued revised state regulations regarding mask wearing to agree with the CDC,” Willis said shortly after noon.

Willis said he didn’t mention the development when he delivered his weekly COVID-19 briefing to county supervisors because the state hadn’t acted yet.

“We can’t be less restrictive than the state, and we didn’t have any guidance from the state,” Willis said. “But now we do.”

During his briefing, Willis told supervisors that Marin County could advance to the less-restrictive yellow tier of the state’s COVID-19 safety rating system as early as May 4.

For full article: Marin backs easing of COVID-19 mask mandate

 

Marin City leaders prepare to begin incorporation process

By LORENZO MOROTTI | lmorotti@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 26, 2021 at 5:50 p.m. | UPDATED: April 26, 2021 at 9:04 p.m.

Leaders in Marin City are moving forward with plans to incorporate the community as the county’s 12th municipality.

An eight-member committee has contacted the Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) and the Marin County Board of Supervisors to discuss the feasibility of incorporation, said Damian Morgan, chair of the Marin City Community Services District board.

“LAFCO is being very helpful,” Morgan said at an online community meeting on Wednesday. “We’ll be doing the application process together in a timely manner.”

Morgan said LAFCO “will have the final say of yes or no.”

“The Board of Supervisors obviously will weigh in,” he said. “They’ll have some say, so we hope to get their support.”

Loni Mahanta, an attorney retained by the committee, said organizers are “taking all the steps needed to make sure all legal requirements are met, that the tax base is there and that the necessary pieces are in place.

For full article: Marin City leaders prepare to begin incorporation process

 

San Rafael transit hub project nears key vote

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 26, 2021 at 6:50 p.m. | UPDATED: April 26, 2021 at 6:51 p.m.

Officials planning to relocate the transit center in downtown San Rafael are close to choosing a site for the project, but some city leaders are calling for a timeout.

Board members for the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, which is leading the effort, are set to vote on the location on May 21.

Officials in San Rafael are concerned that the district is pushing forward with the project without evaluating how the coronavirus pandemic might change the future of public transportation in the Bay Area.

“What is the downside to waiting, pausing, to see the ripple effects and the ongoing impacts of the work-from-home changes in our workforce?” Vice Mayor Maribeth Bushey asked district officials at a meeting last week.

The district’s transportation committee is set to discuss the proposal on May 20 and select a recommendation for the board, said Adam Dankberg, who is managing the project for the bridge district.

The district is aiming to release an environmental impact report for the project in June and complete the environmental review phase by the end of the year, he said. He said the district hopes to open the new center within four to seven years.

Early estimates show the project could cost between $30 million and $40 million.

Denis Mulligan, general manager for the bridge district, said the number of people using the station has decreased by about half during the pandemic. But at the same time, the number of weekday bus trips at the center has increased because of new route configurations spurred by coronavirus restrictions.

Despite the changes, Mulligan said the district is thinking 15 years ahead as it plans for the new center.

For full article: San Rafael transit hub project nears key vote

A Tidbit from Me:  Sharing my personal perspective as a power wheelchair user who utilizes Golden Gate Transit and SMART when travelling throughout Marin. Navigating the San Rafael transit center is often problematic for me. When the SMART train is moving through the transit center and busses are moving to and from the transit station you really have to pay attention. There is quite a bit of environmental noise and several moving vehicles. It’s difficult to know who is doing what and it can be disorienting. I had one significant near miss-I was moving though the transit center to go from one bus platform to another. At the same time the SMART train was traveling northeast and made the right turn into the transit center a bus was travelling westbound 3rd began making a left into the transit center right in front of me. It was right in my path of travel and I realized I had no where to go. Fortunately, the driver did stop and everything turned out ok. Later, I bought him coffee as a thank you for not hitting me. I am hoping the new location will make it safer for everyone.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights and Education Defense Fund

 

The COVID Vaccination Story in California Long Term Care

Please join DREDF on Friday, April 30, 2021, from 12:00 – 1:00pm PDT to hear from Anthony Chicotel, Staff Attorney at California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform (CANHR)

Older adults and disabled people living in long term care facilities are at increased risk of infection and severe illness from COVID-19. According to the state, nursing homes account for four percent of the state's coronavirus cases, but 22 percent of deaths in California. Vaccinations have dramatically slowed the spread of COVID-19 and deaths.

Tony will talk about the highlights and the lowlights of the COVID vaccine experience in long term care facilities.

Please register and submit questions for the
Zoom Question and Answers by using the button below:

 

REGISTER AND SUBMIT QUESTIONS

 

ASL, Spanish Interpretation and Real Time Captioning will be provided.

A Tidbit from Me: This webinar is part of a much larger discussion. California statistics reflect 22 % of the Covid-19 deaths in California are from residential care and skilled nursing facilities according to the Marin County Covid-19 dashboard 74.4% of the people who died in Marin were from residential care or skilled nursing facilities, which translates to 134 valued members of our community. In the Independent Living movement people in residential and skilled living facilities are considered our brothers and sisters. We must do better.

 

 

Sharing from Disability Rights California

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) Concludes that Alameda County, California, Violates the Americans with Disabilities Act and the U.S. Constitution

Putting individuals with mental health disabilities at risk of needless psychiatric institutionalization or incarceration in jail

Apr 27, 2021

(Oakland, CA) On Thursday, April 22, 2021, after a thorough multi-year investigation, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) issued a report finding that Alameda County is violating the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in failing to provide mental health services in the most integrated setting, and that the County’s Santa Rita jail violates the U.S Constitution and the ADA.  The full report can be found here: https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/justice-department-finds-alameda-county-…

Key conclusions from DOJ include:

  1. Alameda County violates the ADA by failing to provide services to individuals with mental health disabilities in the most integrated setting appropriate to their needs by unnecessarily institutionalizing them at John George Psychiatric Hospital and sub-acute facilities;
  2. Many individuals with mental health disabilities have encounters with the criminal justice system, driven in part by unmet mental health needs.
  3. The County’ s jail fails to provide constitutionally adequate mental health care to prisoners, including those at risk of suicide, and violates the ADA by denying prisoners with mental health disabilities access to programs and activities because of their disabilities.
  4. The jail experiences of prisoners with mental health disabilities place them at risk of repeated or unnecessarily lengthy psychiatric institutional stays after release.  

“This report shows that the Department of Justice recognizes the dire need for change in Alameda County.  The DOJ’s investigation highlights the direct link between the lack of community services in Alameda County, including mobile crisis services and housing, and costly cycling of people with psychiatric disabilities in and out of John George Psychiatric Hospital and Santa Rita jail,” said DRC Senior Attorney, Sarah Gregory.  “The County’s failures have a devasting impact on Alameda County residents, which are disproportionately felt by Black residents.”

In July 2020, Disability Rights California (DRC), along with Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund, the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, the Oakland-based law firm Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho, and the Law Office of Aaron J. Fischer, filed a lawsuit against Alameda County that identifies many of the same ADA violations found by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The DRC lawsuit challenges the unnecessary and illegal segregation of people with mental health disabilities -- especially Black people with disabilities -- in psychiatric institutions, often by way of jail or homelessness, and the failure to ensure people with disabilities are provided the community-based services they need.  The suit calls for increasing the availability of critical community-based services, including mobile crisis services -- with mental health providers and peers as first responders, intensive community-based Assertive Treatment Services, and more supported housing.  The lawsuit also demands that Alameda County improve its engagement and outreach efforts and ensure that individuals are linked to needed community services immediately upon discharge from psychiatric emergencies or jail. A copy of the federal lawsuit and information about the case are available at:  https://www.disabilityrightsca.org/cases/drc-lawsuit-against-alameda-co….

Source: The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) Concludes that Alameda County, California, Violates the Americans with Disabilities Act and the U.S. Constitution

  • A Tidbit from Me: Hats off to DRC! People with disabilities, even those in custody, have rights. Too often our valued community members are incarcerated and do not receive the necessary services and supports including mental health treatment. An estimated 32% of prisoners and 40% of jail inmates reported having at least one disability( Source). This is not about why the person is in custody, this is about ensuring that people with disabilities receive the services they deserve. Receiving treatment would also cut down recidivism. The lack of mental health services and supports is often the reason why some valued community members enter the criminal justice system.

 

 

Sharing from NBC News

 

A decades-long fight over an electric shock treatment led to an FDA ban. But the fight is far from over.

“What they’re doing is just taking people that have issues and just building more,” said Rico Torres, who was first shocked at eight years old.

April 28, 2021, 4:55 AM PDT

By Cynthia McFadden, Kevin Monahan and Adiel Kaplan

Rico Torres was just eight the first time school staffers strapped electrodes to his legs and shocked him. They draped a 12-volt battery over his shoulders in a backpack, while a nearby teacher held a clear plastic box with a photo of his face attached. When Torres misbehaved, the teacher would reach inside the box and push a button that sent a two-second jolt of electricity coursing through his body.

Under his court-approved treatment plan, Torres could be shocked for threatening to hit another student or for running away, swearing or screaming, refusing to follow directions or "inappropriate urination," according to court records obtained by NBC News. One employee, he said, used to shock him in his sleep.

"Because I didn't wake up, she shocked me," recalled Torres, now 24. "Then I ended up peeing the bed, so she shocked me again."

The electrodes stayed on his skin 24 hours a day for most of a decade, until he was 18. The device, called a graduated electronic decelerator (GED), was part of his treatment at Judge Rotenberg Educational Center in Canton, Mass., which has for half a century been one of the most controversial institutions for people with disabilities in the country. It's thought to be the only place in the world that uses electric shocks to modify behavior — a treatment the United Nations has called torture.

n early March last year, just one week before the declaration of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Food and Drug Administration took the rare step of banning the device, finding that the significant risk of harm outweighed any medical benefit it could bring. It is only the third such ban in the agency's history.

It seemed like the culmination of a decades-long battle between disability rights activists, former residents and the state of Massachusetts on one side — pushing to stop the use of the device or shut the school down altogether — and the center and its supporters, many of them parents who say the school, and the shock device, saved their children's lives.

For full Report: A decades-long fight over an electric shock treatment led to an FDA ban. But the fight is far from over.

 

A Tidbit from Me: When I saw this story on NBC news today it broke my heart. First for transparency as a person with Cerebral Palsy, which is considered a developmental disability, I find the use of shock treatment against my brothers and sisters appalling. The fact that some feel this treatment is ok is just plain wrong. In the NBC news story the facility admitted this shock treatment as a form of behavior modification is painful. In the 1970’s as a child I had difficulty making it to the restroom. During my individual program plan meeting with the Regional Center the psychologist suggested that cold showers be used as a form of behavior modification treatment. The treatment didn’t work because I needed assistance going to the bathroom and often times the assistance wasn’t provided in a timely manner. Cold showers were bad enough. I am so grateful that I didn’t have to be subject to more extreme behavior modification techniques. Advocates, including centers for independent living and the organizations connected with the National Disability Rights Network, have been advocating for many years to abolish abuse and neglect practices including shock treatment. Often when these behavior modification methods are used it is because the behavior the person is exhibiting is more annoying or disruptive than dangerous. For example in the story the person who was subject to shock treatment for refusing to take his jacket off. This practice and all abuse and neglect practices must end. This is simply a violation of human rights against our community.


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Covid-19 Update, ADAPT/ Living in Community LTSS, CIL Live Transcribe Google Event


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 27, 2021

Good Morning My Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well this morning. Marin CIL’s advocacy division was on the job early this morning. A second cup of coffee will be a must today. Sending love and an elbow bump.

 

County of Marin Update:

More Vaccination Delivery Goes Mobile 

In its quest to vaccinate as many local residents as possible, Marin County Public Health is shifting its approach to offer the free and life-saving COVID-19 vaccine in more neighborhoods around the county, while reducing its reliance on stationary large-scale operations.   

 

Over the past two months, Public Health has expanded its mobile operations to offer more targeted pop-up vaccine clinics in communities where few or no vaccination options exist. Mobile teams can provide up to 500 vaccinations per visit and are part of an effort to remove barriers to access the shot. Appointment requirements have been waived and plans are underway to deploy mobile teams to large apartment complexes, local events, or shopping centers where people naturally gather. 

 

In addition, Public Health will close its two mass vaccination sites in San Rafael at the end of May. The last date to obtain a first dose vaccine from the Marin Health and Wellness Campus on Kerner Boulevard or Marin Center (Marin County Fairgrounds) vaccine sites is Saturday, May 1. Both sites will remain open through May 29 to fulfill second dose needs.   

 

See Public Health’s full news release

 

Dominican Honors County Public Health Officers 

Dominican University of California is bestowing honorary doctorates of humane letters on Marin County Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis and Deputy Public Health Officer Dr. Lisa Santora for their leadership though the COVID-19 pandemic.  

 

“Last March, Dr. Willis was one of the first public health officers in the United States to issue a shelter at home order. This bold move set the tone for the coming months, as both Dr. Willis and Dr. Santora drew on their decades of experience in public health, medicine, and science to lead the county’s work controlling the spread of COVID-19,” University President Mary B. Marcy said. 

 

The ceremony is taking place during the Marin County Board of Supervisors meeting that starts at 9 a.m. Tuesday, April 27. It will be shown live on the County website and recorded for later viewing. Comcast and AT&T U-Verse subscribers can watch the meeting live on Channel 27. 

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL congratulates Dr. Willis and Dr. Santora for the honors bestowed on them by Dominican University. Marin CIL truly values and appreciates Dr. Willis and Dr. Santora’s leadership in promoting accessibility and equitability in Marin Counties Covid-19 response and vaccine roll out. Marin CIL is proud to be part of this effort.

 

Join Our Vaccine Q&As   

If you have questions about the vaccine, we offer webinars that cover all the facts and figures plus the truth about some myths and misinformation. The webinars are offered in English and Spanish through May 27.   

  

Q&A in English:  Every Tuesday & Thursday, 9 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View Event flyer  

  

Q&A in Spanish: Every Thursday, 11 a.m.  

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.  

  -  Or call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#  

  -  View event flyer  

 

COVID-19 Data Update:  

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us

 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from ADAPT

An Open Letter to the Biden Administration and Congress about Ensuring the Freedom of Individuals with Disabilities

American Disabled for Attendant Programs Today – ADAPT – was founded by the Reverend Wade Blank, Michael Smith and other young people who escaped a Denver nursing facility with his assistance.  From its inception, our group has fought for the freedom and integration of people with disabilities.  The last three decades of our work were devoted to ending unwanted institutionalization.  During that time, we have learned that the institutional bias is not based in a single line of the Medicaid statute.  Instead, it is a myriad of seemingly innocuous, but ableist policies that – together – have forced countless Disabled individuals into unwanted institutionalization.

For the last two Congresses, we have worked to pass the Disability Integration Act (DIA).  DIA is a civil rights bill, modeled on the Americans with Disabilities Act, that would ensure individuals with disabilities who could be institutionalized are afforded the opportunity to receive Long Term Services and Supports (LTSS) in the community.  The bill was crafted by Disabled individuals working with Senator Schumer.  When the 116th Congress ended, the bill had 238 cosponsors in the House and 38 cosponsors in the Senate.  The bill had clear bipartisan support with 20 Republicans cosponsoring the bill.

Earlier this year, several members of Congress released language for the HCBS Access Act (HCBSAA).  HCBSAA would establish HCBS as a mandatory Medicaid service and fund these services entirely by the federal government.  It addresses the long-standing bias in the Medicaid program where nursing facilities and institutionalization are considered a mandatory service and community-based services are optional.

The first purpose listed in the bill is “to fulfill the purposes of Americans with Disabilities Act to ensure people with disabilities and older adults live in the most integrated setting”.  We applaud Congress and the Biden Administration for taking steps to address this critical issue.  We believe that a more robust version of the bill language can be incorporated into the Biden administration’s infrastructure bill and lay the groundwork for us to secure passage of the Disability Integration Act. 

The Disability Community has been asked to comment on the proposed language of the HCBSAA.  To effectively comment on the HCBSAA language and identify how the HCBSAA can be strengthened, ADAPT is analyzing how both bills address the various ways Disabled individuals are forced into unwanted institutionalization.

For Full Letter: An Open Letter to the Biden Administration and Congress about Ensuring the Freedom of Individuals with Disabilities

A Tidbit from Me: ADAPT is one of my favorite freedom fighters. Many of the recommendations from ADAPT that are in the letter to the Biden Administration are initiatives that Marin CIL and the California Independent Living Network in collaboration with community members and other stakeholders are working to advance as part of our work to make long-term services and support available to everyone who needs these important supports to remain in their community. To learn more about these efforts please reach out to Marin CIL.

Sharing from The CIL

Friends of TheCIL,

We’re happy to announce that we’ll be hosting a Q&A with Google’s Live Transcribe team that will premiere, pre-recorded, in early May. We need your help getting the word out!

In case you haven’t come across Live Transcribe yet, it’s an app, created by Google, that helps people who are deaf or hard of hearing to communicate with the people around them by providing fast, reliable speech transcription, right on their phone. A similar captioning service is rolled into Google Meet, Google’s video chat platform.

Our Executive Director Stuart James is a huge fan of Live Transcribe. He uses the app practically everywhere he goes - at restaurants, at the doctor’s office, during meetings - and finds that it makes communicating with people much, much easier, especially with the advent of masks during Covid.

One thing Stuart has found, though, is that even though this service could potentially help thousands and thousands of folks who are hard of hearing, not a lot of people know the app exists. TheCIL is trying to change that!

And that’s where you come in. Do you think the app might work for you, a friend, a client? Do you have any questions about how it works? This is your chance to ask! We need your help coming up with a solid list of questions for the Google team that can help us to spread the word about this awesome service in our community.
Click the following link to submit your questions: http://go.thecil.org/e/904371/ai1ZeSYSw-viewform-usp-sf-link/nf58/127654411?h=P4cnKTioP0Kt0HL1RI07PVBSQgbxClJyxPSN3MFtBK0

Here’s a few we plan on asking:

  • With my particular disability, sometimes auto-captioning doesn’t work for me. Will Live Transcribe understand me?
  • What devices does Live Transcribe work on?
  • What are some accessories I can use to make Live Transcribe work even better?

In the meantime, feel free to browse the links below for a little more info on the app:

We look forward to reading your questions! We'll follow up soon with info on how to access the video.

PS: As always, the video will be captioned and will have an ASL interpreter.

Cheers,

TheCIL

 

Sharing from Marin Independent Journal

 

Marin to close COVID-19 vaccination sites as demand wanes

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 26, 2021 at 7:03 p.m. | UPDATED: April 26, 2021 at 7:21 p.m

With the demand for coronavirus vaccines dwindling, Marin County is preparing to close two of its largest vaccination clinics and is no longer requiring appointments for shots.

“We’ve started to see unfilled appointments for the first time,” said Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer.

Since the first vaccine doses arrived in the county in December, many Marin residents have eagerly awaited a chance to get inoculated. After becoming eligible for shots, some scrambled to book appointments online as slots quickly filled up.

But with more than 80% of people eligible for vaccines inoculated with at least one shot, the pattern has shifted, Willis said. The county was administering about 4,000 shots per day at its three clinics at the height of the vaccine rollout, but that number has been cut in half over the past week.

For Full Article: Marin to close COVID-19 vaccination sites as demand wanes

 

A Tidbit from me: Marin CIL was proud to play an integral role in ensuring that Marin’s vaccine rollout was accessible and equitable for people with disabilities and older adults and other traditionally marginalized communities. Marin CIL worked collaboratively with our county partners advocating for the current mobile vaccine program. Marin CIL appreciates and values the support and collaboration supporting the health of our communities.


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Crip Camp at the Oscars and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 26, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are doing well today. As I write to you this morning I am reflecting on the accomplishments of our community: Crip Camp made it to the Oscars! With pride here is the morning report. Sending a virtual elbow bump and a smile.

 

Crip Camp

A Tidbit from Me: Yesterday, like many disability rights activists, I sat at home watching the Oscars looking forward to one of the most powerful documentaries about Disability Rights actually getting an Oscar. My wife Jennifer had even made Oscar snacks for us to enjoy. It came time to hear the Oscar awarded for the Best Documentary….I held my breath in anticipation. I was truly saddened when the Oscar went to My Octopus Teacher. Don’t get me wrong I am sure it was a fabulous movie. However, Crip Camp was about RIGHTS and the freedom of fighting for self-determination and freedom for people with disabilities. I am thrilled that Crip Camp has come so far. Being nominated for an Oscar is quite an accomplishment. Seeing people with disabilities on the red carpet (YAY). The work that started with Camp Janed and the 504 Protests may not have won an Oscar as movie but it changed the world and it doesn’t get any better.

 

Picture Description Left to Right: Pictured on the red carpet at the 2021 Oscars. Andrea Levant is a black woman elegantly dressed with should-length black hair. She is wearing glasses and an iridescent sequined gown. Andrea is a power wheelchair user and is accompanied by her service dog. Judith Heumann is a white woman with short brown hair, wearing glasses, and a stunning ivory pantsuit, and red shoes. She is a power wheelchair user. Nicole Newnham is a white woman with shoulder-length hair, wearing glasses, and an ivory ankle-length dress with a multicolored pattern on one shoulder. Jim Lebrecht is white man with a grey beard and shoulder length curly grey hair. He is wearing a blue Gucci Suit and is a power wheelchair user. Sara Bolder is a white woman with short curly grey hair, wearing glasses, a black suit and a long string of pearls.

Picture Description Left to Right: Pictured on the red carpet at the 2021 Oscars. Andrea Levant is a black woman elegantly dressed with should-length black hair. She is wearing glasses and an iridescent sequined gown. Andrea is a power wheelchair user and is accompanied by her service dog. Judith Heumann is a white woman with short brown hair, wearing glasses, and a stunning ivory pantsuit, and red shoes. She is a power wheelchair user. Nicole Newnham is a white woman with shoulder-length hair, wearing glasses, and an ivory ankle-length dress with a multicolored pattern on one shoulder. Jim Lebrecht is white man with a grey beard and shoulder length curly grey hair. He is wearing a blue Gucci Suit and is a power wheelchair user. Sara Bolder is a white woman with short curly grey hair, wearing glasses, a black suit and a long string of pearls.

Oscars 2021: ‘Crip Camp’ team’s appearance marks ‘tipping point’ for disabled people

By CHRISTIE D’ZURILLA

STAFF WRITER 

APRIL 25, 2021 5:50 PM PT

Diversity is about so much more than skin color, as evidenced by the 2021 Oscars red carpet, which on Sunday welcomed three people using wheelchairs — one with a service dog.

The trio were part of the team behind the nominated documentary “Crip Camp,” which tells the story of Camp Jened, a summer retreat in the Catskills where, from 1951 to 1977, many young people with disabilities first experienced the joys of community.

“We’re on the red carpet! #Oscars,” the film’s official Twitter account said gleefully, tweeting out a photo showing the “Crip Camp” representatives, including nominated writer-directors James LeBrecht and Nicole Newnham.

“Sending hope & gratitude to my friends on the #CripCamp team today!,” tweeted “Crip Camp” writer David Radcliff, who has cerebral palsy, uses a wheelchair and is a member of the Writers Guild of America’s Committee for Writers With Disabilities.

“No matter what #Oscars bring, I hope this is a tipping point after which seeing disabled people at awards doesn’t seem so revolutionary. Thank you for all the work you’ve done & the doors you have helped to open.”

Radcliff tweeted that LeBrecht was the first person he’d ever seen using a mobility device at the Oscars, which he said he has watched nearly his entire life.

Article: Oscars 2021: ‘Crip Camp’ team’s appearance marks ‘tipping point’ for disabled people

 

 

"Hold On!" from the 504 Demonstration in San Francisco, 1977

 

Hold On (Audio)


1.
Civil rights were knocking at our door,
But Carter wouldn't stand on 504.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.
Hold on. Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.
2.
After four years of delay,
We came to claim the ground we'd gained.
We had our eye on the prize. Hold on.
Hold on.  Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

3.
A movement standing strong and tight
With one dream to win - our civil rights.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.
Hold on.  Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

4.
For 26 days unafraid
One hundred fifty people with (and without) disabilities they stayed.
They had their eye on the prize. They held on.
Hold on. Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

5.
Thirty-eight years have rolled on past that door
But we still must fight for 504.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.
Hold on. Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

6.
We won't stop until the battle's won
And enforcement of the law's begun
Keep your eye on the prize,
Hold on.
Hold on, hold on,
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

7.
Civil rights were knocking at our door,
But Carter wouldn't stand on 504.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.
Hold on.  Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize. Hold on.

Hold on.  Hold on.
Keep your eye on the prize.
Keep your eye on the prize.
Keep your eye on the prize.
Hold on.

Words by Jeff Moyer 1977.
Traditional song adapted for the Civil Rights Movement by Alice Keeley.

In 1977 I was at the San Francisco Federal Building with my guitar during the historic 504 demonstration. That 26-day sit-in by 150 demonstrators with and without severe disabilities, successfully pressured President Jimmy Carter to have his Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, Joseph Califano promulgate the long-overdue regulations for Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. Section 504 is the Disability Rights foundation upon which the ADA was built.

My adaptation of "Hold On!", or "Eyes on the Prize", became the anthem for the 26-day sit-in, that resulted in the signing of the Section 504 Regulations. The song became the theme song for a multi-part BBC documentary on the U.S. Disability Rights Movement, entitled, "We Won't Go Away." The entire documentary can be viewed on this important website of the Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities, with its vast treasure trove of historic videos and other critical content.

In 2015, I played "Hold On!" at the 25th anniversary of the ADA at the Ed Roberts Campus, Berkeley, California. We were celebrating the ADA's twenty-fifth anniversary and the grand opening of an exhibit on 504, produced by the Paul K. Longmore Center, San Francisco State University. -Source

 

COVID-19 Data Update:  

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us

 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from the California Department on Aging

CDA is developing California's next Older Americans Act State Plan and is seeking robust and diverse public input on the plan through upcoming remote hearings and on-line surveys.  All information about the OAA State Plan is posted on our website.

 

California’s OAA State Plan for 2021-2025 will guide the Older Americans Act programs and funding and will align CDA’s OAA goals with Area Plans submitted by the 33 Area Agencies on Aging, the Governor’s Master Plan for Aging, and CDA’s Strategic Plan. OAA State Plans are due from CDA, as California’s designated unit on aging, to the Administration for Community Living every four years. The plan currently in development will be effective from October 1, 2021 through 2025.  A draft document and a summary power point are posted on the webpage, for public review.

 

The California Department of Aging (CDA), in partnership with the California Commission on Aging (CCoA), will hold two virtual public hearings and offer a survey and email box during April to gather input on the draft 2021-25 Older Americans Act State Plan CDA and CCoA are interested in receiving input from older adults, people with disabilities, family and friend caregivers, and agencies, advocates, and allies that work with these individuals, as well as the general public. Please share this information with your networks so a broad range of public comment can be provided and incorporated into the final OAA plan. There are three ways to provide your comments: 

 

•        You may provide input during one of the two public hearings (the two hearings will cover the same information) – information below.

•        You can send your input via this short survey

•        You can send email to oaastateplan@aging.ca.gov

 

 

 

VIRTUAL HEARING #1

Monday, April 26, 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, or Android device:

 

Or join by phone (toll free)

  • 888-788-0099
  • Webinar ID: 926 9409 2281
  • Passcode: 587332

 

VIRTUAL HEARING #2

Thursday, April 29, 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, or Android device:

 

Or join by phone (toll free)

  • 888-788-0099
  • Webinar ID: 987 7869 3882
  • Passcode: 395242

 

What is the Older American’s Act: Sharing from the Administration on Community Living (ACL)

 Congress passed the Older Americans Act (OAA) in 1965 in response to concern by policymakers about a lack of community social services for older persons. The original legislation established authority for grants to states for community planning and social services, research and development projects, and personnel training in the field of aging. The law also established the Administration on Aging (AoA) to administer the newly created grant programs and to serve as the federal focal point on matters concerning older persons.

Although older individuals may receive services under many other federal programs, today the OAA is considered to be a major vehicle for the organization and delivery of social and nutrition services to this group and their caregivers. It authorizes a wide array of service programs through a national network of 56 state agencies on aging, 618 area agencies on aging, nearly 20,000 service providers, 281 Tribal organizations, and 1 Native Hawaiian organization representing 400 Tribes. The OAA also includes community service employment for low-income older Americans; training, research, and demonstration activities in the field of aging; and vulnerable elder rights protection activities. -Source

 

Sharing from CDCAN

APRIL 26, 2021 (MONDAY) STATE CAPITOL UPDATE
TODAY 2:00 PM -  4:00 PM - SERVICE ACCESS AND EQUITY WORKGROUP OF THE DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES (DS) TASK FORCE ZOOM MEETING AND CALL - INCLUDES PRESENTATION ON DEPARTMENT'S PROPOSAL FOR COMMUNITY NAVIGATORS
(Reunión del Subgrupo de Trabajo de Acceso al Servicio y Equidad 26 de abril de 2021 2:00 - 4:00 PM)


SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED  04/26/2021 06:10 AM PACIFIC TIME] - Next Issues of disparities and equity in services - including updates and next steps are on the agenda for the Zoom meeting and call of the 35 member Service Access and Equity Workgroup of the Developmental Services (DS) Task Force (under the Department of Developmental Services or DDS -), scheduled for today (April 26th, Monday) at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM (Pacific Time). [Reunión del Subgrupo de Trabajo de Acceso al Servicio y Equidad 26 de abril de 2021 - ¿Cuándo? lunes, 26 de abril de 2021 2:00 - 4:00 PM]
    The workgroup meeting includes a presentation on the subject of community navigators, by the Children's Hospital of Los Angeles and the University of Southern California (USC) on their approach to community navigators. The topic of their presentation is titled  "Parent Navigators to Increase Service Access in a General Pediatrics Clinc" by Christine Bottrell Mirzaian, MD, MPH, Director, Clinical and Community Services, USC UCED; Assistant Professor of Clinical Pediatrics, Keck School of Medicine of USC (see below for links to the actual presentation document in English and Spanish). 
    The full 43 member Developmental Services (DS) Task Force is scheduled to meet later this week  (via Zoom) for its monthly "check-in" meeting on April 29th, Thursday, at 1:00 to 2:30 PM (Pacific Time) (See below for links to that meeting including registration).
    The public and other non-workgroup members are welcome to participate in the Safety Net Workgroup meeting - though people will need to register first (see below for link) to be sent the meeting Zoom link - or people can just call-in directly using the Zoom call-in number (see below).    
    According to the meeting agenda, today's Zoom Service Access and Equity Workgroup meeting and call today at 2:00 PM (Pacific Time)  will cover the following (see below for details)

  • Update - Developmental Services Task Force Recommendations & Strategies
  • Update - 2020-21 Service Access & Equity Grant Awards
  • Update - COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Update - African American Focus Group Vaccine Access Discussion
  • Community Navigator Overview including review of proposed budget trailer bill language for the program (Proposed budget proposal that is part of the Governor's 2021-2022 State Budget plan he released January 10th)  Budget trailer bill proposed language (January 29, 2021): 
    https://esd.dof.ca.gov/trailer-bill/public/trailerBill/pdf/318
  • Presentation: Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles and University of Southern California (USC) Presentation
  • Discussion
    - Question 1: What key elements are important to consider for the proposed Community Navigator program?
    - Question 2: What key outcomes are important to measure and report for the proposed Community Navigator program?

     According to the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) webpage, the 35 member Service Access and Equity Workgroup one of five formal workgroups of the Developmental Services Task Force, with the purpose of continuing "...discussions on creating a culturally and linguistically competent service system, review funded disparity projects and outcomes, explore statewide strategies to improve access, and make data easy to understand for community discussions."
    An agenda, presentation and handouts were released Friday morning (April 23rd) and sent to all those who had registered for the Zoom meeting - including Spanish translations of those documents. See below for links to those meeting materials. 
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request, with "Subscribe CDCAN" in the subject line, to Marty Omoto at: martyomoto@att.net

SERVICE ACCESS AND EQUITY WORKGROUP RECOMMENDATIONS AND STRATEGIES (SO FAR)
    The following, compiled by CDCAN, are the recommendations and strategies (so far) of the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Service Access and Equity Workgroup:

Define cultural & linguistic competency in the [developmental services] system
• Create a focus group with members of the DS [Developmental Services] Task Force/Workgroups
• Include equity measurements in the Service Access & Equity Grants
• Funding for a contract included in January’s Governor’s Budget
• Provide access to technology to individuals and families, especially those in Early Start [state's early intervention program for infants and toddlers]
• Service Access & Equity Grants awarded to 6 projects with a technology component

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

SMART reviews strategy amid leadership, pandemic flux

By WILL HOUSTON | whouston@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 25, 2021 at 1:04 p.m. | UPDATED: April 25, 2021 at 8:43 p.m.

In the face of loosening pandemic restrictions and the upcoming change in its leadership, SMART has begun strategizing how to recover its lost ridership and further build out its rail and path systems despite financial setbacks.

The Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit District board voted unanimously Wednesday to dedicate more than $21 million in sales tax revenue in the next 10 years toward filling several gaps in its bike and pedestrian path in the two counties.

About $5.4 million would go toward leveraging grants to build a second Petaluma train station and begin funding a planned rail expansion to Healdsburg. In total, the $21 million in SMART funds could leverage another $48 million in state and federal grants, staff said.

General manager Farhad Mansourian, who announced his retirement Wednesday after 10 years with the district, said he sees these projects as a “celebration,” especially given the dire financial situation the agency faced in late 2019 and at the start of the pandemic.

For full article: SMART reviews strategy amid leadership, pandemic flux

 

Marin COVID-19 data suggest progress in Latino population

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

April 24, 2021 at 4:51 p.m.

Marin County has recorded fewer new COVID-19 cases among Latino residents than White residents over the past month, marking the reversal of a trend that had persisted throughout much of the pandemic.

The switch began on March 17, the first time since the beginning of the winter wave that the weekly average of new cases among White residents surpassed the number for Latino residents.

While Latino residents comprise 16% of Marin’s population, they have accounted for 53% of its coronavirus infections, a disparity unmatched by any other ethnic group. White residents in Marin, by comparison, make up 77% of the population and account for 34% of cases, county data show.

The latest data from the county show that Latinos are still testing positive at disproportionately higher rates than other ethnic groups in Marin, but they no longer make up the majority of new cases.

For full article: Marin COVID-19 data suggest progress in Latino population

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

Understanding Unconscious Bias and Embracing Cultural Diversity

 

Sign up now to join the next FREE statewide webinar by the Disability Thrive Initiative on Wednesday, April 28th from 3:00 to 4:15 p.m. As Californians, we live in a state with many ethnicities, languages, abilities, religions and cultures. With this in mind, we also know how easy it is to fall into the traps of unconscious bias. Individuals with developmental disabilities (IDD) experience this first-hand in their communities, day programs and even their own homes. Ensuring that services are culturally inclusive can be challenging.

 

Presenters from the Golden Gate Regional CenterSan Andreas Regional Center and The Arc California will share personal stories, offer tested tools, and discuss some of the following topics:

 

  • What is unconscious bias? Learn from first-hand stories
  • Understand the effects that unconscious bias has on delivering and receiving services     
  • Get tools for delivering culturally inclusive alternative services 

 

To join the LIVE online event, please REGISTER EARLY at Webinar.DisabilityThriveInitiative.org to hold your space. Interpreters will be available for ASL and Spanish.

 

REGISTER NOW

 

 

Plans in Works to Resume J&J Vaccinations 

Today, both the CDC and FDA approved continued use of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine after extensive review by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP). Marin County Public Health is making plans to resume use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine once the Western States Scientific Safety Review committee completes its own evaluation. We concur with ACIP’s findings that the benefits of the J&J vaccine far outweigh the risks and that we can continue to administer this life-saving vaccine safely.  

 

To date, Marin County Public Health has administered just over 1,000 doses of the J&J vaccine to Marin residents with no reported cases of blood clots. This type of adverse reaction is extremely rare with 15 reported cases nationwide out of 6.8 million doses administered. COVID-19 vaccine safety is a top priority for us. We will continue to monitor the situation and look to the CDC for any additional future guidance.  

 

The J&J vaccine is a valuable tool in our vaccination toolkit for reaching our highest risk populations where administering a two-shot regimen may be challenging. In addition, many Marin residents have requested the J&J vaccine because of the “one-and-done” ease of the product. While we do not have sufficient supply on hand to offer immediate, wide-spread access to the J&J vaccine, we look forward to offering it to our residents very soon. In the meantime, please review our frequently asked questions for more information about the J&J vaccine.  

 

The public is encouraged to get vaccinated as soon as possible. All vaccines are proven to be highly effective at preventing hospitalization or death from COVID-19. The longer you wait to get vaccinated, the greater the risk of contracting COVID-19. 

 

Standing Ovation for Volunteers 

We’re at the tail end of National Volunteers Week, and there are so many contributors who have helped in Marin with the COVID-19 response and deserve enthusiastic praise. The past year has been so challenging, but interns and volunteers – including members of the Marin Medical Reserve Corps (MMRC) and the Ombudsman staff volunteers – have been by our side throughout the pandemic every step of the way. 

 

As another example, student nursing interns have played a critical role. Here are some of the ways they have assisted us: 

  • Testing at Marin Center and mobile sites, including residential care facilities 
  • Support at vaccination clinics and mobile sites 
  • Contact tracing and investigations 
  • Motel staffing 
  • Telehealth program support for vulnerable residents 
  • Infection control planning, outreach, and education 
  • Schools team support 
  • Psychological assessments at the Marin County Jail 
  • Clinical support in behavioral health programs 
  • Help@Hand digital literacy home visiting program 

 

Learn more online about how to volunteer with the County of Marin. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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The Legacy of Dmitri Belser, Your Advocacy is Needed, Two Great Events, Crip Camp Oscar-bound!


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 23, 2021

Good Morning my Marin CIL Family,

 

I hope you are doing well today. As I write this blog today I am in a little bit of a reflective mood. I am so excited…..Crip Camp is Oscar-bound. Sad news in this report today. An advocate and friend passes. Here is your PM Morning Report. Sending a virtual hug today.

 

Dmitri Belser 

Sad news to share with you today. Dmitri Belser, who was a long-time advocate and the Executive Director for the Center for Accessible Technology (CforAT) passed away. Dmitri was one in a million. During the time I lived in Berkeley I always enjoyed our fireside chats. Dmitri loved to share his personal lived experience, life lessons, and good humor. He was instrumental in making the Ed Roberts Campus happen.  

“Located at a fully accessible transit hub, the Ed Roberts Campus is a national and international model dedicated to disability rights and universal access.

The Ed Roberts Campus commemorates the life and work of Edward V. Roberts, an early leader in the independent living movement of persons with disabilities. Ed believed in the strength of collaborative efforts: He called it “working toward our preferred future.””- Source

His work as the Executive Director of CforAT opened the doors for so many people with disabilities to access technology. Dmitri and his incredible staff made it possible for many to communicate, enjoy life, work, play, and most importantly live independently. Dmitri was an out of the box thinker. He and his husband Tom bought a house several years ago. Short version: UC Berkeley wanted to get rid of a dilapidated old building that was on college property. Dmitri bought the house for $17. According to the news paper article the house was only listed for $1. Dmitri offered $17 so he wouldn’t be outbid or appear cheap. Full Article: Historic home, sold by UC Berkeley for $17 in 2010, now back on market for $1.3M

I am truly saddened by Dmitri’s passing but I know his legacy and passion will live on for years to come. Rest in Power my Friend. Your memory will always be a blessing.

 

County of Marin Update

Find a Pop-Up Vaccine Location 

Marin Public Health partners with organizations and providers to provide "pop-up" vaccine clinics around the county. Dates, times and eligibility varies by location. Appointments are encouraged for some locations; walk-ins are allowed at all locations on a first-come, first-served basis.  

 

Among the locations are: Marin City Health and Wellness Center, Marin City; Grocery Outlet, San Rafael; Ritter Center, San Rafael; Canal Alliance, San Rafael; North Marin Community Services, Novato; Hamilton Field, Novato; Inverness Fire Department, Inverness; and Coastal Health Alliance, Point Reyes Station.  

 

Larger points of distribution for the vaccine are at the Marin County Public Health and Wellness Campus, San Rafael; Larkspur Ferry Terminal, Larkspur; and Marin Center, San Rafael. 

 

The vaccine sites webpage also includes a list of pharmacies, hospitals, and out-of-county options to receive shots. 

 

COVID-19 Data Update:  

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

Vaccination Data 

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data 

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data 

 

Sharing from CDCAN

LEGISLATIVE ANALYST OFFICE (LAO) INTERIM REPORT ON POSSIBLE DIFFERENT WAYS ON HOW STATE CAN INCREASE FEDERAL MEDICAID MATCHING FUNDS FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES ELIGIBLE FOR REGIONAL CENTER SERVICES 
Initial Update Says that Increased Enrollment May Not Result in Significant Net Savings to State's General Fund, But Might Help Achieve Important Policy Goals of Legislature and State

SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 04/22/2021 09:54 AM (PACIFIC TIME] - The Legislative Analyst Office (LAO), issued on April 19th, a interim update with initial findings and preliminary assessments focusing on Medicaid matching funding for developmental services in California, with an initial observation that an increase in enrollment of people with developmental disabilities in the state's Medicaid program (known as "Medi-Cal") - who are not already enrolled in the program - may not result in a significant net savings in terms of state funds that some policymakers and advocates hoped for, but however, might help achieve important policy goals of the Legislature and State.  
    A final report, according to the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) - that had an original due date of March 1, 2021 - will be delivered to the Legislature in the late summer. [See below for link to the interim update]
   According to the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO), one purpose of the final report is to explore ways to increase Medi-Cal (Medicaid) enrollment among individuals with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) through the 21 non-profit regional centers, who are Medi-Cal eligible but not currently enrolled
  .According to the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) interim update, the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) currently serves a relatively small share of individuals with developmental disabilities who are eligible for, but not enrolled in, Medi-Cal, the state’s Medicaid program, and Medicaid home- and community-based services (HCBS) programs (which funds a wide array of services and supports that allow people to live in community-based settings, rather than in institutional settings). As a result, the state cannot draw down federal Medicaid funds to help pay for services under the Department of Developmental Services provided to these individuals (the State's General Fund currently pays 100% of the cost). 
    Increasing enrollment of those not enrolled in Medi-Cal would allow the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) to increase federal Medicaid matching funds by enrolling more people in the Medi-Cal program, including the various Medicaid waivers that can provide - to those people eligible - matching Medicaid funds for a wide range of services and supports provided by community-based organizations and individuals and coordinated by the 21 non-profit regional centers under contract by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS). 
    According to the interim update, the numbers of individuals with developmental disabilities that are eligible or not eligible for Medi-Cal program services are as follows:

  • In 2019‑2020, about 254,000 out of about 320,000 (or 79%) of individuals with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) were enrolled in Medi-Cal.
  • Among children with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) under age 18, 71% were enrolled, while among adults, 86% were enrolled.
  • Of individuals with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) enrolled in Medi-Cal, a total of 71% were either enrolled in the department's Medicaid (Home and Community-Based Services or HCBS) waiver (about 132,000 people) or eligible for authorized services under what is known as the Medicaid 1915(i) SPA [State Plan Amendment] reimbursement (about 48,000 people). [CDCAN Note: States can offer a variety of services under a Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) 1915(i) State Plan Amendment - which amends or adds to the state's Medicaid State Plan . According to the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), the federal agency that oversees nationwide both programs, to be eligible, individuals must meet state-defined criteria based on need and typically get a combination of acute-care medical services (like dental services, skilled nursing services) and long-term services (like respite, case management, supported employment and environmental modifications) in home and community-based settings.]
  • Among individuals with developmental disabilities served by the department who were enrolled in the Medi-Cal program, but not receiving waiver or 1915(i) (Medicaid) State Plan Amendment (SPA) reimbursement, most of those individuals did not receive a service that would make them eligible for the department's Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) waiver or for 1915(i) State Plan Amendment (SPA) reimbursement.
  • According to the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) interim update, about 67,000 individuals with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) - or 21% of 320,000 individuals eligible and served by the department -  were not enrolled in Medi-Cal. The Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) notes that not all of these individuals would be eligible to enroll due to immigration status, income levels, or other reasons.

    While the Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) will provide recommendations in their final report, the update issued April 19th, identifies four main options for increasing Medi-Cal uptake among individuals with developmental disabilities served by the Department of Developmental Services, with some initial observations and discusses some of the trade-offs of each option in terms of savings to state funds.
    The Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) is the widely respected non-partisan agency of the Legislature that monitors, analyzes and reports on federal and state budget, fiscal and policy issues - with staff always present during legislative budget hearings every year.
    The Department of Developmental Services oversees the 21 non-profit regional centers who determinate eligibility and coordinate funding for community-based services and supports provided by community-based organizations and individuals for over 350,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities, including about 40,000 infants and toddlers in California's early intervention program known as "Early Start". 
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request to Marty Omoto (with "CDCAN Reports Subscribe" in the subject line) to: martyomoto@att.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing from YO Disabled and Proud

Virtual Play Reading - Wry Crips Occupy!

April 25th, 2021 Wry Crips and Phamaly Theatre Company are proud to present a virtual play reading of Wry Crips Occupy! - a new documentary-style, ensemble-created play that introduces the women who organized and championed a pivotal event, and changed the trajectory of disability rights in America. Included in the presentation are musical performances by Jeff Moyer and original photography of the 504 Sit-in by HolLynn D'Lil.

It is free to RSVP, and donations to benefit Wry Crips and Phamaly are welcome. ASL Interpretation and Automatic Captions will be presented. If you have any questions please email info@phamaly.org

**ATTENTION: THIS PROGRAM CONTAINS ADULT CONTENT AND LANGUAGE**

RSVP Today!

 

 

A Tidbit from Me: This is going to be an absolutely wonderful and empowering event. I remember Wry Crips in the beginning. My friend and one of the founders Cheryl Marie Wade and the other performers made me realize it was okay to be a “crippy crip” and that all bodies were beautiful and can be loved. This message was truly and empowering moment in my life.

 

 

Sharing from Cal ABLE

April 22, 2021

California State Treasurer Fiona Ma recently co-authored an Opinion-Editorial in support of the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, an important piece of legislation re-introduced to Congress. If passed, the law would make many more Americans eligible to open an ABLE account by raising the age of disability onset from 26 to 46. We hope that you will take a moment to read what the Treasurer has to say.

Congress can help Americans living with disabilities
by passing the ABLE Age Adjustment Act

The coronavirus pandemic has underscored the importance of financial stability, especially amongst the disability community, where unemployment reached a 7-year high in 2020. For the estimated 8 million eligible Americans, ABLE accounts have provided an opportunity for financial stability during a tumultuous time. Now, Congress has the chance to expand this lifechanging program to help millions of additional Americans with disabilities save – and the opportunity is more urgent than ever.

Before the ABLE Act’s passage in 2014, Americans with disabilities risked losing their federal Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits anytime they saved over $2,000 in their own name. The ABLE Act created tax-advantaged savings accounts for people with disabilities and their families that does not jeopardize eligibility for federal and state disability benefits. Withdrawals from ABLE accounts are tax-free, so long as the funds are used for qualified disability expenses such as housing, education, transportation, personal support services, assistive technology, and health care.

Now, 43 states and the District of Columbia have launched ABLE programs and more than $642 million has been saved in over 82,000 ABLE accounts nationwide. . . . To read the entire article, please click here

If you would like to show your support of the ABLE Age Adjustment Act, we encourage you to reach out to your congressional representatives. A sample letter of support is available on the CalABLE website at www.treasurer.ca.gov/able.

For more information about CalABLE, contact us at calable@treasurer.ca.gov.    

Sincerely,

CalABLE Staff

 

A Tidbit from Me:  For transparency speaking in my role as the Chair of the State Independent Living Council I have a seat on the Cal ABLE Board. Currently, Kathleen Barajas, who is a fellow SILC member and a tremendous advocate is my designee to the board. This legislation that will raise the age eligibility to 46  is truly needed. Many people with disabilities are forced to live in poverty because they require supports, including in home care, which is linked to the Medi-CAL program. An ABLE account allows people to have savings and more control over their lives and independence.

 

Sharing from CFILC

 

 
 

 

 

Cripping The Red Carpet

Sunday, April 25, 2021

3:00-4:30pm PST | 6:00-7:30pm EST

Zoom Webinar

ASL, Deaf Interpreters, CART, CLT and live audio descriptions provided

RSVP

 

Celebrate Crip Camp’s Oscar nomination for Best Documentary Feature! A historic moment for the disability community, Crip Camp at the Oscars will truly be a night to remember. The Paul K. Longmore Institute and the Crip Camp Impact campaign are teaming up to kick off Oscar night with a celebration of disability community and culture.

 

Enjoy a red carpet dance party featuring all of you in your crip couture* (whether that's rocking your best sweatpants and hoodie, or busting our your Hollywood glam - we LOVE it all!)

Join our two event emcees, comedians Maysoon Zayid and Nina G.

 

Community Press Kit

Dress up your social media to be Oscars ready!

 This Community Press Kit is a hub of digital assets, downloadable PDFs, and sample social media language, all with the hashtag #CripCampAtTheOscars, to give the disability community multiple options on how to celebrate Crip Camp’s Oscar nomination.

 

Whether you are joining from home, hosting an Oscars virtual watch party with friends, or want to fancy up your social media, you will find everything you need below! Make Crip Camp a part of your Oscars experience. Download and share with the hashtag #CripCampAtTheOscars now!

 

A select few submissions will be highlighted on Crip Camp’s social media channels leading up to Oscars night! To submit your red carpet look, share your post on social media using the hashtag #CrippingTheRedCarpet.

 

 Facebook Frame

Show your Oscar nomination joy on your Facebook profile with the Crip Camp Oscars Facebook frame! To try it out, search for “Crip Camp” in the Facebook profile frames library.

 

 

Virtual Zoom Backgrounds

 

All dressed up with nowhere to go? Download our virtual Zoom backgrounds to “Crip the Red Carpet” with us!

Zoom Background Option 1

Zoom Background Option 2

 

I Love Crip Camp Because… Print-Out Prompts

Why do you love Crip Camp? Fill in your answer with our print-out prompts! Take a selfie with your answer and post it on social media or simply save it as a souvenir.

 

Printable Asset Option 1

 

Printable Asset Option 2

 

Image Descriptions

 

The Crip Camp impact campaign believes that accessibility is always essential. This document contains image descriptions for each of the digital assets.

 

 New Initiative for Disability Representation in Media

Adobe Stock knows that #RepresentationMatters. That’s why Adobe Stock Advocates wants to see more LGBTQ+ disabled people and women with disabilities accurately and authentically represented in stock images.

 

Are you an artist with a disability? Submit your pre-existing or custom photography, illustrations, vector art, or videos under Creative Brief Identity and Gender and become a part of Adobe Stock Advocates. Learn more

 

 A Tidbit from Me: Crip Camp is such a terrific film. Anything I can say does not do the film justice. Please share far and wide. If you haven’t see n the film yet watch it today! I am so proud that this film is nominated for an Oscar.

 

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

 

SMART general manager announces retirement

By ADRIAN RODRIGUEZ | arodriguez@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 22, 2021 at 2:26 p.m. | UPDATED: April 22, 2021 at 3:28 p.m.

 

The general manager of Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit is stepping down after a 10-year run leading the startup service.

Farhad Mansourian announced at SMART’s board meeting on Wednesday that he plans to retire in August. Prior to launching the rail line, he worked at the Marin County Department of Public Works and led it for nine years.

“Before SMART, I served 32 and a half years in Marin County,” Mansourian, 67, said in an interview Thursday. “That’s 42 years of public service that I’m very proud of. It’s time for me to spend more time with my family, as a husband and grandfather.”

Mansourian was hired as SMART’s top manager in August 2011. His starting salary was $246,000 a year, and his ending salary is $319,595.

For full article: SMART general manager announces retirement

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Advocates

Lawsuit Challenges Oregon Department of Corrections’ Policy of Charging People With Disabilities for Their Prostheses and Other Durable Medical Equipment

 

April 21, 2021– Salem, OR – Yesterday Disability Rights Advocates (DRA), a national non-profit legal center, and Lynn S. Walsh, filed a class action lawsuit against the State of Oregon and the Oregon Department of Corrections (ODOC) on behalf of current and former people with disabilities who are incarcerated and who have been charged for the costs of the prostheses and other equipment they need to accommodate their disabilities. The case challenges ODOC’s discriminatory administrative rules and practices requiring people with disabilities to pay for durable medical equipment and/or healthcare appliances that they need in order to access the programs and services of the prisons, including orthoses, prostheses, hearing aids and batteries, dentures, and artificial limbs and eyes. The lawsuit also challenges ODOC’s policy and practice of denying some accommodations outright if the person with a disabilities lacks sufficient funds to pay for the device. Click here to read the complaint.

Plaintiff Donald Terrill has a lower leg amputation and received a prosthesis from ODOC in May 2013. ODOC garnishes Mr. Terrill’s trust account each month to pay for the prosthesis, and so far Mr. Terrill has paid $10,675 towards the cost but still, according to ODOC policy, owes ODOC $14,415 more. Mr. Terrill makes approximately $45 per month at his job, of which $19.125 goes to reimburse ODOC for the cost of his prosthetic. Many people with disabilities incarcerated at ODOC have been paying monthly charges, often  for years, for durable medical equipment that should have been provided at the expense of ODOC.

These charges are only for people with disabilities who require these devices long-term—ODOC does not charge such costs to non-disabled people who require limited-duration aids, such as canes, crutches, or braces. The imposition of these costs represents unlawful surcharges on people with disabilities and fails to reasonably accommodate them in ODOC facilities and programs in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

 

For full article: Lawsuit Challenges Oregon Department of Corrections’ Policy of Charging People With Disabilities for Their Prostheses and Other Durable Medical Equipment


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Honoring George Floyd, Lots of Great Webinars, Strengthened Rental Protections, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 22, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope you are doing well today. The PM Morning Report is back from a two day pause. There is a lot happening in our world. Sending love and a hug. Here is your PM report for you today.

 

Disability Rights California Encouraged by Recent Verdict

April 21, 2021

Yesterday, the verdict of guilty on all charges for the murder of George Floyd brings solace to George Floyd’s family, encouragement to Black people who have been subjected to racism for generations, and hope to all people who value human life and equal justice under the law.

We are grateful that the jury heard the compelling evidence and did the right thing: a man was murdered by a police officer, and now that police officer has been held accountable. No one is above the law, and this verdict is exemplary of that.

We hope that everyone who has been distressed and anxious about the state of the world feels a little safer, knowing that in this moment, there is a recognition that Black Lives [do] Matter. While nothing can bring his life back, we are hopeful that George Floyd’s death was not in vain because it has caused the world to confront racial injustice and demand change. Although the verdict is historic and important, we will not overstate its impact. There is still more work to be done, to remedy the impact of systemic racism and eradicate white supremacy. 

Moving forward, Disability Rights California will continue our journey toward recognizing and supporting communities of color and, particularly, people of color with disabilities, who are disproportionately victimized by police brutality and inequality.

A Tidbit from Me: George Floyd’s murder touched me deeply. Watching the video of a police officer with his knee on George Floyd’s neck, using excessive force, violating his oath and his duty to ensure that every person who is detained or being taken into custody is treated humanely, fairly, and in accordance with the law. He showed no mercy toward Mr. Floyd. His humanity left him that day. This verdict while significant is only the first step in the major change that is needed in policing and the criminal justice system. Speaking as an ally, while I am please with the verdict and I appreciate that this issue raised this discussion to a higher level in the national spotlight it greatly saddens me that Mr. Floyd had to die. Much was made about the crowd during the trial. They were portrayed in a negative light, as afar as I am concerned, on that day, they were heroes. They did the best that they could to try to save his life. We must work for a day when black people and other Indigenous people, and people of color do not have to live in fear when interacting with police. We need to enact policies that require other officers present to report and take action in situations when excessive force is occurring.

 

 

 

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 21, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.

TOMORROW: Join Our Vaccine Q&As

If you have questions about the vaccine, we offer webinars that cover all the facts and figures plus the truth about some myths and misinformation. The webinars are offered in English and Spanish through May 27.

Q&A in English: Every Tuesday & Thursday, 9 a.m.

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.

  -  Call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#

  -  View Event flyer

Q&A in Spanish: Every Thursday, 11 a.m.

  -  Join the session on your computer or smartphone.

  -  Or call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#

  -  View event flyer

Funding Available for Food-Related Businesses

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced key details for the new Restaurant Revitalization Fund for restaurants, bars, food trucks, caterers, and related businesses. The American Rescue Plan Act established the Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) to provide funding to help restaurants and other eligible businesses keep their doors open. The program will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location. Recipients are not required to repay the funding as long as funds are used for eligible uses no later than March 11, 2023. Details are on the SBA website.

Get Vaccinated Marin: Plenty of Appointments Available

Everyone age 16 and older is eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of occupation or medical history. If you are ready to make your appointment, visit Marin Public Health’s appointment webpage to book an appointment at Marin Center, Kerner Health and Wellness Campus, or Larkspur Ferry Terminal.  Or view a list of other vaccine providers in Marin County.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

Sharing from the Marin VOAD

Thrive

Thrive Master Class series offers trainings for non-profit and faith-based leaders to navigate key areas critical to surviving and thriving in Covid-19. See the attached flyer for information and to register. 

April 29, 10am-12pm: Rolling out your Reopening: the Right Way to the New Normal

May 21, 10am-12pm: Tech Saavy: More than Zooming, Facebooking, You Tubing

June 18, 10-11:30am: How to Build a Strong Health Program Today

June 30, 10-11:30am: Where and How to Tap into Covid-19 Recovery Resources and Funding

For more Information and to Register: Thrive Faiths Master Class Series

 

FEMA

FEMA offers a free one (1) hour introductory course in continuity of operations.  It is self-paced and taking the final test is optional.

https://training.fema.gov/is/courseoverview.aspx?code=IS-1300

FEMA has developed a video on the COVID-19 Funeral Assistance Program.  It includes information on the application process and what documents will be needed: https://youtu.be/DgvN_9m58Z0.

 

Past Training Webinars

SF CARD: https://www.sfcard.org/bay-area-uasi-training-exercise-pro

CADRE (Santa Clara VOAD): https://www.cadresv.org/programs-events/annual-conference/

A Tidbit from Me: For transparency Marin CIL is an active member of the Marin VOAD and yours truly is the Vice-Chair of this wonderful organization. ‘Marin VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) supports Marin's non-profit, faith-based and community-based organizations in their disaster preparedness and response. We are a collaboration of Marin's community-based organizations and local and County government agencies ensuring coordination, communication, information and resource sharing among all agencies that are involved in a disaster response. This collaborative network helps to protect and care for our most impacted communities following a disaster.’ Source

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued on April 19 an interim final rule establishing new measures to enforce the CDC eviction moratorium. Under the new rule, which takes effect on May 3, debt collectors can be prosecuted for failing to provide tenants written notice of their rights under the federal eviction moratorium and for misrepresenting a tenant’s eligibility under the CDC order. Thank you to everyone who has called on the Biden administration to strengthen and enforce the federal eviction moratorium, including the over 2,300 organizations and elected officials who joined us in urging the White House to take immediate action to protect renters! Check out NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel’s Twitter thread and learn more about CFPB’s rule here.

Thirteen housing industry groups sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on April 16, expressing concern that states and localities are excluding federally assisted households from receiving emergency rental assistance (ERA) and are not using the flexibility provided by Treasury to use self-attestation to reduce burdensome documentation requirements. The organizations ask Treasury to release updated guidance reminding grantees that federally assisted households are eligible for these funds and encouraging the use of self-attestation. NLIHC continues to urge Treasury to address these and other concerning issues in the ERA program and provide further needed guidance to ensure these critical resources reach the households most at risk of eviction.

For full update: DHRC Update

 

Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California

Fair Housing Virtual Conference 2021

"Riding the Wave of Change:
​Advancing Fair Housing and Equity in a New Era"

April 29, 2021   
9:30am - 1:30pm PST via Zoom

General Admission: $20 
Scholarships are available upon request

REGISTER NOW

 

     DOWNLOAD FLYER

This virtual conference features presenters who will explore how we can best promote affirmative policies to advance fair housing and racial equity. The event will create a space for community members, non-profits, advocates, real estate professionals, housing providers, and municipal leaders and staff to address pressing fair housing issues affecting communities in the Bay Area and strategies to re-energize fair housing initiatives, including affirmatively furthering fair housing.

Together, we can build on the legacy of the leaders of the civil rights movement to create a more just and equitable society. Furthering fair housing means advancing equity, not just in terms of housing choice, but also as it relates to all opportunities related to where you live, including employment, transportation, education, health, and access to financial markets. 

For more information, to request a scholarship, or for any special needs, contact Education Director, Adriana Ames at adriana@fairhousingnorcal.org. 

For more Information: Fair Housing Advocates of Northern California

 

Sharing from the ARC of California (This is a wonderful partnership!)

Special Education Advocacy Curriculum Scholarship

In partnership with Comcast NBCUniversal, The Arc is providing scholarships for eligible families of color and low-income households who reside in Comcast regions to receive FREE access to The Arc@School’s Special Education Advocacy Curriculum (normally a $99 value).

self-paced, online training course for parents of students receiving special education services, the Advocacy Curriculum provides the basic information needed to navigate the special education system, including early intervention services, individualized education programs (IEPs), Section 504, and more.

Scholarships are available for a limited time only.

Who is eligible to apply?

Apply here if you are a person of color or an individual in a low-income household AND you live in a Comcast region.

The application process is easy and only takes a few minutes to complete.

APPLY NOW

Don’t qualify for this scholarship? The Advocacy Curriculum is available for purchase for only $99. Learn more.

 

 

Sharing from CDCAN

DEPARTMENT OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES ISSUES TWO NEW DIRECTIVES 

  • LICENSED RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES - Clarification of Current Restrictions on Visits to Individuals in Licensed Residential Facilities
  • REGIONAL CENTER IN-PERSON MONITORING VISITS - Resumption  (at Least Quarterly) of In-Person Monitoring Visits for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities Living in Licensed Residential Facilities, Family Home Agency settings, and Supported Living Services (SLS) and Independent Living Services (ILS) Living Arrangements


SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 04/21/2021 09:54 PM (PACIFIC TIME] - The Department of Developmental Services (DDS), issued Wednesday (April 21st), two new directives (or guidance documents) as follows:
  LICENSED RESIDENTIAL FACILITIES - Clarification of Current Restrictions on Visits to Individuals in Licensed Residential Facilities
REGIONAL CENTER IN-PERSON MONITORING VISITS - Resumption - at least quarterly -  of In-Person Monitoring Visits for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities Living in Licensed Residential Facilities, Family Home Agency settings, and Supported Living Services (SLS) and Independent Living Services (ILS) Living Arrangements (see below for links and the full text of the directive)
    The Department of Developmental Services oversees the 21 non-profit regional centers who determinate eligibility and coordinate funding for community-based services and supports provided by community-based organizations and individuals for over 350,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities, including about 40,000 infants and toddlers in California's early intervention program known as "Early Start". 
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request to Marty Omoto (with "CDCAN Reports Subscribe" in the subject line) to: martyomoto@att.net

 

Sharing from Placer Independent Resource Services

On Tuesday, April 27 starting at 3:00 p.m. EDT, the FCC will host a public webinar to provide information on the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB).

 EBB is a temporary program that provides a discount of up to $50 per month ($75 on Tribal lands) off a qualifying household’s internet bill. For eligible households, there is the potential for a discount of up to $100 towards the purchase of a tablet, laptop or desktop computer from a participating provider so long as the eligible purchaser contributes more than $10 and less than $50 toward the purchase price.

 The webinar will provide consumers and outreach partners with an overview of the EBB program, eligibility information, and enrollment procedures. During the event, the FCC will provide an overview of the outreach tool kit materials that have been developed for partners and the public to use to create awareness about the temporary program.

 American Sign Language Interpreters and open captioning will be provided for this livestreamed meeting at www.fcc.gov/live.  Other reasonable accommodations for people with disabilities are available upon request. Include a description of the accommodation you will need and tell us how to contact you if we need more information. Make your request as early as possible. Last minute requests will be accepted, but may be impossible to fill. Send an e-mail to: FCC504@fcc.gov or call the Consumer & Governmental Affairs Bureau at 202-418-0530 (voice).

 Links to Press Release:

URL:  https://www.fcc.gov/news-events/events/2021/04/emergency-broadband-benefit-webinar-consumers-and-outreach-partners  

Word:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-371674A1.docx

PDF:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-371674A1.pdf 

Text:  https://docs.fcc.gov/public/attachments/DOC-371674A1.txt

 For more information regarding the Emergency Broadband Benefit Plan, please contact the FCC at broadbandbenefit@fcc.gov or visit www.fcc.gov/broadbandbenefit.  For those who use American Sign Language, you may call the FCC Consumer ASL Line at 844-432-2275.

A Tidbit from Me: This is such an important program for our communities. People with disabilities, older adults (especially Black, Indigenous, People of Color) often do not have access to the internet and are severely impacted because of the digital divide. This makes it difficult for these communities to even navigate everyday life and impacts their independence. We depend on the internet for almost everything, especially now during Covid-19.

 

Sharing from the ARC

Recorded webinar on Home and Community Based Services

A Tidbit from Me: This is an excellent webinar. Home and Community Based Services are so important in maintaining independence and allow people with disabilities and older adults to live and thrive in community. Many home and community based services for our communities are directly linked to Medi-Cal eligibility. Advocates, including Centers for Independent Living and Marin CIL, are working to expand access to long term services and supports which includes Home and Community Based Services for all-not just those who are Medi-Cal eligible.

 

Sharing from the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District

Golden Gate Transit, Golden Gate Ferry, Marin Transit, and SMART are providing free transit trips to and from vaccination sites for community members with appointments. All three agencies are offering free rides by bus, train, and boat in both directions to mass vaccination sites, hospitals, or anywhere else that is offering vaccinations. This joint effort is aimed at reducing transportation and cost barriers for community members to receive the vaccine.

To receive a free ride, customers are required to show physical or digital confirmation of their same-day vaccine appointment at time of boarding. 

More information on vaccination sites and appointment availability in Marin County can be found on the Marin County Health Department's vaccination options webpage.

Golden Gate Transit operates daily and Golden Gate Ferry operates weekdays only. For schedules and trip-planning assistance, visit goldengate.org or call the Golden Gate Customer Service Center at 415-455-2000. Customer service representatives are available weekdays from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. 

Marin Transit operates daily. For schedules and trip-planning assistance, customers may visit marintransit.org or call 511 and say “Marin Transit.” Representatives are available weekdays from 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

SMART operates weekdays only. View the train schedule online at SonomaMarinTrain.org/schedules-fares. For questions or trip-planning assistance, contact the SMART Customer Service Center at 511 or 707-794-3330, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. weekdays, except holidays.

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL appreciates Marin Transit, Golden Gate Bridge District, and Sonoma-Marin Area Transit, working together in support of access to the vaccine for our communities.

 

Sharing from The National Center on Law & Elder Rights (NCLER)

Free Webcast: Assessing Legal Capacity: Strategies for an Elder Rights-Centered Approach

When: Wednesday, April 28, 2021, at 11:00-12:00 P.T./2:00-3:00 E.T.

This training will explore the elements of legal capacity and how capacity can be inferred from the Model Rules of Professional Conduct. Presenters will provide an overview of the ethical issues of representing a client with diminished capacity and explore strategies for advocates to conduct person-centered capacity assessments and provide services.

Presenters will share:

  • Elements of legal capacity and the relevant Model Rules of Professional Conduct;
  • Strategies to address unconscious bias in assessment of capacity;
  • Promising practices for incorporating decision supports and trauma-informed lawyering in capacity evaluations and representation; and
  • The latest updates to the ABA checklist for assessing legal capacity (the first major revision in 15 years).

Presenters:

  • David Godfrey, Senior Attorney, ABA Commission on Law and Aging
  • Vivianne Mbaku, Senior Staff Attorney, Justice in Aging

Closed captioning will be available on this webcast. A link with access to the captions will be shared through GoToWebinar’s chat box shortly before the webcast start time.

This training will be presented in a WEBCAST format to accommodate more participants. Due to the high volume of participants, computer audio will be the only option to listen to the presentation. No telephone call-in number will be provided. Please plan accordingly. Thank you. 

This webcast will be recorded and available on our website shortly after the presentation. The recording and training materials will also be emailed to all registrants within a few days after the training.

The webcast will take place on Wednesday, April 28, 2021, at 11:00 a.m. PT/2:00 p.m. ET and will run for one hour.

Register Here

 

A Tidbit from Me: This is such an important topic of rights. People, as we age, need to have a high quality of life and their wishes respected as much as possible even when they are experiencing conditions related to diminished capacity.

 

Sharing from the Pacific ADA Center via the DoNetwork

Introducing a New Webinar:
"ADA National Network Special Session: Vaccine Access for People with Disabilities: Guidance, Funding, Strategies and Best Practices"
April 22, 2021

Webinars begin 11:30 am PST

Registration: Free on-line at http://adapresentations.org/healthcare/registration.php

Registration closes at midnight, April 21, 2021.

All webinars offer captioning. Requests for sign language interpreters must be made the Monday before the webinar to support@adapacific.org.

For all other accessibility questions about Zoom webinar conferencing software, go to https://zoom.us/accessibility.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

Update from Disability and Older Adult Community Representative Members of the CA Vaccine Advisory Committee

Please join us on Friday, April 23, 2021, from 12:00 – 1:30pm PDT for an update on COVID-19 vaccines for disabled people and Older Adults. 

Presentations from:

Aaron Carruthers, State Council on Developmental Disabilities
Denny Chan, Justice in Aging
Andy Imparato, Disability Rights California
Christina Mills, California Foundation for Independent Living Centers
Silvia Yee, Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund

The discussion will include:

  • The CA Vaccine Advisory Committee and its role
     
  • Responding to the rapidly changing environment, including new scientific information, political announcements, barriers encountered
     
  • Ensuring equity for BIPOC
     
  • The role of community-based organizations, including centers for independent living
     
  • In-home vaccines
     
  • How California is doing compared to other states

Please register and submit questions for the
Zoom Question and Answers by using the button below:

 

REGISTER AND SUBMIT QUESTIONS

 

ASL, Spanish Interpretation and Real Time Captioning will be provided.

Source: DREDF

A Tidbit from Me: This will be a wonderful webinar. Each of these presenters have been steadfast advocates for people with disabilities and older adults to ensure that the healthcare and access needs of  our communities are addressed in the planning and implementation of California’s vaccine rollout.

Sharing from Marin CIL’s own Debra Howell our fabulous Registry Coordinator

REPAIR: A HEALTH AND DISABILITY JUSTICE ORGANIZATION

Join us on Thursday, 5/13/21 at 4pm PDT / 7pm EDT

for a screening of the new film:

 Disability and Cultural Activism

 

Register here

 

Featuring Q&A with filmmaker Emmitt Thrower

 

About the film: This 64 minute documentary starring Leroy F. Moore Jr., the founder of Krip Hop Nation, takes you on a journey of cultural activism by disabled abled artists. It chronicles the efforts of poet/artist/activist Leroy Moore in creating a mixtape CD around the issue of Police Brutality Against People with Disabilities.

 

This event is part of the virtual series "Imagining Change: Film and Dialogue About Disability, Racism, Violence, Gender and Power". The series is a collaboration between Repair and the UCLA Disability Studies program in conjunction with the UCLA Disability Inclusion Labs.

 

The film and discussion will be closed-captioned. For requests or questions related to disability access, contact us. Open to the public. Free/sliding-scale. Donation not required, but welcome to help support our work!

 For More Information: Repair


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Covid-19 Update, Webinars, Direct Support/ Covid-19, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 19, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

Happy Monday! I hope you are doing well today. A lot on my docket so time to get to it. Sending a hug and raising my coffee to you this morning. Tomorrow and Wednesday I will be in an all-day EOC training. The PM Morning Report will take a brief pause.

 

County of Marin Update from April 16th, 2021

Marin Witnesses Reduction in COVID-19 Cases Among LatinX Residents

As the Marin community prepares for a possible move to Tier 4 (“yellow status”) on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, Marin Public Health is reflecting on the considerable progress the community has made over the past few months.

Marin County’s progression towards the yellow tier is primarily due to reductions in cases among our Latinx residents, following concerted strategies to vaccinate residents in low income essential worker communities. While making up 16% of Marin county's population, people who identify and Hispanic or Latino make up 54% of all cases. Since the beginning of April, however, this pattern has reversed, with fewer cases among LatinX residents than their white counterparts in Marin. Today, 96 percent of LatinX residents above age 65 have been vaccinated with at least one dose, the highest rate of any group. [View data]

The success in removing barriers to vaccine is partly due to aggressive outreach strategies guided by the Marin County Vaccination Community Advisory Board, made up of representatives from vulnerable communities.

 

Public Health Monitoring Local “Breakthrough” Cases

Marin’s vaccination progress is well underway, with more than 72% of residents over the age of 16 already vaccinated with at least one dose of vaccine.  While Marin’s immunity levels are growing day-by-day, Marin Public Health is continuing to watch for rare breakthrough cases.

A “breakthrough” case is anyone who has a positive COVID-19 test two weeks or later after their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine. The CDC reports that vaccine breakthrough cases are expected.  COVID-19 vaccines are effective and are a critical tool to bring the pandemic under control. However, no vaccine is 100% effective at preventing illness and there’s a very small chance that people who are fully vaccinated could get sick with COVID-19. However, when they do occur, COVID-19 breakthrough cases are usually milder, shorter in duration and less likely to lead to hospitalization or death.

Vaccine breakthrough cases occur in only a small percentage of vaccinated persons. As of April 2, more than 80,000 people in Marin County had been fully vaccinated against COVID-19, with 21 breakthrough cases (or 0.02%) identified. Nationwide, more than 75 million people in the United States have been fully vaccinated, and only 5,814 reports (or 0.007%) of breakthrough infections. To date, no unexpected patterns have been identified in the case demographics or vaccine characteristics among people with reported vaccine breakthrough infections.

COVID-19 vaccines are effective. CDC recommends that all eligible people get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as one is available to them.  Find yours at GetVaccinatedMarin.org.

 

 

Get Vaccinated Marin: Appointments Available for Residents Age 16 & Over

The long-awaited day is here: everyone in Marin County, age 16 and older, is now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine, regardless of occupation or medical history.

If you are ready to make your appointment, visit Marin Public Health’s appointment webpage to book an appointment at Marin Center, Kerner Health and Wellness Campus, or Larkspur Ferry Terminal.  Or view a list of other vaccine providers in Marin County. Providers are opening new appointments multiple times per week, including next-day appointments.

WATCH ENGLISH VIDEO ON YOUTUBE

WATCH SPANISH VIDEO ON YOUTUBE

 

If you still have questions about the vaccine, we invite you attend one of our upcoming webinars where you can learn more about the vaccines and getting vaccinated, and the truth about some myths and misinformation.  The webinars are offered in English and Spanish each week through May 27.

Q&A in English:  Every Tuesday & Thursday, 9 a.m.

  -  Join on your computer or smartphonehttps://tinyurl.com/4z85kxf2

  -  Call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#

  -  View Event flyer

Q&A in Spanish: Every Thursday, 11 a.m.

  -  Join on your computer or smartphonehttps://tinyurl.com/yhkxss5z

  -  Or call (408) 638-0968 and use meeting code 9948 0065 846#

  -  View event flyer

 A Tidbit from Me: With vaccine breakthrough cases appearing in Marin and nationally it is more important than ever to follow local, state, and federal guidelines and remember to wear your mask! Marin CIL is proud to be part of the Marin Vaccine Community Advisory Committee and the Marin Vaccine Distribution Access and Functional Needs Taskforce together with other stakeholders working to advance equity and accessibility.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

Sharing from the SILC

From the Administration for Community Living

I am writing to provide you updates regarding staffing at the Administration on Disabilities (AoD).  As you may be aware, Reyma McCoy McDeid has left the Administration for Community Living.  Until a new Commissioner is appointed, AoD’s Deputy Commissioner, Jennifer Johnson, will lead AoD, as she has during other times of transition.

 

In addition, Corrina Stiles, who had been serving as the Director of the Office of Independent Living Programs (OILP), accepted a new position outside of ACL. We are beginning the process of hiring a new OILP Director (we’ll share the job announcement as soon as it is posted) and look forward to filling this position soon.   In the interim, Jennifer Johnson will also serve as the Acting Director of OILP.  The rest of the OILP team remains the same, with Sean Barrett as the Team Lead and the OILP staff serving as Project Officers.

 

David Jones, who is the Director of the Office on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (OIDD), will also serve as the Acting Director of the Office of Disability Service Innovations (ODSI) during this transition. The remainder of the teams in OIDD and ODSI remain the same:

 

  • OIDD:
  • Allison Cruz, Team Lead
  • Project Officers remain the same
  • ODSI:
  • Ophelia McLain, P&A Team Lead and Protecting Rights and Preventing Abuse Team Lead
  • Thom Campbell, Discretionary Grants Team Lead (PNS, TBI, PRC and LLRC)
  • Project Officers remain the same

 

Once the OILP Director position is filled, Jennifer will return to her role as ODSI Director.  We are committed to making this transition period as smooth as possible for AoD grantees and appreciate your collaboration.    

In the meantime, we remain focused on the unprecedented opportunities in front of us to advance community living and to advocate for full access and inclusion for all people, regardless of disability, age, race or ethnicity, income, or other factors that too often create barriers. I want to thank all of you for the crucial work you have been doing throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.  We were thrilled to receive funding from the CDC to ensure equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines for people with disabilities and older adults.  This is a first-ever partnership with CDC to invest in our networks, and we couldn’t have achieved this without being able to point to the impactful work you are already doing.  In addition, last week we released compendium of strategies and best practices for helping people with disabilities and older adults access COVID-19 vaccines, highlighting the many ways all of you have been a crucial resource and partner with state and local public health authorities.     

 

We are also focused on advancing the Administration’s priority to expand the home and community-based services (HCBS) that help people with disabilities live, work and fully participate in community life.  In addition to the recent $12.7 billion increase in HCBS funding in the American Rescue Plan, we were excited to see the focus on the care economy in the President’s American Jobs Plan, with proposals to significant expand HCBS funding and strengthen the direct care workforce. We are looking forward to working with the Administration, and with all of you, as these efforts move forward. 

 

Ensuring equity will continue to be at the forefront as we do all of this work.  As we begin implementing the President’s Executive Order on Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government, we are committed to ensuring that people with disabilities and older adults who are multiply marginalized are at the table, informing our work to address the long-standing barriers faced by people with disabilities and older adults.  We look forward to partnering with all of you, learning from your work, and creating opportunities our networks to collaborate in advancing equity.   

 

These opportunities in front of us are the direct result of the hard work and strong advocacy we have been doing together for many years.  I want to thank you for all you have done, and what you continue to do.  All of us at ACL look forward to our continued collaboration.

A Tidbit from Me: The Administration for Community Living was created around the fundamental principle that older adults and people of all ages with disabilities should be able to live where they choose, with the people they choose, and with the ability to participate fully in their communities.

By funding services and supports provided by networks of community-based organizations, and with investments in research, education, and innovation, ACL helps make this principle a reality for millions of Americans. -Administration for Community Living

 

 Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

Join today’s (April 19) national HoUSed campaign call from 2:30-4:00 pm ET. U.S. Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary for Community Economic Development Noel Andrés Poyo will provide updates on Treasury’s Homeownership Assistance Fund (HAF) and Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) programs. We will also get updates on advancing the HoUSed campaign’s priorities, hear about a study on evictions by large multistate landlords, get the latest from Capitol Hill and from the field, and more. Register for the call at: https://bit.ly/3ub2sWM

 

 

Sharing from CDCAN

TODAY 2:00 PM -  4:00 PM - SAFETY NET WORKGROUP OF THE DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES (DS) TASK FORCE ZOOM MEETING AND CALL

SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED  04/19/2021 05:00 AM PACIFIC TIME] -  Updates and next steps will be the focus of the Zoom meeting and call of the 29 member Safety Net Workgroup of the Developmental Services (DS) Task Force (under the Department of Developmental Services or DDS), scheduled for today (April 19th, Monday) at 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM (Pacific Time). 
    The issues around crisis response and safety net impacting people with developmental disabilities specifically has been - and continues to be - urgent and major concerns for advocates and policymakers, highlighted by recent events involving law enforcement and use of force in Los Angeles county and elsewhere across the state and nation. 
    The full Developmental Services (DS) Task Force is scheduled to meet next (via Zoom) for its monthly "check-in" meeting on April 29th, Thursday, at 1:00 to 2:30 PM (Pacific Time) (See separate CDCAN Report for details).
    The public and other non-workgroup members are welcome to participate in the Safety Net Workgroup meeting - though people will need to register first (see below for link) to be sent the meeting Zoom link - or people can just call-in directly using the Zoom call-in number (see below).    
    According to the meeting agenda, today's Zoom meeting and call will cover the following (see below for details)
    -  Background
    -  Safety Net Updates (December 2019 and July 2020 Safety Net Workgroup meeting summaries) that will also include updates on: 
       * Stabilization Training Assistance Reintegration (STAR)
       * Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources and Treatment (START)
       * Support for children and adolescents
       * Support for those transitioning from Porterville Secure Treatment Program
    - Discussion on following questions:
       *  Discussion Question 1: What strategies do you recommend to support first responders, regional centers, families and others in response to crisis events?
       * Discussion Question 2: What are the top 3 recommendations, from the previous work of this group, to move forward to the Developmental Services (DS) Task Force?

    According to the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) webpage, the Safety Net Workgroup is tasked with continuing "...the evaluation of, and make recommendations on, the developmental services safety net, to include crisis services through person-centered approaches." In the presentation document for the meeting today, the department further details the purpose of the Safety Net Workgroup that includes "discuss and make recommendations to improve the continuum of safety net and/or crisis services developed statewide including:
  • Assessment of the progress made to creating a safety net
  • Identifying areas for evaluation
  • Recommendations from the stakeholder community
  • Considerations of new models of care for individuals whom private sector vendors cannot, or will not, serve"

    An agenda, presentation and handouts were released Friday morning (April 16th) and sent to all th ose who had registered for the Zoom meeting -  though not yet posted on the department's workgroup webpage (see below for links to those webpages). Posting of those documents are expected soon.
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request, with "Subscribe CDCAN" in the subject line, to Marty Omoto at: martyomoto@att.net
WHEN: APRIL 19, 2021 - MONDAY  ***TODAY***
TIME: 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM (Pacific Time) 
AGENCY: DEPARTMENT OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES (DDS) 
WHAT: SAFETY NET WORKGROUP OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES TASK FORCE
FOCUS OF MEETING: 
PURPOSE OF THIS WORKGROUP: According to the department "the Safety Net Workgroup will continue evaluation of, and make recommendations on, the developmental services safety net, to include crisis services through person-centered approaches."
IN-PERSON MEETING LOCATION: No
ZOOM LINK - REGISTER FOR MEETING:
https ://cal-dds.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_j33tc6WFT1u3omT7PGAbFg

A Tidbit from Me: The Covid-19 pandemic impacted the independence of people with disabilities and older adults. This meeting is important. While it focuses on the Regional Center system this is a cross-disability issue. During Covid-19 there was a shortage of homecare/direct-care workers. This impacted many including myself. Many people like myself were able to adjust staffing to have our support/care needs met however there were many others who were not able to through no fault of their own. As we advocate for strengthening and expanding initiatives in Long-term services and supports we must put systems in place for the next large scale emergency, including a pandemic to ensure that people with disabilities and older adults have the services they need during these types of events.

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

Providing Direct Support to Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities During the Pandemic

The Institute on Community Integration’s Research and Training Center on Community Living for Persons with intellectual and Developmental Disabilities at the University of Minnesota, in partnership with the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals, conducted a survey of approximately 9,000 direct support professionals (DSPs) from across the country about their experiences supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) during the COVID-19 pandemic. DSPs are interdisciplinary professionals who provide complex and essential supports to individuals with IDD, making community inclusion a reality.

This is a six-month follow-up report to the initial report completed in April 2020 and is the largest study conducted on the direct support workforce.

Key findings include:

• Nearly half (47%) said they had been exposed to COVID-19 at work and their exposure was higher in congregate facilities than in individual or family homes.

• 97% of workers self-identified as essential workers, but only 30% received salary augmentations.

• Black/African American DSPs were paid less per hour than white DSPs, and a higher percentage of Black/African American DSPs worked 40 or more additional hours per week.

For full report: Providing Direct Support to Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities During the Pandemic

 


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Marin Lessening Restrictions for Gathering, DREDF Q&A Vaccine


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 16, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope each of you is doing well on this wonderful Friday. It is the end of the week and we made it almost to the finish line! Sending a smile and a virtual elbow bump. Here is the PM Morning Report for you today. Wishing you a wonderful weekend.  

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 15, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.

 

With Precautions, Larger Gatherings to be Allowed

The rules about social gatherings, live-audience events, and other activities are loosening as COVID-19 infections decline and vaccination rates increase in Marin County and statewide.

Beginning April 15, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has revised its private gatherings guidance to allow larger numbers of people to gather beyond the former three-household restriction. The allowable size of a gathering is tied to a county’s tier within the Blueprint for a Safer Economy

For Marin, currently in Tier 3 or orange status, the new guidance allows outdoor gatherings of up to 50 people while maintaining standard precautions such as the wearing of face coverings and social distancing. Indoor gatherings are strongly discouraged, but may occur with up to 25 people or 25% of the stated capacity of the indoor space (whichever is fewer) so long as windows and doors are open for ventilation and guests follow guidance for mask wearing, physical distancing, and food consumption.

Marin has a chance to enter the yellow Tier 4 next week if numbers continue to improve. That would allow greater numbers to gather both indoors and outdoors.

Read the County’s full news release, or subscribe to receive all County news releases.

 A Tidbit from Me: With Marin County now in the next phase of opening up this is yet another positive step forward as we navigate coming together in person and in community. On a personal note as an extrovert I couldn’t be more thrilled, with that said we need to be  mindful of the health of our whole community. Please wear your mask and stay safe. We have come a long way, let’s keep this momentum moving forward. As my late mother would often say….make good decisions.

Coronavirus & Homelessness: Next Steps

COVID-19 has exacerbated local homelessness, which is another critical public health issue. The State of California’s Project HomeKey builds on the success of an earlier program and is the next phase in the response to protecting Californians experiencing homelessness who are at high risk for serious illness and are impacted by COVID-19. With state funding, the County of Marin now has two locations – existing buildings in Corte Madera and San Rafael – targeted to provide permanent supportive housing. The upcoming effort is being called HomeKey 2.0.

You have a chance to share your thoughts & ideas about this. The County is co-hosting an online series of community information sessions running through April 22. The goal is to review successes from the first HomeKey process (aka HomeKey 1.0) and the tentative process and timeline for HomeKey 2.0. Community members can find the schedule and details at www.marincounty.org/homekey or provide feedback through an online survey.

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Novato takes new look at homeless housing program

By WILL HOUSTON | whouston@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 14, 2021 at 8:35 a.m. | UPDATED: April 15, 2021 at 5:51 p.m.

After a tumultuous and failed attempt to bring state-funded housing for homeless to Novato last year, city leaders said they are open to Gov. Gavin Newsom’s proposed expansion of the program so long as past problems are not repeated.

In his 2021-2022 budget proposal, Newsom asks the state Legislature to allocate $750 million for a second round of funding for Project Homekey. The program, which launched last year, gave state grants to cities and counties to swiftly acquire and convert hotels and other buildings into permanent housing for homeless residents.

Marin County received $8.6 million from the first round of Project Homekey funding, which it used to buy a commercial office in San Rafael and a Corte Madera inn to create 66 new homes. Most of the funding was provided from the federal coronavirus relief bill known as the CARES Act.

The county had also sought to purchase the Inn Marin and Suites in Novato to house homeless families, but county officials said they could not agree on a sale price with the owners. Novato city leaders and residents were rankled by the fact that Project Homekey would have allowed the county to buy the inn without having to receive any city approvals or undergo normal city vetting that often can take years to complete. The state also imposed a rapid timeline for the county to purchase the property, giving the city just a few weeks to weigh in on the county’s proposed purchase.

For full article: Novato takes new look at homeless housing program

 

A Tidbit from Me: As I talked about previously, homelessness has affected many families including my own. That is one of the reasons why I am such a proponent of and so proud of Marin CIL’s, as well as other community efforts, support of Project Roomkey and Project Homekey. People who experience housing challenges or homelessness are valued members of our communities. Many are people with disabilities. In the Independent Living Movement they are considered our brothers and sisters. During the Covid-19 pandemic the need for our safety-net services have greatly increased especially the need for housing. To get involved in Marin CIL’s housing and other initiatives please reach out to us.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

 

Sharing from the California SILC

Join the National I&R Support Center next week for a webinar on One Year In: COVID-19 Information Resources for Aging and Disabilities Programs. This webinar is scheduled for Thursday, April 22, 2021, from 4:00-5:00p.m. Eastern time.

 

COVID-19 has disproportionately affected many groups, especially older adults and the large population of people in the United States living with a disability. While vaccines offer hope for return to community and social engagement, needs remain high and vaccination access can be hampered by a myriad of barriers. Information and Referral/Assistance programs and aging and disabilities agencies broadly have experienced a year of deep challenges to support older adults and people with disabilities through this time of COVID. Join the webinar to enhance your understanding of risks for populations you serve, learn about vaccine distribution nationally, and consider what lies ahead. See data on the impacts COVID-19 has had on I&R/A programs. Hear from the Georgia Institute of Technology Center for Inclusive Design and Innovation about accessible materials and resources from existing CDC COVID-19 guidance developed for disability audiences. Leave with real-time resources for you to access as the field collectively works to distribute vital health information to those who need it most.

 

Presenters:

  • Martha Roherty, Executive Director, ADvancing States
  • Liz Persaud, Program and Outreach Manager, Tools for Life, Georgia’s Assistive Technology Program, Center for Inclusive Design and Innovation, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Nanette Relave, Senior Director, National I&R Support Center, ADvancing States
  • Elaine Sawyer, Senior Policy Associate, ADvancing States

 

Real-time captioning will be provided for this webinar. 

 

Pre-registration is required for this webinar. Space is limited so make sure to register as soon as possible.

 

To register:

1. Visit the registration webpage         

 

2. Click "Register" (next to Event Status or near the bottom of the webpage)

 

3. On the registration form, enter your information and then click "Submit".

 

Sharing from AAPD

2020 NBC Universal Tony Coelho Media Scholarship


Thanks to a generous contribution from NBCUniversal, the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is proud offer eight (8) NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarships for the fall semester of 2021.

The NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarship is available to undergraduate and graduate students with disabilities who are pursuing an interest in the media, entertainment, or communications fields. Each recipient will receive $5,625 to help cover the cost of education.

This scholarship has been named in honor of Tony Coelho, a former United States Representative from California and the primary author and sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

For more information please visit the AAPD website.


 DEADLINE:  May 20, 2021

 

Apply Today!

A Tidbit from Me: This is a great opportunity for youth with disabilities! Please share far and wide!

 

Sharing from Disability Rights and Education Defense Fund (DREDF)

Virtual Question & Answers on Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine at Home

Please join us on Monday, April 19, 2021, from 10:00 – 11:00am PDT for a Virtual Question & Answer session on Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine at Home with Tri Do, MD, Medical Director at Community Health Center Network and Professor of Medicine at UC San Francisco, and Ben Chen, Developmental Disabilities Coordinator, Alameda County Developmental Disabilities Planning and Advisory Council.

Dr. Do and Mr. Chen serve on the Alameda County Vaccine Community Advisory Council.

Please register and submit questions for the
Zoom Question and Answers by using the button below:

Register Here

 

 

ASL, Spanish Interpretation and Real Time Captioning will be provided.

A Tidbit from Me: DREDF is one of my favorite freedom fighters! DREDF, together with the California Foundation of Independent Living Centers (Marin CIL’s membership organization), the California State Council on Developmental Disabilities, Disability Rights California, and Justice in Aging, serve on the California Covid-19 Community Vaccine Advisory Committee. Together they have played a pivotal role in advocating for the health and access needs of our communities in the planning and roll-out of the Covid-19 vaccine.  


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Several Great Updates, Covid-19 Vaccine Guidance, Babies Can Be Heroes Too, and much More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 15, 2021

Good Afternoon my Family in Community,

Below is your special early afternoon edition of the PM Morning Report. A lot going on today….lots of meetings and getting ready to do two presentations later this afternoon. Enjoy the read. Sending you love and hugs. I appreciate all you do for our communities.

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 14, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.

 

Vaccine Eligibility Opens to People Age 16 & Older

The day has come: all Marin County residents age 16 and older are now eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, regardless of occupation or medical history. Everyone is encouraged to schedule an appointment through the County’s website GetVaccinatedMarin.org.

The County is continuing its intensive outreach efforts to ensure that communities most impacted by COVID-19 have ready access to vaccine appointments and information. This includes prioritizing a portion of vaccine for groups and communities who have been disproportionally impacted by COVID-19 infection and those most at risk of serious outcomes.  This will protect not just those who are vaccinated but reduce additional community transmission. [Learn more]

 

Blueprint Update: Marin Remains in Orange

Yesterday, California Department of Public Health (CDPH) provided another update on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for reducing COVID-19 and keeping Californians healthy and safe.

In general, 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 all three measures for the prior two consecutive weeks in order to progress to the next tier.

While Marin County remains in Orange Tier 3 for now, CDPH confirmed Marin has met the Yellow Tier 4 criteria for one week. If Marin’s data continues to improve, Marin could move into Tier 4 as early as Wednesday, April 21. You can track Marin’s progress by viewing our Blueprint for a Safer Economy dashboard, which is updated each Tuesday afternoon to reflect CDPH’s calculations.

 

Assistance Available for COVID-related Funeral Expenses

The federal government is assisting families with funeral expenses for COVID-19-related deaths that took place after January 20, 2020. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has begun accepting applications to receive up to $9,000 in reimbursements. Eligible applicants may apply by calling (844) 684-6333 or TTY (800) 462-7585 weekdays from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Pacific time. Applicants must provide FEMA with a copy of a death certificate, proof of funeral expenses incurred, and proof of funeral assistance received from any other source.

 

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from the Marin Commission on Aging

 

The Marin County Commission on Aging presents this special webinar designed to promote an understanding of Telehealth - the new normal – and what the County is doing to provide wider access throughout Marin. 

 

During this webinar, you will:

 

  • Learn about the emerging role of Telehealth in our lives today - and what it will look like in the future.  Speaker: Ariana Myers, VP Health, Donisi Health, a global company at the forefront of contact-free health monitoring;
  • Understand from a Marin physician about the rewards and challenges of providing virtual care to patients;
  • Hear about the virtual strategies the County has deployed to insure delivery of vital services during COVID-19.  Speaker: Benita McLarin, Director of Marin Health & Human Services;
  • Become aware of the challenges and inequities the digital divide has created in Marin, especially in terms of access to healthcare.  Speaker: Dennis Rodoni, President, Marin County Board of Supervisors;
  • Hear about “Digital Marin,” a project that’s already starting to bridge the county’s digital divide.  Speaker: Liza Massey, Marin County Chief Information Officer.

 

Participant fee has been waived.   For more information, email: TelehealthWebinar@gmail.com

 

To register for this event, click here.

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Tam district trustees split on Drake renaming process

By KERI BRENNER | kbrenner@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 14, 2021 at 5:29 p.m. | UPDATED: April 14, 2021 at 6:59 p.m.

After three hours and more than 40 impassioned public comments at a Tamalpais Union High School District board meeting this week, trustees remain deeply divided over what should be done to rename Sir Francis Drake High School.

Board members, speaking for the first time publicly after nine months of the controversy, said Tuesday they all wanted Drake’s name removed from the San Anselmo high school because of the 16th century English mercenary’s ties with slavery.

But they split on whether they approved of the process underway by the Drake Leadership Council, a school panel that has been working on the issue since September. The board took no action Tuesday, instead letting the panelists decide among themselves on a way forward.

“Drake spent eight years on slave voyages — those representing a time of reprehensible behavior,”  trustee Kevin Saavedra said.  “The process should have taken that information and compelled the community to see it. They’ve not done that. It needs to be done right.”

He and trustee Dan Oppenheim said they supported a do-over that would be more inclusive of the district’s 87,000 residents as well as hundreds of graduates who live locally or elsewhere. The restarted process should include adding Sir Francis Drake as an option for a name choice, Saavedra said.

“There is no name I would approve of through this process,” he said, referring to the school panel’s work so far.

Board president Leslie Harlander and trustee Cynthia Roenisch disagreed.

“I don’t have a problem with the process,” Roenisch said. “We need to recognize that people are human. There’s been extensive community outreach. Some people who are commenting on the process are actually commenting on the result, because they disagree with the result.”

Harlander said she didn’t think starting over or taking a vote of the community would be productive.

For full article: Tam district trustees split on Drake renaming process

A Tidbit from Me: The Independent Living Movement is first and foremost a social justice movement. I am sharing this conversation with you today: it is important for our work in disability rights for us to be listening to other community conversations.

 

Stanford begins testing Pfizer vaccine in babies and young children

How vaccine trials on very young will help stamp out COVID-19

By LISA M. KRIEGER | lkrieger@bayareanewsgroup.com |

PUBLISHED: April 15, 2021 at 6:00 a.m. | UPDATED: April 15, 2021 at 7:00 a.m.

The littlest research volunteers arrived at Stanford University on Wednesday, accompanied by their parents, to participate in a pivotal study of the COVID-19 vaccine in very young children.

“We want our kids to be protected from the virus, and not to spread it to others if they do get infected,” said Zinaida Good of Palo Alto, whose 3-year-old son Andel sat still for a shot, then went home to play and take a nap. The family’s 7-month-old baby Soren is scheduled for a shot next month.

The goal of the trial at Stanford Health Care, the only site on the West Coast to test the Pfizer vaccine in children younger than 5, is to identify the strongest dose with the fewest side effects.

As adult vaccinations expand, an increasing number of grownups can socialize, blissfully mask-free. About 75 million American adults are now fully vaccinated.

But children remain unprotected.

The lack of youth vaccines affects the general population, not just individual families, said experts. Because about one-quarter of all Americans are under the age of 18, the nation won’t reach herd immunity without inoculating young people.

“We want to make sure that children have access to vaccines not just for themselves but for the community,” said Dr. Yvonne Maldonado, a Stanford professor of pediatrics and infectious disease and the principal investigator of the trial.

If the research is successful and vaccines are authorized, “the kids will contribute to the community ‘force field’ against COVID,” said Dr. Peter Chin-Hong, a professor of medicine and infectious disease specialist at UC San Francisco, who is not involved in the Stanford research. “We need everyone in the population immunized.”

Chin-Hong, a father of two, said there is an additional concern: Children’s potential vulnerability to new variants.

For full article: Stanford begins testing Pfizer vaccine in babies and young children

A Tidbit from Me: I want to honor our youngest researchers and their families who are working for the common good and for the benefit of public health. The PM Morning Report honors and appreciates our youngest Covid-19 heroes.

Sharing from the Tam Adult School

Tam Adult School online “Home Care Aide Basics” class to be held on Zoom on Tuesdays and Thursdays mornings (9:00am – 11:30am) from May 25 – June 29, 2021.  The course is free of charge and will culminate with an online Job Fair on Tuesday, June 29.  If you have any questions the contact information is on the handout. Register Here

For More Information: Tam Adult School

A Tidbit from Me: There is a significant shortage of home care workers to support the independence of people with disabilities and older adults. Marin CIL appreciates the Tam Adult School for holding this important class that will benefit so many of our community members.

 

Sharing from CalABLE

CalABLE Basics

Date: Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Time: 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM (PT)

Whether you are thinking about opening a CalABLE account, are new to the Program, or just need a refresher on how it all works, this webinar is for you. CalABLE Basics will discuss:

  • Eligibility
  • Contributions
  • Qualified Disability Expenses
  • Savings and Investment Options
  • Opening an Account
  • ...and more

CalABLE Ambassador Miguel Lugo will also speak about his experience with the Program and how he is using his account to help meet his financial goals. As always, the webinar will conclude with a Q&A session to give participants an opportunity to ask additional questions.

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. To join via telephone:

  1. Call +1 (669) 900-6833
  2. Enter Webinar ID: 976 1116 6498

For those who are unable to make the live broadcast, a replay of the webinar will be made available via our YouTube channel at a later date.

If you have any questions, please contact us at calable@treasurer.ca.gov

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

Register to attend NLIHC’s 2021 Housing Leadership Awards Celebration, to be held virtually, free to the public, on Wednesday, April 28, 4-5 pm ET, to honor the 2021 Housing Leadership Awards honorees: the Housing Justice Network of the National Housing Law Project; Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH), chair of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee; Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA), chair of the House Financial Services Committee; and Joy Johnson, long-time resident leader of the Charlottesville Public Housing Association of Residents (PHAR) and former NLIHC board member. Register to attend at: https://bit.ly/LEADERS21

 

Disaster Housing Recovery Update, Wednesday, April 14, 2021

The NLIHC-led Disaster Housing Recovery Coalition is convening and supporting disaster-impacted communities to ensure that federal disaster recovery efforts reach all impacted households, including the lowest-income and most marginalized people who are often the hardest-hit by disasters and have the fewest resources to recover.

Please note that NLIHC hosts weekly national calls on coronavirus, disaster, housing, and homelessness on Mondays at 2:30pm. The call is this coming Monday, April 19, from 2:30pm to 4:00pm ET. Register for the call here: https://tinyurl.com/ru73qan

 

Sharing from the California State Independent Living Council

Senate democratic leadership unveiled their budget priorities called, “Build Back Boldly Senate Democrat Priorities.”   Here is the link to the document on the Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review’s webpage. Build Back Boldly Budget Priorities

The Senate plan calls for permanent repeal of the 7% cut to IHSS.  There are other pieces, like reform of the Medi-Cal asset test, that will also be of interest.

 

Sharing from the Association on Community Living

New Legal Guidance and Resources to Ensure -- and Expand -- Access to COVID-19 Vaccines for People with Disabilities and Older Adults

April 13, 2021

As part of a shared commitment to President Biden’s National Strategy and Executive Order to ensure an equitable COVID-19 response, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR), the Administration for Community Living (ACL), and the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have published several new resources to help states, vaccination providers, and others leading COVID-19 response activities improve access to vaccines for people with disabilities and older adults. These resources clarify legal requirements, illustrate some of the barriers to vaccine access faced by people with disabilities and older people, and provide strategies – and examples of how the aging and disability network can help employ them – to ensure accessibility. (See the announcement from HHS.)

The Office for Civil Rights released new guidance outlining legal standards under the federal civil rights laws prohibiting disability discrimination and providing concrete examples of the application of the legal standards in the context of COVID-19 vaccine programs and how to implement them. OCR also issued a fact sheet setting out specific steps that those involved in the planning and distribution of vaccines to combat the COVID-19 pandemic may wish to consider to promote compliance with disability rights laws and provide access to vaccination programs for people with disabilities. Earlier COVID-19 guidance from OCR addressed civil rights protections prohibiting discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, and civil rights of persons with limited English proficiency.

Source: New Legal Guidance and Resources to Ensure -- and Expand -- Access to COVID-19 Vaccines for People with Disabilities and Older Adults

 

Upcoming Webinars:


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Covid-19, Johnson and Johnson and More, Important Youth Mental Health Summit, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 14, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are doing well today. My phone rang early this morning….Marin CIL’s advocacy bureau was hopping. As I am writing this I am finishing one cup of coffee and getting my second one ready. It’s a two cup of coffee day. Sending you an elbow bump and a smile. Have a wonderful day!

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 13, 2021 

 

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.  

 

Video: COVID-19 Update to the Board of Supervisors 

 

Earlier today, Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis provided a COVID-19 response update to the Marin County Board of Supervisors. In his talk, he reviewed current COVID-19 data and the “cautious optimism” they are providing; vaccination progress; Marin’s continued status in Tier 3 (orange) in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy; the possibility of moving to Tier 4 (yellow) by next week; and more. 

WATCH ON YOUTUBE 

 

Statement on Pause of Johnson & Johnson Vaccine 

 

Marin County Public Health has paused local use of the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine at the request of U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) following a report of six cases of a rare type of blood clot in individuals who received the J&J COVID-19 vaccine. We will safely store all available J&J supply until FDA and CDC conclude their investigation of the product.  

 

In Marin County, J&J COVID-19 vaccine doses account for less than 3% of our cumulative vaccine allocation. The temporary halt will mainly impact our mobile operations, where J&J’s one dose increased vaccination capacity. Starting today, mobile teams will resume using Pfizer and Moderna to continue our efforts to vaccinate harder to reach groups. 

 

We have experienced a “pause” once before, when on January 17, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued an advisory to pause administration of a specific lot of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine after some adverse reactions were observed at a vaccine site in Southern California.  In that event, all Marin County vaccine providers held unused Moderna doses until they were given the “all clear” to safely resume use from CDPH about one week later.  

 

We are encouraged to see that the vaccine monitoring and surveillance systems are functioning as intended to ensure the safety of all vaccine recipients across the U.S.  While CDC and FDA investigate these cases carefully, we encourage everyone who is eligible to continue pursuing either a Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. The COVID-19 vaccine remains a safe and powerful tool in our COVID-19 pandemic-ending toolkit, along with wearing a mask, watching your distance and washing your hands frequently. 

For more information: Sharing from the State Council on Developmental Disabilities

An Important Health Update about the Johnson & Johnson Vaccine

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are reviewing data involving six U.S. cases of a rare type of blood clot in individuals after receiving the Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 vaccine that were reported to the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS). You can read the official health alert at https://emergency.cdc.gov/han/2021/han00442.asp.

 

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has directed health care providers to pause the use of the J&J vaccine until further direction from health and safety experts. If you are scheduled to receive the J&J vaccine, please contact your healthcare provider, vaccination location, or clinic to learn about additional vaccine availability.

 

If you received this vaccine, the CDC recommends:

 

  1. If you have received the J&J COVID-19 vaccine and develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination, contact your healthcare provider, or seek medical care.
  2. Report adverse events following receipt of any COVID-19 vaccine to VAERS.

A Tidbit from Me: The PM Morning Report wants to express appreciation to Marin Public Health for following CDC guidance and pausing the Johnson and Johnson Vaccine out of an abundance of caution. I know this raises some confusion and concern for our community members who received the Johnson and Johnson vaccine or were planning on requesting this vaccine. Marin CIL serves on the Marin Community Vaccine Distribution Committee and the AFN Vaccine Taskforce. We will share with our community the latest information about this issue as soon as we have more information.  

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:  

 

 

 

Sharing from the Marin VOAD

What Helps Me Youth Art Campaign and Youth Mental Health Summit

 

This past year has been a rollercoaster of emotions for all of us. Now, more than ever, mental health for youth needs to be a priority. Our community has been impacted by suicide and mental health issues. But we can reverse this ripple effect!  Please share the opportunities below.

 

The Board of Supervisors (BOS) Intern Team and Mental Health Subcommittee of the Marin County Youth Commission (MCYC) want to invite Marin youth to celebrate May Mental Month by participating in two events: 

 

What Helps Me Art Campaign

Starting on April 1st, the BOS Intern Team will be hosting the What Helps Me Art Campaign for youth in Marin – we’re inviting you to tell your story of emotions and mental health through art. You can create a drawing, painting, poem, dance, sculpture, music, video, or any other art form that helps you express your message and feelings. Pick one (or more) of the following prompts to inspire your art. 

 

1. What helps me with ___ (ex: anxiety, stress, anger, etc.)

2. What gives me ___ (ex: joy, strength, hope, inspiration, etc.)

3. What works for me?

4. What am I thankful for?

5. How does it feel/look like when you are struggling?

6. What keeps me grounded during stressful times?

 

Visit the campaign webpage to submit your art until May 15 to be showcased during May Mental Health Month on social media as well as County websites. Importantly, you will be promoting the importance of mental health among youth in Marin and helping to start important discussions in our community. Note that art will be submitted anonymously, so no names will be shown with art when showcased.

 

Youth Mental Health Summit

The Marin County Youth Commission’s Mental Health Subcommittee is inviting you to the Second Youth Mental Health Summit on May 1st & 2nd from 10 am-12 pm via zoom. We are hosting this summit for 50 young people (8th-12th grade) from all over the county to attend. Please see the attached flyer for more information.

 

During these two interactive and youth-led sessions, participants will learn about demystifying mental health, suicide prevention, and how to support themselves and their peers with mental health struggles. We will also be sharing many resources to empower youth. We will have guest speakers and FREE goodie bags! Translation services in Spanish will be provided. In the spirit of equity we will be choosing students from different schools, race, ethnicities, backgrounds and gender identities. All are welcome but space is limited. Applications due April 19th. Participants will be notified by April 22nd if they are accepted. Fill out this form to apply.  

 

For any questions about the Youth Mental Health Summit, please reach out to Samantha Ramirez, Youth Commission Coordinator, at sramirez@yli.org and for questions about the art campaign,  please reach out to Nancy Vernon at nvernon@marincounty.org. Contact Sam or Nancy for a short presentation about these events to your organization, school, or group.

 

In Community and With Love,

 

Marin County Youth Commission and BOS Intern Team

 

If you are concerned about yourself or someone you know, please contact:

 

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

Lifeline Crisis Chat: www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org (available 24/7)

Need help now? Text "START" to 741-741

BHRS Access Line: 1-888-818-1115

 

All are available 24/7.

A Tidbit from Me: Please share this far and wide. The PM Morning Report loves this collaboration between the County of Marin and the Marin County Youth Commission’s Mental Health Subcommittee. It is so important to have innovative ways to support the youth members of our community especially now. I love art.

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin County Planning Commission approves Bolinas housing

By MARIN INDEPENDENT JOURNAL |

PUBLISHED: April 13, 2021 at 3:54 p.m. | UPDATED: April 13, 2021 at 4:51 p.m.

The Marin County Planning Commission voted 5-1 on Monday to approve an eight-apartment affordable housing development in Bolinas.

The Bolinas Community Land Trust plans to build the two, two-story buildings on its unoccupied 2-acre property at 31 Wharf Road. Commissioner Don Dickenson cast the dissenting vote.

The apartments would be reserved for low- and very low-income tenants. Two business spaces would also be available on the first floor of one of the buildings.

The land trust plans to relocate its office into one of them. The commission’s approval can be appealed to the Board of Supervisors by the end of Saturday.

Source: Marin County Planning Commission approves Bolinas housing

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL would like to express our appreciation to the Marin County Planning Commission for moving this much needed housing forward. At Marin CIL we hear from our valued community members every day about the need for more affordable and accessible housing; especially for our valued members who are low or very low income. People with disabilities and older adults are valued community members and make great tenants. If you have available housing please consider reaching out to Marin CIL when looking for tenants.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights California

Settlement Reached Between Disability Rights California and San Benito County to Improve the County’s Behavioral Health System

Apr 13, 2021

Hollister, CA) On February 26, 2021, Disability Rights California and San Benito County reached a comprehensive settlement agreement that not only addresses the rights of individuals placed on an involuntary psychiatric hold pursuant to California Welfare and Institutions Code § 5150 (“5150”) but also expands the resources and services available to assist individuals experiencing a mental health crisis in the home and/or community.

“This Agreement ensures individuals served by San Benito County Behavioral Health can receive needed services in the home and community, helping to prevent unnecessary 5150s and hospitalizations,” said Nicholas Levenhagen, Senior Attorney with Disability Rights California. 

The settlement agreement is the result of months of negotiations that was guided by the findings and recommendations of an independent subject matter expert who conducted a review of the county’s behavioral health system. This review included interviews with San Benito County Behavioral Health (“SBCBH”) leadership and staff, confidential interviews with individuals served by SBCBH and their families, and an evaluation of SBCBH records, policies, and procedures.

Based on the expert’s findings and recommendations, the final settlement includes structural and personnel changes, an expansion of SBCBH services in the home and community, updates to SBCBH policies and procedures, and improves training and collaboration with other agencies.

Some important highlights from the settlement include:

  • The County will continue using a Crisis Hot-Line and implement a Crisis Response Team (CRT) to respond to the needs of individuals experiencing a mental health crisis in the home, workplace, or other community-based location in a timely manner.
  • SBCBH will work towards conducting mental health assessments at a client’s place of residence or in a clinical setting, whenever possible, within six months.
  • The County has contracted for crisis residential services for adults, children, and youth.
  • The County will provide a community-based space where individuals in crisis may go if they could benefit from a calm environment supported by peers, as available (“Warm Room”).
  • The County will work on expanding supportive housing for individuals in need of mental health services.
  • The County will continue to work collaboratively with the San Benito County Jail staff to ensure that individuals receiving mental health services released from San Benito County Jail have documented discharge planning, continuity of medications, and appropriate follow-up appointments with providers.

The agreement also recognizes that Section 5150 provides for detention for up to 72 hours only and that all possible steps will be taken to either safely release a 5150 hold, or transfer an individual to an LPS designated facility when a bed is available or alternative placement prior to the expiration of 72 hours.

DRC attorney Anne Hadreas notes: “This agreement provides a valuable model that other small counties in California may follow to help divert individuals experiencing a mental health crisis from being placed on an involuntary hold at a hospital or facility.”

SBCBH notes: San Benito County Behavioral Health (SBCBH) strives to provide access and quality services to the public. The recommendations made by Disability Rights California are closely aligned with San Benito County’s goal to create innovative projects for our beneficiaries. In our efforts to increase the amount and quality of services that are available, we are committed to continue working on expanding our current services as well as implementing new ones. SBCBH will soon be relocating to a new building that will provide a fresh look for our main clinic with modern space for clients to receive their services. SBCBH will continue our commitment to providing quality services and with increased access to services to the community.

Additional details of the final settlement agreement and the expert’s final report can be viewed here.

Source: https://www.disabilityrightsca.org/press-release/settlement-reached-between-disability-rights-california-and-san-benito-county-to

A Tidbit from Me: DRC is one of my favorite organizations. We need to do more to support behavioral health. This is an issue of equity and rights.


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Covid19, Marin Poised to Expand Eligibility, Tonight: YO! Disabled and Proud Event with Alice Wong


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 13, 2021

Good Morning my Wonderful Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well today. On the move this morning. Here is the morning report for you today. As I write this report I am raising my cup of coffee to you. Sending an elbow bump and a smile to you this morning.

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: April 12, 2021

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.

 

Kaiser, County Create Vaccination Super Site

Effective April 13, Kaiser Permanente (KP) will team up with Marin County Public Health to provide COVID-19 vaccinations by appointment at the Marin County Fairgrounds in San Rafael.

KP has operated a high-volume vaccination site at the Terra Linda High School gym since late February, administering 63,000 doses. With the school preparing to reopen for in-classroom instruction, KP will be relocating its vaccination operations.

As KP joins, the layout and flow of the County Fairgrounds operation have been redesigned for efficient flow of an anticipated higher total volume of patients each day.

See the County’s news release.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin poised to widen COVID vaccine eligibility to all adults

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 12, 2021 at 6:33 p.m. | UPDATED: April 12, 2021 at 6:35 p.m.

Anyone age 16 and older in Marin will be eligible for a coronavirus vaccine on Thursday and should be able to get at least one shot by mid-May, the county’s public health officer said.

“We’re well-positioned to open it up completely,” Dr. Matt Willis said.

About 50,000 residents will qualify for shots for the first time Thursday, which comes two weeks after the county expanded eligibility to include everyone age 50 and older on April 1.

People who will become eligible later this week can schedule appointments immediately, but the ability to book a vaccination slot will depend on availability, Willis said. Appointments can be made at GetVaccinatedMarin.org and at MyTurn.ca.gov.

Marin’s vaccine supply had been growing steadily as more people qualified for shots, but the county’s allotment shrunk this week — by more than 30% from the week prior — because of a statewide shortage of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, Willis said. California health officials said the state expected to receive about 90% fewer Johnson & Johnson doses from the federal government this week.

“This is a temporary downstream effect of the loss of 15 million Johnson & Johnson doses in Maryland,” Willis said.

Last week, Johnson & Johnson said one batch of the vaccine, manufactured at Emergent BioSolutions’ site in Baltimore, did not meet the company’s quality standards and was “never advanced to the filling and finishing stages of our manufacturing process.”

For full article: Marin poised to widen COVID vaccine eligibility to all adults

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

California Early Start Baby Line 1-800-515-BABY

If you have questions about your infant or toddler’s development (or other children such as your grandchildren or those under your care) you are in luck because the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) and the Interagency Coordinating Council (ICC) have FREE resources for parents, grandparents, family members, and professionals so they can learn more about early intervention and, if needed, how to get connected to the best services possible. This is so important that California’s first ever Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, has a public service announcement (PSA) that she would like to share far and wide. Dr. Burke Harris is a pediatrician and knows just how critical early intervention services are to ensuring the best possible outcomes for infants and toddlers who may need support in their development. The PSA can be found on DDS’ You Tube page here:  https://youtu.be/j5U_bCp7y40. The video also features closed captioning in English and Spanish.

Please share this PSA with everyone you know because you never know who might benefit, but we do know that EARLY INTERVENTION MAKES A DIFFERENCE!

Source: California Early Start Baby Line 1-800-515-BABY

 

Sharing from Disability Voices United

All In for Self-Determination!

A Statewide Virtual Conference on

California’s Self-Determination Program

Friday - Sunday half days

April 16 - 18, 2021

Join self-advocates, family members, independent facilitators, FMSs, regional center staff, service providers, advocates, and anyone else interested in the Self-Determination Program!

 

The conference will include keynote speeches by key leaders in California, panels of self-determination experts, and numerous breakout sessions for beginner, intermediate, and advanced self-determined individuals and their supporters.

 

The conference will take place on an innovative platform that gives conference attendees the ability to network with other participants as well as virtually visit all of the “booths” in our Expo. Our amazing Expo will include FMSs, independent facilitators, service providers, and advocates who can help you get started in your self-determination journey.

 

Registration Costs

$50 - Individuals served by regional centers and their family members

($75 starting on March 20)

 

$100 - All others

($100 starting on March 20)

 

Conference registration includes access to the conference platform and participation in all sessions and Expo plus a conference T-shirt and the Thinking Outside the Box self-determination manual, which will be mailed in advance.

 

Payments accepted:

  • Regional center clients: Our vendor number is #PH2437
  • Current SDP Participants - We can invoice your FMS
  • Credit cards
  • Checks

 

Click HERE to Register for the All In for Self-Determination Conference.

A Tidbit from Me: I have the honor of speaking on the panel taking place on Sunday at 12pm with Andy Imparato, the Executive Director of Disability Rights California,  Leroy Moore, Co-founder of Hip Hop Nation, Ari Ne’eman, PhD student in Health Policy, Harvard University, Founder, Autistic Self Advocacy Network, Eden Rapp, Board Member, Disability Voices United, Sofia Vergara, EdD.

 

Sharing from YO! Disabled and Proud

YO! DISABILITY LEADERSHIP SPEAKER SERIES FEATURING: ALICE WONG

YO! Disabled and Proud and the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers (CFILC) are proud to launch the Disability Leadership Speaker Series! Throughout the series, we will be introducing leaders within the disability community who are excited to share their stories and experiences!

We are honored to welcome our first guest in the series: Alice Wong, disability activist!

 

Picture Description: One of our most powerful advocates. Asian woman who uses a power wheelchair wearing a blue, white, and orange blouse. She is wearing red lipstick and smiling. Alice is using a respirator.

 

Join us for an interactive virtual event on Tuesday, April 13 at 6 p.m. (PST). Alice will share personal stories, insights, and advice on being a great leader and advocate. Participate in a Q&A session with Alice and learn how you can make a difference in the disability community! Follow Alice on Twitter: @SFdirewolf.

 

Register to attend today! Visit: tinyurl.com/YODLSS21
(Note: Zoom event link will be emailed to registrants in the week prior to the event).

Picture Description: One of our most powerful advocates. Asian woman who uses a power wheelchair wearing a blue, white, and orange blouse. She is wearing red lipstick and smiling. Alice is using a respirator.

A Tidbit from Me: This is going to be a fabulous, empowering event.


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Advocacy Opportunity, Covid-19 Update, Medicaid Evolution and HCBS Podcast Episode, & More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 12, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope you are doing well on this wonderful Monday. Much in the PM Morning Report this morning so let’s get to it. Sending an elbow bump and a smile to each of you this morning!

Cherrio

 

County of Marin Update
 

VIDEO:  Vaccination Progress Update From Dr. Willis:

Marin County’s Public Health Officer, Dr. Matt Willis, provides an update on Marin County's progress providing COVID-19 vaccines to our community, as well as some of the strategies and partnerships that have led to our local success.

WATCH ON YOUTUBE

 

Marin Ranked Healthiest County; Work Remains for Wellness Inequities

The health of Marin County’s residents is best in the state according to the recently released 2021 County Health Rankings & Roadmaps report. The rankings, produced annually by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute, confirm the critical role that factors such as education, jobs, income, and environment play in how healthy people are and what will impact their health and longevity in the future. 

In the new rankings, Marin was No. 1 in health factors and health outcomes among California’s 58 counties. It was the 11th time in 12 years that Marin as been ranked No. 1. Marin continues to be a top performer in the state and country in the categories of length of life, quality of life, and clinical care. It was No. 2 in health behaviors and No. 3 in social and economic factors.

The County Health Rankings & Roadmaps report also reveals that all counties have areas where they can improve. Marin has one of the worst scores in income inequality (53rd out of 58 counties) and received low grades in housing affordability (26th).

“The rankings echo what we’ve seen in the pandemic: as a county, we’re doing well overall, but our weakness is inequities within Marin.” said Dr Matt Willis, County Public Health Officer. “COVID 19 has deepened differences between groups, and those differences fall along lines of race and income. That’s the work ahead of us as a community, through the pandemic and beyond. When all are able to thrive, that will be real cause for celebration.”

Continue reading news release.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from Nancy Baker Kennedy- one of my favorite people and leading advocates for expanding Long-Term Services and Supports

Medicaid Evolution and HCBS Access Act Podcast Episode

Barrier Free Futures Podcast *      Guest: Allan Bergman *  HIGH IMPACT, Disability Consultant * Topic: Medicaid Evolution and HCBS Access Act

https://barrierfreefutures.libsyn.com/

*********************************

Next Week's Guest: Tia Nelis

Topic:  Self Advocacy Movement

**********************************

Comments or ideas for a BFF show please let me know at:

Barrier Free Futures

Host:  Bob Kafka

Contact: barrierfree@ksfr.org 

Disability Rights and Services 

KSFR 101.1 Santa Fe 

 

Sharing from the Marin Organizing Committee

An advocacy opportunity

Things are heating up again around Project Homekey At the upcoming Novato City Council meeting, there are two key agenda items. The council is going to discuss whether and to what extent the City of Novato should be involved in Project Homekey 2.0 and possibly establish a City Council ad hoc committee to work with staff to bring forward options for Council approval on various issues relating to homelessness.  We need people to both make a public comment at the meeting and/or send an email to the council in support of these initiatives. Please let me know if you plan to attend.

 

Attached is a template of language you can use in your email.

 

Novato City Council Meeting, Tuesday, April 13, 6pm

Full agenda   

Proposed Project Homekey agenda item  

Staff Report on Homelessness

 

Project Homekey 2.0 Info Sessions

Also during the weeks of April 12 & 19, Opening Doors Marin, in partnership with the County of Marin, is hosting a series of ten community information sessions about a possible Homekey 2.0 program. The goal of these sessions is to provide an overview of Homekey 1.0, describe what Homekey 2.0 might look like, and solicit community feedback about both the process and possible projects. 

 

In July 2020, the State of California launched Project Homekey with the aim of helping local communities acquire hotels, motels, commercial buildings, and other creative housing types in order to rapidly house people experiencing homelessness during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through this program, Marin County received approximately $8.6 million to aid the purchase of 63 new units of permanent supportive housing in San Rafael and Corte Madera. I urger you to attend one of these sessions. Register.

City Council - OPEN SESSION

 

   City Council - OPEN SESSION

Tuesday April 13th - 6:00pm

   1. Join via direct link: https://bit.ly/2QbAJ9H

    2. Join via Zoom.com

      Meeting Number (access code): 934 8557 8405

      Event Password: 1960

  3. Join via telephone by calling (669) 900-9128 (same meeting info)

 

LETTER 1– Novato Resident

Email: novatocouncil@novato.org

Dear Councilmembers and Mayor:

My name is XXX and I live at XXX. I am an active member of ______________, which is a member of the Marin Organizing Committee, and I support Project Homekey 2.0 in Novato for permanent supportive housing and the formation of an ad hoc committee to address homelessness in Novato. 

We are in the middle of a global pandemic and the worst economic downturn in a century. The lack of safe, affordable housing in Marin was a public health crisis before COVID-19, but now it is a true emergency. Many families and individuals are struggling to pay their rent.

The people we are talking about are already living among us—they are our neighbors, our classmates, our workmates, and our family members who have fallen on hard times, and we just need to get them safely housed so we can start helping them with their other challenges.

I recognize that Novato has done a lot—and that is what makes me proud to make this community my home.  I ask that you to work with the County and Opening Doors in support of Project Homekey 2.0.

Thank you,

[NAME]

 

LETTER 2 – Novato Resident

Email: novatocouncil@novato.org

Dear Councilmembers and Mayor:

My name is XXX and I live at XXX. I’m a proud Novato resident of XX years, and I support Project Homekey 2.0 in Novato for permanent supportive housing and the formation of an ad hoc committee to address homelessness in Novato. 

Homelessness and the lack of stable, affordable housing in Novato was a public health crisis long before the pandemic hit. According to the 2019 homeless count, we have the largest number of homeless individuals of any community in Marin.

I support this project because it represents the values that I moved here for—the close and inclusive community that values families and children. I am happy to share my community with these families who need a safe place to stabilize and thrive. While I know that our city budget is tight, we need to recognize that these family’s budgets are even tighter. We will find a way to make this work; we are all in this together.

Please work with the County on this purchase, and work with us, your community, to inspire us all to embrace what is best about Novato.

Thank you,

XXXX

 

LETTER 3 – Novato Resident

Email: novatocouncil@novato.org

Dear Councilmembers and Mayor:

My name is XXX and I live at XXX. I am writing to express my support of Project Homekey 2.0 in Novato for permanent supportive housing and the formation of an ad hoc committee to address homelessness in Novato. 

I keep hearing about the potential loss of tax revenues that could result from the conversion of this property to affordable housing for formerly homeless families. However, I also think we could see some cost savings. Research suggests that it is much less expensive to just house people than it is to keep providing them the types of emergency services they often need while living unsheltered.

While I know this is a difficult financial time for our City, it is especially difficult those with the fewest resources. Many of our community members have had to rely on rental assistance to stay housed due job loss and childcare issues related to COVID. Others have fallen through the cracks entirely. We need to think about our priorities and put people’s lives ahead of financial considerations. That is where the real value lies.

Please work with the County to make this purchase work. I know we will be a stronger and more just community as a result.

Thank you,

XXXX

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL in collaboration with the Marin Organizing Committee, our community members, and other community based organizations has been advocating for expansion of affordable and accessible housing. This includes Project Homekey and Roomkey. To learn more about Marin CIl’s housing initiatives or to join us in this important work please feel free to reach out to Marin CIL.

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

CDC update: We’re overcleaning to stop COVID-19

Because the COVID-19 virus spreads primarily through inhaled droplets, the CDC says there is little benefit to nonstop cleaning

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 9, 2021 at 2:55 p.m. | UPDATED: April 11, 2021 at 11:51 a.m.

All that constant scrubbing, soaping and sanitizing?

It can stop now, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The federal agency has updated its coronavirus safety guidelines, recommending that cleaning once a day is usually enough to maintain a healthy site.

Routine use of disinfectants to fight COVID-19 is unnecessary when no people with confirmed or suspected cases are known to have been in a space, the agency says.

Public health experts welcomed the news, saying there is little evidence that contaminated surfaces spread the virus. A much greater threat, they add, is the exhaled breath of infected people.

“This virus largely spreads through the air, not via surfaces,” tweeted Dr. Ashish Jha, dean of the Brown University School of Public Health.

“Do basic hand hygiene, absolutely,” he said. “But focus on masks, ventilation and keeping air safe.”

Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County’s public health officer, said the new federal guidance prompted him to advise libraries that it is no longer necessary to set books aside after they are returned. At the beginning of the pandemic, he had recommended placing returned library material aside for a four-day “quarantine,” and in March he shortened it to a 24-hour period.

“We should be always making sure that we’re really focusing our response on what the evidence is telling us,” Willis said. “We have to pick our battles, and the fact is, there’s a lot more yield focusing on respiratory transmission.”

For full article: CDC update: We’re overcleaning to stop COVID-19

A Tidbit from Me: Sharing my personal perspective…I actually think that the cleaning guidance for Covid was really useful and should be adapted to fight the flu and other diseases. Truth be told I use that guidance to work with my care team at home, to give their cleaning activities extra oomph.

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

April 9, 2021

Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon

4909 Lakewood Blvd #400

Lakewood, CA 90712

Senator Lena Gonzalez

500 Citadel Drive

Commerce, CA 90040

RE: Los Angeles County Sheriff Department and Shooting of Isaias Cervantes

Dear Assembly Member Rendon and Senator Gonzalez,

The Arc and United Cerebral Palsy California Collaboration is among the largest and oldest advocacy organizations providing services, supports and advocacy with and for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and their families. The Arc/UCP CA Collaboration has a combined 36 chapters and affiliates throughout the state that provide direct services and supports to thousands of individuals and families. We are writing to request your help in addressing police use of excessive force against individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

On March 31, 2021 Isaias Cervantes, a young man with autism who is also hard of hearing, was shot and critically wounded by a LA County Sheriff Deputy in your districts. Isaias and his family are your constituents and they, along with every other constituent with disabilities, deserves to be treated with dignity and respect regardless of whether or not they are experiencing a personal or familial behavioral crisis. Detailed accounts of the shooting are sparse at this point as there is an active and on-going investigation; however, the underlying facts still remain that despite the deputies being told by Isaias sister that he is hard of hearing, has autism, and was in the midst of a behavioral crisis, the deputies responded with excessive and a near lethal use of force. The LA County Sheriff’s Department stated that this was a “very unique situation” and while that may be true there is absolutely no justification whereby shooting an unarmed man can be seen as a necessary or justifiable use of force.

In 2019 Assembly Bill 392 Peace Officers: Deadly Use of Force, and Senate Bill 230 Law Enforcement: Use of Force: Training and Polices, were signed into law as part of a Use of Force Reform sparked by the social unrest and protests that resulted from the shooting of Stephon Clark. Together those bills reformed police use of force policies and now the law requires that, among other things, use of deadly force be necessary, not merely reasonable, and that nonlethal alternatives be used first. How could it be necessary to shoot an unarmed man in the back? Moreover, the near fatal interaction was said to have taken place in a very short period of time – less than 5 minutes – what other nonlethal alternatives were attempted?

Welfare and Institutions Code, Section 5150 allows a peace officer, among other specified individuals, to take a person, upon probable cause, into custody and place them in a designated facility for mental health evaluation and treatment, as a result of a mental health disorder whereby the person is deemed to be a danger to themselves or others. It is not uncommon for families or care providers to ask for this type of assistance when their loved one is experiencing a behavioral crisis as to ensure everyone’s safety. For the Cervantes family, what started out as a request for help to keep everyone safe ended in a near fatal interaction between a young man with disabilities and law enforcement. LA County Sheriff’s Department is no stranger to the 5150 process, given that they have a very active Mental Health Evaluation Team. Last year alone, they responded to 17,215 calls involving persons with a mental illness in crisis, of those calls, 10,470 were confirmed to be individuals with a mental illness or a developmental disability.

Fear of a law enforcement encounter going bad runs deep in the disability community as it is estimated that 30% -50% of all fatal law enforcement encounters involve a person with a disability. At the highest risk are African American males who have autism and are deaf. In fact, the legislative findings in AB 392 expressly state that individuals with physical, mental, intellectual, or developmental disabilities are significantly more likely to experience greater levels of physical force during police interactions, as their disability may affect their ability to understand or comply with peace officer commands. (Penal Code 835(a)(5)). Senate Bill 230 expressly states that the highest priority of California law enforcement is safeguarding the life, dignity, and liberty of all persons without prejudice to anyone. It further provides under Government Code 7286(b)(16) that each law enforcement agency shall, by no later than January 2, 2021, maintain a policy that provides a minimum standard on the use of force. Each agency’s policy shall include… (16) Training and guidelines regarding vulnerable populations, including, but not limited to, children, elderly persons, people who are pregnant, and people with physical, mental, and developmental disabilities.

The safety and lives of our loved ones with disabilities – intellectual, developmental, or other – cannot be reduced to mere words in a legislation. We cannot rely on “guidelines and training” because clearly, in all too many incidents, that has proven ineffective.  All the training in the world does not matter if push literally comes to shove, and the batons, tasers, and guns are the default response to a person in the midst of a behavioral crisis. In the wake of the shooting and killing of George Floyd, the California Legislature has taken on a deep and meaningful discussion about what police reform looks like – there is a new Select Committee on Police Reform, the Little Hoover Commission held hearings on Police Training, and there are several pieces of legislation pending – but disability, which is significantly different that mental health issues, is nearly non-existent in the conversation. It is well passed time to fully include the disability community in the conversation about how to strengthen the relationship between law enforcement and the disability community when it comes to challenging interactions. Our community is truly between a rock and a hard place because we rely on the police for help when our loved ones are lost, scared, hurt, or in crisis but underlying that need is the fear that anyone of those interactions could go bad and result in loss of life or trauma.

On behalf of all individuals with disabilities, their families, friends and service providers, we respectfully as that you both work with us to address the very specific issue of use of force in the disability community. Thank you for taking the time to read our letter and we look forward to further discussions with you.

Respectfully,

Pat Hornbecker, President

The Arc of California

​Jordan Lindsey, Executive Director

The Arc and United Cerebral Palsy California Collaboration

A Tidbit from Me: I appreciate the important work that many police officers do in our communities every day. This latest case of Use of Force involving a person with a disability, together with the other instances involving the police interacting with people with disabilities, the black and brown community, and other traditionally marginalized community members illustrates that we must do better. Every person who interacts with law enforcement has a right to be treated with dignity, respect, and be free of harm. We must do better.


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Covid-19 Update, Language Justice, Fire Season is Upon Us


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 9, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

Happy Friday!! Much happening today. Got to get to it! I hope you had a great week. Here is your PM Morning Report. Enjoy the read.

County of Marin Update

Post-Vaccine: Do I need to wear a mask? (Spoiler alert: YES)

We’ve received several inquires about whether masks are necessary now that vaccinations are underway in Marin.

The CDC’s website warns, “we’re still learning how vaccines will affect the spread of COVID-19,” and recommends everyone continue wearing masks in public places until researchers confirm the long-term efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines against new variants. Also, in the State of California, masks are still required outside of the home, regardless of your vaccination status.

The Cleveland Clinic offers some additional reasons why you should not throw away those masks as soon as you get your shot:

  1. It takes times for the vaccine to kick-in.You won’t reach the nearly 95% effectiveness rate until two weeks after your second-dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. After the first dose, you do get a partial immune response, which is good news, but it doesn’t mean you’re immediately protected the minute the needle goes in your arm. For the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, you’re considered fully vaccinated two weeks after your single dose.
  2. We still need to protect those with compromised immune systems and those who cannot be vaccinated. We know that people with chronic medical conditions (like heart disease and cancer) are at risk for developing a severe case of COVID-19. And since this population wasn’t involved in clinical trials, we can’t assume that they’ll have the same effectiveness rate. It’s also recommended that if you’ve had an allergic reaction to any of the ingredients in the vaccine, you shouldn’t get it. If you had an allergic reaction to the first dose, the CDC doesn’t recommend getting the second dose either. If you’re fully vaccinated, it’s recommended to steer clear of those considered high-risk who are not vaccinated.
  3. There are still limited doses of the vaccine. Experts say that 80% of the population will need to vaccinated to reach herd immunity. While Marin has reached 40% full vaccinated (and 60% with at least one dose) we are making good progress. However, the vaccine supply chain is still volatile, and it could take us until the end of Summer 2021 to reach the 80% fully vaccinated mark.

Remember, until we reach heard immunity, vaccines are just one tool in our pandemic busting toolkit and are most effective when used in combination with wearing a mask, watching your distance and washing your hands.

A Tidbit from Me:  I cannot say enough: Yes you need to wear your mask! Federal, State, and local guidance list people with disabilities and older adults as being most vulnerable to Covid. To be honest I hate the term “most vulnerable”. Sharing my personal perspective: People with disabilities and older adults are powerful people who have contributed much to our communities. I prefer the term “more susceptible”. Please wear your mask. Honor community and those you love and care about by keeping everyone safe.

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

 

Novato parents fear loss of school’s bilingual program

By KERI BRENNER | kbrenner@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 8, 2021 at 11:20 a.m. | UPDATED: April 8, 2021 at 4:57 p.m.

A popular dual immersion program at Lynwood Elementary School in Novato is in potential jeopardy after a community panel placed the school on a short list for possible closures.

Parents at the school — who say they were told they needed to keep their kids in the 3-year-old Spanish-English program for five years to reap the full academic benefits — have launched a website and a petition drive to lobby against the closure. The online petition has garnered about 1,700 signatures.

“The district made a commitment to the Lynwood community that this would be a long-term program and asked parents to make a similar commitment,” said Romario Conrado, petition organizer. “To discontinue or move the program would undermine trust in the district and unfortunately decrease enrollment.”

Lynwood, which has the only full-school dual immersion program in Marin, was included in a list of three elementary schools — along with Rancho and Lu Sutton — for possible closure by a Novato Unified School District committee last month.

The volunteer panel, which is seeking ways for the district to cut costs amid declining enrollment, decided on the schools after reviewing cost-per-student data for the district’s seven K-5 elementary schools. Lynwood, with 276 students, had the highest per-student cost at $1,929.

Kris Cosca, the district’s superintendent, said the language program could continue even if Lynwood were closed. That would be a decision for the district trustees, he said.

“Should a site hosting a special academic program be closed, this does not guarantee the program’s end, as the program could be relocated to another site,” Cosca said. “NUSD is fully committed to provide excellent academic programs for its students of all ages and will explore every opportunity to do so within its budgetary constraints.”

Parents say the per-student cost shouldn’t be the only factor in a decision involving the unique program. San Rafael City Schools, which has a single-track dual immersion program at Venetia Valley School, is considering starting a similar full-school program.

“Our dual immersion program is the only one in Marin County and is only 3 years old,” Lynwood parent Claudia Gonzalez White said. “This is a huge equity issue when the committee is choosing to include the school with the most marginalized population on their closure list — not to mention the racial demographics of our population.”

For full article: Novato parents fear loss of school’s bilingual program

A Tidbit from Me: School immersion programs are so important. It is really about language justice (including ASL) ensuring that all student are able to have the supports and services they need to be able to thrive and get the most out of there public school experience. Students have had a difficult time during Covid. It has been especially difficult for student with disabilities especially students who need special education services and supports. It is my hope that Novoto Unified School District will keep this important program for the benefit of these valued school community members.

 

 

California plans $536M for forests before fire season

By ASSOCIATED PRESS |

PUBLISHED: April 8, 2021 at 11:24 a.m. | UPDATED: April 8, 2021 at 11:27 a.m.

California will authorize $536 million for wildfire mitigation and forest management projects before the worst of the fire season strikes later this year, Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders said Thursday.

That more than doubles $200 million in recent annual spending, advocates said, and wildfire preparedness grants were dropped entirely last year when the state prematurely anticipated a pandemic-driven budget shortfall.

Armed now with an unexpected multi-billion-dollar surplus, lawmakers plan to add the money to this fiscal year’s budget before considering even more in the new spending plan that takes effect July 1.

“With California facing another extremely dry year, it is critical that we get a head start on reducing our fire risk,” Newsom and his fellow Democrats who lead the Assembly and Senate said in a joint statement.

They’re rushing to thin forests, build fuel breaks around vulnerable communities and allow for planned burns before a dry winter turns into a tinder-dry summer. Last year’s record-setting wildfire season charred more than 4% of the state while destroying nearly 10,500 buildings and killing 33 people.

Earlier this month, the governor used his emergency powers to authorize nearly $81 million to hire nearly 1,400 additional firefighters. In January, Newsom proposed spending $323 million this spring on forest health and fire prevention projects, with another $1 billion in next year’s budget.

Lawmakers said Thursday’s agreement expands on the governor’s plan with more short- and long-term spending on vegetation management on both public and private land, clearing space around homes and making them less vulnerable to wildfires, fire prevention grants and prevention workforce training. It also includes economic stimulus for the hard-hit forestry economy.

For full article: California plans $536M for forests before fire season

A Tidbit from Me: Fire season is upon us and one of the best ways for everyone, including people with disabilities and older adults, to plan for an emergency is to start planning now. Fire Safe Marin has some excellent resources that will help you keep you and your family safe in case of a Wildfire. Ready Marin has excellent resources for building your personalized disaster plan, putting together a go-kit in case you need to evacuate and a disaster kit for sheltering in place. Marin CIL is here to help you too. If you are a person with a disability or older adult and want to learn more about how to develop a personal disaster plan for you, your family, and those you care about please reach out to us.

Resources:

Fire Safe Marin

Ready Marin


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Employment and PWDs, Marin City Takes Steps to Address Vaccine Hesitancy, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 8, 2021

Good Afternoon my Family in Community,

I hope each of you is doing well today. A lot happened this morning so your PM Morning Report is now the early afternoon report. It’s almost Friday woot woot! Thank you for all the wonderful work you do. Enjoy the read. Sending a virtual elbow bump and a smile.

 

County of Marin Update

Justice Department Warns About Fake Post-Vaccine Survey Scams

Fraudsters are everywhere hoping to deceive you out of your money or personal information. The latest series of scams are fraudulent COVID-19 vaccine surveys for consumers to fill out with the promise of a prize or cash at the conclusion of the survey. However, the surveys are used to steal money from consumers and unlawfully capture consumers’ personal information.

Consumers receive the surveys via email and text message, and are told that, as a gift for filling out the survey, they can choose from various free prizes, such as an iPad Pro. The messages claim that the consumers need only pay shipping and handling fees to receive their prize. Victims provide their credit card information and are charged for shipping and handling fees, but never receive the promised prize. Victims also are exposing their personally identifiable information (PII) to scammers, thereby increasing the probability of identity theft.

Unless from a known and verified source, consumers should never click on links in text messages or emails claiming to be a vaccine survey.

For more information or resources to protect yourself from phishing attempts, visit the Department of Justice’s website.

 A Tidbit from Me: Please be aware of fraud. I myself have been a victim of fraud in the past it can happen to all of us. Please report it! Remember you are not alone and it is not your fault.

 

State Clarifies Guidance for Outdoor and Indoor Youth and Adult Sports

California has updated its Outdoor and Indoor Youth and Recreational Adult Sports Guidance related to spectators and observers, and inter-team competitions, meets and races.

Spectators and observers for indoor sports is limited to observation of youth sports (age 18 years and under) and is further limited to immediate household members for the strict purpose of age appropriate supervision. This prohibition shall remain in effect until such time as Indoor Seated Live Events and Performance Guidance is posted and becomes effective. At this time, Marin Public Health recommends only one adult spectator per athlete for indoor sporting events. 

Spectators and observers are allowed for outdoor sports pursuant to Outdoor Seated Live Events and Performances. However, sports providers are encouraged to consider video streaming of both indoor and outdoor games so that they can be watched "live" from home to the greatest extent possible.

Inter-team competitions, meets, races, or similar events are permitted to occur only with other teams within the state. This removes the limitation for cross-county competitions with only those that share a border. 

 

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin City sees results from COVID vaccination push

By LORENZO MOROTTI | lmorotti@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 7, 2021 at 5:52 p.m. | UPDATED: April 7, 2021 at 6:52 p.m.

Health officials and community leaders in Marin City are moving the needle on coronavirus vaccination rates.

Nationwide, there have been reports that Black and Latino communities are hesitant to get the vaccine, but it might just be a matter of providing equitable access and reliable information, said Felecia Gaston, founder of the Performing Stars arts nonprofit.

Gaston said the community has made use of a $20,000 grant provided through the statewide “Together Toward Health” program, which aims to provide information to people who are wary of immunization. The county also provided a $10,000 grant.

Gaston said a number of organizations — including the Marin City Health and Wellness Center, the Marin City Community Services District and the First Missionary Baptist Church — have formed a de facto “Marin City outbreak team” to advise residents about inoculation.

“There a lot of people who want the vaccine and there are some people who are hesitant,” she said. “So we directed them to the right people so their questions can be answered. The ‘vaccine buddy’ program grew out of that.”

For full article: Marin City sees results from COVID vaccination push

A Tidbit from Me: The Marin City community has really taken the lead in addressing vaccine hesitancy. It is important that everyone hear from trusted messengers when it comes to making decisions about healthcare. The Marin Community Vaccine Advisory Committee and the Access and Functional Needs Taskforce has been working to ensure that vaccine distribution has been accessible and equitable. People with disabilities are part of every community and just like other communities the issue of vaccine hesitancy is a concern. Have questions about the Covid-19 vaccine? Or do you just want to talk about your experience during Covid-19? Marin CIL is organizing an opportunity to gather virtually to share what is happening, to get information, and to support each other as we continue to navigate life during a pandemic. This will be an opportunity for all of us to come together as a community and share our vaccine stories, answer questions about the vaccines and address vaccine hesitancy in a safe and friendly environment. Sharing our personal stories is a powerful tool for all of us to support one another in this rapidly changing time.  We will be hosting an event via zoom soon. Stay tuned for more details.

 

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

 We released a new resource on FEMA non-congregate sheltering that provides a brief overview of the recent FEMA policy changes that will support state and local efforts to house individuals experiencing homelessness and others living in congregate settings in hotels and motels. The memorandum also provides key recommendations for advocates seeking to ensure their communities take advantage of this unprecedented federal funding opportunity. Check out the new report at https://bit.ly/3dK0LZP!

We continue to track more than 700 state and local emergency rental assistance (ERA) programs, analyze key features of these programs, and share best practices for ensuring ERA funds are distributed to households most in need and are used to advance racial equity. NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel sent a letter on behalf of the DHRC to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen,  HUD Secretary Marcia Fudge, and Domestic Policy Council Director Susan Rice outlining concerns about several developing trends in ERA programs and urging the administration to take immediate action to remove barriers that will prevent ERA resources from reaching households with the greatest needs. Read the letter at https://bit.ly/3mtEq6W.

While the Biden administration extended the federal eviction moratorium through June 30 and announced greater enforcement of the moratorium’s protections, they did not act on the clear evidence and need to strengthen the order to address the flaws that undermine its public health purpose. It is not too late to act further. The Biden administration must strengthen the order and close the loopholes that some landlords have exploited to continue evicting renters from their homes and must ensure the moratorium’s protections are automatic and universal throughout the duration of the pandemic.

 

 

 

Sharing from California Workforce Development Board

Workforce Deliverable for California Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities

Number of Employed Persons by Age Group (February 2021)

 

Number of Employed

Total Employed

Disabled

Non-Disabled

Total

16,728,500

438,300

16,290,200

16-24 years old

1,737,900

35,000

1,702,900

25-34

4,068,800

78,300

3,990,500

35 -44

3,774,700

67,600

3,707,100

45-54

3,432,600

72,000

3,360,600

55 years and older

3,714,500

185,400

3,529,100

 

Employed Persons: persons who did any work for pay or profit during the survey reference week; persons who did at least 15 hours of unpaid work in a family-operated enterprise; and persons who were temporarily absent from their regular jobs because of illness, vacation, bad weather, industrial dispute, or various personal reasons.

Number of Unemployed Persons by Age Group (February 2021)

 

Number of Unemployed

Total Unemployed

Disabled

Non-Disabled

Total

2,054,400

105,200

1,949,200

16-24 years old

407,700

11,600

396,100

25-34

528,000

21,400

506,600

35 -44

367,500

16,300

351,200

45-54

341,100

21,000

320,100

55 years and older

410,100

34,900

375,200

 

Unemployed Persons: Persons are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work. Persons who were not working and were waiting to be recalled to a job from which they had been temporarily laid off are also included as unemployed

Unemployment Rates by Age Group (February 2021)

 

Unemployment Rate

Unemployment Rate

Disabled

Non-Disabled

Total

10.9%

19.4%

10.7%

16-24 years old

19.0%

24.9%

18.9%

25-34

11.5%

21.5%

11.3%

35 -44

8.9%

19.4%

8.7%

45-54

9.0%

22.6%

8.7%

55 years and older

9.9%

15.8%

9.6%

 

Unemployment Rate: The percentage of the total labor force (sum of employed and unemployed persons) that are unemployed but actively seeking employment and willing to work.

Labor Force Participation Rates by Age Group (February 2021)

 

Labor Force Participation Rate

Labor Force Participation Rate

Disabled

Non-Disabled

Total

60.2%

17.8%

64.8%

16-24 years old

47.7%

27.2%

48.5%

25-34

77.4%

41.1%

79.0%

35 -44

79.5%

40.7%

81.2%

45-54

78.3%

30.0%

81.7%

55 years and older

38.3%

10.4%

45.2%

 

Labor Force Participation Rate: The percentage of the civilian non-institutional population 16 and over working (employed) or looking for work (unemployed).

 

Analysis of Job Search Methods used by Unemployed Persons with Disabilities* (February 2021)

Job Search Method

Number of Unemployed Persons with Disabilities*

Total

56,800*

Contacted the Employer Director

16,900

Sent Out Resumes/Filled Out An Application

12,200

Contacted Friends Or Relatives

10,400

Miscellaneous (i.e., contact temp. agency)

7,300

Look At Advertisements

5,300

Placed Or Answered Advertisements

4,700

 

*The total will not sum to total number of unemployed persons for February 2021 due to U.S. Census Bureau statistical weighting and nonresponses to the Current Population Survey of Households question related to job search methods.

Source of All Workforce Data: U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Survey of Households

For additional information: California's Long-Term Unemployment 2020

 

Sharing from the Office of Disability Employment Policy: United States Department of Labor

Help advance racial and social equity in employment for people with disabilities

The federal government is committed to ensuring that disability is a key element in advancing racial and social equity for all. And the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy, the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs and the Women's Bureau invite you to share your ideas for how we can promote equity in employment by joining a national online dialogue on advancing racial and social equity in employment for people with disabilities beginning April 12.

The goal of this virtual dialogue is to gather input on how USDOL can promote equity in employment policies and programs for people with disabilities from historically underserved communities, people with mental health conditions, those recovering from long-term effects of COVID-19, and job seekers and workers with disabilities.

We welcome ideas from those who identify with these groups and all members of the public interested in advancing racial and social equity in employment for people with disabilities. Your input will help inform our work to remove barriers to opportunity for people with disabilities and ensure access to good jobs.  All ideas are welcome, but we are specifically interested in input on:

  • Challenges faced by workers and jobseekers with disabilities;
  • Ways to reach jobseekers and employees with disabilities in underserved communities;
  • Examples of programs or policies that advance racial and social equity in employment; and
  • Methods for providing assistance to employers, workers and other stakeholders.

You can join this important conversation any time April 12-26 by visiting the online dialogue site and submitting your ideas or commenting and voting on ideas submitted by others.

We look forward to hearing from you!

A Tidbit from Me: It’s important to mention the choice to work, or not to work, or how much to work is a personal decision based on a personal choice. In Independent Living philosophy one of the core principles is for people with disabilities to be able to achieve economic opportunity in the same parity of those without disabilities. While we have made tremendous strides in this area we have a long way to go. Many people with disabilities who want to work often become subject to ableism. Our community is often subject to false assumptions regarding what they think we can do whether than what we are capable of doing. For our community it is often difficult to get through the door to the interview. I feel very blessed, I love my job. I have had a lot of great opportunities in my life.

 

 


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Autism Acceptance Month, Covid-19, Marin Remains in Orange Tier, Vaccine Training Available, & More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 7, 2021

Good Morning my Incredibly Wonderful Family in Community,

Lot’s happening this morning in the world of advocacy. Lot’s of meetings and phone calls. I honor each of you for the work you do every day. Here is the PM Morning Report for you.

 

County of Marin Update

 

B.1.1.7 COVID-19 Variant Detected in Marin

Two local cases of COVID-19 infection with the B.1.1.7 variant of SARS-CoV-2, first detected in the United Kingdom, have been reported by Marin County Public Health. As the county ramps up genomic sequencing of local COVID-19 specimens, this report signals the first reported cases associated with this variant in Marin County.

The B.1.1.7 variant is classified as a “Variant of Concern” by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention because it is more infectious than other strains, and it may lead to more severe disease. The B.1.1.7 variant is contributing to surges of cases in Europe and the Eastern United States. Regionally, the proportion of cases that are linked to the more transmissible variants is climbing and signals a concerning trend.

“This variant has been detected across California. Though it’s no surprise, the presence of this variant in Marin is not something to ignore.” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin County’s Public Health Officer. “It’s a reminder as we reopen that we’re not out of the woods, by any means. We need to stick with the tried and true prevention measures while we work to increase vaccination rates.”

Continue reading the news release for more information.

 

Blueprint Update: Marin Remains in Orange

Today, California Department of Public Health (CDPH) provided another update on the Blueprint for a Safer Economy, a statewide plan for reducing COVID-19 and keeping Californians healthy and safe.

While Marin County remains in the Orange Tier 3 for another week, CDPH confirmed Marin has not yet met the Yellow-level (Tier 4) for consideration to move forward (even with the new adjustments to the Blueprint framework that Governor Newsom announced today). In general, 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 all three measures for the prior two consecutive weeks in order to progress to the next tier.

The following table outlines the requirements for case rates, test positivity rates, and quartile test positivity rates for each tier status, as well as CDPH’s April 6 assessment for Marin County:

You can track Marin’s progress by viewing our Blueprint for a Safer Economy dashboard, which is updated each Tuesday afternoon to reflect CDPH’s calculations.

 

Moving Beyond the Blueprint for a Safer Economy

With statewide vaccinations increasing and hospitalizations continuing to steadily decline — Governor Gavin Newsom today outlined the state’s next step in the COVID-19 pandemic recovery, moving beyond the Blueprint for a Safer Economy.

On June 15, California will fully open its economy if two criteria are met:

  • If vaccine supply is sufficient for Californians 16 years and older who wish to be inoculated; and
  • If hospitalization rates are stable and low

Everyday activities will be allowed and businesses can open with common-sense risk reduction measures, including mandated masking and encouraging all Californians to get vaccinated, to prevent illness and promote health. Testing or vaccination verification requirements will remain in relevant settings.  The entire state will move into this new phase as a whole. The state will monitor hospitalization rates, vaccine access and vaccine efficacy against variants, with the option to revisit the June 15 date if needed.

“It’s reassuring to see that the state’s plan for moving beyond the Blueprint is tied to metrics, continuing to follow science and data as we have all along,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin’s Public Health Officer. “We’re optimistic that with current vaccination progress and a drop of case rates, we can achieve this new goal. That said, two months is a long time and there’s still uncertainty in our vaccine supply and the effects of new variants that may be detected locally between now and then. We still need to monitor case trends in the coming weeks and vaccine efficacy against variants.”

For more information, visit the state’s “Beyond the Blueprint” webpage.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin virus monitors detect UK COVID variant

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: April 6, 2021 at 5:58 p.m. | UPDATED: April 6, 2021 at 6:45 p.m.

Marin County announced Tuesday that the first two cases of a more infectious and deadly COVID-19 variant have been confirmed in Marin.

So far, 851 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant, first detected in the United Kingdom, have been found across California.

“Though it’s no surprise, the presence of this variant in Marin is not something to ignore,” said Dr. Matt Willis, Marin’s public health officer. “It’s a reminder as we reopen that we’re not out of the woods by any means. We need to stick with the tried and true prevention measures while we work to increase vaccination rates.”

Willis recommends that residents refrain from non-essential travel and continue to wear masks and practice distancing.

For full article: Marin virus monitors detect UK COVID variant

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

April is Autism Acceptance Month

April has widely been known as “Autism Awareness Month” in the United States as a way to empower autistic individuals and their families. The autism community and leading disability organizations are calling for a shift in language to match the growing need for acceptance within the community. The shift in the use of terminology aims to foster acceptance to ignite change through improved support and opportunities in education, employment, accessible housing, affordable health care and comprehensive long-term services. 

The Autism Society of America, the nation’s oldest leading grassroots autism organization, is proud to celebrate Autism Acceptance Month in April 2021 with its “Celebrate Differences” campaign. Designed to build a better awareness of the signs, symptoms, and realities of autism, #CelebrateDifferences focuses on providing information and resources for communities to be more aware of autism, promote acceptance, and be more inclusive in everyday life.

To learn more about how you can support the language change from awareness to acceptance visit: https://www.autism-society.org/get-involved/national-autism-awareness-month/

Source: April is Autism Acceptance Month

A Tidbit from Me: Autism Acceptance Month makes me remember a story about my older brother who lives with Autism. My brother Michael is a great guy who I love very much. Part of his disability package is that he has a limited ability to communicate and does need one on one support. When we were kids I used a manual chair. My wheelchair started rolling down an incline into a busy street. I yelled for my brother Michael to grab my chair. He did at the bottom of the steep driveway and prevented me from rolling into the street and hitting a vehicle. He most likely saved my life and at the very least saved me from receiving substantial injuries. Honoring my brother in the PM Morning Report today.

 

 

Sharing from Marin VOAD

Weekly vaccine health education trainings

Marin Public Health is holding weekly vaccine health education trainings. These trainings are open to the public and are in both English and Spanish. 

WHO: Marin Health and Human Services 

WHAT: A 60-minute webinar where you can learn about the vaccines, getting vaccinated, and the truth about some myths and misinformation.

WHEN: Through May 27th:

English: Every Tuesday and Thursday 9-10 AM 

Spanish: Every Thursday  11 AM - 12 PM 

HOW: Join our Zoom meeting link, call in, or QR code (see website for QR Code)

1. Use the link https://tinyurl.com/4z85kxf2

2. Call in (408) 638-0968 use meeting code: 9948 0065 846#

Call (415) 473-7191 for more information

 

V-SAFE - TRACKING SIDE EFFECTS FROM THE COVID-19 VACCINE

The CDC offers a webpage sharing common side effects from the COVID-19 vaccines and also provides the opportunity for you to share your own experience with side effects.  The program is called V-Safe and can be accessed via this site: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/safety/vsafe.html  

 

V-safe is a smartphone-based tool that uses text messaging and web surveys to provide personalized health check-ins after you receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Through v-safe, you can quickly tell CDC if you have any side effects after getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Depending on your answers to the web surveys, someone from CDC may call to check on you and get more information. V-safe will also remind you to get your second COVID-19 vaccine dose if you need one.

Note: V-safe cannot schedule COVID-19 vaccination appointments, including second dose appointments if required. If you need to schedule, reschedule, or cancel a COVID-19 vaccination appointment, contact the location that set up your appointment or a vaccination provider in your area. This may be your state or local health department, employer, or vaccination provider.

V-safe does not provide medical advice. If you have symptoms or health problems that concern you at any time following COVID-19 vaccination, please contact your healthcare provider.

 

Covid Vaccine Scams

Please be aware of reported scams targeting vulnerable consumers with promises of gifts and cash for taking a fraudulent post-vaccination survey. Please make sure to share this information with your communities. 

 

WASHINGTON ––In the midst of on-going efforts to vaccinate the U.S. population against COVID-19, reports are surfacing about a scam targeting vulnerable consumers with promises of gifts and cash for taking a fraudulent post-vaccination survey.

The reality is that these fraudulent surveys are used to unlawfully capture consumers’ personal information and potentially steal money from consumers.

“Fraudulent schemes like this emphasize the need to remain vigilant of those trying to profit from the most vulnerable in the midst of a pandemic. HSI has been at the forefront of the government’s investigative response to COVID-19 related crime since the onset of the pandemic and will remain a leader in the fight to prevent fraudulent activity under the guise of protecting the health and safety of our population,” said Steve Francis, IPR Center director.

The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center (IPR Center), Department of Justice (DoJ) and the leading manufactures of the COVID-19 vaccine, are investigating reports of these fraudulent COVID-19 vaccine surveys enticing consumers to provide personal information with the promise of a prize or cash at the conclusion of the survey.

Consumers receive the surveys via email and text message, and are told that, as a gift for filling out the survey, they can choose from various free prizes, such as an iPad Pro. The messages claim that the consumers need only pay shipping and handling fees to receive their prize. Victims provide their credit card information and are charged for shipping and handling fees, but never receive the promised prize. Victims also are exposing their personally identifiable information (PII) to scammers, thereby increasing the probability of identity theft. Unless from a known and verified source, consumers should never click on links in text messages or emails claiming to be a vaccine survey.

Schemes that use links embedded in unsolicited text messages and emails in attempts to obtain personally identifiable information are commonly referred to as phishing schemes. Phishing messages may look like they come from government agencies, financial intuitions, shipping companies, and social media companies, among many others. Carefully examine any message purporting to be from a company and do not click on a link in an unsolicited email or text message. Remember that companies generally do not contact you to ask for your username or password. When in doubt, contact the entity purportedly sending you the message, but do not rely on any contact information in the potentially fraudulent message. 

 

TIPS TO AVOID BEING VICTIMIZED 

Currently, no post-vaccine surveys are being conducted by Pfizer, Moderna or Johnson & Johnson. Any emails or text messages that purport to be sent on behalf of these companies seeking personal financial information is illegitimate and fraudulent as these companies would never request an advanced payment for shipping or other expenses. Do not open the messages or provide any personal information, including credit card and/or bank information.

 

WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE A VICTIM 

If you are a victim of these post-vaccine survey scams:  

  • Report the activity to the online payment service used for the financial transaction
  • Contact your financial institution upon discovering any fraudulent or suspicious activity within your account(s)
  • If you receive a text message or email claiming to be a COVID-19 vaccine survey and containing a link or other contact information, please report the communication to the IPR Center at http://www.IPRCenter.gov
  • Consumers can also report suspected illicit criminal activity or fraudulent schemes related to the COVID-19 pandemic, by emailing Covid19Fraud@dhs.gov

This consumer public health and safety warning is being provided by the IPR Center and Consumer Protection Branch of the DoJ’s Civil Division.

About National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center 

The National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Center, working collaboratively with its public and private sector partners, stands at the forefront of the United States government’s response to combatting global intellectual property theft and enforcing intellectual properties rights violations. The IPR Center was established to combat global intellectual property theft – and, accordingly, has a significant role policing the sale and distribution of counterfeit goods on websites, social media, and the dark web. 

 

About Consumer Protection Branch

The Consumer Protection Branch leads Department of Justice efforts to enforce laws that protect Americans’ health, safety, economic security, and identity integrity.  To accomplish its mission, the Branch brings both criminal and affirmative civil enforcement cases throughout the country.  The Branch uses its strong relationships with U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and investigative agencies, expertise with complex litigation, and nationwide reach to respond nimbly to emerging consumer threats.

 

FEMA Disaster Legal Services (DLS) Program

FEMA offers confidential free legal assistance to low-income individuals for disaster related needs. Their hotline number is:1-888-382-3406.

Under section 415 of the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, Public

Law 93-288, 42 U.S.C. 5182, as amended, when the President declares a disaster, FEMA, through an

agreement with the Young Lawyers Division of the American Bar Association, provides free legal

help to survivors of that disaster through the request of the state, local, tribe, or territory. Disaster

Legal Services (DLS) provides confidential legal assistance to low-income individuals who, prior to

or because of the disaster, are unable to secure legal services adequate to meet their disaster-related

needs. DLS is only provided for survivors of Presidentially declared major disasters that include

Individual Assistance (IA).

DLS attorneys are volunteers who offer their time and talents to provide free legal services to

disaster survivors; they are not FEMA employees, and any services or conversations that occur

between a survivor and one of the attorneys are confidential and will not be shared with FEMA. If

volunteer attorneys are unable to assist survivors with their legal needs due to topic and/or time that

would generate a fee, survivors will be referred to independent attorneys who can provide pro-bono

or low cost services through the lawyer referral network in the impacted area.

The following are the types of disaster legal assistance local lawyers typically provide:

• Help with insurance claims for doctor and hospital bills, loss of property, loss of life, etc.

• Drawing up new wills and other legal papers lost in the disaster

• Help with home repair contracts and contractors

• Advice on problems with landlords

• Estate administration, including guardianships and conservatorships

• Consumer protection matters, remedies, and procedures

• Preparing powers of attorney and guardianship materials

• FEMA appeals and other disaster-related actions against the government

• 1-888-382-3406

 

Sharing from Hand in Hand

Let's Join the National Care Can't Wait Summit Together

Start: Saturday, April 10, 2021 • 12:00 PM • Eastern Standard Time (US & Canada) (GMT-05:00)

End: Saturday, April 10, 2021 • 2:00 PM • Eastern Standard Time (US & Canada) (GMT-05:00)

Our partners at Caring Across Generations and National Domestic Workers Alliance are organizing a historic National Summit to bring people across the country together, to share stories about our care relationships, and to move toward a future that values caregiving and invests in child care, paid leave and home and community based services.

The program will feature the stories of family caregivers, care workers, people with disabilities, older people, children - all of us!

Join other Hand in Hand members and people from across the country to watch the live program on Facebook together and to lift up the human experience of caring for others!

For more information and to register: Let's Join the National Care Can't Wait Summit Together


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Uber, EVV Stakeholder meeting, Covid-19, and more


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 6, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope each of you has had a wonderful holiday weekend. Lots of meetings this morning and much to do. Sending a virtual elbow bump and a hug to each of you. Here’s the PM Morning Report enjoy the read. Thanks for all you do for our communities.

 

County of Marin Update

Mobile Vaccine Squad Has a Mission: Find and Protect

One of Marin Public Health’s vaccine strategies involves the use of mobile teams. These teams travel to where the most vulnerable live and take shots directly to people who otherwise may not be vaccinated. There are three types of mobile operations underway: One visits long-term care facilities, low-income senior housing communities, sober living houses and shelters; another does home visits; and a third offers pop-up vaccine clinics in hard-hit or underserved areas.

Last month, Bloomberg’s Sarah Holder shadowed Marin Public Health’s mobile vaccine operations, including public health nurse, Linda Dobra, who has been intimately involved with the County’s communicable disease initiatives for the past 20 years. Read the article to learn more.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from CDCAN

BREAKING NEWS: CALIFORNIA HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES AGENCY RENAMES & REVAMPS OLMSTEAD ADVISORY COMMITTEE  AS "DISABILITY & AGING COMMUNITY LIVING ADVISORY COMMITTEE" WITH ADDITIONAL NEW STATE AGENCY SECRETARIES AND DEPARTMENT HEADS AS MEMBERS

  • Renamed & Revamped Advisory Committee Will Include Members of Previous Olmstead Advisory Committee
  • Includes Secretaries of Major State Agencies Overseeing Health and Human Services (Including Medi-Cal, Health Care Services, Public Health, IHSS, SSI/SSP, Aging, Developmental Services, Rehabilitation), Workforce, Employment, Housing, Transportation, Veteran Affairs, Office of Emergency Services 
  • CA Health & Human Services Agency Says Newly Renamed and Revamped Advisory Committee Will Build on the Work of the California Olmstead Plan Released in 2012, the Governor’s Alzheimer’s Prevention and Preparedness Task Force Report Issued in November 2020, and the Governor’s Master Plan for Aging Issued January 2021"
  • First Meeting of Renamed & Revamped Advisory Committee: April 30th (Friday) 09:00 AM - 12 Noon (Pacific Time)


SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 04/05/2021 11:01 AM (PACIFIC TIME] - In a major groundbreaking move, the California Health and Human Services (CHHS) agency, headed by Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly, announced today that it has renamed and revamped the existing Olmstead Advisory Committee as the new "Disability and Aging Community Living Advisory Committee" that will maintain the purpose and goals to "advance community living, inclusion, and integration across California" with additional membership of additional key state agencies and departments impacting housing, workforce, employment, transportation and veterans affairs. 
    Secretary Ghaly said the change will build upon the previous work of the California Olmstead Plan released in 2012, the Governor’s Alzheimer’s Prevention and Preparedness Task Force Report issued in November 2020, and the recent Governor’s Master Plan for Aging issued in January 2021, developed after an intensive year long stakeholder process.
    The change - widely praised by disability and senior advocates across California - was one of the key components pushed by stakeholders (both advocates and state policymakers) in the Governor's Master Plan for Aging, as a need for ongoing focus on issues impacting the "whole person" of people with disabilities (including developmental, those with mental health issues, people who are blind, people who are deaf) and older Californians that includes needs regarding long term services and supports, health care, housing, food security, transportation, employment and workforce, education, and emergency preparedness. Advocates especially praised the inclusion of several key state agencies that have major impact to people with disabilities and older Californians, including those overseeing departments relating to housing, workforce and employment, transportation, veterans, and emergency preparedness.
    Members of the Olmstead Advisory Committee were all reappointed by California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly to the newly renamed advisory committee, along with the appointment of some new stakeholder members. 
    The first public meeting of the renamed and revamped advisory committee is scheduled for  April 30, 2021 (Friday) from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM (Pacific Time), and due to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, will be conducted remotely as all state and legislative stakeholder meetings have been since March 2020.  
    According to Secretary Ghaly, the new Disability and Aging Community Living Advisory Committee underscores the State's commitment "...to community living for all, rooted in both the Olmstead Supreme Court decision of 1999 and in California’s values of inclusion, access, and equity".
    In the letter to all those appointed to the newly renamed and revamped advisory committee, Secretary Ghaly said that "....California is committed to community living for all, rooted in both the Olmstead Supreme Court decision of 1999 and in California’s values of inclusion, access, and equity.  In survey after survey, when people with disabilities and older adults are asked for preferences on where to live, the top choice is in communities, not in institutions. People of all abilities and ages are happier and healthier when living in community settings. Inclusion of people with disabilities and older adults ensures that all voices and perspectives are represented and that all communities benefit from the contributions of disabled and older co-workers, neighbors, volunteers, mentors, friends, and family members."
    Secretary Ghaly added that "...the Committee will advise state agencies on community living policies and programs, including but not limited to long-term services and supports, transportation and housing, and employment opportunities," that he believes will help advance community living, inclusion, and integration in California. 
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request, with "Subscribe CDCAN" in the subject line, to Marty Omoto at: martyomoto@att.net

ORIGINAL OLMSTEAD ADVISORY COMMITTEE ESTABLISHED IN SEPTEMBER 2004
    The Olmstead Advisory Committee was established originally in September 2004 by an executive order issued by then Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (later revised to direct the Secretary of the California Health and Human Services agency to establish and maintain the committee under the California Health and Human Services agency) in response to the 1999 US Supreme Court ruling. 
    Members were appointed by then California Health and Human Services Agency Secretary Kim Belshé in January 2005, with the very first meeting of the advisory committee held in March 2005.
    The Olmstead Advisory Committee has been in existence and meeting at least quarterly since 2005, through three different Administrations, except for the first three quarters of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 
     The title of the advisory committee refers to the landmark 1999 US Supreme Court ruling regarding the rights of two women with developmental and other disabilities from the State of Georgia who wanted to live in community-based settings instead of the state facility that they lived in (see below for more information about the name and background of the two individuals who filed the historic federal lawsuit).  The two women - Elaine Wilson (who died in December 2005) and Lois Curtis filed the federal lawsuit against Tommy Olmstead, the then head official of the Georgia health and human services agency).
    That US Supreme Court ruling, handed down on June 22, 1999, among other things, required the states to take steps to avoid the unnecessary or unjustified institutionalization of persons with disabilities, mental health needs and seniors.  The decision did provide certain exceptions for the states - though none of those applied in the case involving Elaine Wilson and Lois Curtis.
    Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, writing the majority opinion of the US Supreme, concluded that “For the reasons stated, we conclude that, under Title II of the ADA [Americans with Disabilities Act], States are required to provide community based treatment for persons with mental disabilities when the State’s treatment professionals determine that such placement is appropriate, the affected persons do not oppose such treatment, and the placement can be reasonably accommodated, taking into account the resources available to the State and the needs of others with mental disabilities.”
    Since the court’s landmark ruling the states have taken steps and efforts to implement the decision, with some creating statewide committees (like California's), and developing "state plans" and other measures.
    Over the past over two decades years since the 1999 decision, especially with major cuts to health and human services community-based services due to huge budget deficits in the early and late 2000’s, advocates in every major state, including California - while praising major steps toward compliance - have raised criticisms and concerns of the need for major resources in fully implementing the historic 1999 US Supreme Court ruling.

 

UPCOMING DEPARTMENT'S SAFETY NET WORKGROUP ZOOM MEETING AND CALL
    The following, compiled by CDCAN, are details (and links) regarding the Zoom meeting and call set for  April 19th Safety Net Workgroup of the Developmental Services Task Force: 

WHEN: APRIL 19, 2021 - MONDAY
TIME: 2:00 - 4:00 PM (Pacific Time)
AGENCY: DEPARTMENT OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES (DDS) 
WHAT: SAFETY NET WORKGROUP OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES TASK FORCE
SUBJECT OR FOCUS OF MEETING: Updates
PURPOSE OF WORKGROUP: According to the department, the Safety Net Workgroup "...will continue evaluation of, and make recommendations on, the developmental services safety net, to include crisis services through person-centered approaches."
IN-PERSON MEETING LOCATION: No
ZOOM LINK - REGISTER FOR MEETING:
https://cal-dds.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_j33tc6WFT1u3omT7PGAbFg
Note: You will be sent to registration page titled "Webinar Registration" and will need to type in your first and last name and email address.
    After completing the registration, you will receive email response from "DS Task Force" with the subject line of "Safety Net Workgroup Confirmation" that will contain the link to the actual Zoom webinar that is specific to your registration only. 
PHONE ACCESS: To access the APRIL 19TH SAFETY NET WORKGROUP Zoom Meeting by phone only (no registration needed): 
    PHONE NUMBER: 1 669 900 6833  ("Welcome to Zoom")
    PHONE PASSCODE:  n/a
    WEBINAR - MEETING ID: 933 3191 4763 #
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS: According to the department, persons who require reasonable accommodations or language interpretation to participate in this (or any of the task force or work group meetings), email the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) at: DSTaskForce@dds.ca.gov 
REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS DEADLINE (FOR THIS MEETING: April 12, 2021
MEETING MATERIALS (AGENDA AND OTHER DOCUMENTS): 
  AGENDA - not posted yet
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT THE DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES TASK FORCE:
  EMAIL: DSTaskForce@dds.ca.gov
  WEBPAGE - Developmental Services Task Force and Workgroups - Past Workgroup Meetings:
https://www.dds.ca.gov/initiatives/ds-task-force/

 

Sharing from the New York Times

 

Turning Away From Nursing Homes, to What?

Covid-19 has driven down Americans’ demand for senior care facilities. Building support for more elders to remain at home requires systemic changes.

By Mark Miller

April 1, 2021

Regina Smith has dedicated her career to keeping seniors out of nursing homes. A geriatric social worker at an adult day care network in Indianapolis, she strives to provide services that can help people live independently.

But Ms. Smith’s expertise didn’t keep her own mother from a nursing home — or prevent the worst from happening when the pandemic struck last year.

Ms. Smith’s 75-year-old mother, Katherine, suffering from dementia and other serious conditions, moved to a home in town in 2019. Last April, she contracted Covid-19 and died just a few days later. “The very thing I fight for for others I was not able to do for my mom,” Ms. Smith said.

That trauma has made Ms. Smith much more skeptical about institutional care settings, and inspired her to work even harder to find solutions that keep clients at home. “We deal with a lot of people who have dementia or Alzheimer’s, and the family members are looking for memory care as soon as possible,” she said. “I just share my story with them.”

Covid-19 had taken the lives of 181,000 people in U.S. nursing homes, assisted living and other long-term care facilities through last weekend, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation — 33 percent of the national toll. All types of nursing homes, no matter their quality, have been hit, according to an investigation of Medicare’s rating system by The New York Times.

The troubles have intensified a spotlight on long-running questions about how communities can do a better job supporting people who need care but want to live outside an institutional setting.

Becoming more age-friendly

Demand for such care has declined sharply during the pandemic.

The occupancy rate in nursing homes in the fourth quarter of 2020 was 75 percent, down 11 percentage points from the first quarter, according to the National Investment Center for Seniors Housing & Care, a research group. The reduced demand was tied to Covid-19, deaths from the virus and a steep decline in elective surgery that requires follow-up care in a skilled nursing facility, according to the group’s research.

“We’ve been seeing increasing levels of calls to our member agencies and other community aging providers from people who have Mom or Dad in a nursing home or an assisted living facility, and now they want to get them out and bring them home,” said Sandy Markwood, chief executive officer of the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging.

The shift may not be permanent, but this much is clear: As the aging of the nation accelerates, most communities need to do much more to become age-friendly, said Jennifer Molinsky, senior research associate at the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard.

“It’s about all the services that people can access, whether that’s the accessibility and affordability of housing, or transportation and supports that can be delivered in the home,” she said.

Job 1: Finding a place to live

A major shortage of age-friendly housing in the United States will present problems for seniors who wish to stay in their homes. By 2034, 34 percent of households will be headed by someone over 65, a jump from 26 percent in 2018, according to the Harvard center, and the share of households age 80 and over will grow even more rapidly.

Yet in 2011, just 3.5 percent of homes had single-floor living, no-step entry and extra-wide halls and doors for wheelchair access, according to Harvard’s latest estimates. “And that figure doesn’t say anything about walk-in showers or accessible kitchens that people need,” Ms. Molinsky said.

Offering a variety of age-friendly housing is crucial, she added, including apartments with some level of services. “Those options are very limited, especially for people with middle or lower incomes or who live in high-cost or low-density locations,” she said.

Affordability is a critical issue, especially for renters. Nearly 10 million retirement-age households spend more than 30 percent of their income on housing, creating a cost burden, according to the Harvard researchers.

Health care at home

Perhaps the biggest challenge is how to care at home for seniors with more intensive health needs.

“It’s one thing to make communities into better places to be when you’re in your 60s and 70s and in good health. The question of how to make that work for people in their 80s and 90s is much bigger,” said Anne Tumlinson, chief executive of ATI Advisory, a consulting firm focused on health care for older adults. She is also the founder of Daughterhood.org, a network of local support circles for caregivers.

Medicare does not pay for most long-term care services, regardless of where they happen; reimbursement is limited to a person’s first 100 days in a skilled nursing facility.

Medicaid, which covers only people with very low incomes, has long been the nation’s largest funder of long-term care. From its inception, the program was required to cover care in nursing facilities but not at home or in a community setting.

“There’s a bias toward institutions,” said Judith Solomon, a senior fellow specializing in health at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. “People can get care in a nursing home, but can’t necessarily get that same care in the community — even when that would keep them healthy and safe.”

Medicaid funding has shifted in recent years, with 56 percent of spending on long-term services and supports going to home and community-based care in 2018, according to federal data. That was up sharply from 20 percent as recently as 15 years ago, Ms. Solomon said.

States are permitted to cap Medicaid enrollment, and 820,000 people in 41 states were waiting to enroll in 2018, on average for 39 months, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. But growth will accelerate because the new American Rescue Act raises the federal share of states’ spending on home and community-based services by 10 percentage points, amounting to $12.7 billion for one year starting this month. States can use that money to expand a broad range of rehabilitative services, including personal care, health care and transportation.

And the $2 trillion infrastructure plan proposed by President Biden this week includes spending $400 billion over eight years to bolster long-term care outside of institutional settings.

One program that could expand is PACE, or Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly. PACE, funded by Medicare and Medicaid, provides medical and social services so frail seniors who would qualify to be in a skilled nursing facility can continue to live independently. Most are low income and eligible for both Medicare and Medicaid.

For full article: Turning Away From Nursing Homes, to What?

 

Sharing from the California SILC

Webinar: Increasing Connectivity with the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB)

Free webinar discussing the new FCC Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) and how one might access that program.

Thursday, April 15, 2021, 3:00 PM ET
Register for this Webinar

Connectivity is an essential part of everyday life during the COVID-19 pandemic. A connected device with internet access provides a gateway to social engagement with family and friends while practicing physical distancing; healthcare services; remote work and school; and supplies and meals. 

The Emergency Broadband Benefit is an FCC program to help households struggling to pay for internet service during the pandemic. This new benefit will connect eligible households to jobs, critical healthcare services, and virtual classrooms. 

This webinar will include an overview of the Emergency Broadband Benefit including what it is, who is eligible, how it works, and how to help people enroll. A brief question and answer period will follow the presentation. To submit a question in advance of the webinar, please email: broadbandbenefit@fcc.gov.

Presenters::

  • Lori Gerhard, Director Office of Interagency Innovation, ACL
  • Eduard Bartholme, Associate Bureau Chief-CGB, FCC

 

Here is the link to register:

https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_3DWPQ9R6T-uHR6tvdqA4Ug

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

HUD Announces $693 Million for National Housing Trust Fund to Build Deeply Affordable Housing!

 

 

 

HUD announced today that communities will receive $693 million, more than double last year’s allocation, in national Housing Trust Fund (HTF) funding for the construction and operation of affordable, accessible housing for the lowest-income people. The HTF is a dedicated resource for building, rehabilitating, and preserving affordable housing for people with the lowest incomes.

This funding is a welcome and urgently needed resource, but much more is required to meet the country’s need for deeply affordable, accessible housing. NLIHC’s HoUSed campaign calls on Congress to provide at least $40 billion annually for the HTF to expand and preserve the supply of rental homes affordable and available to people with the lowest incomes. Learn more about the HoUSed campaign at: nlihc.org/housed

Contact your representatives and senators and urge them to enact bold, long-term solutions to the nation’s affordable housing crisis that will ensure housing is universal, stable, and affordable!

Background

Enacted in the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 (HERA), the national Housing Trust Fund is the first new housing program in a generation dedicated solely to the construction of housing affordable to the lowest-income people. The HTF is a permanent federal program with dedicated funding sources outside of the annual appropriations process; the HTF is funded through a modest annual assessment fee on Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, so it does not compete for funding with other HUD housing programs.

At least 90% of HTF funding must be used for the production, rehabilitation, preservation, or operation of rental housing, while up to 10% can be used for homeownership activities for first-time homebuyers. The HTF is administered through HUD as block grants to states and territories, and funding for each state and territory is determined by the number of extremely and very low-income renters who are severely housing cost-burdened as well as the shortage of rental properties available to extremely and very low-income households.

Increasing the supply of deeply affordable housing not only helps the lowest-income people but can alleviate rent pressure on those with higher incomes as well. Millions of low-income renters occupy housing units they cannot afford because they have no other option; increasing the supply of quality affordable, accessible rental housing for those with the lowest incomes through the HTF would allow these renters to move into homes affordable to them and free up their original units for renters at higher incomes. The HoUSed campaign urges Congress to provide at least $40 billion annually for the HTF to expand and preserve the supply of rental homes affordable and available to people with the lowest incomes.

In addition to expanding and preserving the supply of rental homes affordable and accessible to people with the lowest incomes, the HoUSed campaign is calling on Congress to bridge the gap between incomes and housing costs by expanding rental assistance to every eligible household; providing emergency rental assistance to households in crisis by creating a permanent national housing stabilization fund; and strengthening and enforcing renter protections to address the power imbalance between renters and landlords that puts renters at risk of housing instability and homelessness.

Take action by joining the HoUSed national campaign today, and by contacting your representatives and senators to demand they support bold solutions to the affordable housing crisis!

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin’s COVID restrictions could ease under state revisions

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 5, 2021 at 6:18 p.m. | UPDATED: April 5, 2021 at 6:18 p.m.

California health officials are poised to rewrite the state’s four-tiered plan for reopening the economy as the COVID-19 vaccine rollout continues, a move that could speed up the process of rolling back restrictions for Marin County.

The state is preparing to unveil the details of a new “green tier,” which would be the least-restrictive phase for counties, said Dee Dee Myers, a senior adviser to Gov. Gavin Newsom. The new phase could signal the end of the state’s tiered reopening system, which imposes restrictions based on coronavirus case rates and other metrics in each county, she said.

“The governor has been talking about a green light or a green phase, or getting past the blueprint,” Myers said during a press briefing on Friday. “That additional guidance is coming soon.”

But in the meantime, the state is planning to relax the criteria for each tier, officials said. That could mean Marin, which advanced from the second-most restrictive “red” tier into “orange” on March 23, could jump more quickly into the “yellow” tier, which is the least restrictive in the state’s current opening scheme.

For full article: Marin’s COVID restrictions could ease under state revisions

 

 

 

Sharing from Community

JML Law Wins Appeal in 'Unprecedented' Disability Case Against LAUSD For Failure to Accommodate Teacher With Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity

Friday, March 26, 2021 12:15 PM

Brown v. LAUSD establishes that symptoms of 'electromagnetic hypersensitivity' a.k.a. 'Microwave Sickness' could be deemed a 'physical disability' under the FEHA

LOS ANGELES, CA / ACCESSWIRE / March 26, 2021 / Today, JML Law announced it has won a major appeal in the California Court of Appeal that establishes that a plaintiff who pleads symptoms and physical manifestations of "electromagnetic hypersensitivity" has adequately alleged that they suffer from a "physical disability" under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act ("FEHA").

In the majority opinion handed down in the case, Brown v. LAUSD (Appeal No. B294240), the Court of Appeal recognized that it doesn't matter whether or not other courts in the United States have recognized "electromagnetic hypersensitivity" as a disability under the federal Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA") because JML Law's client, Laurie Brown, has brought her case not under the ADA, but under FEHA, which is broader in scope. The Court of Appeal held that Brown sufficiently alleged that she suffered from a physical disability under the FEHA and that she sufficiently stated a cause of action for failure to accommodate, where she alleged that LAUSD refused to honor an accommodation which LAUSD had agreed to provide to Brown. The Court of Appeal stated that based on their reading of Brown's First Amended Complaint, "LAUSD's actions here do not align with those of an employer taking positive steps to accommodate the employee's limitations."

The complete published opinion by the Court of Appeal can be accessed at https://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/B294240.PDF.

JML Law represents Brown, a former middle school teacher who had worked for LAUSD for decades and had hoped to continue teaching there for years to come. However, that was made impossible because LAUSD allegedly refused to accommodate her in returning to the classroom. As a result of not being accommodated, her employment with LAUSD ended.

For full article: JML Law Wins Appeal in 'Unprecedented' Disability Case Against LAUSD For Failure to Accommodate Teacher With Electromagnetic Hypersensitivity

 

 

Sharing from Forbes

Uber Ordered To Pay $1.1 Million After Blind Woman Says She Was Refused Service

Rachel Sandler

Forbes Staff

A San Francisco woman was awarded $1.1 million by an arbitrator Thursday after she claimed Uber drivers repeatedly denied her rides because she is blind and uses a guide dog, the latest case where the ride-hailing giant’s drivers status as independent contractors has been called into question.

The arbitration case was filed by San Francisco resident Lisa Irving in 2018, and accused Uber of violating the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) after she was harassed or denied rides on 14 occasions in 2016 and 2017, which caused her to be late for work on two occasions and lose her job.

Irving’s lawyers say Uber drivers also abandoned her in dangerous places at late hours, verbally abused her and once cut a trip short and falsely claimed she had been delivered to her destination.

For full article: Uber Ordered To Pay $1.1 Million After Blind Woman Says She Was Refused Service

A Tidbit from Me: The PM Morning Report wants to give a shout out to Lisa Irving for her steadfast advocacy! It is time for Uber and Lyft to stop litigating over whether they have to be accessible and just get it done. For transparency: as community members in the mid-2000’s my wife Jennifer and I worked with Uber and Lyft to incorporate accessibility into their rideshare service. Later, Uber reached out to Marin CIL to put together a Driver Training program to onboard the original  drivers for their WAV (wheelchair accessible vehicle) program in the San Francisco Bay Area. Unfortunately, neither Uber or Lyft supported their WAV programs and they went by the wayside. It is my understanding that Uber may offer some wheelchair accessible service in San Francisco. It is extremely limited.

 

Sharing from the Department of Developmental Services

Electronic Visit Verification (EVV) Meeting April 27, 2021

Focus group discussion on IHSS and SLS

 

 

Please join the Department of Developmental Services for the next EVV meeting on April 27, 2021 at 2:00 pm via Zoom. This small group meeting will include discussions on EVV for self-vendored consumers, so this event is by invitation only.

 Tuesday, April 27, 2021

2:00-4:00 pm

Register

A Tidbit from Me:  Both the IHSS program and Supportive Living Services programs play an pivotal role to support the independence of people with disabilities. The goal of both programs is to keep people from being institutionalized. For transparency I received IHSS services for many years. When I was no longer eligible for IHSS I became eligible through the Regional Center System to receive Supportive Living Services.

 The IHSS Program is a Medi-Cal based program. It will help pay for services provided to you so that you can remain safely in your own home. To be eligible, you must be over 65 years of age, or disabled, or blind.  Disabled children are also potentially eligible for IHSS.  IHSS is considered an alternative to out-of-home care, such as nursing homes or board and care facilities.

The types of services which can be authorized through IHSS are housecleaning, meal preparation, laundry, grocery shopping, personal care services (such as bowel and bladder care, bathing, grooming and paramedical services), accompaniment to medical appointments, and protective supervision for people with cognitive related conditions.

Supported Living Services (SLS) consist of a broad range of services to adults with developmental disabilities who, through the. Individual Program Plan (IPP) process, choose to live in homes they themselves own or lease in the community.

 

 


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Honoring Rights, Covid-19 Update, Happy Easter and Passover


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 2, 2021

Good Morning my Wonderful Family in Community,

Happy Friday! I hope you are all doing well and I want to wish you all the best during this time of Easter and Passover. I honor you for all the work you do every day. Have a wonderful weekend.

 

 

Barbara Jordan

Picture Description: Congresswoman Barbara Jordan is a proud black woman with short black hair wearing glasses. She has a wonderful smile and is wearing a red plaid button-up shirt with a grey jacket.

 

Picture Description: Congresswoman Barbara Jordan is a proud black woman with short black hair wearing glasses. She has a wonderful smile and is wearing a red plaid button-up shirt with a grey jacket.

Barbara Jordan (1936-1996) became the first African-American to serve in the Texas Senate in 1967, and in 1973 she became the first African-American woman from a Southern state to serve in Congress. She was also the first black woman to give the keynote address at a Democratic National Convention. She had multiple sclerosis (MS). She worked for voting rights and minimum wage laws, and was considered a leader in the civil rights movement.

For More Information and Picture Source: Jordan, Barbara Charline (1936–1996)

Source:14 Black Disabled Women Who Made a Powerful Impact In Life & Self Love

A Tidbit from Me: Congresswoman Jordan was someone that me and my family admired. I remember we all stopped and paused to watch her service. What a leader who did so much for so many. It’s the PM Morning Reports pleasure to honor her today.

 

Harriet McBryde Johnson

 

Picture Description: Harriet Johnson is a powerful leader who is Caucasian. Harriet has long black braided hair. She uses a power wheelchair and is pictured wearing a white sweater sitting at a desk in her office surrounded by many documents.

Picture Description: Harriet Johnson is a powerful leader who is Caucasian. Harriet has long black braided hair. She uses a power wheelchair and is pictured wearing a white sweater sitting at a desk in her office surrounded by many documents.

Harriet McBryde Johnson (1957-2008) was a disability rights lawyer and activist most well known for debating Peter Singer, the famed moral philosopher, at Stanford University in 2002. Singer argued that parents should be given the choice to euthanize infants with severe disabilities because they will be “worse off” in life than their able-bodied counterparts. Johnson, who experienced disability since birth from a muscle-wasting disease, used her own life experiences as well as common arguments from the Disability Rights Movement and the organization Not Yet Dead to refute Singer.

Nearly a year after the debate took place, Johnson published “Unspeakable Conversations” a cover story for The New York Times Magazine recounting her experience. The article moves from her first encounter with Singer to their email exchange and public debate providing detailed descriptions of Johnson’s experience as a woman with severe disabilities. For example, she provides a detailed and lengthy description of her travel, which includes her power wheelchair being destroyed by airline staff and a night sleeping in the airport before repairs could be completed. Ultimately, Johnson argues that the foundation of Singer’s position lies in commonplace prejudice. She also refuses to villainize Singer because “then I must so define all who believe disabled lives are inherently worse off or that a life without a certain kind of consciousness lacks value. That definition would make monsters of many of the people with whom I move on the sidewalks, do business, break bread, swap stories and share the grunt work of local politics.” She concludes by saying that “my goal isn't to shed the perspective that comes from my particular experience, but to give voice to it.”

Further Reading: Too Late to Die Young by Harriet McBryde Johnson (2005) and “A Habitable World” in Hypatia by Rosemarie Garland-Thomson (2014)

Source and Picture Source: Harriet McBryde Johnson

A Tidbit from Me: This hits home for me. My older sibling and I all have severe disabilities and my younger sibling acquired his disability as an adult. Over the years people would ask me and my family why my parents continued having children. This question was awfully hurtful and when I was young left me perplexed to find the appropriate response. A question that always came to mind was “which one of us shouldn’t have been born?”. As a young person this question was traumatic. This question puts ableism right in the forefront and as a child one can feel that their life is a problem. As an adult this question makes me angry. What right does anyone have to judge the actions of parents? Disabled lives have value. We contribute. Each of us makes the world better in our own way. My mom always said that we are all created in the image and likeness of God.

 

County of Marin Update

The Marin County COVID-19 Status Update is published weekdays and as needed to share important news and resources related to the COVID-19 pandemic and to keep the local economy running. We remain here for you.

 

Shout-Out to MarinHealth

It's all hands-on deck with the MarinHealth team who joined the Marin Center Vaccination point of distribution (POD) this week. MarinHealth has been a key partner in the local response to the COVID-19 pandemic from the beginning. From testing to outbreak prevention, to treating COVID-positive patients and now to vaccinations, this partnership is critical to our success. Our community partners have been our true heroes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you MarinHealth!

Reminder About Applying for Rental Assistance

Communities of color have been disproportionately impacted by the public health emergency and are often at the highest risk of housing displacement. In Marin, more than 3,000 people have contacted the County for help with unpaid rent related to the pandemic.

Good news, though: Marin has received $16 million to distribute as part of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, intended to prevent evictions and homelessness. Money will be channeled directly to landlords to cover past tenant rent and utilities. The online application period is now open. Read the County’s full news release or  call (415) 473-2223 or email staff to learn more about the Emergency Rental Assistance Program.

A Tidbit from Me: If you are a person with a disability or an older adult and need help applying for rental assistance or any other program please reach out to Marin CIL.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin travel indicators raise fears of COVID setback

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 1, 2021 at 2:13 p.m. | UPDATED: April 1, 2021 at 7:52 p.m.

With new coronavirus cases in Marin beginning to level off after a steep decline, health officials are warning that spring travel could fuel another COVID-19 surge.

“If you have the travel bug, remember that COVID-19 is a travel bug,” said Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer. “Stay local. The last thing we need to do is import variants into our community.”

About 58% of Marin residents over the age of 16 have had at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. But that still leaves a sizable chunk of the population vulnerable to infection, Willis said.

“We’ve made so much progress in the past two months,” he said. “Vaccination rates are increasing and infection rates are declining. Our goal should be to hold onto those gains and not let down our guard.”

But signs of an increase in travel have already been noted this week. Marin Airporter, which shuttles people between Marin and the San Francisco International Airport, has seen ridership more than double over the past week.

The service has sold about 250 tickets per day over the past week, up from about 100 daily tickets in other recent weeks, said Wilkens Philippe, a supervisor for the business.

For full article: Marin travel indicators raise fears of COVID setback

 

Marin allotted funding for COVID vaccination equity

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: April 1, 2021 at 4:49 p.m. | UPDATED: April 1, 2021 at 5:31 p.m.

Marin County is slated to receive $400,000 in state funding to help vaccinate residents in low-income neighborhoods against the coronavirus.

The funding is part of a $7.6 million distribution to the nine Bay Area counties. The money can be used to expand vaccine distribution centers in poorer areas, sign people up for vaccine appointments through MyTurn and hire outreach workers, legislators said.

Marin’s health department hasn’t finalized a plan to use the money, but “it’s definitely going to support our strategy to remove any barriers to vaccination for our low-income communities,” said Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer.

The funding for the Bay Area comes after the region was largely left out of a state equity program announced last month.

In early March, the state announced a new vaccine plan that would set aside 40% of its available doses for 400 priority ZIP codes — and allow reopening restrictions to loosen once 2 million doses were delivered in those areas. The state based the list on a health equity metric known as the California Healthy Places Index, which ranks census tracts based on income, education levels, health care access and other factors.

Yet many communities that expected to be included — where people have contracted and died from COVID-19 at high rates — were left out. In all, just 10 Bay Area ZIP codes made the list, with not a single one located in Marin, San Mateo or Santa Clara counties.

State Sen. Mike McGuire said Bay Area lawmakers have been meeting for weeks with Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration to hash out a plan to improve vaccine equity in the region. He said the $7.6 million in funding was the result of those discussions.

For full article: Marin allotted funding for COVID vaccination equity

A Tidbit from Me: This is wonderful. Marin CIL has been working to advance access and equity throughout Covid-19 and now with vaccine distribution.

 

Sharing from the National Low Income Housing Coalition

HoUSed: Universal, Stable, and Affordable Housing

Join Monday’s (April 5) national call from 2:30-4:00 pm ET on HoUSed: Universal, Stable, and Affordable Housing. We will discuss the housing elements in President Biden’s “American Jobs Plan,” a new study of tenant screening practices, and the latest on the extension of the CDC eviction moratorium. We will also discuss updates from Capitol Hill, share organizing and advocacy strategies to advance of the HoUSed campaign, receive updates from the field, and more. Register for the call at: https://bit.ly/3ub2sWM

 

Sharing from SCDD

As more people across the state receive immunization, communities will slowly be able to return to normal. Californians with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, but information about the vaccine itself might be confusing or raise concerns.

 Hopefully by now you’ve seen our webinars about informed decision-making and how service providers and others can help people with IDD get the COVID-19 vaccine. Now we want to tell you more about the vaccine itself!

 

Whether you have a disability, have a family member with a disability, or provide services to someone with a disability, you need the facts. Join our webinar to hear directly from doctors about:

 

·     What happens in your body when you get immunization and possible side effects

·     How the vaccines were developed so quickly in this pandemic

·     Who makes sure the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective

 

Dr. Ron Chapman from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and Gerri Collins-Bride, NP, from UC-San Francisco Health will share what you need to know about the vaccine and what it means for people with disabilities.

 

They will be joined for a panel discussion with Jesse Rocha from South Central Los Angeles Regional Center and Kim Mills from A Better Life Together, who sits on the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) Vaccine Advisory Committee. Our panelists will share what they know about the vaccine from different cultural perspectives within the disability community.

 

 

Register Now!

 


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Honoring Dolores Huerta and Jane Jackson, Covid-19 News, and Employment Workshop


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on April 1, 2021

Good Afternoon my Family in Community,

The PM (Morning) Report is a little late……”why?” you ask….because in our world stuff just happens. Marin CIL’s advocacy department had some emerging community member  calls for assistance this morning. Here is the report for you. I wanted to wish each of you Happy Easter and Passover. Sending you a virtual hug.

 

 

In Honor of Cesar Chavez Day and Women’s History Month

 

Picture Description: A Hispanic woman with black hair, smiling at the camera 90 years young. Dolores is wearing a black and white patterned blouse and long silver earrings.

Picture Source: Dolores Huerta

Picture Description: A Hispanic woman with black hair, smiling at the camera 90 years young. Dolores is wearing a black and white patterned blouse and long silver earrings.

Growing Up With an Activist: A Valuable Legacy (In Relevant Part)

In the name of human rights of farm workers

by Fresia Rodriguez Cadavid, AARP VIVA, Fall 2004 

Through self-sacrifice, a commitment to nonviolence, and their spirituality, César Chávez and Dolores Huerta changed a nation. Together they founded the farm worker movement, fought against agribusiness, and organized thousands of laborers so they could earn a living wage and have just working conditions. In 1962, they launched the National Farm Workers Association, which preceded the United Farm Workers of America (UFW) union.

To advance la causa, they led selfless lives. Both forfeited time with their large and loving families to defend the human rights of farm workers; they lived in voluntary destitution so as not to drain resources from the movement. They also lived in jeopardy; their lives threatened many times.

With their passion and strength, Chávez and Huerta endured the hardships and passed along their values of service and community to their children.

Today Huerta continues la lucha, as do her children, their families, and Chávez’s children. They continue to believe in the words, spoken by Chávez, which marked the movement: “It is my deepest belief that only by giving life do we find life.”

 

The Huerta Children
Enriching Activism

At age 74, Huerta, a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother, continues to inspire activism. Her second-eldest daughter, Lori de León, is a program developer at the foundation named after her mother. “I became very aware at a young age that there were needs of people that were not being met. I would travel with my mother to [farm workers’] homes and see dirt floors and cardboard and chicken wire, and newspaper-stuffed walls. I knew [my mother] was very special because she was helping them,” says the 52-year-old.

She recounts the difficulty of sharing her mother with the movement: “We didn’t have an upbringing. We were on our own. At a young age all my brothers and sisters realized the importance of her work.” She recalls when her mother missed her 13th birthday, at the time a very special birthday to de León, to instead help organize orange pickers who worked for Minute Maid in Florida. Huerta told her young daughter that by sacrificing her personal needs and wants for that day, thousands of farm workers and their children, could benefit. “How could anyone argue with that?” de León recalls.

For full article: Growing Up With an Activist: A Valuable Legacy

 

A Tidbit from Me: I first had the privilege of meeting Dolores Huerta in 1989. As most folks know Berkeley and the East Bay were a hub for Disability Rights and advocacy. At that time one of my best friends was a wonderful advocate/activist named Jane Jackson. Jane was originally from Marin/Kentfield, for those of you who know Marin County history you might remember her mother Libby Gaeta(she was one of the leaders involved in advancing Women’s rights in Marin). As we often talk about disability rights is intersectional which means disability crosses every community. The farm worker and the disability rights movement bonded over policies supporting labor and human rights. Later, Dolores joined us on actions to advance the passage of the American’s with Disabilities Act. It is the PM Morning Report’s pleasure to honor her today.

Celebrating Women’s History Month

Picture Description: Jane Jackson, who is a power wheelchair user, with grey hair wearing a bright multicolored sweater (predominantly red).

 

Picture Source: Jane Jackson

Picture Description: Jane Jackson, who is a power wheelchair user, with grey hair wearing a bright multicolored sweater (predominantly red).

Local civil rights activist died in Cuba at age 73

By ANGELA HILL |

PUBLISHED: November 5, 2007 at 3:42 a.m. | UPDATED: August 17, 2016 at 4:19 a.m.

Longtime human rights activist Jane Jackson, who spent most of the last three decades based in Oakland as she fought for disabled rights and numerous social-justice causes around the world, died while visiting her second home in Santiago de Cuba, Cuba, on Sept. 26. She was 73.

Jackson, who herself used a wheelchair because of an inner-ear disorder causing severe dizziness, was well known throughout the Bay Area for her tireless struggles to improve access for people with disabilities, particularly on public transit.

With her trademark wheelchair covered with social-justice bumper stickers, she once rolled in front of an AC Transit bus to call attention to non-working wheelchair lifts. She was among 200 wheelchair users who blocked rush-hour buses at the Transbay Terminal in the late 1970s.

For many years, she served on various boards and commissions related to issues concerning the disabled in the City of Oakland. She helped get sidewalk curb ramps built, and wheelchair lifts installed on buses. In the late 1980s, she was part of a determined group of disabled people in the East Bay who fought to ensure all BART elevators would be in working order.

“Whenever you see a curb cut, or four in the same intersection, or when you see a person in a wheelchair using a lift on a public bus, or riding BART because the elevator actually works — she is one of the people to thank,” said her daughter, Libby McMahon of Carmel.

When once asked if this kind of activism was draining, Ms. Jackson responded, “Injustice is so hard for me to live with. It’s easier to fight.”

For full article: Local civil rights activist died in Cuba at age 73

A Tidbit from Me: My friend Jane Jackson…so much to say. Jane was in a class of her own. She believed in direct action and holding policy makers accountable. Not only in advancing disability rights, human rights as well. Jane and I first bonded over policy work and many demonstrations to make the public bus accessible. Later we had to advocate just as hard to push for policies that required transit operators to actually use the lift on the bus to board us. Back then bus drivers would pass us up, say the lift doesn’t work. In the old days they would sometimes refuse to secure our wheelchairs in the accessible seating position. We often would have to ask another passenger to assist or ride unsecured; which led to several “wild rides”…..speaking from experience. Jane and I were active in abolishing apartheid, supporting the LGBTQ community and in particular people with HIV/AIDS, and for many years we supported the ARC/AIDS Vigil. The ARC/AIDS vigil was located adjacent to the San Francisco Federal Building at UN Plaza. The ARC/ AIDS Vigil provided food and other supports to this underserved community and  worked to bring awareness and fight discrimination against people living with HIV/AIDS. I learned so much about human rights those days. This activism in my early days shaped the person and activist that I am today. It’s a pleasure to honor one of my dearest friends in the PM Morning Report.

 

 

County of Marin Update

Marin County COVID-19 Status Update: March 31, 2021

Modeling How to Reopen Schools

All public and private schools in Marin County are open to classroom-based learning. The lessons learned in achieving that goal are being highlighted for other jurisdictions that seek to reopen schools nationally. A recent publication, Marin County: Leveraging Education and Public Health Partnerships to Support School Reopening, concludes that strong ties and shared vision between local public health leaders and educators is critical to successful reopening.

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

 

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

Vaccination Data

School -based COVID-19 Transmission Data

Blueprint for a Safer Economy (“tier status”) Data

 

Sharing from the National Council on Independent Living

I&R Center: Call for Sessions Open for the 2021 HCBS Conference

March 30, 2021 By theadvocacymonitor 

Dear Aging and Disability I&R Professionals,

ADvancing States is pleased to share that the call for sessions for the 2021 Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) Conference is open.

For the last 36 years, the HCBS Conference has convened state and federal agencies around improving systems that deliver long-term services and supports (LTSS) for all ages and abilities. The HCBS Conference attracts more than 1,500 attendees from over 50 states and territories and highlights best practices from across the country in home and community-based services.

Advancing States seeks original, thought-provoking, educational sessions that enable national attendees to learn about creative approaches, new ideas, innovative models, and emerging trends in the landscape of LTSS programs and HCBS service delivery, as well as topics that address the pressing issues facing aging and disability programs.

The 2021 HCBS Conference will be a hybrid virtual / in-person event. We are currently accepting in-person and virtual session proposals. You will be able to select your preferences on the session submission form. The specific dates and location of the 2021 Conference will be announced in the upcoming weeks, please reserve your calendar for the beginning of December 2021.

Thank you,

Nanette Relave 

Senior Director, National I&R Support Center | ADvancing States

241 18th Street S, Ste. 403, Arlington, VA 22202

Office Line: 202.898.2578 | nrelave@advancingstates.org

 

Sharing from Marin CIL

Dear Students, Parents, and Colleagues:

Please join us for The Road Ahead: A 7-week Virtual Marin County Transition Series where community organizations will discuss post-secondary support services and resources in the areas of employment, independent living, community-based programs, college opportunities, mental health resources, and assistive technology.

You may visit the link below to register and learn more about our first event where Marin County Office of Education (MCOE), Department of Rehabilitation (DOR), and Golden Gate Regional Center (GGRC) will speak about their collaborative partnership and access to services for transition age youth with disabilities.

The Road Ahead:
Marin Local Partnership Agreement

April 1, 2021
Employment Options and Support Services

April 15, 2021
Exploring Independent Living Options and Housing Supports

April 22, 2021
Discovering Mental Health Supports

April 29, 2021
Exploring Assistive Technology Support and Access

 

 


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Honoring Corbett O'Toole, Covid-19 News, Dr. Matt Willis Rocks, Employment, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on March 30, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope you are doing well today. Marin CIL's advocacy department is rocking this morning. Coffee in hand and just a tiny bit of sugar free chocolate as I write this blog to keep my energy up for today. Feeling pretty good…. I hope the same for you. Sending an elbow bump and a smile. Happy Tuesday to each of you!

 

Women’s History Month

Honoring Corbett O’Toole

Picture Description: Corbett is a Caucasian woman with a great smile and short hair. She is wearing a blue and purple blouse with a bright red necklace around her neck. There is green grass in the background

Picture Description: Corbett is a Caucasian woman with a great smile and short hair. She is wearing a blue and purple blouse with a bright red necklace around her neck. There is green grass in the background

Another of the influential group of women participants in the Disability Rights Movement, Corbett O’Toole’s (1951-present) activism largely focuses on education, health, sexuality, and globalization in the context of women with disabilities. After working for the Center for Independent Living and participating in the sit-in at HEW with Heumann, Cone, Breslin, and Wright, O’Toole founded the Disabled Women’s Alliance in 1989. Since the 1990s, much of O’Toole’s advocacy work has focused on organizing international conferences for women with disabilities, such as the 1992 Disabled Women and the Law Conference and the 1997 First International Conference on Parents with Disabilities and Their Families. O’Toole also presented two briefings on the education and health care of disabled women and girls for Congress. O'Toole's work corresponds with Barbara Faye Waxman's emphasis on disability sexuality. 

As an independent scholar, O’Toole’s work focuses on a sexuality and women with disabilities, particularly mothers. In “Sex, Disability, and Motherhood” for Disability Studies Quarterly, the first journal devoted to disability studies, O’Toole argues that “disabled mothers face many issues that inhibit or prevent them from effective parenting,” particularly scarcity of information and resources, yet “they also find effective solutions.” She concludes by noting that the barriers to success “reside in the unexamined medical-model perspective” and that challenging this model would “provide permanent reframing of fundamental myths that constrain disabled women’s access to sexuality and parenting.” O’Toole’s own scholarship and activism work to combat these myths and provide a model of motherhood for women with disabilities. She adopted her daughter, Meecha Bragante Corbett, who also has a disability, during her work at the United Nations Fourth International Conference on Women in Beijing, China.

Further Reading: Congressional Briefing on Disabled Girls and Young Women in Education (2002) and “The Sexist Inheritance of the Disability Movement” in Gendering Disability (2004) by Corbett O’Toole. You can also view her oral history from the Disability Rights and Independent Living Movement Oral History Project.

Source: Women's Disability Activism: Corbett O'Toole

Corbett O’Toole’s Website: Corbett Joan O'Toole: Queer, disabled, elder

Photo Source

A Tidbit from Me: I have known Corbett for many years. It is the PM Morning Reports pleasure to honor her today. Corbett is a fabulous advocate who has been committed to advancing disability rights and independent living almost from the very beginning of our movement. Her groundbreaking work brought into the light the difficulties and discrimination that people with disabilities who are parents face. Often times parents with disabilities face judgement on a variety of different fronts…..first from the system (Drs. And Social workers) who often express ablest views implying that the disability interferes with their ability to be a parent. There is a lack of understanding that people with disabilities make great parents. Yes, sometimes they need additional services and supports. However, that doesn’t lessen their ability to be wonderful role models for their kids. Sadly, this also comes up in divorce cases all the time. Over the years Marin CIL has supported many parents who were threatened with either loosing or reducing the parents right to custody or visitation. This discrimination that faces many families from our community must end.

 

 

County of Marin Update

Online Sessions Provide Answers on Vaccines

Marin County Public Health offers COVID-19 health education online training twice a week for local businesses, nonprofits, and other agencies. Participants in the COVID-19 Vaccine Talks learn about the different brands of vaccines, the process of getting vaccinated, and the truth about some widely circulated myths and misinformation. 

The free trainings are held via Zoom each Tuesday and Thursday starting at 9 a.m.

Reminder: Sign up to receive updates to Marin Recovers, the go-to website for the safe reopening of Marin. It includes all the guidelines business owners / managers need as Marin progresses through the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy including information on loans and other forms of financial relief.

Physicians Taking Anti-Discrimination Approach

In February 2020, just before the start of the pandemic and the first COVID-19 case in Marin County, Public Health Officer Dr. Matt Willis co-authored a blog post for Bay Area clinicians with Dr. Tomas Aragon, then Public Health Officer for San Francisco. It was a warning of the tendency to racialize blame in epidemics and reminding physicians to lead an anti-discrimination approach.

“We know that racial, ethnic and cultural discrimination cause bad health outcomes,” they wrote at the time. “In the case of an emerging illness, stigma about the illness makes people less likely to come forward, to seek help or ask questions.”

With the resurgence of anti-Asian sentiment in Bay Area and across the nation, the message remains timely. The Stop Asian Hate movement is gaining traction and boosting awareness. Read the short blog post.

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL commends Dr Matt Willis for bringing to the attention of decision makers and the community the importance of advocating against any acts of discrimination or medical rationing that adversely affect the AAPI community and the need to improve messaging and outreach to these communities.

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin faces uncertainties as COVID vaccine eligibility expands

 

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: March 29, 2021 at 5:20 p.m. | UPDATED: March 29, 2021 at 10:09 p.m.

As Marin County prepares to expand the pool of people eligible for coronavirus vaccines, health officials are hoping for an increase in supply to meet the surge in demand.

Residents 50 and older will be qualified for COVID-19 vaccinations on April 1 and people age 16 and older on April 15. In total, that represents 80,000 Marin residents who will be eligible for shots for the first time.

“That’s the biggest group yet,” said Dr. Matt Willis, the county’s public health officer.

California’s supply of vaccines is expected to grow in the coming weeks, but it’s unclear how many doses will arrive in Marin, Willis said.

State officials announced a plan earlier this month to dedicate 40% of California’s vaccine supplies to people living in 400 ZIP codes that rank lowest in the California Healthy Places Index, which measures factors such as household income, level of education, housing status and access to transportation. None of the ZIP codes is in Marin.

“We will see more doses,” Willis said. “It’s just that we may not see proportionally as much as other counties.”

Without a major supply boost, newly-eligible residents might struggle to find appointments to get inoculated, Willis said.

“If we don’t have significantly more doses to work with, there will be a very long line for people who are eligible,” he said.

For full article: Marin faces uncertainties as COVID vaccine eligibility expands

 

Sharing from CDCAN

NEW: DEPARTMENT OF DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES ISSUES FOUR NEW DIRECTIVES IMPACTING REGIONAL CENTER "ALTERNATIVE NONRESIDENTIAL SERVICES"

  • TRANSPORTATION SERVICES for Alternative Nonresidential Services: Monthly Unit Rate of Reimbursement Beginning April 1st
  • GROUP SUPPORTED EMPLOYMENT for Alternative Nonresidential Services: Monthly Unit Rate of Reimbursement Unique to Each Vendor Beginning April 1st
  • NEW VENDORS for Alternative Nonresidential Services: Monthly Rates for New Vendors (as defined in Directive)
  • PROVIDER "ATTESTATION" (CONFIRMATION OR CERTIFICATION) FOR ABSENCE PAYMENTS for Alternative Nonresidential Services Covering Period Between May and August 2020 


SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED 03/29/2021 09:54 PM (PACIFIC TIME] - The Department of Developmental Services (DDS), issued Monday late afternoon (March 29th), four new directives (or guidance documents) covering the department's "Alternative Nonresidential Services" as follows:
    TRANSPORTATION SERVICES for Alternative Nonresidential Services: monthly unit rate of reimbursement beginning April 1, 2021.
    GROUP SUPPORTED EMPLOYMENT for Alternative Nonresidential Services: monthly unit rate of reimbursement unique to each vendor beginning April 1, 2021. 
    NEW VENDORS for Alternative Nonresidential Services: monthly rates for new vendors (as defined in directive). 
    PROVIDER "ATTESTATION" (CONFIRMATION OR CERTIFICATION) FOR ABSENCE PAYMENTS for Alternative Nonresidential Services: covering period between May and August 2020.   
    Governor Gavin Newsom's March 12, 2020 executive order (see below for link) authorized the director of the Department of Developmental Services (DDS) to issue directives or guidance waiving any provision or requirement of the landmark state law known as the "Lanterman Developmental Disabilities Services Act" and also the California Early Intervention Services Act due to COVID-19, with an expiration date of 30 days - with 30 day extensions as needed.  That is why the department is required to issue directives waiving an existing state law with expiration dates of 30 days, that can be extended (and have been for at least six previously issued directives). The department is expected to issue a directive in the next few days that extends by another 30 days (into May) previously issued directives that currently have April expiration dates [CDCAN will issue report when that directive extending expiration dates of previously issued directive is released]. 
    The directive issued August 31, 2020 that authorized "Alternative Nonresidential Services" as an option to providing other types of services to people who currently are not allowed (under current state public health directive on gatherings) to attend site-based programs, however does NOT have an expiration date. That directive was issued under a different executive order by the Governor (Executive Order N-75-20 issued on August 24, 2020, that suspended Title 17, California Code of Regulations section 54326(a)(11). The four directives issued today (March 29, 2021) by the department impact Alternative Nonresidential Services as authorized by the August 31, 2020 directive under the August 24, 2020 Governor's executive order.
    Some directives issued by the Department of Developmental Services have no expiration date either because the directive was providing only information or does not change state law, and remains in effect unless rescinded by the Department of Developmental Services. 
    The Department of Developmental Services oversees the 21 non-profit regional centers who determinate eligibility and coordinate funding for community-based services and supports provided by community-based organizations and individuals for over 350,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities, including about 40,000 infants and toddlers in California's early intervention program known as "Early Start". 
     CDCAN NOTE: To receive the free CDCAN Reports, send email request to Marty Omoto (with "CDCAN Reports Subscribe" in the subject line) to: martyomoto@att.net

WHAT IS ALTERNATIVE NONRESIDENTIAL SERVICES?
    According to the Department of Developmental Services (DDS),  Alternative Nonresidential Services is a "way for consumers to receive nonresidential services that may have been disrupted by the COVID-19 State of Emergency. [Regional Center funded] Service providers can offer supports that differ from their traditional program
design and respond to any new needs and interests that have emerged as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic."
    Alternative Nonresidential Services, according to the department, is not required but is "...an option that can be used to support the needs of consumers..." when traditional or conventional services cannot be provided as they were before COVID-19.
   Some examples of Alternative Nonresidential Services are:
     Delivering food, personal protective equipment
     Delivering packets, equipment and supplies for activities and remote learning
     Wellness checks and discussion about current events
     Collaborative meetings to plan upcoming events
     Pre-recorded or live video classes to learn new skills
     Assisting with networking and development of employment and microenterprising opportunities
     Supporting set up, training and use of technology devices

 

Sharing from the ARC of California

Employment is Essential

As we end Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month it is important to recognize the unique challenges individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities have experienced over the last year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Over the last year, many individuals experienced dramatic shifts in their daily lives such as changes in where they live, who they live with, day program activities, social experiences with friends and family, educational opportunities and employment opportunities, just to name a few. Employment of people with disabilities is one of the hardest hit areas for people with IDD and one that deserves significant attention as we begin to recover and emerge from this pandemic. Research shows that at the beginning of 2020 national employment measures were close to an all-time high with many states facing a massive worker shortage. People with disabilities were also finding greater employment opportunities. However, unemployment of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities was still notably high with estimates of unemployment ranging from 80% – 86% of employment age adults. Since the pandemic began it is estimated that people with disabilities have experienced an even greater disproportionate impact of job loss and that about 40% of people with disabilities who were employed pre-pandemic have lost their jobs. It is unknow what percent will get their jobs back but nevertheless that is a massive set back considering the very low percentage of people with disabilities that were employed to begin with.

The National Conference of State Legislatures in Collaboration with the State Exchange on Employment and Disability, an initiative under the US Department of Labor’s Officer of Disability Employment Policy, published a series of reports that look at the effects of the pandemic on employment as well as state policy options that increase opportunities for people with disabilities. As local, state, and federal governments shift into economic recovery mode inclusion of people with disabilities in meaningful employment policy and practice is critical.

The NCSL reports can be found here https://www.ncsl.org/research/labor-and-employment/covid-19-and-employment-for-people-with-disabilities.aspx

Source: Employment is Essential

A Tidbit from Me: One of the primary principles of the Independent Living philosophy is the right for every person to be able to participate in all aspects of community life and have the opportunity to achieve economic self-sufficiency similar to people without disabilities. One of the best ways to achieve economic self-sufficiency is with a job. We have made tremendous strides in the employment of people with disabilities in the past years. However, we still have a long way to go to make equity for our communities a reality in the workplace. The unemployment rate of people with disabilities is extremely high. The opportunity for advancement is often difficult to achieve. Often there are significant pay differences between people with disabilities and those without disabilities. The Independent Living movement strives to remove these barriers every day in our work.  


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Honoring the Legacy of Cheryl Marie Wade, Rental Assistance Available, A Little Bit of This and That


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on March 29, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

Happy Monday! I hope you are doing well this morning. A lot happening this week. If you have any questions or need anything from me or Marin CIL please feel free to reach out. Remember: We are here for you! Here’s the PM Morning Report for you. Sending an elbow bump and a smile.

 

Celebrating Women’s History Month

Honoring Cheryl Marie Wade

Cheryl Marie Wade (1948-2013), lovingly referred to as the “Queen Mother of Gnarly,” was a pioneer of disability arts and culture and one of the first performance artists with a physical disability to gain critical acclaim. Wade’s performance art and poetry, which feature visceral descriptions of her life with rheumatoid arthritis that resulted in physical disability and chronic pain, serve as an alternative form of disability activism. Rather than protesting or seeking policy reform, Wade combatted the stigmas of women’s disabled bodies by displaying her body through performance and challenging stereotypes and dominant narratives of disability through her prose.

Wade was an early critic of traditional disability activism and of the push for physical accessibility because it was not inclusive of people with chronic pain and/or illness. For Wade and women like her, greater access and equality would not remedy the physical pain that limited her activities and consumed her emotional and intellectual resources. This issue of marginalization even within the Disability Rights Movement would be echoed by Barbara Faye Waxman, Marta Russell, and the coordinators of the Disability March, all featured here.

In Wade’s performance of “Here,” she moves between lyrical poetry of quotes about her body and “gnarly” hands to prose-style reflections on how she interprets these depictions before moving on to discuss intimate relationships between people with disabilities. Over the course of the performance, she touches on the medicalization of disabled bodies, cultural fears of and prejudices against disability, the limits of physical accessibility, the importance of a community for people with disabilities, and her own sexuality.

Further Reading: Cheryl Marie Wade’s oral history from the Disability Rights and Independent Living Movement Oral History Project

VIDEO: Here by Cheryl Marie Wade (Content Warning: Video contains adult subject matter)

Source: Women's Disability Activism: Cheryl Marie Wade

A Tidbit from Me: Cheryl is one of the most gifted people I have had the privilege to know. I first met her in the late 1980’s when I was asked to MC an event regarding disability and sex. Cheryl was one of the featured speakers. Her presentation was powerful. She talked about sexuality in a way that reminded us  it was important to think of “disabled bodies as beautiful”. The unique ways our bodies move during intimacy because of our disabilities was just as meaningful as those without disabilities. She was witty, funny, and full of wisdom. It is the PM Morning Reports pleasure to honor one of my hero’s and mentor today.

 

County of Marin Update:

Can’t Wait to Travel? Consider the Risks

Word to the wise about making out-of-town spring break or other travel plans over the next few months: Infectious diseases like COVID-19 love to come along for the ride.

Also, with springtime observances like Easter coming on Sunday, April 4, remember that maintaining precautions against large gatherings will prevent a resurgence of the virus.

Even with nearly half of Marin County residents vaccinated with at least one shot, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the California Department of Public Health, and Marin County Public Health are all aligned with longstanding warnings against travel and gatherings – that refraining from big social affairs and remaining at home and restricting trips is the best way to end the pandemic.

The increasing prevalence of virus variants that are more contagious or more lethal across the nation and globe is travel related risk. Travel puts both the traveler and the community they return to at risk of infection. 

If you have the travel bug, remember that COVID-19 is a travel bug,” said Dr Matt Willis, Marin County Public Health Officer. “Stay local.  The last thing we need to do is import variants into our community.”

Local public health officials have already seen the impact on non-essential travel among club sports teams.  Local teams have traveled to distant parts of California or even outside of the state to participate in tournaments. This has resulted in an increase of COVID-19 cases among youth athletes, and exposures to family members. This affects local schools, as COVID-19 cases can require closures of classrooms for quarantine.

“We’ve made so much progress in the past two months: vaccination rates are increasing, and infection rates are declining,” added Willis. “Our goal should be to hold on to those gains, and not let down our guard.”

The CDC’s Know Your Travel Risk webpage includes important reminders under the caveat that any travel is not recommended at this time of the pandemic. If you must travel, take steps to protect yourself and others:

  • If you are eligible, get fully vaccinated for COVID-19.
  • Before you travel, get tested with a viral test 1-3 days before your trip.
  • Wear a mask over your nose and mouth when in public.
  • Avoid crowds and stay at least 6 feet/2 meters (about 2 arm lengths) from anyone who did not travel with you.
  • Get tested 3-5 days after your trip and stay home and self-quarantine for a full 7 days after travel, even if your test is negative. If you don’t get tested, stay home and self-quarantine for 10 days after travel.

Those adhering to the advice and staying close to home still need to consider restrictions on in-person gatherings, too. Currently, the California Department of Public Health recommending moving gatherings outside, where air circulation is better. Otherwise, indoor gatherings should be no more than 2 hours in length and with no more than three different households who remain masked. Additional considerations for safe holiday travel and gatherings can be found on Marin Public Health’s Celebrate Safely webpage.

Health officials note that when vaccination rates reach 80 percent of residents, some restrictions and travel and gatherings may be further relaxed. As supplies increase residents are encouraged to obtain their vaccine when eligible. Visit GetVaccinatedMarin.org for latest updates on eligibility and availability of appointments.

 

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

Sharing from the California State Independent Living Council (SILC)

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) is recruiting an experienced, visionary executive to join one of the largest and most acclaimed state public health departments in the nation. The Center for Health Care Quality (CHCQ) Deputy Director serves as a member of the CDPH Senior Leadership Team and will direct, coordinate, and manage the policies, strategies, and programs of CHCQ to ensure uniform program direction and maximum efficiency.

 

If you are looking for a unique opportunity to be a part of improving the health of Californians and are a transformative leader with a focus on inclusion, collaboration, engagement, change management, strategic thinking and agility, this Deputy Director position with CDPH may be the job for you!

 

The California Department of Public Health is committed to achieving a diverse workforce through application of equal opportunity and nondiscrimination policies in all aspects of employment to create an environment that is welcoming to all individuals. The State of California is an equal opportunity employer to all, regardless of age, ancestry, color, and disability (mental and physical), gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military or veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religious creed, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), and sexual orientation.

 How to Apply:

To be considered for these unique opportunities, please visit the Office of the Governor appointments website to complete the online application form. Please print, sign, and send a copy of the online application with your application package to CDPH by one of the following methods:

 

California Department of Public Health

Attn: Human Resources Division, Deputy Director

P.O. Box 997378

MS 1700-1702

Sacramento, CA 95899-7378

 

The application package must include:

  • Signed copy of the Office of the Governor online application
  • Completed State Examination/Employment Application STD Form 678
  • Resume
  • Cover letter explaining interest in and qualifications for the position

 

All applications must be received by April 9, 2021. Additional information about the Deputy Director position is available in the attached flyers. In addition, you may visit the CDPH website to learn more about the department and how it promotes and protects the health of all Californians.

 Regards,

Candy Linnell

Human Resources Division

California Department of Public Health

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin businesses weigh return to offices as virus rules soften

By MATTHEW PERA | mpera@marinij.com |

PUBLISHED: March 28, 2021 at 11:30 a.m. | UPDATED: March 28, 2021 at 11:30 a.m.

Marin’s recent move into a less-restrictive tier under California’s COVID-19 reopening plan means that workers can return to offices after months of working from home.

While some companies are inviting staff members back to their desks, other Marin businesses said they will continue asking employees to work remotely.

At Glassdoor, which has offices on Shoreline Highway in Mill Valley, all employees will continue working from home, a company spokeswoman said.

Eventually, the company plans to implement a “work where you want policy,” said spokeswoman Amelia Green-Vamos.

“Our employees will have the option to choose whether they want to exclusively work from home, primarily work from their local office or take a hybrid approach and balance certain days working from home and others working in a local office,” Green-Vamos said.

But for now, she said, the company will not reopen its offices until “it is deemed safe to return.”

Dr. Matt Willis, Marin’s public health officer, said he recommends that office workers continue to stay at home.

For full article: Marin businesses weigh return to offices as virus rules soften

 

Marin power supplier offers pandemic rate breaks

By ADRIAN RODRIGUEZ | arodriguez@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: March 28, 2021 at 11:10 a.m. | UPDATED: March 29, 2021 at 6:25 a.m.

MCE, the power aggregator formerly known as Marin Clean Energy, is launching a discount program for customers who are behind on the bills because of the pandemic.

Approximately 11,500 residents and 10,800 small businesses in Marin County would be eligible for the program, part of the utility’s $10 million COVID-19 relief effort set to launch in April.

The program is scheduled to run for the rest of the year, but the MCE board could choose to extend it.

“There was a motivation to try to help out struggling customers amid COVID,” said Tom Butt, chairman of the board and mayor of Richmond. “We looked (at) our reserves and saw that this was enough to make a difference, but not enough to deplete our annual contributions to the reserve fund.”

The Marin-based utility agency, which covers 36 jurisdictions in four counties, has a $450 million annual budget. The reserve fund generally equals about half that amount, Butt said.

Eligible customers would include residential customers enrolled in discount programs such as the California Alternate Rates for Energy, or CARE, and Family Electric Rate Assistance, or FERA. Small businesses on the A1, A1X or B1 rate through Pacific Gas and Electric Co. are also eligible.

Dawn Weisz, executive director of MCE, said it is initiating the discounts now, as opposed to last year, because of timing. The utility’s fiscal year begins in April.

“Our budget for the last fiscal year was established before the big effects of the pandemic had begun,” she said. “We would have had to revisit our existing budget mid-year.”

She said the utility did offer other forms of assistance over the past year in line with the existing budget.

For full article: Marin power supplier offers pandemic rate breaks

A Tidbit from Me: Marin CIL appreciates MCE’s support of community members who are experiencing financial hardship during this historic time. Marin CIL participates in the Marin Green and Healthy Homes Initiative. Marin Green and Healthy Homes mission is: To break the link between unhealthy housing and unhealthy families by creating and advocating for healthy, safe and energy efficient homes. A world where no child’s potential is limited by unhealthy housing conditions. Marin Green and Healthy Homes partners include:

MCE also partnered with Marin CIL and together with the California Foundation for Independent Living Centers and PG&E in support of Marin CIL’s Disability Disaster Access and Resources Program in providing batteries to MCE customers who depend on electricity for life safety and mobility during a Utility Public Safety Power Shutoff event.

 

 

Sharing from the Department of Health Care Service

On March 23, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) approved DHCS’ request for a temporary extension of the Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS) 1915(b) waiver program through December 31, 2021. This nine-month extension allows DHCS time to develop and obtain approval for the California Advancing and Innovating Medi-Cal (CalAIM) initiative, and to align with the proposed one-year extension of the 1115 waiver (Medi-Cal 2020). The CalAIM initiative includes transitioning the Medi-Cal SMHS 1915(b) and 1115 waivers into a single comprehensive section 1915(b) waiver, with a proposed effective date of January 1, 2022. DHCS will continue to work with CMS during the extension period.

On March 26, CMS approved State Plan Amendment (SPA) 21-0016 to add Medicaid Disaster Relief to implement temporary policies under section 1135 during the PHE. As approved in the SPA, DHCS will increase the fee-for-service payment rate for durable medical equipment (DME), specifically oxygen and respiratory equipment, equivalent to 100 percent of the Medicare rate. The payment increase will be effective for dates of service on or after March 1, 2020, so DME providers can continue providing necessary equipment during the COVID-19 PHE.

Additional Published COVID-19 PHE Guidance

 

A Tidbit from Me: The Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services (SMHS) program is “carved-out” of the broader Medi-Cal program and operates under the authority of a waiver approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) under Section 1915(b) of the Social Security Act. As the single state Medicaid agency, DHCS is responsible for administering the Medi-Cal SMHS Waiver Program which provides SMHS to Medi-Cal beneficiaries through County Mental Health Plans (MHPs). The MHPs are required to provide or arrange for the provision of SMHS to beneficiaries in their counties that meet medical necessity criteria, consistent with the beneficiaries’ mental health treatment needs and goals. -Source: Medi-Cal Specialty Mental Health Services

 

Sharing from Marin CIL’s own Fabulous Renee Pollard

Biden’s American Rescue Plan is a lifeline for low-income renters

By Chris Holden on March 15th, 2021

The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, a $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill signed by President Joe Biden last week, provides a range of benefits that will help lift millions out of poverty, especially children.

From emergency rental assistance directly helping low-income renters stay safe in their homes, to education funding, the aid that is most important to low-income renters have been detailed below.

Emergency Rental Assistance

The American Rescue Plan provides $27.4 billion for emergency rental assistance. Of this amount, $152 million will be set aside for each state; and $315 million for territories.

Eligible renters must have incomes at or below 80% of Area Median Income (AMI). They must also qualify for unemployment benefits or had other financial hardships due to the pandemic. Renters at risk of homelessness are also eligible.

State and local programs must prioritize serving households with incomes below 50% of AMI, or people unemployed for more than 90 days. State and local programs can add other priorities.

Emergency rental assistance can be used to pay for back-rent and rent going forward. It can also pay for delinquent utilities and utility bills going forward. It can pay for internet connections and other housing related expenses. Assistance can be received for 18 months.

In addition, the law provides $5 billion for emergency housing vouchers. These vouchers will be targeted to people experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness, and also to domestic violence and human trafficking survivors.

The emergency housing vouchers can only issue these vouchers through September, 2023. However, once someone receives a voucher, it cannot be taken away. This means these voucher recipients will have rental assistance as long as they need it, and won’t lose it when the vouchers will no longer be issued.

Low-income renters in rural areas will benefit from $100 million provided to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). This will assist tenants in USDA rural rental housing. Tribes will also receive $750 million. This money will be disbursed through federal block grant programs that serve tribes.

How does this help low-income renters?

Millions of low-income renters have faced the threat of eviction since the pandemic began a year ago. Low-income renters are currently protected by the CDC national eviction moratorium, but it will expire on March 31. Although most renters have been able to stay in their homes under the moratorium, they still owe rent. When the moratorium expires, millions of renters will owe thousands of dollars in back rent and fees.

Emergency rental assistance and emergency housing vouchers will help low-income renters catch up on back-rent and utilities. It will also provide ongoing support for renters as the economy continues to recover from the pandemic.

Homeless Assistance

The American Rescue Plan has $5 billion to help people experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness. These funds can support rental assistance and supportive services. The funds can also be used to develop new affordable rental housing. In addition, the money can be used to acquire non-congregate housing (like motels) and convert these properties into permanent affordable housing or an emergency shelter.

How does this help low-income renters?

With so many low-income renters facing the threat of eviction, these funds will help homeless shelter and service providers pay for new places for at-risk renters to stay. It will help make congregate shelters safer, and provide more shelter options where people can have privacy. The emphasis on funding permanent housing and shelter shows a strategy of re-using current buildings to address housing shortages over the long term.

For full article: Biden’s American Rescue Plan is a lifeline for low-income renters

A Tidbit from Me: Based on the article it is not clear how much funding Marin County will be receiving as part of this initiative. Currently, during the rent moratorium: make sure to pay 25% of rent owed between September 1, 2020 and June 30th, 2021 at any time before June 30th. Any funding received through this initiative will be beneficial to many Marin County residents including people with disabilities, older adults, and BIPOC, as well as other traditionally marginalized communities. Marin CIL as mentioned previously is working in partnership with community-based organizations and appointed and elected officials to advance rental protection initiatives on behalf of out valued community members who have been adversely affected during this unprecedented pandemic.

 

Sharing from the Marin Public Charge Workgroup

COVID-19

  • In early April, FEMA will begin providing financial assistance for funeral expenses incurred after Jan. 20, 2020 for deaths related to coronavirus (COVID-19) to help ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the pandemic. Up to $9,000 in COVID-19 funeral funding assistance is available to cover expenses for funeral services and internment or cremation. The Full eligibility criteria is included in FEMA’s policy guidance (PDF).   In the coming weeks, a dedicated 800 number will be established to help individuals who apply. To apply, potential applicants will need to provide an official death certificate, funeral expense documents (e.g., receipts or contracts), and proof of funds received from other sources (e.g, burial insurance). More information regarding COVID-19 Funeral Assistance can be found on FEMA.gov.

  

  • The Marin Access Services Call Center is offering assistance for eligible Marin residents to schedule a COVID-19 vaccination. Flyer attached.

 

  • *Reminder*  Marin HHS Covid-19 Events will host a series of COVID-19 Vaccine Talks where participants can learn about vaccines, getting vaccinated, and the truth about some myths and misinformation. Flyers in Spanish (Spanish health education flyer) and English (VaxTalkFlyer) are attached.  Contact Amy Callis with questions.  

 

  • *Reminder* The County of Marin has produced a new COVID-19 community response toolkit landing page, accessible here

 

  • *Reminder* The County of Marin’s COVID-19 updated testing flyers are here.  Questions can be directed to Kristen Seatavakin @ KSeatavakin@marincounty.org 

 

Mental Health

 

  • Buckelew Programs will offer a series of Suicide Prevention Hotline Training classes starting on April 20, 2021.  The training will include 40+ hours of comprehensive and supportive training on crisis intervention, assessing suicide risk, and active listening. Email HR@buckelew.org with questions and to request an application. In-person or Zoom interview required by April 19.  Flyer attached. 

 

  • The Multicultural Center of Marin will host Racial Trauma Support Groups to address mental and emotional injury caused by encounters with racial bias and ethnic discrimination, racism, and hate crimes. Any individual that has experienced an emotionally painful, sudden, and uncontrollable racist encounter is at risk of suffering from a race-based traumatic stress injury. In the U.S., Black, Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) are most vulnerable due to living under a system of white supremacy. Flyers attached.  For more information about the support groups, please contact Cesar Lagleva at 415-846-3789 or giaclay@yahoo.com.

 

Housing

 

  • The Racial Equity Action Lab will host a Zoom session on April 12th from 1-3 PM entitled Bring California Home: Racial Equity Input Session.  Bring California Home (AB 71) is a bill that would reimagine how California ensures we all have a roof over our heads—centralizing state programs, demanding measurable results, and establishing a permanent, ongoing source of funding for housing and services. The bill would raise approximately $2.4B annually. It also would reward local governments for hitting aggressive goals, and improve data collecting and reporting. This session will provide an opportunity to inform statewide policy and funding for racial equity work in local communities. Flyer attached.  Click here for Zoom link; Passcode: JoinBARHII, 1 669 900 6833 US, Meeting ID: 894 2922 0710

 

Economic Development

 

UC Cooperative Extension is hosting two upcoming Zoom sessions for food producers and processors. Both webinars are aimed at helping anyone get started processing and selling foods locally. Both programs are being offered in Spanish only. See details below:

 

·    April 6, 10:00 - 11:00am – Applying to sell at AIM farmers markets

·    April 15, 6:00pm – Selling homemade foods under the Cottage Foods Act

 

_________________________________________________________________________

 

Llamando a todos los emprendedores de la industria de la comida –

Próximamente abra dos talleres para productores y procesadores de alimentos hispanohablantes. Ambos talleres en línea son ofrecidos por organizaciones de la zona y están dirigidos a ayudar a cualquier persona a comenzar a procesar y vender alimentos localmente.

 

·    Martes 6 de abril, 10:00 - 11:00 am – Como aplicar para vender en los mercados agrícolas de AIM

·    Jueves 15 de abril, 6:00 pm – Venda alimentos caseros bajo la Ley de Cottage Food

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Education a Defense Fund (DREDF)

Together We Must Stop Asian Hate

Dedicated mothers. Immigrants who came to the United States in search of a better life. An Army veteran working as a handyman. People who, according to an article in USA Today, loved their families and loved to dance and sing karaoke.

The horrific, tragic killing of those eight people – including six Asian and Asian American women by a white man in Atlanta on Tuesday, March 16 in two attacks – shines an uncomfortable, necessary spotlight on anti-Asian racism and violence in the United States. Both the shooting and its aftermath – in which a first responder attributed the shootings to "a bad day" rather than white supremacy, or the shooter placing the blame on his victims – shows the lengths to which many will go in an attempt to avoid facing difficult but necessary truths.

The names of those killed in the first of three attacks were Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Delaina Ashley Yaun Gonzalez, and Paul Andre Michels. Soon Chung Park, Hyun Grant, and Suncha Kim, were killed in the second attack on Gold Spa in Atlanta and Yong Ae Yue was killed across the street in the third and final attack on Aromatherapy Spa.

It's disheartening, but not entirely surprising that, to date, the killer – and speculation about his motivations – have probably garnered more attention than his victims or their stories. 

Beyond the usual thoughts and prayers, our collective grief and outrage reside firmly with the victims' friends and families, specifically, and Asian-American communities, collectively. But thoughts and prayers alone are not enough. Outrage and grief get us much closer to the work we must do, as a nation, both individually and collectively to combat anti-Asian racism, reject racial stereotypes, stem gun violence, and hold murderers accountable.

We'll leave others to speculate about the perpetrator's motivations because whatever they may have been this much is without question:  In the shooter's mind, they did not merit respect or acknowledgement as individuals with their own hopes, dreams, histories and loved ones.

As far as the killer was concerned, his victims were nothing more than "temptations" to be eliminated. Props in his play.

DREDF rejects this thinking, and the troubling history of legal, political, cultural, and economic Asian-American scapegoating which precedes it. We also reject the misogyny, systemic violence, white supremacy and lack of accountability which remain at the core of incidents like what occurred March 16.

Furthermore, we commit to having hard discussions, among ourselves, with colleagues, and in our families, on how racist violence is both specific and common, subjecting each group to unique kinds of objectification and ill treatment while, at the same time, eroding trust across racial, ethnic and socio-economic divides or acknowledging how real people have complex, intersecting identities.

Perhaps most importantly we honor the individuals – and the communities they were a part of -- whose legacies have been unwillingly, irreparably recast in the public spotlight, posthumously, in the context of tragedy rather than everything else that their lives were, everything else that they deserve.

Source: Together We Must Stop Asian Hate

 

Sharing from Marin CIL’s own Equally Fabulous Tonique McNair

Applications Open for Rental Assistance

Those experiencing hardship because of pandemic may use new online tool

San Rafael, CA – The online application period is now open for Marin County renters who have experienced economic hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic. There is $16 million to distribute as part of the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, intended to prevent evictions and homelessness.

The Marin County Board of Supervisors accepted the funding during its February 9 and March 9 meetings, and money will be channeled directly to landlords to cover past tenant rent and utilities.

The state’s Business, Consumer Services & Housing Agency estimates as many as 1.5 million California renters are behind on rent for reasons tied to the pandemic. Clearing accumulated debt is designed to provide a lifeline to the hardest-hit families and provide income stability for landlords. In Marin, over 3,000 people have contacted the County for help with unpaid rent related to the pandemic.

Communities of color have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic and are often at the highest risk of housing displacement.

“Those most in need of pandemic-related rental assistance often face the most barriers to access a program like this,” said Leelee Thomas, CDA Planning Manager. “Sometimes it comes down to communication in multiple languages and hands-on assistance. As this distribution of funds gets underway, we will continually watch for new barriers and adjust as needed to ensure equitable distribution of funds.”

Local landlords have a choice to accept 80% of unpaid rent owed between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021, in exchange for forgiving the remaining  20%. If a landlord chooses not to accept the offer, tenants may still apply for relief valued at 25% of unpaid back rent owed for the covered period.

The $16 million was on top of nearly $6 million in local funding already allocated. Marin’s safety-net rental assistance program started in March 2020 when the Marin County Board of Supervisors approved a local relief fund partnership with the Marin Community Foundation (MCF) to support the most financially needy local residents during COVID-19.

A household of three with an income at or below $125,000 a year is eligible if they are qualified for unemployment benefits, experienced a reduction in income, incurred significant COVID-related costs, are at risk of homelessness or endured other financial hardship due to the coronavirus. Priority is given to households that  are considered extremely low income, which in Marin would be a family of three with an income of no more than $43,550.

To prevent virus-related homelessness, the Supervisors passed local eviction moratoriums several times over the past year before the state enacted its own evictions ban. Most recently, the Board of Supervisors unanimously passed a resolution January 12 that continues to bar evictions through June for people economically impacted by the coronavirus. State legislation has since superseded the local ban.

Earlier, the County created a new phone number and email address to guide residents who may need assistance with the online application.. Anyone needing help  with the online application may call (415) 473-2223 or email staff to learn more about the Emergency Rental Assistance Program, which is open for applications.

 

BREAKING NEWS: Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19

Updated Mar. 29, 2021

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky signed a declaration determining that the evictions of tenants could be detrimental to public health control measures to slow the spread of SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

ORDER: Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19 pdf icon[185 KB, 17 pages]

Source: Temporary Halt in Residential Evictions to Prevent the Further Spread of COVID-19


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Subminimum Wage for PWD's, Opportunities for Community Engagement, Covid-19, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on March 26, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

 

I hope you are all doing well today. Happy Friday!! I hope each of you has had a good week. There is much going on in advocacy and community. Feel free to reach out to Marin CIL if we can be of support to you. Sending love and hugs. Here is the PM Morning Report for you! Enjoy the read

 

County of Marin Update

State To Expand Eligibility to 50+ Starting April 1 and All Individuals 16+ on April 15 Based on Expected Supply Increases

Today, Governor Gavin Newsom announced the State of California intends to expand vaccine eligibility to more people as early as next week in response to increasing vaccine supply:

  • Individuals aged 50+ will be eligible to make an appointment starting on April 1
  • Individuals 16+ will be eligible to make an appointment starting on April 15.

The State of California expects to be allocated approximately 2.5 million doses per week in the first half of April, and more than 3 million doses in the second half of April, which is about a 65% increase over what the state currently receives on a weekly basis.  Even with expanded vaccine supplies, it is expected to take several months to vaccinate all who want the vaccine.

“We are even closer to putting this pandemic behind us with today’s announcement and with vaccine supplies expected to increase dramatically in the months ahead,” said California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly. “However, we are not there yet. It will take time to vaccinate all eligible Californians. During this time, we must not let our guard down. It is important that we remain vigilant, continue to wear masks and follow public health guidance.”

What does this mean for Marin?

In-line with the state’s updated vaccine plan, Marin residents age 50 & older will be eligible to make appointments starting April 1.

Officials estimate 160,000 Marin residents currently qualify for Phases 1A or 1B of the vaccine rollout, with 110,615 having received at least one dose of vaccine so far. Opening-up additional groups of eligibility means 50,000 more Marin residents will be eligible for appointments by April 15.

Appointments are still in high demand given the small supply of vaccine arriving in Marin County each week. Remember, all Marin County providers offer vaccine regardless of insurance coverage (for example, you do not need to be a Kaiser member to be vaccinated by Kaiser).

Monitor our vaccine appointment page to review all vaccine providers in Marin, or sign up for vaccine notifications via the Marin County Public Health Vaccine Interest Form and the State of California’s MyTurn system.

 

FEMA to Help Pay Funeral Costs for COVID-19-related Deaths

In early April, FEMA will begin providing financial assistance for funeral expenses incurred after Jan. 20, 2020 for deaths related to coronavirus (COVID-19) to help ease some of the financial stress and burden caused by the pandemic. Up to $9,000 in COVID-19 funeral funding assistance is available to cover expenses for funeral services and internment or cremation. The Full eligibility criteria is included in FEMA’s policy guidance (PDF).   

In the coming weeks, a dedicated 800 number will be established to help individuals who apply. To apply, potential applicants will need to provide an official death certificate, funeral expense documents (e.g., receipts or contracts), and proof of funds received from other sources (e.g, burial insurance). More information regarding COVID-19 Funeral Assistance can be found on FEMA.gov.

 

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing from CRIL For the PM Morning Report’s valued East Bay Readers

I'm doing a zoom workshop on Friday, April 2 at 2p.m. 

The topic will be on DANY, the Disability Action Network for Youth Group I run through CRIL. 

 

We are a youth advocacy group based in Hayward, CA. 

Our target audience is youth ages 14-28.

We hope to gain more members!  

Youth really love it and love connecting to others and doing advocacy out in the community. 

 

I hope you can join us and learn about the incredible group! 

 

Parents are welcome to attend to if they want to know about resources for their youth aged kids. 

 

Please feel free to send out this info to your networks and if questions feel free to contact me at jamie.caron@crilhayward.org.  

 

Thanks! 

 

Hope to see you then. Here's the Zoom Info: 

Topic: DANY workshop

Time: Apr 2, 2021 02:00 PM Pacific Time (US and Canada)

 

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83525959657?pwd=Rm5vVlVidjlNZ1FkTHl6WEFDY3NVUT09

 

Sharing from the California Association for Retired Americans

A conversation with

Congressman Jared Huffman

Marin's representative since 2013

 

 

 

 

After an extraordinarily difficult 2020, Congress and the

new administration are proposing many new policies.

Covid-19 vaccine distribution is accelerating and

international crises have not gone away.

 

There will be much to learn from and discuss with

our Congressman.

 

 

 

 

Questions, comments, and opinions welcomed.

They may be submitted by:

Entering them when you register below.

Posting them by Chat during the program.

Q & A after the program, time permitting.

 

 

Please join us

Wednesday March 31 at Noon

on ZOOM

 

 

 

 

 

 

Registration closes

Monday March 29

midnight

 

 

Registration is required

 

Do It Now!

Click here to Register

 

 

 

 

 

Your personal link will be sent to you on Tuesday March 30

 

 

Sharing from KTVU Fox 2

125 low-income mothers of color in Marin County can receive $1K a month in guaranteed income

By KTVU staff Published 6 hours ago

Marin County KTVU FOX 2

NOVATO, Calif. - Mirroring similar efforts in cities such as Stockton and Oakland, Marin County supervisors this week approved participating in a universal basic income experiment to give 125 low-income mothers of color $1,000 a month for two years.

The county will spend $400,000 and the remaining $3 million will come from the Marin Community Foundation, the Marin Independent Journal reported. To qualify, the women must have a child under the age of 18.

 

 Participants will be selected at random from among 4,600 people who have already received direct cash aid from the foundation with the help of the Family Independence Initiative.

The vote in Marin County came on the same day that Oakland announced that 600 families will be able to receive $500 a month for 18 months with no strings attached.

Source:125 low-income mothers of color in Marin County can receive $1K a month in guaranteed income

A Tidbit from Me: This is a wonderful initiative. As a person who grew up in Marin I feel especially proud. This Universal Basic Income program will go a long way to ensure that these deserving community members have more sustainable income to meet the needs of their families.

 

Sharing from CDCAN

STARTING APRIL 1ST:  CALIFORNIA EXPANDS COVID-19 VACCINE ELIGIBILITY TO ALL CALIFORNIANS AGE 50 AND OVER
STARTING APRIL 15TH:  EXPANDS VACCINE ELIGIBILITY TO ALL CALIFORNIANS 16 YEARS AND OLDER 

Expanded Eligibility Based on Expected Increases in Vaccine Supply
Governor's Office Says Even with Increased Vaccine Supply, Vaccination of Willing Californians Will Take Several Months

 State supporting trusted providers and counties for non-traditional outreach in hard-to-reach communities

SACRAMENTO, CA [BY MARTY OMOTO, CDCAN LAST UPDATED  03/25/2021 5:37 PM PACIFIC TIME] -  With supply of COVID-19 vaccines expected to significantly increase in the coming weeks, the Governor's office announced this afternoon that California is expanding vaccine eligibility, starting April 1st, to all Californians who are age 50 years and older, and starting April 15th. to all Californians who are 16 years and older. Those eligible will be able to make an appointment for COVID-19 vaccination.
    The announcement from the Governor's office followed President Joe Biden first news conference in the White House held Thursday afternoon (Washington DC time), where he announced a new goal of 200 million COVID-19 vaccination shots being given within his first 100 days in office. Biden’s earlier goal of 100 million coronavirus vaccinations within that time frame was met Friday, on the 59th day of his administration. The pace of COVID-19 vaccinations in the US has rapidly increased, averaging about 2.5 million doses daily.
    The federal government has a deal with Johnson & Johnson for 200 million doses. It also has deals with drugmakers Pfizer and Moderna for 600 million doses combined.
    Based on the current estimates, according to the Governor's office, California expects to be allocated approximately 2.5 million first and second doses per week in the first half of April, and more than 3 million doses in the second half of April.
    According to the Governor's office, California currently receives about 1.8 million doses per week - estimates that may be adjusted as time goes on. According to the Governor's office, the state has the capacity to administer more than 3 million vaccines per week, and is building the capacity to administer 4 million vaccines weekly by the end of April.
    “With vaccine supply increasing and by expanding eligibility to more Californians, the light at the end of the tunnel continues to get brighter,” said Governor Newsom. “We remain focused on equity as we extend vaccine eligibility to those 50 and over starting April 1, and those 16 and older starting April 15. This is possible thanks to the leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration and the countless public health officials across the state who have stepped up to get shots into arms.”
    “We are even closer to putting this pandemic behind us with today’s announcement and with vaccine supplies expected to increase dramatically in the months ahead,” said California Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly. “However, we are not there yet. It will take time to vaccinate all eligible Californians. During this time, we must not let our guard down. It is important that we remain vigilant, continue to wear masks and follow public health guidance.”

Initiatives to Reach Communities Hardest Hit by COVID-19
    The Governor's office also announced that in addition to increased allocations of vaccines to providers serving the hardest hit communities, the state has embarked on a series of initiatives to vaccinate those populations that have faced the highest rates of COVID infections before vaccines become available to the entire 16+ population. 
    These efforts include:

  • Provider funding for programs to reach and vaccinate communities facing the biggest health disparities
  • Working with organized labor to reach essential workers
  • Partnering with agricultural organizations and community-based organizations to vaccinate agricultural workers
  • Allowing providers to target by ZIP code via "My Turn" (state's website to sign up for vaccinations)  with single-use codes (scheduled to launch at the end of March):  https://myturn.ca.gov/
  • Supporting a subset of community-based organizations currently partnering with the state on COVID-19 education to provide direct vaccination appointment assistance
  • Prioritizing currently eligible populations and allowing providers the discretion to vaccinate those who live in high-impact areas (County Healthy Places Index Quartiles 1 and 2), including families

Vaccinations of "Willing Californians" Expected to Take Months - State Will Update Vaccine Allocation Methodology
    According to the Governor's office, even with expanded vaccine supplies, it is expected to take several months for willing Californians to be vaccinated. Based on public information shared by vaccine manufacturers and the federal government, California expects to receive several million vaccine doses per week starting sometime in April.
    Along with the expanded eligibility and to align with upcoming federal guidance, the Governor's office announced that California will update its vaccine allocation methodology:

  • This will transition over four weeks, beginning with the March 22 allocation (delivered to providers the following week), from one based on the distribution of the 65+ population, workers in the agriculture and food, education and child care, and emergency services sectors to one based on the distribution of the 16+ population across California.
  • This will be done in conjunction with completion of the shift to the state directly allocating vaccines to providers.
  • The state will continue to double the amount of vaccine allocated to the lowest Healthy Places Index (HPI) quartile as announced on March 4.

     According to the Governor's office, 40% of COVID-19 cases and deaths have occurred in the lowest quartile of the HPI, developed by the Public Health Alliance of Southern California, which provides overall scores and data that predict life expectancy and compares community conditions that shape health across the state.
    The rate of infections for households making less than $40,000 per year (5.7) is 84% higher than that of households with an income of $120,000 or more (3.1). At the same time, California’s wealthiest populations have received 50% more vaccinations when compared to the rate of our most vulnerable populations. This approach recognizes that the pandemic did not affect California communities equally and that the state is committed to doing better.

A Tidbit from Me: As previously reported Marin CIL participates on Marin’s Vaccine Advisory Committee and the Access and Functional Needs Vaccine Distribution Taskforce. Marin CIL is working in partnership to ensure that the vaccine rollout process is accessible and equitable for our communities. We are working collaboratively with these efforts to address issues around vaccine hesitancy. To learn more about this work or to get involved. Please feel free to reach out to us.

Sharing from Connie Arnold Long-time Disability Rights Advocate (who now lives in the Sacramento Area but was involved in Marin advocacy in the 80’s and 90’s)

Livestream Link for Accessible Public Rights-of-Way Webinar (April 1)  

The next webinar in the U.S. Access Board's free monthly series will take place April 1 from 2:30 – 4:00 (ET), and will review available resources, namely the guidelines that the Board previously proposed for public rights-of-way and shared use paths. Presenters will discuss common issues and solutions, as well as review proposed requirements for sidewalks and street crossings, curb ramps and blended transitions, detectable warnings, pedestrian signals, on-street parking, street furniture, transit stops, and other components of public rights-of-way and shared use paths.

This is a great opportunity for landscape architects to learn how to navigate the challenges of ensuring access to public streets and sidewalks since new guidelines for accessible, public rights-of-way have not yet been finalized under the ADA. Questions can be submitted in advance of the session or can be posed during the live webinar.

Visit www.accessibilityonline.org for more information or to register. All webinars include video remote interpreting (VRI) and real-time captioning. The webinar series is hosted by the ADA National Network in cooperation with the Board. Archived copies of previous Board webinars are available on the site.

 Additionally, the archived webinar will be available for Self-Paced Continuing Education by May 1 for those wishing to receive continuing education credits. 

 All webinars include video remote interpreting (VRI) and real-time captioning. The webinar series is hosted by the ADA National Network in cooperation with the Board.

Source: Accessible Public Rights-of-Way Guidelines: U.S. Access Board Webinar

 

Sharing from the Marin Independent Journal

Marin supervisors face hard choices on budget deficits

By RICHARD HALSTEAD | rhalstead@marinij.com | Marin Independent Journal

PUBLISHED: March 25, 2021 at 4:57 p.m. | UPDATED: March 25, 2021 at 6:00 p.m.

Despite a $50 million windfall from the American Rescue Plan Act, Marin County’s structural deficit will produce growing budget shortfalls over the next five years, the county’s fiscal chief said.

Budget Manager Bret Uppendahl forecasts a $6.7 million deficit for the fiscal year that begins on July 1. The shortfall would have been larger had supervisors not approved $7.8 million in budget adjustments in November, he said.

Uppendahl sees the county’s shortfalls growing several million dollars each year, to $15.6 million by 2025-26, unless changes are made.

“We do know that additional reductions are needed to continue to balance the budget,” he said, “not only next year but likely in the future.”

Uppendahl delivered the outlook to the Board of Supervisors on Monday, the start of a 10-hour budget workshop that spanned three days.

“It seems like more than 10 hours somehow,” Supervisor Katie Rice said on the final day.

The supervisors will use information gleaned during the workshop to inform their choices when they adopt a new budget in June.

Uppendahl said the county’s goal is to balance next year’s budget without any service cuts. He said savings could be realized by “modifying our assumptions regarding future cost of living adjustments for employee compensation.”

He also said there might also need to be cuts in spending for technology replacement, vehicle maintenance and capital projects.

For full article: Marin supervisors face hard choices on budget deficits

A Tidbit from Me: Engaging in the Marin County Budget process is one of the best ways for our communities to make their voices heard.  If you would like to learn more about the budget process for the County of Marin, please feel free to reach out to us peter@marincil.org or (415)234-3840.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights California

California is One Step Closer to Paying Workers with Disabilities Minimum Wage for Their Labor

Disability Advocates Applaud the Senate Labor Committee for Passing SB 639

Mar 25, 2021

Sacramento, CA) On Monday, March 22, 2021, SB 639 passed through the Senate Labor, Public Retirement and Employment Committee with a vote of 4-0. The bill will be heard next in the Senate Human Services Committee.

SB 639 would prohibit paying workers with disabilities less than the California minimum wage and be paid a fair wage just like every other worker. The legislation also advances economic justice for workers with disabilities by transitioning workers with disabilities to competitive integrated employment.

Since 1938, employers have been given the ability to apply for a certificate that allows them to pay employees with disabilities less than the federal minimum wage and pay them unfairly. If SB 639 is enacted, California will join several other states that have already prohibited paying workers with disabilities a subminimum wage and redefine an outdated system.

“We thank Senator María Elena Durazo for authoring SB 639 and applaud the members of the Senate Labor, Public Employment and Retirement Committee for passing the bill with a vote of 4-0. This bill puts an end to paying workers with disabilities sub-poverty wages and ensures these workers are offered equal protection of the law just like every other worker,” says Andrew Imparato, Executive Director, Disability Rights California. 

"We are moving in the right direction to end subminimum wage in California. I am grateful that the author and the committee members recognized that paying people with disabilities below the standard minimum wage is a civil rights issue," said Wesley Witherspoon, Chair, State Council on Developmental Disabilities.

Over 5,000 Californians with disabilities are currently working in sheltered workshops, and are being paid as little as 15 cents an hour. SB 639 develops a plan to transition these workers into decent-paying jobs and provides individualized support during this transition. Californians in support of SB 639 can send a letter of support to the Senate Human Services Committee members.

Link to sample letter here

Source: California is One Step Closer to Paying Workers with Disabilities Minimum Wage for Their Labor

A Tidbit from Me: It is a fundamental principle of the Independent Living Movement that people with disabilities be paid a fair wage for their work, similar to those without disabilities. This discriminatory practice has kept many people with disabilities, especially our brothers and sisters with intellectual and developmental disabilities, in forced poverty for decades.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the employment rate of people with disabilities in 2020 was 17.9 percent versus 61.8 percent of persons without a disability. There are over 5,000 Californians with disabilities who work in segregated settings and are paid as low as 15 cents an hour for their work.[2] We need to push for policies that promote full integrated employment at a fair wage that is comparable to those without disabilities. This is a matter of rights. Paying people with disabilities less than minimum wage is wrong and should never be permitted or excused.

 

Sharing from Disability Rights Advocates

HBO Max Rolls Out Audio Described Content

Customers Who are Blind Will Notice Many New Features, With More on the Horizon

March 26, 2021 – Boston, MA – Advocates for people who are blind applaud WarnerMedia’s first delivery date of significant upgrades in the landmark agreement signed last October by WarnerMedia; the American Council of the Blind (ACB); the Massachusetts-based Bay State Council of the Blind (BSCB); and individual claimants Kim and Brian Charlson. These blind individuals and advocacy organizations were represented by Disability Rights Advocates (DRA), a national non-profit legal center, and Disability Law Center, the Protection & Advocacy agency for Massachusetts.

WarnerMedia has pledged to increase the accessibility of HBO Max, and in the first phase of delivering on that promise, the streaming platform will roll out major enhancements this week, including:

  • Nearly 1,500 hours of audio described content on Web and Mobile platforms including select HBO originals, Max Originals, Warner Bros films, and some acquired content. Audio description is a separate audio track that, when activated, provides a verbal description of visual elements on screen. For more on audio description, visit ACB’s Audio Description Project.
  • An Audio Description category will be prominently featured in the navigation menu. This prominent browse location will also increase awareness about the importance of audio description and accessibility.
  • Improvements to the accessibility of the HBO Max website and mobile applications for individuals who are blind or have low vision and use screen reader software to navigate and interact with digital content. Screen reader software enables people who are blind or have low vision to access online services by rendering the content displayed visually on the screen as large print, synthetic text-to-speech, or as digital braille on a braille display. Programming for compatibility with these types of assistive technologies is something website and app developers need to keep in mind.
  • Addition of articles to the HBO Max help site specifically supporting customers with disabilities, including detailed instructions on how to perform certain tasks that may be unclear for some users.
  • Training for HBO Max customer service specialists to help them better support customers with disabilities, including sensitivity training and training on assistive technology.

For full article: HBO Max Rolls Out Audio Described Content

A Tidbit from Me: This is truly wonderful! Hats off to everyone who made this happen. This is tremendous!

 


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Covid-19 News, Oakland Adopting Sustainable Wage Pilot, Opportunities for Engagement, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on March 24, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community

I hope you are doing well today. The advocacy Bureau has been rolling full speed this morning. A lot going on so let’s get to it. Sending a hug and a smile.

Marin County Update

Video: COVID-19 Update to the Board of Supervisors

Earlier today, Dr. Willis provided a COVID-19 response update to the Marin County Board of Supervisors. In his talk, he reviewed current COVID-19 data; vaccination progress; Marin’s achievement of Tier 3 (Orange) in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy; steps for Marin to achieve Tier 4; and more.

WATCH ON YOUTUBE

 

 Blueprint Update: Marin Progresses from Red Tier to Orange

Effective Wednesday, Marin County is moving from “red” to “orange” status in the Blueprint for a Safer Economy with clearance from the State of California. The move from tier 2 or “substantial risk” status to the less restrictive tier 3 or “moderate risk” level is based on consecutive weeks of progress in local coronavirus case statistics.

Here are the primary changes allowed with a move to tier 3:

  • Retail & grocery stores: can expand indoor capacity to 100%.
  • Restaurants – indoor dining: can expand indoor capacity to 50% or 200 people (whichever is fewer).
  • Museums & movie theaters: can expand indoor capacity to 50% or 200 people (whichever is fewer).
  • Houses of worship: can expand indoor capacity to 50% or 200 people (whichever is fewer).
  • Weddings/funerals: can expand indoor capacity to 50% or 200 people (whichever is fewer).
  • Family recreation / entertainment facilities: can expand indoor capacity to 25%.
  • Gyms & fitness studios: can expand indoor capacity to 25% and reopen indoor pools.
  • Breweries/wineries that do not serve food: can expand indoor capacity to 25% or 100 people (whichever is fewer).
  • Bars that do not serve food: can operate outdoors only.
  • Non-essential offices may reopen (but working remotely is still encouraged).
  • Higher education: can expand indoor capacity to 50% for indoor lectures.

Changes to business sector guidelines are available on the Marin Recovers website or the California Blueprint for a Safer Economy website. You can track Marin’s progress by viewing our Blueprint for a Safer Economy dashboard, which is updated each Tuesday afternoon to reflect CDPH’s calculations.

See the full news release.

 

 

SAVE THE DATE: 2nd Annual COVID-19 Black Regional Town Hall Virtual Event

African American doctors, public health representatives and community leaders from all over the Bay Area are joining forces to host a COVID-19 Black Regional Town Hall event. The event will feature California Surgeon General, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, and an esteemed panel including Benita McLarin, Director of Marin Health and Human Services, and Liz Darby, Social Equity Programs and Policies at County of Marin. Learn and discuss the facts about the vaccine to protect yourself and others. This town hall event is presented by Unity Care, Roots Clinic, Minority Business Consortium, Black Leadership Kitchen Cabinet, African American Community Service Agency and Silicon Valley Community Foundation.

Thursday, March 25 – 5:30pm to 7:30pm

Register: https://covid19black.org/get-involved/

 

 

COVID-19 Data Update:

Below is a summary of today’s data now available on Marin Data & Surveillance webpage. View the page for a broader range of data, plus interactive graphs for confirmed COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths. Data analysis is available by age range, gender, race, and city/town/geographic region. Questions about the data? See our Data FAQ or contact us.

Other Marin County Data Dashboards:

 

 

 

 

 

Sharing from the Department of Rehabilitation (DOR)

ANNOUNCEMENT:  Free workshops from California Association of Social Rehabilitation Agencies (CASRA)

April 14, 2021, 11am-noonAre You Talking Like Businesses Think?  How to Get More Consumers Hired Doing Remote Job Development, with Larry Robbin, Robbin and Associates

Register here:  https://casra.org/calendar-details-social-rehabilitation-agency.html?calendarid=33

April 21, 2021, 11am-noonFostering Harm Reduction in Residential Treatment for People with Co-Occurring Struggles - A Practical Approach, with James Roberts, MA

Register here:  https://casra.org/calendar-details-social-rehabilitation-agency.html?calendarid=35

 

 

Sharing from the California State Independent Living Council (SILC)

SILC Seeking SPIL Work Group Members

 While developing the 2021-2023 State Plan for Independent Living (SPIL), members of the Independent Living Network worked together to prioritize several goals. These goals and the related objectives were written by work groups staffed by volunteers, and then approved by both the SILC SPIL Committee and the entire SILC. In December 2020, the Administration on Community Living (ACL) approved the CA SPIL. Three of the work groups have ongoing projects that need to be completed. More comprehensive summaries of the 2021-2023 SPIL goals and objectives related to each work group are available by clicking the title of the work group below:

 

Funding Formula/Equity (FF/E) –

·    The Funding Formula Equity Work Group meets on first Friday of the month at 2:00 to 3:30 pm.

·    Goal: Develop new ILC base funding formula

 Long-Term Services and Supports (LTSS)

·    The Long Term Services and Supports Work Group meets on first Wednesday of each month from 10:30 am to 12:00 noon.

·    Goal: Create Environmental Scan Survey and work to provide information and support to ILCs who may want to participate as an Aging and Disability Resource Connection

 Meaningful Data

·    The Meaningful Data Work Group meets on the fourth (4th) Friday of the month from 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm.

·    Goal: Look at existing ILC Data Collection and Tools; Use Data to tell the story of IL in California; Propose uniform ILC database systems

 

As a work group member you will be asked to attend meetings (1 to 2 per month), share your ideas and give feedback to other work group members, and complete occasional outside research or work on a volunteer basis. SILC Staff will attend all meetings to take notes and help on the administrative and technical side, but we expect these projects will be led by community members.

 If you have questions, please feel free to contact Danielle at (916) 263-7905 extension #1 or by email at SILC@calsilc.ca.gov.

 Agenda and Zoom meeting information is shared ten (10) days in advance on the SILC Web Page under Agency Announcements.

 Please feel free to share this announcement widely with anyone else who may be interested in serving. You do not need to be a SILC member to participate.

 Thank you for your commitment to furthering Independent Living in California!

 

 

  • The next ADRC partner roundtable is on Friday, March 26. The topic will be the digital divide. Lito Morillo from the Independent Living Center of Kern County and Jan Lemucchi from the Kern County Aging and Adult Services will present highlights of their work to bridge the divide during the COVID-19 pandemic. The roundtable will also feature representatives discussing new tools and statewide updates, and there will be time for breakout rooms to connect with ADRC peers. Register in advance for this meeting: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJwqcOmprDgpHNz8XiWascMpBCpj00D1J9p5
  • The ACL is offering an interactive event this month to discuss strategies and promising practices on the role of community-based organizations (CBOs) in addressing social determinants of health during transitions of care. This Care Transition Peer Hour will feature will share information about their community partner program and the unique role Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs) and Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs) have played in addressing social determinants of heath as community partners supporting the implementation of value-based payment contracting. Care Transitions March Peer Hour: Wednesday, March 31st from 2:00 – 3:00 PM ET.  Register Here!
  • CFILC and C4A proudly continue the conversation from their Integrated Conference with a special one-day virtual web conference on Thursday, April 22 (Earth Day) focused on assistive technology. Join professionals in the assistive technology, aging, and disability fields to learn, grow, and network! The interactive workshops include:

•        AT Makers

•        Closing the Digital Divide for Older Adults

•        AT Smart Home

•        The Three R’s of AT: Recycle, Refurbish, Reuse

•        AT for Connection and Companionship

•        AT for Aging in Place at Home

For more information and registration: click here.

 

  • The Alliance of Information and Referral Systems (AIRS) is hosting the Envision I&R e-conference from May 12-14, 2021 at 11am EST. This three-day conference includes three plenary sessions and a choice of 25 subject matter expert sessions on a variety of essential topics. For more information and registration: click here

 

Sharing from CalABLE

CalABLE and Stimulus Payments 

SSI and Stimulus Checks

If you receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), you may be wondering when you will receive your $1400 stimulus payment recently approved by Congress. According to the IRS, a payment date for SSI and SSDI recipients will be announced as soon as the information is available. In general, many Americans have already received payments or will be receiving them soon, but for those receiving benefits, it might take a little longer. The IRS will use information already on file to send out checks, even if an individual has yet to file a return. They have also already indicated that SSI and SSDI benefits automatically qualify to receive a payment, with no additional action required.

How will I be paid for my third stimulus check?

Most SSI and SSDI recipients will receive this new stimulus payment, the same way they received the payments for stimulus 1 and 2.

Will this stimulus payment be counted as income or affect my benefits?

Like the first two stimulus payments, this third payment is not counted as income and won’t affect your benefits at all. The money can be used for any reason, even for items above and beyond basic living expenses. The money is also protected from being counted as a resource for twelve months. After 12 months, any unspent stimulus money can be counted as a resource by Social Security. If you receive SSI and have more than $2,000 ($3,000 for a couple) in assets, you may be required to spend that money down or risk having your benefits being suspended. SSDI recipients do not have this $2,000 limit.

Is there anything we can do to avoid having benefits suspended?

For the first 12 months, your stimulus money will not be counted as a resource. After 12 months, any remaining funds will be counted and could result in a suspension of your SSI benefits. Depositing your money in a CalABLE account will prevent your money (up to $100,000) from being counted against benefits. For more information regarding opening a CalABLE account, please visit our website.

If you have any questions about the CalABLE program, please email us at calable@treasurer.ca.gov.

 

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

San Rafael Spanish Town Hall, Thursday March 25, 6:30-7:30pm

https://www.cityofsanrafael.org/event/ayuntamiento-de-san-rafael-distrito-1-covid-19/

Join San Rafael Councilwoman Maika Llorens Gulati to discuss the latest on COVID-19, rental assistance opportunities, and financial assistance for San Rafael small businesses. Have a question about COVID-19, vaccines, rent support, the city of San Rafael, or any other topic? Ask your questions here and we will try to answer you during the virtual meeting on March 25 from 6:30 to 7:30.

When: Thursday, March 25 from 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Where: Watch live on the City of San Rafael’s YouTube Channel.

Special guests:

  • Dr. Lisa Santora, Deputy Public Health Officer
  • Lorenzo Cordova, Senior Aide to Marin County Supervisor Dennis Rodoni

 

Sharing from Channel 12 KDRV

OAKLAND WILL GIVE LOW-INCOME FAMILIES OF COLOR $500 PER MONTH, NO STRINGS ATTACHED 

Low-income families of color in Oakland, California, could receive some extra financial assistance over the next year and a half.

Posted: Mar 24, 2021 9:19 AM

Posted By: CNN

Low-income families of color in Oakland, California, could receive some extra financial assistance over the next year and a half.

Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf announced this week that the city will launch a guaranteed income project to give hundreds of Black and Indigenous families and people of color $500 per month for 18 months.

The project's payments will be unconditional, and recipients may spend the money however they choose.

The Oakland Resilient Families program is the latest trial of a "guaranteed income" system of wealth distribution, where residents are given a set amount of money per month to supplement the existing social safety net.

The project targets groups with the city's greatest wealth disparities, per the Oakland Equality Index, which reveals the median income for White households in Oakland to be nearly three times that of Black households.

"The poverty we all witness today is not a personal failure, it is a systems failure," Schaaf said in a statement. "Guaranteed income is one of the most promising tools for systems change, racial equity and economic mobility we've seen in decades."

Guaranteed income provides security to those who most need it

Guaranteed income is different from Universal Basic Income (UBI), which would provide enough income to meet everyone's basic needs.

Instead, guaranteed income is only meant to supplement other wages and programs for low-income residents, helping to build the "income floor" on which people in poverty can begin to build financially secure lives.

Although the idea has seen a resurgence in recent years, it's not new -- Martin Luther King, Jr. advocated for it in his 1967 book, "Where Do We Go from Here: Chaos or Community?"

"I'm now convinced that the simplest approach will prove to be the most effective -- the solution to poverty is to abolish it directly by a now widely discussed measure: the guaranteed income," King wrote.

For full report:  OAKLAND WILL GIVE LOW-INCOME FAMILIES OF COLOR $500 PER MONTH, NO STRINGS ATTACHED


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Honoring Marilyn Golden, Covid-19 Update, Advocacy Opportunities, Schools Reopen, and More


Photo of Peter Mendoza.

by Peter Mendoza Posted on March 23, 2021

Good Morning my Family in Community,

I hope you are all doing well today.

I value and appreciate all the great work you do everyday for our communities. Raising my mocha to you this morning. Sending a hug and a smile. Here is the PM Morning Report for you today. Enjoy the read.

 

Women’s History Month

Marilyn Golden

Picture Description: Marilyn is a Caucasian manual wheelchair user with brown shoulder length curly hair. She is wearing a blue shirt, a sweater and glasses.

Picture Description: Marilyn is a Caucasian manual wheelchair user with brown shoulder length curly hair. She is wearing a blue shirt, a sweater and glasses.

Marilyn Golden is a Senior Policy Analyst at the Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund (DREDF), our nation’s foremost national law and policy center on disability civil rights, with offices in Berkeley, California and Washington, D.C.

She has been closely involved with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) throughout all the stages of its proposal and passage and now during its implementation. She directed the ADA Training and Information Network, a training project funded by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) from 1992 – 1994 to develop a network of 400 ADA specialists with disabilities. In the same project, she further served as the lead trainer for each of its eight week-long training programs. She has directed and led numerous other in-depth ADA training programs that have given thousands of people comprehensive knowledge on how to make the ADA a reality. She is the principal author of the DREDF publication The ADA, an Implementation Guide, DREDF’s highly respected ADA curriculum.

Since the ADA’s passage, Ms. Golden has continued to play a key role in policy development on a federal level in the areas of transportation and architectural barriers, as a strong and effective advocate for people with disabilities. She was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the U.S. Access Board in 1996, serving until 2005. She was recognized as a White House Champion of Change in Transportation by President Barack Obama in 2014. And she’s been a member of three federal policy advisory committees: the Rail Vehicle Accessibility Advisory Committee (U.S. Access Board, 2013-2015), the ADAAG (Americans with Disabilities Act Architectural Guidelines) Review Advisory Committee (U.S. Access Board, 1994 – 1996), and the Urban Mass Transportation Administration’s ADA Federal Advisory Committee to assist in developing the DOT ADA regulation (U.S. Department of Transportation, 1991). She has also led the struggle for many of the policy victories during and since the ADA to provide better public transportation for people with disabilities.

Pursuant to DREDF’s position opposing the legalization of physician-assisted suicide and euthanasia since 1999, Golden quickly became nationally prominent in that struggle. She took a lead role in conceiving, producing, and leading the Disability Rights Leadership Institute on Bioethics in 2014. She has authored many of the key articles explaining why assisted suicide laws are dangerously harmful public policy, and worked in many successful campaigns to defeat assisted suicide legislation across the U.S. She has also represented the disability community in many debates and dialogues on the subject.

Golden was the principal author of the National Council on Disability’s 2015 report, Transportation Update: Where We’ve Gone and What We’ve Learned.

She served as Project Manager for a Federal Transit Administration (FTA) 2015 research study, Accessible Transit Services for All, which identified practices that have reduced ADA paratransit costs, improved efficiency, and increased the mobility of people with disabilities.

She was the principal author of the Topic Guides on ADA Transportation, also for FTA and published in 2010, as well as other transportation studies.

Her management and leadership skills were recognized early in her career when she was hired at age 25 as Director of Access California, a City of Oakland, California resource center on architectural and communications accessibility. She served for nine years in that capacity before joining the DREDF staff in 1988. During the same period, she served in a volunteer capacity as Co-Coordinator of the Disabled International Support Effort, which provided material aid and technical assistance to disability organizations in developing countries.

Her involvement in international disability rights has continued since the ADA’s passage. She has been called upon to share her knowledge with audiences in South Africa, Germany, Austria, New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland, Spain, Costa Rica, the European Union, and at the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, China.

Ms. Golden attended Brandeis University, from which she graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa. Soon thereafter she acquired a disability and became deeply involved in the disability rights movement.

Source: Marilyn Golden

A Tidbit from Me: I first met Marilyn in 1987 at the September Alliance for accessible transportation. Advocates from California together with members of American Disabled for Accessible Public Transit (ADAPT) as they were known then staged a 4-day direct action activity in response to American Public Transit Association holding their public meeting in San Francisco. At that time California had many accessible busses. However, APTA was against mandating accessibility in other states or on a national level. APTA’s solution was to give states and municipalities a choice as to whether to purchase accessible busses or to rely on a van service similar to paratransit to provide transportation services to our community. This was unacceptable to many in our community. Separate was not equal as we learned in the Civil Rights movement and it was not equal in transportation.  Marilyn was one of the key leaders in the early days of DREDF who represented our community at APTA meetings to attempt to advocate for accessible busses.