hipnews Fall 2011 Edition
 
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SAVE THE DATE!!
Annual Meeting to Focus on Disability Rights
Federal Judge Rules PATH Station Must Be Made Acce
ADA Final Rule Regulations for Service Animals and
Moving? Send Us Your New Address
Project Downtown Access–Hackensack Needs YOU!
Pot O’ Gold Raffle Under Way
“Opportunities Plus,” hip’s Summer Internship Prog
OCTOBER: NATIONAL DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS
We Mourn. . . Helen Marshall
CHANGE IS IN THE AIR FOR AVL
A COOL ANSWER TO SUMMER’S HEAT!
LEAD Begins the 2011-2012 Academic Year
GROWING WITH YES!
NJ TRANSIT TESTING TAP>RIDE PROGRAM
Fitness the Accessible Way
Our New Journey Raffle A Success
Sherri Krupnik Welcomed to Bergen Staff
BERGEN YES! GOES HIGH TECH
YES! Envisioning Success in Summer 2011 for Bergen
PERSONAL ASSISTANCE SERVICES PROGRAM FACT SHEET
The Importance of Making a Will
HIP’S ANNUAL APPEAL AND END-OF-YEAR GIVING
Election Day Tuesday, November 8 Polls are open 6
hip Offers Innovative Programs
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
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- hipnews Fall 2011 Edition Text Version -


  SAVE THE DATE!!
  
 Holiday festivities are just around the corner! Get ready for hip’s Annual Holiday Party SUNDAY, DECEMBER 11TH, NOON TO 4 P.M. at the DoubleTree Hotel, Fort Lee. Watch the mail for your invitation!
 
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  Annual Meeting to Focus on Disability Rights
  
 Annual Meeting to Focus on Disability Rights and Highlights of Another Banner Year for hip
Every November brings a time for joining together to celebrate another outstanding “hip year” and to welcome a major player on disability issues. This year is no exception. Joseph D. Young, Executive Director of Disability Rights New Jersey, will be the keynote speaker at hip’s Annual Meeting on Tuesday, November 15th, at the Meadowlands Plaza Hotel, Secaucus. Hosted by Hudson hip, this year’s program begins at 6:30 p.m. Light refreshments will precede the meeting.
Joe Young has been a staff member of DRNJ (formerly NJ Protection & Advocacy) for over 15 tears, but he started representing people with disabilities in 1979, when he joined the Community Health Law Project. A graduate of Rutgers University School of Law, he has appeared in administrative, trial, and appellate courts, including the New Jersey Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals. Mr. Young will discuss important civil rights litigation, as well as state and federal involvement, that impacts the lives of people with disabilities. Advocates won’t want to miss this exciting opportunity to participate in a discussion central to our concerns.
Disability Rights New Jersey is part of the nationwide protection and advocacy system established by Congress to monitor the states’ treatment of people with disabilities and to advocate and advance their legal, civil, and human rights.
A year-in-review presentation by hip CEO Eileen Goff, as well as the election and re-election of members and officers to the Board of Trustees, will complete the program. The Meadowlands Plaza Hotel is located at 40 Wood Avenue in Secaucus. Directions can be obtained from the Hudson hip office.
 
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  Federal Judge Rules PATH Station Must Be Made Acce
  
 Federal Judge Rules PATH Station Must Be Made Accessible for All
by Kathy Wood, Hudson hip Director
In July of 2005, Hudson hip received a letter from a downtown Jersey City resident with a disability who wanted to ride the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) train into New York City. Since this was 14 years after the implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, a simple train ride should not have presented a problem. Unfortunately, this was not the case because the PATH station on Grove Street, which was most conveniently located for this individual, was completely inaccessible. Despite the fact that PATH had very proudly and prominently announced the opening of a newly constructed station entrance in May of 2005, the station remained inaccessible. The new entrance consists of five steps up to an open plaza and a very long double flight of stairs from that plaza down to the train platform. There are no elevators, lifts or other means of access for people who use wheelchairs or who otherwise are unable to use stairs or escalators.
In response to a letter from hip inquiring about accessibility, the then Director and General Manager of PATH advised that “at some time in the not too distant future” major construction would be necessary to accommodate longer trains. PATH expected to address “handicapped accessibility” at that time. However, there were no specific time lines or plans described. The letter further stated that perhaps hip might want to tell our clients about Hudson County Transcend and NJ Transit Accessible Services.
UNITED SPINAL JOINS HIP IN LAWSUIT
Obviously this was not an acceptable response, so hip contacted the Community Health Law Project and the United Spinal Association (which has a long history of successful litigation in the area of transportation access). A New York City law firm, Broach and Stulberg, was subsequently engaged to represent hip, the United Spinal Association, and a hip member with a disability in this matter. A lawsuit was filed in Hudson County Superior Court in 2007 and was removed to federal district court in Newark.
Many motions, counter motions, depositions, and oral arguments followed. The Port Authority argued that renovations are infeasible because the station’s corridors would be made too narrow to comply with fire safety codes and because it would be necessary to acquire property rights to construct the elevators. In granting summary judgment for the plaintiffs on September 6th, Federal District Court Judge Stanley Chesler rejected the argument that the modifications would narrow station corridors to an unacceptable extent and ordered the Port Authority to make the Grove Street PATH station accessible, even if property rights have to be acquired order to do so.This has been a long, hard battle, but it was worth taking a stand and sticking to it. Many thanks go to the attorneys who devoted countless hours to this effort. It is truly a “David and Goliath” story.
 
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  ADA Final Rule Regulations for Service Animals and
  
 ADA Final Rule Regulations for Service Animals and Wheelchairs
• ?Service Animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability. Other species of animals, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purpose of this definition.
• ?Power Mobility Devices/Wheelchairs: the Department of Justice has finally come up with a definition of a wheelchair: “A manually operated or power-driven device designed primarily for use by an individual with a mobility disability for the main purpose of indoor, or of both indoor and outdoor locomotion.” People who use wheelchairs can use any area open to pedestrians.
• ?Other power-driven mobility devices include Segways, golf carts or other electronic personal assistance mobility devices. Public accommodations must also allow people to use these devices unless the facility can show a danger or interruption of services.
• ?In other words, a facility must be very careful in developing policies concerning these vehicles and their use.
• ?An individual may not ask a person with a wheelchair or other power-driven mobility device about the nature or extent of the individuals’ disability.
• ?A tank chair is designed to go off-road through streams, mud, snow, sand, and gravel or anywhere outdoors. A tank chair is designed to be used outdoors, but it is marketed as an indoor chair as well.
COURTESY OF LEONA MATHER, ADA COORDINATOR, GLOUCESTER COUNTY, NJ
 
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  Moving? Send Us Your New Address
  
 The US Postal Service will help us find you eventually, for a small fee that we’d rather not have to pay! So, if a move is in your future, let hip know where to send your hipNews.
 
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  Project Downtown Access–Hackensack Needs YOU!
  
 Project Downtown Access-Hackensack is now a reality! hip is assisting small business owners located on Main Street, Hackensack, to identify problems of access at their locations and provide them with information about eliminating such barriers to make their businesses accessible to all customers.
After communicating with the Hackensack Upper Main Alliance last summer, CEO Eileen Goff and staff advocate Nancy Hodgins met with Hackensack’s city manager to discuss our project. We were very encouraged by his support for this effort; we also found this positive attitude in the welcome offered by a majority of the Main Street businesses. Aside from the need to comply with current laws and regulations, business owners seem to appreciate that they can expand their customer base by removing any existing barriers to assure customers with disabilities that they will be welcome in their establishments.
People with disabilities, according torecent statistics, make up over 15% of the U.S. population. “Approximately 40 million Americans over the age of 5 have at least one disability, making them the largest minority group in the nation. As our baby boomer population ages and more veterans return from war, this number will double in the next 20 years.” *What business owner, during these difficult economic times, can afford to turn away an additional 15% of their potential customer base? Indeed, assuring that one’s business is open and welcoming to all customers will prove to be an important factor of any business owner’s success.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
For hip, having a large number of volunteers will be the key to success for this project. We don’t want this commitment to become burdensome for even the most dedicated volunteer, so the more helpers we have, the better it will be for everyone. Some may prefer to survey stores with a friend and work as a pair. The surveys are easy to understand and simple to complete. You needn’t discuss any details with the business staff. Simply observe the surroundings in and outside the store, check off YES, NO, or NA to questions on the survey form, and give a packet of information to the owner or an appropriate employee to help identify barriers and explain how to remove them. The information also tells them about possible tax deductions and credits for removing such barriers. We will visit any stores with special problems later to discuss options and advantages to barrier removal.
Unbearable summer heat and humidity, along with Hurricane Irene and torrential rains, delayed our start, but we are now moving “full steam ahead.” So far, 11 volunteers have been assisting hip as surveyors. Some come for an hour or two once a week, while others give a day and work for as long as they wish. Thanks to those who have already given their time, more than 70 businesses have been surveyed, but many more still need to be assessed. Winter weather is just around the corner, so this is the time to push hard to get the job done.
SPECIAL STICKERS TO BE AWARDED
When all the results are entered into a database, and after follow-up visits to stores with continuing problems, hip will give a special sticker to any business found to be (or modified to become) barrier free. We will encourage them to display the sticker proudly on their storefront window to tell shoppers that this is an accessible business that welcomes all customers. We’re sure that this will encourage all shoppers to support businesses that have “gone that extra mile.”
If you have the time and wish to help us achieve this ambitious goal, please call us at Bergen hip (Ext. 18) or e-mail nhodgins.ber@hipcil.org. Not only will you help us complete an important project, but you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you were a critical part of the effort to help Hackensack become a downtown shopping area that welcomes all shoppers, with and without disabilities.
*American FactFinder – U.S. Census Bureau
Want to be our “friend” at hip?
Coming soon… hip is getting ready to join the world of social media. Be on the lookout for our new Facebook and Twitter pages in the coming months!
 
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  Pot O’ Gold Raffle Under Way
  
 Our Annual Pot O’ Gold Raffle is up and running! You won’t want to miss being part of the action. Last year’s first prize was $1,060; second prize, $265. Hardly “chump change”! And this year, prizes could be even bigger! Watch the mail for your raffle books and let Rhea Hess at Bergen hip know if you want more. The seller of the largest number of books takes home $50. Raffle books can also be picked up at the Annual meeting on Nov. 15th at the Meadowlands Plaza Hotel in Secaucus. The drawing takes place on December 9th. Winners will be announced at the holiday party.
 
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  “Opportunities Plus,” hip’s Summer Internship Prog
  
 “Opportunities Plus,” hip’s Summer Internship Program for Young People with Vision Loss, Celebrated at a Festive Event
On Tuesday evening, August 23rd, an event took place at the Marriott Hotel – Newark Airport, to celebrate the success of “Opportunities Plus,” the summer 2011 internship program for young people with vision loss created and implemented by hip. “Opportunities Plus,” like several other statewide programs that hip has designed and directed, transcended local boundaries. Eight men and women from throughout New Jersey participated in paid internships, having been matched with a variety of employers for this unique vocational experience. The program was supported by ARRA funds, through the New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Its purpose was to introduce young adults with vision loss to the world of work, with the goal of future employment.
At the dinner celebration, the focus was clearly on the accomplishments of the interns. Each employer spoke of their abilities, and of how impressed they were with the responsibility the young people demonstrated. Some also noted that they “learned more from the interns than perhaps the interns learned from us.” The interns spoke of the skills they have developed and how the experience will benefit their future careers. Two are entering prestigious colleges with scholarships; the others plan either to attend college or seek employment in the immediate future.
CEO Eileen Goff expressed appreciation for the ARRA funding, which made the initiative possible. Michael Kosec, a senior staff member of the NJ Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired, representing the agency’s executive director, praised the success of the program. Other speakers stressed the necessity for young people with vision loss to work diligently to prepare for success in a competitive world. Seven of the eight interns were present, along with parents and family members, five employers, “Opportunities Plus” project coordinator Lynette Washington, advisory board members, and hip staff. “Opportunities Plus” was an outgrowth of LEAD (Leadership, Education, Advocacy, and Determination), a program created by hip many years ago for high school students with vision loss. LEAD coordinators were present at the celebration.
Employers received plaques to acknowledge their efforts, and the interns received money identifiers – to prepare them for the salaries they will receive in their future employment.
 
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  OCTOBER: NATIONAL DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS
  
 OCTOBER: NATIONAL DISABILITY EMPLOYMENT AWARENESS MONTH
Congress has designated each October as National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). This effort to educate the American public about issues related to disability and employment began in 1945, when Congress enacted a law declaring the first week in October each year “National Employ the Physically Handicapped Week.” In 1962, the word “physically” was removed to acknowledge the employment needs and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities. In 1988, Congress expanded the week to a month and changed the name to “National Disability Employment Awareness Month.”
PRESIDENT ISSUES PROCLAMATION
The following statement was issued by the U.S. Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Washington, D.C.:
On October 3, President Obama issued a Proclamation marking October 2011 as National Disability Employment Awareness Month. In his proclamation, he urged “all Americans to embrace the talents and skills that individuals with disabilities bring to our workplaces and communities and to promote the right to equal employment opportunity for all people.”
To celebrate (this special month), the Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS) is highlighting projects and initiatives funded by the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA), and the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitative Research (NIDRR) that improve employment outcomes for people with disabilities, including transition-aged youth. All month, OSERS will feature innovative, employment-based projects and individual success stories on http://www2.ed.gov/about/offices/list/osers/deam-2011/index.html
Building on a strong education foundation is the key to launching the future success of young people with disabilities. Thank you for all you are doing to support and encourage individuals with disabilities as they work towards realizing their career and life goals. – Alexa Posny, Ph.D., Assistant Secretary, OSERS
 
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  We Mourn. . . Helen Marshall
  
 With the death of Helen Marshall on September 25th, after a long illness, hip lost one of its most devoted Board members and a cherished friend to all of us. Helen joined the hip Board of Trustees in 1996 and served two terms as President. But throughout the years she spent with us, Helen also served with style and distinction in many other capacities – as chair of the Finance and Fund Development Committees, chair of the Hudson hip Advisory Board, and tireless advocate for all people with disabilities, including in her hometown of Bayonne.
One Board member has described Helen as “multi-faceted.” How true. But perhaps Helen will be most fondly remembered for her boundless creativity: each year, for our benefit dinner dance, she put her imagination and organizational skills to work, and “transformed a recreation center into a unique theme of beauty.“
We will remember Helen for her many wonderful qualities, and most of all, for her unfailing dedication to hip and all that our organization stands for.
 
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  CHANGE IS IN THE AIR FOR AVL
  
 by Susan Vanino, Coordinator,
Adjustment to Vision Loss Program
Like leaves changing colors in the fall, so too can people change. Often when vision loss becomes apparent to someone, he or she may become frightened, depressed, and have feelings of despair. Frequently, they unknowingly isolate themselves, and find it difficult to adjust.
Through the Adjustment to Vision Loss (AVL) program, an extensive network of peer support groups has been designed to ensure that people experiencing vision loss know that they are not alone. Members share solutions to challenges and learn new coping mechanisms of which they were previously unaware.
INFORMATION AND DEMONSTRATIONS HELP
Demonstrations of the latest assistive technologies along with timely information about vision loss help members to begin adjusting to their situation, and changing, just like the beautiful fall leaves.
If you or anyone you know is experiencing vision loss and would like to attend or know more about Adjustment to Vision Loss peer support groups operating in 14 New Jersey counties, please call Susan Vanino, AVL program coordinator, at hip’s Hackensack office (Ext. 26), or e-mail svanino.ber@hipcil.org.
 
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  A COOL ANSWER TO SUMMER’S HEAT!
  
 The summer of 2011 was the fourth hottest ever recorded in New Jersey!
As in past years, hip came to the rescue of many consumers. Through SNAP and SAIL, the two CILs were able to help consumers purchase air conditioners for 58 homes.
Once again, hip extends special thanks to Diane Albarella, who donated funds to provide an air conditioner for a Bergen County senior citizen. The hip CILs are always responsive to the needs of our consumers, and the summer of 2011 was no exception to hip’s dedication to the well-being of our communities.
 
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  LEAD Begins the 2011-2012 Academic Year
  
 Celeste Quintana delivered a dynamic message to 70 LEAD participants and family members in Edison on September 25th at the “Ice Breaker” event that launched the academic year for new and ongoing students with vision loss in hip’s unique educational program. Ms. Quintana, owner of a chain of McDonald’s restaurants, with a staff of 600, shared powerful information about what employers expect from their workers. “If you tell the employer that your favorite thing to do is watch TV on the sofa, you might as well not bother to show up for the interview,” quipped Ms. Quintana, who was one of eight employers in this past summer’s “Opportunities Plus” internship program.
 
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  GROWING WITH YES!
  
 by Marian Padilla
Independent Living Transition Coordinator
Wence Morales, a friendly student at Harrison High School, became part of the YES! (Youth Envisioning Success) Program when she transitioned from elementary school into high school. Her personality is naturally outgoing and warm but, like many teenagers, she faces obstacles. Since participating in YES! self-advocacy sessions with hip’s transition coordinator, she has become more secure in being able to address her needs at school and at home. For example, at the end of the last school term, Wence requested a meeting with her teachers and guidance counselor to inform them she would like to participate in drama club this year. She asked about the wheelchair accessibility of the auditorium and rehearsal areas, as well as any field trips associated with the club. When we asked how being a part of the YES! program has helped her, she said that she now takes more of a lead role in planning her life. As she grows older, she takes on more responsibility.
When Wence’s family couldn’t provide transportation to and from sleep-away summer camp, Wence contacted hip. We linked her with Advancing Opportunities, Inc. (UCP), which provided Wence with accessible transportation. After returning from two weeks away at summer camp, Wence contacted hip’s transition coordinator to discuss volunteer opportunities in her area. As she enters her sophomore year in high school, Wence is looking forward to participating in Peer Leadership and sharing her experiences with younger students. Her goal for this new school year? To continue to do well, of course, and to embark on whatever new adventures come her way. We are certain that Wence will indeed continue to do well, and we look forward to being part of her next adventure.
 
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  NJ TRANSIT TESTING TAP>RIDE PROGRAM
  
 NJ Transit’s “Tap>Ride Program” is being tested in the Jersey City area on six bus routes (6, 43, 80, 81, 87, and 120) out of Greenville garage. The Tap>Ride program allows customers to pay their fare by simply tapping their contactless credit or debit card on newly installed readers located near the fare box. Customers will no longer have to search for exact fare or fumble for change.
NJ Transit invites passengers with disabilities to participate in the pilot program. They are especially interested in trying out a wristband that will act as a contactless credit card. Designed for people who have difficulty handling cash or credit cards, the device can be worn as a wristband or used in another way to pay the fare. You will simply board the bus, tap the oval of the wristband to the reader near the fare box, and enjoy the ride!
If you or someone you know would like to join the pilot program, NJ Transit will offer you a $75 prepaid wristband that will act as your contactless credit/debit card. The wristband will have $50 of NJ Transit value and $25 that can be used outside of NJ Transit. Think of it this way: you can get $50 in free transit rides and $25 in free groceries. For more information, e-mail taprideada@njtransit.com
 
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  Fitness the Accessible Way
  
 On a mild early fall evening, an intrepid group of Hudson consumers met at the Meadowlands Plaza Hotel in Secaucus for what turned out to be a “no excuses accepted” evening of fitness. Following a light buffet supper and some time for social interaction, a team of physical and occupational therapists from the Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in Saddle Brook discussed the importance of exercise and physical activity for everyone, regardless of disability or fitness level.
The therapists led the group in a seated exercise session. They demonstrated stretching and strengthening techniques as well as aerobic movements. Exercises were modified for each participant, and all were encouraged to move a little more each day.
At the end of the evening, several people said that they hadn’t known that they could exercise while seated, but that they would definitely use the techniques they had just been taught. Now they know they can exercise while watching TV!
 
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  Our New Journey Raffle A Success
  
 The 2011 Our New Journey gift raffle raised $2,450. The prizes awarded in September were gift certificates for Shop & Shop. Anne McMahon, ONJ founder and chair, reports that a family caregiver of a 17-year-old son with a disability has been contacted and is receiving emergency care-giving financial assistance for two months. Other individuals are being considered to receive help from proceeds of this project. Anne thanks everyone who bought raffle books for their generosity and support in making this annual fund-raiser a huge success.
On Sunday, November 20th, Our New Journey will be selling handcrafted items at the Holiday Craft and Vendor Show, sponsored by the Hasbrouck Heights VFW Ladies Auxiliary (10 am to 4 pm) at VFW Post 4591, 513 Veterans Place. A great idea for holiday giving in a worthy cause.
Our New Journey is a personalized service that assists families of individuals with disabilities as well as seniors in several ways: through caregiver peer-to-peer support, individual guidance directed toward understanding personal needs, help with locating available services, and limited financial support for direct care assistance. For every $15 raised, Our New Journey can provide one hour of homecare; for every $135, one overnight of respite service.
 
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  Sherri Krupnik Welcomed to Bergen Staff
  
 Sherri Krupnik has joined our Bergen hip staff as a care manager for the Aging and Disability Resource Connection. Sherri’s effervescent personality and practical background in social work are valuable assets to our organization. Sherri comes with six years’ experience as a social worker in New York City. She grew up in New Hampshire and earned a bachelor’s degree in Family and Consumer Studies at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Before coming to New York to complete her master's degree in Clinical Social Work at NYU, Sherri spent a year working as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer in Western Massachusetts. There she partnered with a rural school system to establish ESL (English as a Second Language) reading programs. A Teaneck resident, Sherri enjoys reading and boating, and most of all, enjoys spending time with her husband and two young children. Welcome to hip, Sherri!
 
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  BERGEN YES! GOES HIGH TECH
  
 The Bergen hip CIL has acquired some impressive high tech equipment available for students with learning disabilities. We have an amazing array of software and other assistive technology to help students with organizational, reading, writing, and math skills. If you are a high school student who wants to learn more about the benefits of assistive technology and how to use it, call Alanna Staton at Ext. 23 to make an appointment for a hands-on demonstration. The best part is that most of it is free or low cost! Throughout the summer, 26 students were given demonstrations of a range of assistive technology options through a grant from Advancing Opportunities, Inc.
 
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  YES! Envisioning Success in Summer 2011 for Bergen
  
 by Alanna Staton, Independent Living Transition Coordinator
During July and August, hip hosted two summer groups for youth in Bergen County. Small groups of students had an opportunity to socialize with one another over lunch before diving into a great curriculum about self-advocacy and transition skills. Topics included:
• ?Discussing the importance of self-advocacy for the transition to adult life
• ?Reviewing school and training options
• ?Learning how to take control and responsibility for future goals
• ?Creating a support system
• ?Exploring and researching career options
• ?Learning about successful adults with learning differences
• ?Considering “dream” jobs
• ?Discussing independence and responsibilities: school to work
• ?Focusing on your strengths – specialization and the world of work
• ?Connecting with communitysupport services
One activity that was fun encouraged students to think about where they want to be five years from now. Using images cut from magazines, each student created a Dream Board. Dream Boards give students a visual image of the goals they want to achieve. A Dream Board is a daily reminder that keeps one focused on future goals and dreams. See it, believe it, receive it!
One group met one day a week for six weeks, while another group met each day for a week. Both groups experienced great success. Below are some pieces of advice the students wanted to give to other students with disabilities:
“?Face your fears and don’t let them bother you.”
“Keep trying hard!”
“You are your own boss.”
“?Think positive. If you have a good education, you can get a good job and make good money.”
“?Go ahead and make your future successful and bright – just like you!”
“?Don’t stop trying. You’ll eventually succeed.”
“?Your disability can be your greatest advantage.”
Youth Envisioning Success (YES!) will continue self-advocacy workshops in Bergen County schools this fall. If you would like to schedule workshops at your school, call Alanna Staton at Bergen hip (Ext 23) or email astaton.ber@hipcil.org.
 
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  PERSONAL ASSISTANCE SERVICES PROGRAM FACT SHEET
  
 Recent changes have been made to this program. Those interested can find the latest information below:
WHAT IS THE PERSONAL ASSISTANCE SERVICES PROGRAM?
The Personal Assistance Services Program, (PASP) established under N.J.S.A. 30:1-12; P.L. 1993, c. 215 is designed to provide personal assistance services to individuals with permanent physical disabilities. These services enable adults with disabilities to be employed, prepare for employment and/or live independently. Personal assistance services differ from traditional home services in that they are consumer directed and supervised and are considered to be a non-medical model of assistance, rather than a home health care service.
WHICH COUNTIES HAVE THE PROGRAM?
The law establishes the program in each of the 21 counties in the State of New Jersey. County government has the responsibility for designating an office of county government, or another community based agency, that has experience in providing information and services for persons with disabilities, to administer the program locally.
WHO WILL ADMINISTER
THIS PROGRAM?
The law established the Personal Assistance Services Program in the State Division on Disability Services housed in the New Jersey Department of Human Services. The program for Bergen and Hudson is administered through the Bergen County Division on Disability Services. The county Division is responsible, under the supervision of the state Office on Disability Services, for consumer selection, assistant recruitment and local operation of the program.
WHAT ARE PERSONAL ASSISTANT SERVICES AND WHO PROVIDES THEM?
Personal assistants are individuals with training or related experience in providing in-home services, who directly assist a person with a disability in carrying out routine non-medical tasks such as bathing, dressing, transfer to a wheelchair, meal preparation, laundry, shopping, household management and transportation.
WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO RECEIVE THESE SERVICES?
Consumers served under the program are subject to the following eligibility criteria.
• Permanently physically disabled
• Between the ages of 18 and 70
• ?Capable of self-direction and able to supervise a personal assistant
• Resident of the State of New Jersey
In selecting consumers for participation in the program, preference is given to those individuals who are in paid employment, in a program preparing them for employment (school/job training) volunteering, or using services to support community based independent living.
ARE THERE FINANCIAL ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA?
No, under the law there are no financial eligibility criteria for consumers. Those persons who qualify under the current Social Service Block Grant (SSBG) guidelines receive the service at no cost; those with incomes in excess of those guidelines are expected to contribute toward the cost of their services based on a sliding scale (Cost-share).
HOW ARE THE HOURS AND TYPE OF SERVICE DETERMINED?
Consumers selected for the program receive up to 40 hours of service per week, based on their individual needs. A “Plan of Service” specifying the type of service required and the hours requested, is completed by the applicant in the assessment process conducted by a registered nurse, social worker or rehabilitation professional. A professional assessment will be conducted to determine the person’s capacity for self-direction, and the appropriateness of the requested plan of service to meet their needs. A recommendation will be made to the county division regarding the person’s suitability for the program and award of hours. Additional services that a consumer may be eligible to receive through other funding sources (Medicaid, private insurance, etc) must be accessed first and are taken into account in formulating the final consumer Plan of Service.
WHERE CAN I GET FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT THE PROGRAM?
Further information on the Bergen/Hudson Personal Assistance Services Program may be obtained by contacting:
Bergen County Division on
Disability Services
One Bergen County Plaza 2nd FL.
Hackensack, NJ 07601-7076
Anika Davis, PASP Coordinator
(201) 336-6502
Anne Marie McCarthy,
Asst. PASP Coordinator
(201) 336-6508 • TTY (201) 336-6505
 
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  The Importance of Making a Will
  
 Even though it’s a topic many of us would rather put off “until tomorrow,” the truth is that every adult should have a will.
WHY DO YOU NEED A WILL?
A will ensures that you are able to:
• ?Avoid the laws of your state dictating how and to whom your property is distributed
• ?Decide who will inherit your property and what they receive
• ?Choose the legal guardian for any children, ensuring their future
• ?Choose your personal representative so that your estate will be handled and distributed by someone you know and trust
• ?Specify funeral and burial instructions
• ?Retain your privacy
There are many places on the Internet where you can learn more about the advantages of having a will and how to make one. Of course there is no substitute for a personal legal representative to assist you in this vitally important life responsibility.
Whether you already have a will, or are considering making one, a wonderful legacy would be a bequest to hip, as well as to any other charitable cause that you hold dear.
 
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  HIP’S ANNUAL APPEAL AND END-OF-YEAR GIVING
  
 We are grateful for the many recent contributions to hip as the result of our recent Annual Appeal. End-of-year gifts are still most welcome. Thank you all!!
 
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  Election Day Tuesday, November 8 Polls are open 6
  
 ABSENTEE BALLOT DEADLINE DATES:
Monday, October 24 – To request an application from the County Clerk for an Absentee Ballot to be sent to you in the mail, with sufficient time to receive and return the application, and with sufficient time to receive your absentee ballot.
Tuesday, November 1 – Last day the County Clerk can receive your completed application for an Absentee Ballot that you received in the mail.
Absentee ballots can be picked up in person at the County Clerk’s office any time before Election Day.
Tuesday, November 8 – Completed Absentee Ballots must be received by Bergen and Hudson County election officials no later than the end of Election Day.
For an Audio Version of the Sample Ballot: Voters who are visually impaired and would like to receive an audio version of the Sample Ballot (by mail) can call 201-336-7020 by Tuesday, November 1 (not available in Hudson County this year)
FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION, CONTACT:
Bergen County Clerk: Phone: 201-336-7000
website: http://www.co.bergen.nj.us/countyclerk/elections_voting.html#elections_voting2
Hudson County Clerk Phone: 201-369-3470 • website: http://www.hudsoncountyclerk.org
 
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  hip Offers Innovative Programs
  
 hip Offers Innovative Programs to Meet the Independent Living Needs of People with Disabilities in Bergen and Hudson Counties and Beyond
Founded in 1980, Heightened Independence & Progress (hip) is celebrating 30 years of service. hip not only continues to provide vital assistance through information, referral, advocacy, and peer support, but also offers a wide variety of programs to people with all types of disabilities in Bergen and Hudson Counties. Some programs have statewide, even national impact. The following is a summary of hip programs.
Adjustment to Vision Loss coordinates peer support groups and assists with access to mental health professionals for individuals with vision loss. Contact: Susan Vanino (Bergen)
Caregiver Assistance and Support Project (CASP)
provides care management to Bergen County residents 60 and over who are providing care for younger adults with physical disabilities. Contact: Jessica Marchione, Sherri Krupnik (Bergen)
Community Advocacy and Outreach Program seeks to
promote full inclusion through advocacy, education and legislation. Contact: Nancy Hodgins (Bergen)
Comprehensive Independent Living Support (CILS) is a program providing short-term or ongoing assistance to individuals in Hudson County to remain in the community. Contact: Amy Giron (Hudson)
Hispanic Outreach Program directs all Independent Living services to individuals with disabilities of Hispanic origin, in English and Spanish. Contact: Lucy Montalvo (Bergen) or Marily Gonzalez (Hudson)
Leadership Education, Advocacy, and Determination (LEAD), a statewide mentoring and skills-building project, assists high school students with vision loss in their transition to adult life. Contact: Maria Valentin (Bergen)
Modification Access Project (MAP) assists with funding for barrier-free home renovation projects from concept to completion. Contact: Maria Valentin (Bergen)
Multimedia Transcription Service (MTS) converts written materials into Braille, large print, and audiotape formats. Contact: Theresa Johnston (Bergen)
Our New Journey provides financial and practical help to families newly impacted by the onset of illness or disability. Contact: Anne Ciavaglia McMahon (201-288-2867)
Polio Network of New Jersey – The Ruprecht Fund. hip administers this fund for PNNJ to help polio survivors in New Jersey finance necessary products and services. Contact: Maria Valentin (Bergen)
Special Assistance for Independent Living (SAIL) provides funding to Hudson County residents for assistive devices or barrier-free home renovation projects. Contact: Marily Gonzalez (Hudson)
Special Needs Assistance Program (SNAP) provides funding and facilitates acquisition of services and adaptive devices such as wheelchairs, bathroom equipment, hearing aids and more. Contact: Maria Valentin (Bergen)
Support for Independent Living (SIL) provides ongoing care management services through assessment, linkage, and coordination for people with disabilities (18-59).Contact: Jessica Marchione, Sherri Krupnik (Bergen)
Support Groups – COPE (Multiple Sclerosis) and Women with Disabilities. Contact: Paula Walsh (Bergen)
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a state-funded case management program for New Jersey residents who have survived an acquired brain injury, for services and supports they need to live in the community. Contact: Paula Walsh and Sherri Krupnik (Bergen); Marily Gonzalez (Hudson)
Youth Envisioning Success (YES!) assists high school students and families to move from school to adult life. Contact: Alanna Staton (Bergen); Marian Padilla (Hudson)
 
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  BOARD OF TRUSTEES
  
 Jean Fox Csaposs, CHAIR
Lottie Esteban, FIRST VICE CHAIR
Anne Marie Prendergast, SECOND VICE CHAIR
John DeWitt, TREASURER
Joseph Tomasko, SECRETARY
Paul Aronsohn • Thomas Bengaff
Joan Bermingham • Robert Ciavaglia
Lillian Ciufo • Betty A. Fetzer
Richard Hodgman • Roy Lippin
Helen Marshall • Anna Navatta
Hyacinthe Nkurunziza
Eileen Goff, PRESIDENT/CEO EX-OFFICIO
 
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