Community Living Committee Minutes
August 6, 2020
Members Present: Ryan Rotundo, Katherine Boeck, Rhonda Cox, Allison Dodson, Corye Dunn (for Virginia Knowlton Marcus), Joshua Gettinger, Brendon Hildreth, Aldea LaParr, Mya Lewis (for Victor Armstrong), Senator Mujtaba Mohammed, James Stephenson, Peggy Terhune, Sandra Terrell, Kerri Eaker, Dreama McCoy (for Sherry Thomas), Dawn Allen
Staff Present: Philip Woodward, Yadira Vasquez, JoAnn Toomey, Talley Wells, Letha Young
Guests Present: Linda Kendall Fields, Janet Price-Ferrell, Jill Hinton, Michelle Merritt, Steve Strom, Bryan Dobbs
Introduction: Ryan Rotundo welcomed the committee and did an icebreaker focused on a short-term goal each member has.
MOTION: Allison Dodson made a motion to approve the May Community Living Committee minutes, and Katherine Boeck seconded them. The motion was approved by unanimous vote.
Fiscal Update: Yadira Vasquez provided the fiscal update.
Making Alternatives to Guardianship a Reality in North Carolina
Linda Kendall Fields at the UNC School of Social Work provided an update. She discussed how this initiative will focus on Supported Decision-Making, and it has a Steering Team that meets monthly and a Workgroup that meets quarterly. She noted that NCCDD’s previous Rethinking Guardianship: A Person-Centered Approach initiative established a workgroup drafting reforms to N.C. General Statute 35A to reflect the philosophies this initiative values. Linda said she will continue to report on the statutory reform progress if the committee wants her to do so even though it is not a specific work item for this new initiative. She mentioned that Jonathan Martinis of the Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University is the national spokesperson for Supported Decision-Making and is serving as a consultant for the initiative. Linda also said the initiative has turned over training materials to Beverly Colwell at the NC Department of Public Instruction’s Exceptional Children Division to work on sending this information out to teachers.
Natural Support Network Development
Janet Price-Ferrell of FIRST provided an update. She discussed how, in May and June, the initiative hosted Full Circle – Staying Socially Connected Zoom calls where most of the participants were not already engaged with the initiative. She said FIRST is working on the portal that will host the tools, including training modules, videos, and stories, to help people understand how to develop a Personal Support Network after the funding for this initiative ends. She indicated that there will be more material for the future planning category. The committee discussed this type of transition planning occurring for people with I/DD in high school rather than waiting until later (such as age 40 or 50). Janet said the goal this year is systems change for parents because individuals’ families will be gone at some point, so she asked how the system will move forward for them.
Registry of Unmet Needs Research Project
Talley Wells described the background reasoning for examining the Registry of Unmet Needs, also known as the Innovations Waiver waiting list. The committee discussed the value of having Christina Dupuch lead this project for the Council. Talley Wells pointed out how the Registry of Unmet Needs ties closely with NCCDD’s public policy work. Kerri Eaker mentioned the need to “pull all of the voices together and brainstorm” because there are movements across North Carolina, but nobody appears to address this issue with a collective voice. Rhonda Cox did not need to recuse herself despite her role working at Vaya Health, where Christina Dupuch used to work.
Katherine Boeck made a motion to approve a Registry of Unmet Needs sole-source initiative for the period of one year to Cansler Collaborative Resources in an amount up to $30,000 beginning October 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021 with the match being waived and Christina Dupuch as the lead project coordinator. Joshua Gettinger seconded the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous vote.
Supported Living II
The group discussed how Money Follows the Person (MFP) has proposed giving NCCDD $75,000 per year for a two-year initiative to address Supported Living for individuals with the highest levels of need. Steve Strom, the MFP Project Director, shared the background of the Supported Living: Making the Difference initiative and making sure the new Supported Living service was more consumer-directed. He said there were specific tools that families indicated they needed to make Supported Living work, and additional work products need to be developed. Joshua Gettinger suggested printing guidebooks only on demand and not a set number that will sit in a warehouse because our state’s system of services is changing rapidly. Mya Lewis agreed and said there is a need to focus on a product that can be updated easily. Kerri Eaker mentioned that their Care Coordinator gave her family an outdated guidebook for her son Dakota. She also mentioned family members in North Carolina not being allowed to provide Supported Living services, raising the question of whether a new guidebook would address policy concerns. Talley said NCCDD will consider policy questions that arise.
The committee discussed a possible motion and whether the motion needed to include specific language referring to the nature of the guidebook. Sandra Terrell suggested keeping the motion as is but document the feedback and get details for the RFA. Philip Woodward said he would draft an RFA that incorporates all of the feedback the committee expressed today and that the committee will have the opportunity to review and approve the draft for release at the November Council meeting.
Katherine Boeck made a motion for staff of the Council to have authority to draft the RFA regarding a Supported Living II initiative. Request for permission to release the RFA will occur at the November 6th, 2020 Council meeting. Aldea LaParr seconded the motion. The motion was approved by unanimous vote.
I/DD Peer Support Curriculum
Talley Wells provided an update, saying NCCDD is excited to bring it to North Carolina, but NCCDD needs to have buy-in from DHHS and needs to see the curriculum before investing in it. Talley said he has scheduled a call with NACDD leadership and Optum Healthcare in August.
Mobility for All Pilot Program Grant
Philip Woodward announced that in June 2020, the NC Department of Transportation received a Mobility for All Pilot Program grant that will help the state develop a scheduling software allowing people with disabilities to schedule rides for health or employment-related purposes in the Elizabeth City region. The grant is for $350,000 with the federal government providing $280,000 and North Carolina being required to cover the $70,000 match. Philip said he and Talley Wells will update the committee with more information when the pilot starts.
Corye Dunn of Disability Rights North Carolina mentioned Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds approved last week that will provide an important source for accessible housing for people with disabilities.
Katherine Boeck made a motion to adjourn. Allison Dodson seconded the motion. The meeting was adjourned at approximately 12:20 p.m.