My son Matthew's journey started when my son was diagnosed with PDD at 21 months. We were soon thereafter introduced to MARC because we were told that he was entitled to certain therapies at home, including speech, OT and PT too, I believe. These people were frequent visitors in our home to help Matthew bridge the gap in the areas that needed boosting, so they were coming often 2x per week. As you can imagine, the therapists would eventually feel like friends because of the amount of time they spend with you and your child. It is a good thing to have when you are just starting to get used to the "new life" with the impact the diagnosis can have on you as the [...]
On Wednesday May 17, 2017 Julie Gerhart-Rothholz, participated in a press conference with Senator Casey & Senator Maggie Hassan and an Occupational Therapist to address the AHCA and Medicaid block grants. As a parent and Boar Member of The Arc Alliance, Julie addressed the topic of how AHCA/Medicaid block grants can negatively impact her son Evan. Julie ended the session providing a significant context on this challenging issue. Link to Video It is extremely important for each of us to contact our legislators and tell them the potential impact these proposed changes will have on our loved ones. Join with Julie and let your voice be heard locally, state wide and nationally! Link to find your Legislator
Please contact your state representative and ask them to sign on as a cosponsor to Rep. Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre) memo that requires Department of Human Services (DHS) to develop a plan to close state centers by January 1, 2023. Do you know that Pennsylvania has 5 State Centers for Individuals with Intellectual & developmental disabilities? Thankfully there is a plan in place to close the Hamburg State Center, relocating 80 individuals into the community by 2018/19. However that means our state still has 4 State Centers (Like Pennhurst) in existence housing approximately 800+-individuals! This must end! Help those individuals still segregated and isolated in state centers by contacting your legislator and urging them to sign onto Rep. Kerry Benninghoff's Memo. Below is the link. [...]
Below is a press release sent to The Arc Alliance from the Office of Developmental Programs updating the community on Sheltered Workshops and adult day programs.
You can click your heels three times, and say there’s no place like home, but after you say that, where will you end up? Today we are going to discuss pros and cons of different living arrangements that you can use to help your young adult live independently. Understand that this is not an exhaustive list but several issues I have discovered. Also remember that each option has both financial and personal freedom costs that each individual and family needs to consider. For example, what’s the level of freedom/independence are you willing to forgo in order to have specific services? These are not easy questions but essential when looking into the future. First things first, before we discuss the benefits and disadvantages of the [...]
Once your son or daughter is finished with their high school education, a decision needs to be made as to whether they get a job or continue their education. That is where OVR can help you. The last time we communicated, I talked about waivers and what it takes to apply for them. Today I want to touch on The Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR). Many people with disabilities (and other people needing assistance) use OVR to help them obtain a job or continue their education. Like everything else that we are going to discuss in the next couple blogs, applying for OVR is another process. We just have to take it one step at a time. For a complete list of resources that [...]
In support of Individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, The Arc Alliance has been advocating and working with legislators and administrations for decades to resolve the five remaining state funded centers. Today, The Arc Alliance is proud to commend Governor Tom Wolf, Department of Human Services Secretary Ted Dallas and all those in support for their courageous action in announcing the closure of the Hamburg State Center. Secretary Dallas expects the closure to take approximately 18-24 months. “For the 30 years I have been CEO of The Arc Alliance, my and The Arc Alliance's goal has been to provide individuals with the freedom of choice and the support to live as independent a life as possible. The announced closure of the Hamburg State Center is another [...]
Rep. Thomas Murt Addressing Participants at Awareness Walk On a chilly but sunny day several hundred individuals joined Representative Thomas Murt on an awareness walk highlighting intellectual and developmental disabilities. Rep. Murt is a devoted advocate for the rights of individuals with disabilities within the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. From coordinating awareness events like this walk in Horsham, to advocating and increasing funds devoted to reducing the I/DD and Autism Waiting list for individual services Rep. Murt champions the issues and concerns facing individuals and families in our community. The Arc Alliance commends and thanks Rep. Murt for all his work and support. Scott Camilleri & Rep. Thomas Murt addressing families Scott Camilleri, Executive Director of The Arc Alliance Foundation [...]