Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Statewide Independent Living Council

2019 Independent Living Conference Workshops and Speaker

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Morning Plenary - Social Determinants of Health

Maddie Ribble, MA Public Health Association
photo of Maddie Ribble

Lunch Plenary - Voting and the 2020 Census

Marlene Sallo, Executive Director of the Disability Law Center

photo of Marlene

NCIL Advocacy Award to David Correia

MWCIL Advocacy Director, David Correia, received the 2019 Regional Advocacy Award for Region I from the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL). The award was announced in Washington in July at the national conference, and he received it at the Statewide Independent Living Conference from Jennifer Lee and Steve Higgins. Region I consists of Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.

photo of Jennifer, David and Steve


Keeping It Moving: Physical Activity and Exercise for People with Mobility Disabilities

Nassira Nicola and Kimberley Warsett MA Department of Public Health, Office of Health Equity
photo of Nassira and KimberlyThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other leading health advocacy organizations recommend regular exercise to reduce the risk of chronic disease and pain, improve muscle and bone health, and boost mood. This is especially important for people whose disabilities already involve pain and reduced mobility - and yet a new data analysis from the Health and Disability Program shows that people with mobility disabilities are less than half as likely as nondisabled people to get the recommended amount of exercise. Furthermore, when people with mobility disabilities don't get enough exercise, they're much less likely to describe themselves as feeling healthy. This workshop will discuss some of the barriers to exercise for people with mobility disabilities (hint: it's not laziness!), the unfair impact of these barriers across particular segments of the disability community, and ways that ILCs, local health and planning departments, and individual consumers can work to remove these barriers in the community and their own lives.

Independent Living for a Lifetime: How Age-Friendly Communities Advance Independence

James Fuccione Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative and Bill Henning Boston Center for Independent Living
photo of Bill and JamesMassachusetts is home to 50 Age-Friendly Communities designated by AARP and the World Health Organization, and one of three statewide designations in the country. With this movement gaining momentum, there is opportunity to create inclusive social and physical environments in cities and towns that work for all residents. The Massachusetts Healthy Aging Collaborative (MHAC) is working with local, regional and statewide organizations to promote and support this Age-Friendly movement and will provide an overview of activity, data, and progress. MHAC will also inform attendees how they can get involved to add their own important voice to this process. The Boston Center for Independent Living is a member of the MHAC Executive Committee and will further explain and emphasize the opportunity and overlap of this movement with current independent living efforts.

Transition Planning: Preparing for College

Nancy Mader, Leslie Leslie Federation for Children with Special Needs
photo of Nancy and LeslieThis workshop discusses the change in law from high school to college and how to prepare students with disabilities for college life. Topics include self-determination and disability disclosure; documentation needed for accommodations; resources outside of college disability services and more.
  1. Understanding the change in laws (from IDEA to ADA and 504)
  2. Developing self-determination skills
  3. Disability disclosure (what, when, and who)
  4. Choosing the right school (4 year or 2 year)
  5. Other resources

Outreach and Marketing: Getting Your ILC Noticed

Deborah Barber, Tina Moroney, Patricia Cox Disability Resource Center
photo of Patricia, Deborah and TinaThis workshop will focus on the outreach and marketing tactics that will help get your ILC noticed! Tina will present different social media/online marketing platforms and how to expand your consumer outreach online. This will include how to manage your Google listing, how to use a distribution list, how to sync events with Facebook, and how to make consistent social media posts. Deborah will speak about how to design a dynamic flyer, how to network in your community and where to distribute materials. Patricia will talk about where to find media contacts, and how to write an effective press release.

Finding and Using Community Transportation, and Advocating to Fill Transportation Gaps

Rachel Fichtenbaum MassMobility, EOHHS and Joe Bellil Easterseals MA Rachel and Ann Access to reliable, affordable transportation is a critical component of independent living. This session will provide a brief overview of transportation services available in communities around Massachusetts and introduce tools and resources to help individuals and providers find local options. Then, we'll highlight strategies for filling in the gaps. Joe Bellil of Easterseals Massachusetts will discuss a project in Worcester that has received federal funding to promote inclusion of riders with disabilities in transportation planning. Three rider groups have come together under a common coalition to advocate for themselves and for each other's transportation access. Joe will share the activities and strategies advocates are pursuing, and highlight lessons learned about transportation advocacy. Then Rachel Fichtenbaum of MassMobility will share information on funding opportunities that may be available to ILCs or other organizations looking to launch transportation initiatives. The presentation will be conversational, with attendees encouraged to share their own strategies as well as their questions throughout the discussion - so please bring your ideas, questions, and stories!

Basic Overview of Social Security Disability Benefits

Brian Forsythe Work Without Limits Benefits Counseling
BrianThis training addresses common myths around work and Social Security disability benefits (SSI and SSDI), while providing an overview of work incentives that counter such myths. Participants will review the major differences between SSI and SSDI, how work earnings affect cash benefits and public health insurance (Medicaid and/or Medicare).

Census 2020: Counting Everyone

Marlene Sallo Disability Law Center
This workshop will outline the importance of outreach to people with disabilities and how to encourage their participation in Census 2020. In particular the workshop will cover:
  1. Why counting everyone is important
  2. The role advocates can play in ensuring outreach efforts are inclusive of people with disabilities
  3. Provide information to the attendees so that they can then inform the disability community about the importance of Census 2020
  4. PDF - silc_2019_census_2020.pdf
  5. PowerPoint - silc_2019_census_2020.pptx
  6. MSWord Large Print - silc_2019_census_2020.docx

ADA Updates in 2019

Jason Angel - New England ADA Center
JasonPlease join us for our annual update on the Americans with Disabilities Act. The principle, all people including people with disabilities have the right to participate, seems simple enough. However, even though the ADA was passed 29 years ago, implementation has been spotty and many parts of the law are still unclear. We will discuss recent settlement agreements from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ), as well as emerging case law. We will review resources from the US Access Board and the New England ADA Center. There will be plenty of time for your questions.

Affordable Housing 101

Cecilia Woodworth, Department of Housing & Community Development
ceciliaAffordable Housing 101 provides information on affordable housing resources in Massachusetts and how to access them. We will talk about common affordable housing terms, and project- and tenant-based housing options. The workshop will also talk about tools to use when doing housing search and best practices to complete a successful search.

Massachusetts PCA Quality Improvement Project: Addressing Recruitment and Retention for Personal Assistance Users Receiving 40 or More Hours/Week

Lisa Marschke, Linnea Rego, Coordinator with the Homecare Training Benefit and Rebecca Gutman, 1199SEIU
three women presentersThis workshop will give an overview of the Department of Public Health, Health and Disability Program and the resources they can provide to help support individuals with disabilities living independently. Individuals who participate in this workshop will have a better understanding of the prevalence of health issues as well as disparities among those living with disabilities. The workshop will address how access to health care, dental care, mental health services and housing can impact disparities and how the Independent Living Movement can work to address these disparities.

Elements of Transition Planning

Annette M. Hines, Esq Special Needs Law Group of Massachusetts, PC
AnnetteDecisions regarding transition are very difficult to make, and the planning requires time and a strong support team. In order to achieve a successful transition to adulthood, an individual’s transition plan must look at many elements of adult living including employment opportunities, vocational and post-secondary education, where to live and with whom, independent living skills, recreation, leisure activities, social relationships, self-advocacy, health and safety, financial benefits and income planning.

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