I am headed to Chicago this morning for meetings on managed care and rebalancing. Tomorrow I meet with Arc US Vice President Nancy Webster. On Friday, it is back to Chicago for more meetings on Medicaid and a discussion on the Governor’s Rebalancing Initiative with Directors Casey and Romano and Mark Doyle, the Governor’s Transition of Care, Project Manager.Tony

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A newsletter for chapters that connects, engages and informs. DECEMBER 12, 2011
Letter from the CEO
Peter V. Berns, CEO of The Arc
Peter V. Berns
CEO of The Arc
Turning Knowledge into Dollars
Recently I attended a meeting where major corporations talked about the different types of assistance they provide for employees with disabilities. This led me to think about the full range of employee benefits that are offered in the workplace today, from traditional benefits such as health insurance, to newer offerings, such as employee assistance programs. It occurred to me, though, I wonder if any major employers are offering any tailored benefits for employees that have a family member with a disability.
As we think about developing new revenue streams to support chapters of The Arc, there may be an opportunity to build on our greatest asset – the extensive knowledge The Arc network has about the practical problems facing people with I/DD and their families and the solutions. Perhaps we could package an information referral, education and training, or one-to-one technical assistance into a service offering that an employer would buy and offer as a benefit to their employees. If not a separate service, perhaps chapters of The Arc could serve as sub-contract service providers to existing Employee Assistance Program providers.
Please let me know if you have come across any employers that are offering this type of employee benefit or if your chapter is providing these types of services on a fee-for-service or subscription basis. I look forward to hearing from you at berns@thearc.org.
Resources & Opportunities
Desktop computer Please Help Name Our 2012 Webinar Series
We’re looking for something catchy – something meaningful to describe the re-vamped webinar training program offered to our chapters. New, in 2012, The Chapter Excellence Group will offer weekly webinars on Thursdays from 2-3 p.m. EST. Topics may include: advocacy, chapter leadership and governance, marketing, new trends in services and supports, and much more. Here’s your opportunity to express your creativity by helping us to name this educational training series. Submit your idea to Kate Hull at hull@thearc.orgby Jan 2 and if we use your idea, we’ll contact you to sign you up for a FREE 2012 webinar training of your choice (yes, that’s your choice at no charge!)
Upcoming Webinars Include (Full Schedule Here):

The Arc of Massachusetts New Transition Resource Available
The Arc of Massachusetts and The Arc of Greater Haverhill-Newburyport have created a valuable resource [PDF]which explains the concepts of transition and self-determination in an easy-to-understand and straightforward way and provides a timeline for how to approach the transition process from school to adult life for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Check out their brochure [PDF]on The Arc of Massachusetts’ website on their Community Services Page for Children and Families.
Sibling Leadership Network Webinar Focuses on Siblings of Individuals with I/DD
Janet Thibeau of the Sibling Leadership Network (SLN) will present “No Sibling Left Behind: Supporting Siblings of People with Disabilities” in a Webinar Tuesday, December 20 from 2-3 p.m. EST. When a family includes a person with a disability, sibling relationships can become even more dynamic and the voices of siblings are too often left unheard. Find out what is it like to be a brother or sister of an individual with a disability during this webinar about the sibling experience, research on siblings, and the growing movement to support siblings of people with disabilities. Space is limited, so reserve your seat now.
Internal Revenue Service IRS Offers Earned Income Tax Credit Filing Resources
Check out www.eitc.irs.govfor useful tools to help you understand and help individuals you serve with the Earned Income Tax Credit. Look at the top of the page for the Partner Toolkit tab which contains fact sheets, communication materials, links to the EITC Assistant and a special employer page. Many of these resources can be copied or downloaded to allow you to use them in your outreach materials such as newsletters you use for outreach to your constituents.
Social Security Administration Webinar For People with Disabilities Who Wish to Work
The Social Security Administration will offer a free webinar on December 21 from 3-4 p.m. EST on support services for Social Security disability beneficiaries who are interested in work. Visit the Ticket to Work websitefor more information. This webinar is designed to educate about the Ticket to Workprogram and Work Incentives Planning and Assistance projects where individuals with disabilities can find the help they need to return to work.
Laptop computer Give Your Chapter a Great New Year’s Gift!
The Pass to Excellence Webinar Seriesis the perfect gift for your chapter. You can take your knowledge of the Standards for Excellence ® Program to the next level with a four-part webinar series providing you with an opportunity to learn about the specific elements of the Standards for Excellence® code, to assess your chapter against your benchmarks, and to pursue training specific to your needs as you implement change and strengthen your organization. The registration fee covers four sessions, including a discussion with current chapters of The Arc who are Standards for Excellence® certified. For chapters interested in certification, this will offer the opportunity to gauge your progress and learn more about the Standards program.
Register nowfor the following 2012 sessions:

  • February 7 at 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST
  • February 14 at 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST
  • February 21 at 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST
  • February 28 at 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. EST
News & Action Items
Department of Housing and Urban Development Five Chapters of The Arc Win HUD Housing Grants
The Arc of Atlantic County (GA), The Arc of North Carolina, The Arc of Orange County (NC), The Arc of Blackstone Valley (RI) and Nassau AHRC (NY) were awarded grants under a $749 million U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development projectto fund accessible housing for very low-income persons with disabilities and seniors across the U.S. The grants [PDF]are intended to help nonprofit organizations like The Arc to produce accessible housing, offer rental assistance and facilitate supportive services in more than 189 housing developments in 41 states. When complete, more than 4,800 elderly and individuals with disabilities will be able to obtain affordable housing with access to needed services.
Children's playground DOE Releases New Report on Bullying Laws and Policies
The Department of Education released a new report, Analysis of State Bullying Laws and Policies, which summarizes the anti-bullying efforts in the 46 states with anti-bullying laws and the 41 states that have created anti-bullying policies as models for schools. Out of the 46 states with anti-bullying laws in place, 36 have provisions that prohibit cyber bullying and 13 have statutes that grant schools the authority to address off-campus behavior that creates a hostile school environment. To learn about more key findings and to read the full report, visit the Department of Education website.
Zach Anner
Photo: Adam Larkey
Oprah Winner With Cerebral Palsy To Premiere New Show
A man with cerebral palsy selected earlier this year to host his own travel show on Oprah Winfrey’s network will debut the new series in December. Zach Anner, 26, was one of two winners of Winfrey’s “Your OWN Show” contest in February, landing a six-episode series on the OWN Network. The show follows Anner as he tackles a new city during each of the half-hour episodes. In travels though Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Portland, Ore., Anner doesn’t let his wheelchair get in the way. He tries everything from surfing to sailing, rock climbing and water skiing. “Rollin’ with Zach” premieres tonight at 8 p.m. ET on OWN.
Happy holidays
via flickr
Happy Holidays from The Arc
Just as all of you are busy this time of year reaching out to your most loyal and dedicated supporters, we hope that as chapter executives, you received the letters personally signed by Peter Berns, The Arc’s CEO and Barry Meyer, President of NCE. We are all coming together this time of year in the spirit of good wishes, and we hope that you will give this request serious consideration and consider making a personal gift to The Arcof the United States before 2011 ends. Our success is built on each other, and together we will be stronger and sustainable, assuring our ability as a movement to service the individuals and families on whose behalf we work all year round. Happy Holidays!
Chapter Focus
 Isaiah with The Arc of Kona Chapters Share Success Stories Online
In this and upcoming issues of Fusion, The Arc will feature news from Chapters participating in The Arc and Walmart Foundation-funded School-to-Community Transition Initiative. Forty-nine Chapters across the country have been awarded grants specifically to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities in their communities overcome issues related to transitioning from school to work, higher education or living in the community as an adult. Read about The Arc of Kent County’s Community Participation Initiative (CPI) where individuals are connected to activities they express interest in such as yoga, running, theater and volunteering. Also, read the story of a young man named Isaiah who was one of the first high schoolers to sign up for The Arc of Kona’s transition program. Isaiah is now successfully employed at Malama Market on the Big Island of Hawaii. Get more inspirational stories from other Chapters working on transition issues on our website.
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Brand Resources

Chapter Resources

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Brand Update
The Arc is sad to say goodbye to our brand coordinator, Amberley Romo. Amberley is moving on to a new adventure but she wants each of you to know how much she enjoyed working with you during this exciting time. Please contact Shelly DeButts at debutts@thearc.orgor 202-534-3710 with any questions you have about becoming licensed, using your new brand, accessing resources or contributing to the Rebranding Initiative Fund.
How many Chapters have signed up to use The Arc’s new brand? Find out on our website.
Save the Date!
The 2012 Disability Policy Seminar is just around the corner. Plan to join us in Washington, D.C. April 23-25 for the ultimate gathering of advocates for people with I/DD. Registration will open early January, but you can book your room at The Grand Hyatt now at disabilitypolicyseminar.org.
Where’s Peter?

  • January 20–21: NCE Board Retreat, Los Angeles, CA
  • January 31: The Arc of Connecticut, Hartford, CT
  • February 6–8: The Arc of Nebraska, Lincoln, NE
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For online access to “For Chapters,” click on the “For Chapters” link at bottom left of The Arc home pageunder “Chapter Resources.” If you’re already logged in, you will be brought directly to the “For Chapters” section. If you’re not logged in, you will be prompted to follow a link to the login page. If you’re a member, simply enter your username and password and click login. If you’re not a current member, click on “New User Registration” and complete the new user form. Under “Chapter Involvement,” please be sure to select “Employee of a Chapter.” Within 24 hours you will have access to the “For Chapters” section of the website.
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Tony Paulauski
Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
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