March is Developmental Disabilities Month!  How are you celebrating?

Please share with the Arc how you are spreading the word.  Check out Trinity’s efforts to raise awareness and build connections through their open house March 12.

Here are some ideas:

1) Share your stories on social media about IDD! #DDawareness18, Check out the NACDD Guide
2) Connect with your legislators to talk with them about I/DD in Illinois
3) Join the Going Home Coalition for Advocacy Days starting March 26, by scheduling in district meetings with your state House and Senate legislators

NACDD – DD Month Education Schedule – Join In!
For March 1-9, our topic is Education – “See Me As Your Classmate”
For March 12-16, our topic is Employment – “See Me As Your Coworker”
For March 19-23, our topic is Community Living – “See Me As Your Neighbor”
For March 26-30, we will round up the entire month – “See Me As Your Friend

March 20 is the primary! 

Are you ready to vote?  Equip for Equality has a Voter Helpline.  Check out the info here.

Director Fenton Retirement We announced previously but congratulate Director Fenton, the Division of Developmental Disabilities Director, on his announcement of his retirement May 31, 2018.

Ligas Court Hearing – On Wednesday, Judge Coleman heard updates from the state, the plaintiffs and interveners this week about how negotiations were going on a plan for the state to return to compliance with the Ligas Consent Decree.  The state/plaintiffs/interveners had various level of optimism that they would come to come agreed upon plan but Judge Coleman seems to expect a plan regardless from the state at the next hearing, April 4, 10:30 am.  Each side will need to submit their perspective the status update prior to this hearing.  Negotiations include discussions of wage increases (which would be continent on legislative appropriation), new performance measurements and increased monitoring of the impact of changes in quality.   Ronnie Cohn mentioned the issue of the states low reimbursement rates that are not being addressed.

Reminder – Scholarships Available – If you work for a chapter of the Arc of US, scholarship applications are due TODAY for the summer leadership conference and other training opportunities!  Don’t miss it!

Medicaid Remains a Problem – Check out the Arc’s Medicaid Q&A sheet for some basic information about the issues and concerns.  We continue to advocate for systems change to address permanently these issues.

Upcoming Events!

March 13 – Webinar – IEPs (see below for details!)
March 22 – South Side Information Session
April 25-26 – Arc Convention

On Tuesday, March 13, 2018 from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM, The Illinois Life Span Program of The Arc of Illinois will host a free webinar, IEP Facilitation: How Facilitated IEP Meetings Can Guide the Process, with Sherry Colegrove, of the Illinois State Board of Education(ISBE) and three IEP facilitators.

Please register for Lunch Webinar – IEP Facilitation: How Facilitated IEP Meetings Can Guide the Process on Mar 13, 2018 12:00 PM CDT at:

Details about how to join the webinar will be sent to you upon registration. (If you’re unable to join, a recording will be available at at a later date.)
Meg Cooch Signature
Meg Cooch
Executive Director
The Arc of Illinois
20901 S. LaGrange Rd. Suite 209
Frankfort, IL 60423
815-464-1832 (OFFICE)