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March: Developmental Disabilities and Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month


March 12-14:2017 UCP Annual Meeting of the Members of the Corporation at Embassy Suites Airport Hotel, Nashville, TN. Please reserve your room in the room block and Register here for the 2017 Annual Meeting.


March 20-22: Disability Policy Seminar, The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel. Register here.


March 23: Affiliate Topical Call. 3:00 PM EST. Topic: Google Adwords for Nonprofits. Hosted by the South RAC. Call in #: 1-888-402-6958.


March 24: CP Awareness Day Twitter Chat. Join and follow the conversation using #CerebralPalsyCan.



Message of Sympathy to UCP Board of Trustees Member
We are deeply saddened by the sudden and unexpected passing of Nancy De Sa, sister of UCP Board of Trustee Member and Chair of the Public Policy Committee, Jeanne De Sa on February 16, 2017. UCP extends its deepest sympathy to Jeanne and her family during this difficult time.

Important Annual Meeting Information:

Complimentary Embassy Suites Nashville Airport Hotel Shuttle

Exit the airport from the baggage claim area. Cross the driveway and go left following the signs to the Hotel Shuttle pick-up area. There is an enclosed area for people to wait if the weather is bad. Call the hotel at 1-615-871-0033 via your cell phone, and ask for the shuttle to pick you up. You may want to call as you are about to exit the baggage claim area to expedite.

The airport is relatively close to the hotel. The shuttle cycles trips about every 15 to 20 minutes. People should be on the lookout for the shuttle when they get to the pick-up area, as it may be there already picking up people who have been waiting. The shuttle can accommodate up to 8 individuals, depending on the size and amount of your luggage.

Reservations for return shuttle to the airport can be made with the bellmen once at the hotel.

If accessible transportation is needed, the hotel uses a third party shuttle (taxi company) for individuals needing wheelchair accessible transportation to and from the airport. The hotel will be billed directly for this complimentary service. Individuals requesting this service will need to provide us with their flight information in advance of arriving in Nashville and the hotel will set-up the service. Please contact Shawn Gilleylen, Executive Assistant to the Interim CEO, at to request wheelchair accessible transportation.

Voting at the Annual Meeting

Affiliates in good standing will be voting at the annual meeting of the members on March 14, 2017. We hope that many of you will attend the meeting, but if you do not plan to attend, you should give your vote by proxy to the proxy committee, or an individual that you know will be attending.

Please complete the attached Member Certification, or Proxy form, and return to Shawn Gilleylen by February 24, 2017.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Shawn Gilleylen, Executive Assistant to the Interim CEO, at or by phone at (202) 973-7104.

Annual Meeting Draft Agenda

A draft agenda for our time together can be found here.

As you can see, the agenda encourages regional and group discussions that will be critical for the organization to bring us to resolution. RAC Chairs and Professional Council members will be facilitating the RAC discussions and questions will be distributed to attendees.

Website Update

Several members of the network have experienced issues with their websites over the past two weeks. Our server provider recently underwent an upgrade of their system and we have been working with them to adjust our settings to meet their new requirements. We apologize for the inconvenience, and expect to have the problem fixed by the end of the day.

We Want to Hear Your Stories For CP Awareness Month!

UCP National wants to hear the stories of individuals with Cerebral Palsy within the affiliate network in honor of Cerebral Palsy Awareness Month! Have a client story or impact story you would like us to share on UCP national’s social media channels? Email UCP’s Marketing Specialist, Kaitlyn Meuser, at with your stories and photos.

March is Also Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month

National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities (NACDD), Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) , and National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) have partnered to launch a social media campaign to highlight the many ways in which people with and without developmental disabilities come together to form strong, diverse communities.Throughout the month of March, we will be posting many resources across social media including videos, blogs, toolkits and other shareable content. If you have any resources or materials that you think should be included in the campaign, please send them to Deanna Hartzman at UCP will be regularly sharing campaign content on our national social media as well.

Mass Mutual Sponsorship

Thanks to our longstanding relationship with Mass Mutual through Kelly Piacenti, Assistant Vice President, Mass Mutual Financial Group, UCP will receive a grant to utilize for our new messaging initiatives, as well as other new initiatives within the national organization.

Change at UCP of Baton Rouge

Renee Craft, Executive Director at UCP of Baton Rouge, has announced her resignation. Her resignation will become effective March 3, 2017. She has taken a position with Baton Rouge General Hospital Foundation. We wish Renee much success in her new role. Doug Leyda, Clinical and Operations Director, will be serving as the Interim Executive Director.

Shared Services Agreement between UCP of Michigan and UCP of Metro Detroit

Leslynn Angel has assumed the position of Executive Director of both UCP of Michigan and UCP of Metro Detroit. The two affiliates entered into a shared services agreement on February 1, 2017 with the retirement of Glenn Ashley, who had been serving as Interim Executive Director.Washington Update

On the ACA repeal front, House leadership has issued a policy brief calling for “A Better Way” to repeal and replace the ACA. NASUAD’s guide to budget reconciliation and The Commonwealth Fund’s fact sheet on Medicaid Block Grants are helpful resources. Also, the Kaiser Family Foundation has a new side by side tool that compares the various proposals that are in circulation and a four-minute video that breaks down the budget reconciliation process. Lastly, Connie Garner and Rodney Whitlock issued a joint op-ed on LTSS.

A few of the bills that we’ve monitored in the past have been reintroduced on the Hill, and we have some new ones to examine. An updated summary of bills is on our website. We recently supported a bill by Senator Coons that addresses the taxation of student loan forgiveness for a disabled person.

The DeVos Department of Education has been a hectic and confusing place. Secretary DeVos has instructed state officials to proceed with implementing ESSA regulations, and the IDEA website was under construction for a week.

We are starting to see an increased use of a particular Congressional maneuver in the House designed to rollback regulations. Two weeks ago, H.J. Res 37 was the resolution disability advocates were watching. Now H.J. Res 57 marks the first time the House has voted to overturn a regulation of the Department of Education. It pertains to the accountability regulation of ESSA, which protects students with disabilities.

Client-Facing Issues

Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Nevada, and North Carolina have recently launched qualified ABLE programs, bringing the total number of states with ABLE programs to 16.  They are all part of the National ABLE Alliance, which offers six different investment options.
ACA Repeal/Replace:

The Autism Self Advocacy Network has put together a toolkit for self-advocates.

Organizational Issues

Funding Opportunity:

The Kennedy Center has issued a call for contract proposals to organizations providing arts education services to students with disabilities.


1) CMS has issued a NPRM regarding individual and small group marketplace insurance stability. A press release summarizing the rule can be found here. Comments are due by March 7th, and UCP national will look for an opportunity to sign on to any group comments that are circulated.

2) CMS is hosting a webinar tomorrow afternoon (2/22) about the Disability Competent Care model and Access. On March 22nd, the topic will be LTSS.


1) Call for Sessions for the 2017 National Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Conference, August 28- August 31, 2017 in Baltimore, MD.

2) CQL will have a webinar on March 14th.


The Lead Center is hosting a webinar on February 28th about recent changes to WIOA Section 188.


The Ruderman Family Foundation recently issued a white paper in support of self-driving vehicles.

Take Action

1) NIDILRR Seeks Comment on Draft Long-Range Plan
The National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR) is requesting comments on its draft long-range plan for the period 2018-2023.

This long-range plan provides an overview of the state of people with disabilities in the United States and NIDILRR’s current investments and potential future directions for research grants. NIDILRR is publishing the draft plan to obtain public comment on the proposed research and development activities to help the agency fulfill its mission.

Read the NIDILRR draft long-range plan.

Comments will be accepted by email to by close of business on Monday, March 20.

Join The Conversation
Find @UCPNational on Facebook and Twitter