Top Headlines:Trump’s Health Plan Would Convert Medicaid to Block Grants, Aide Says 

Nonprofits in AZ Feel Effects of Minimum Wage Hike
One Father with CP on His Journey to Fatherhood
Attack on Teenager in Chicago Highlights Violence in the Disability Community
New Spoon Could Help Change the Way Some With Disabilities Eat

UPCOMING EVENTS:January 26: Volunteer Quarterly Call: “New Administration, New Congress – What’s on the Horizon for Health Care and Disability?” with UCP Board Member Jeanne De Sa. 12:00 PM EST. Call in #: 1-888-402-6958. 

March 12-14: 2017 UCP  Annual Meeting of the Members of the Corporation at Embassy Suites Airport Hotel, Nashville, TN. Please RSVP to confirm your attendance and reserve with room block.
March 23: Affiliate Topical Call. 3:00 PM EST. Topic: Google Adwords for Nonprofits. Details to Be Announced.



ANCOR/UCP Membership Orientation

All affiliates should have received a welcome letter from the American Network of Community Options and Resources (ANCOR) directly. ANCOR and UCP want to be sure that you are aware of all of the benefits and opportunities available to you as ANCOR members, so you have a chance to fully participate in this membership. What committees are active in ANCOR? What do they do? How can I join? Are there any services or products that could help me maximize the limited resources within my organization? How do I engage in ANCOR’s Connected Community? How can I be sure that I’m hearing about all of the upcoming events (especially the free and members-only ones!)?

Hear the answers to these questions, and more, on Wednesday, February 1st from 3:00 pm- 4:00 pm (Eastern) on a briefnew member orientation webinar scheduled just for you. Rick Forkosh, Barbara Merrill, and several ANCOR staff will be online to walk you through various aspects of membership, answer your questions and learn from you, what you’d like to see from the partnership.
Mark your calendars and plan to join us here on February 1st.

UCP Annual Meeting of the Members of the Corporation

A reminder to secure your room reservations for the March 12-14, 2017 meeting of the Members of the Corporation. For planning purposes, the RAC meetings will begin promptly on Sunday March 12, 2017 at 12:30 pm (Central) and the meeting of the members will end on Tuesday March 14, 2017 at 1:00 pm (Central).

If you are not able to attend, please be sure that your feedback and proxy is given to someone who is attending so that your voice can be represented. In order to vote, you must be an affiliate in good standing.

Please make your reservations as soon as possible. The hard deadline for the room block that is being held is February 15, 2017. If you need to arrive on Saturday March 11, 2017, the original 10 rooms have sold out and we have secured additional rooms at a rate of $199.00 in our room block.

*Please be aware that the NCAA Basketball Regional Tournament in Nashville may affect room availability and price.*

The personalized group web page is live and ready for you to begin making reservations: visit the group page here.

Marketing Sub Committee

Members of the Marketing Sub Committee are: Mike Ward, Board Member of UCP of Metro Detroit; Dave Carucci, CEO of UCP of San Diego; Mike Meadors, UCP National Board Member and Board Member of UCP of Central Florida; Bill McCool, ED of UCP of Delaware; Luanne Welch, CEO of ES/UCP of North Carolina and Virginia; and Chair of the Affiliate Services Committee, Ouida Spencer.

If you have thoughts and/or ideas for this sub committee, please contact one of the members or Anita Porco, VP of Affiliate Services at

Bellows Committee
Diane Wilush, Chair of the UCP National Board, has appointed Tom O’Donnell to the Bellows Committee. Tom was Chair of the UCP National Board in 2004 and is an attorney in Kansas City, MO. Chair Mark Boles commented ”I’m certain Tom’s valued input will assist us greatly in our task of providing funds to individuals in UCP affiliates for much needed assistive technology, all while maintaining the intent and integrity of the Elsie Bellows will and the legacy of Jack Schillinger.”
Please be sure to use only this form to submit your Bellows applications. The form can also be found on the “Bellows Guidelines” section of the Affiliates-Only portal on Any other previous version of the form should be deleted.Closure of State Center in PennsylvaniaCongratulations to UCP of Central PA for their tireless work advocating for people with disabilities. It has paid off! On January 11, 2017 the Pennsylvania Department of Human Services announced the closure of one of five remaining State Centers for People with Intellectual Disabilities. Read the press release here.Jeff Cooper, President and CEO of UCP of Central PA stated: “For decades UCP of Central PA, UCP of PA, and our national UCP have been consistent and strong advocates for the closure of state centers. These institutions segregate and isolate individuals with disabilities. Our goal is for there to be no institutions anywhere in our nation and that all people live as part of their community with independence, choice, and dignity. We are making progress.”

Healthcare Outcomes and the Impact on People with Disabilities:

On January 18, 2017, UCP held the second event in the “Speak for Yourself” series funded by a grant from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The hour-long webinar titled, “What Matters to You?: A Guide to Patient-Centered Research for People With Disabilities,” focused on providing individuals with disabilities the strategies needed to navigate the world of healthcare: be it in a medical setting or a research setting as a patient, or as an individual– focusing on the needs and desires that are most important to each individual with a disability. Presentations included topics such as: An Introduction to Patient-Centered Research, A Day in the Life: Living with A Disability, Being a Self-Advocate, and Network-Building. To view the archived webinar, watch the presentations, and to find out more information on the “Speak for Yourself” project, please click here.

Washington Update

It has been a whirlwind of a fortnight in DC, with the inauguration and early actions of the incoming Administration as well as important votes of the 115th Congress underway. UCP joined a group letter with other disability organizations opposing the budget resolution and has participated in a variety of stakeholder meetings to determine when and how to engage the new Administration.

As we look to the annual meeting in Nashville, the public policy committee is meeting to review our goals and looks forward to reporting to the membership on the future direction of UCP’s public policy work.

Client- Facing Issues

Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District:

UCP’s policy intern wrote a blog post about the recent arguments here.  A helpful rundown on the issues in the case is available here. The amicus brief that UCP joined is here.

TBI Resource:

Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC) has launched a podcast for Military Family Caregivers. Each episode of The TBI Family podcasts provides information about traumatic brain injury, tells caregiver stories, and shares resources for TBI caregivers. Click here to listen.

ABLE Resources and Webinar for Families:

UCP is a supporting partner of the ABLE National Resource Center (ANRC). ANRC is hosting a free webinar on January 31st for families and self advocates focused on introducing four of the most recent plans to launch. Click here to learn more about ANRC, and here to register for the webinar. ANRC also created short informative videos on ABLE Basics and Becoming ABLE Ready.


The National Health Law Program (NHeLP) has put together a helpful fact sheet about the ten ways that the ACA helps people with disabilities. Click here to check it out.

Organizational Issues

Funding Opportunity:

ACL’s National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research has several active funding opportunities under code NIDILRR or 93.433 at In particular, a development grant is available to CBOs to plan and conduct research, demonstration projects, training, and related activities that develop methods, procedures, and rehabilitation technology which support people with severe disabilities. Learn more here, and apply by February 21st.

Fellowship Opportunity:

The CDC is accepting applications from organizations to host a two-year public health fellow (fully funded by CDC). To learn more about the program, and to apply to host by January 29th, click here.


Section 2040 of the 21st Century Cures Act focuses on elevating rehabilitation science at NIH. The Disability and Rehabilitation Research Coalition (DRRC) put together a helpful section by section summary of the what the law will do.


1) CMS published a final rule for home health agencies, covering the conditions of participation for beneficiaries as well as several other topics. The rule is effective July 13, 2017. Learn more here. Complete rule is available here.

2) CMS also recently published a proposed rule seeking comments before March 17th about the qualifications necessary for customized orthotics professionals. Read the proposed rule here. Late last year, CMS issued a final rule regarding the prior authorization process for (Durable Medical Equipment, Prosthetics, Orthotics, and Supplies (DMEPOS). That rule is here.

3) Starting February 7th, CMS’ Medicare-Medicaid Coordination Office is hosting a multi-part webinar series on the Disability-Competent Care model for providers and their front-line staff members. Learn more about the series here.


1) HI and NM recently received initial approval for their state HCBS transition plans. Full list here.

2) Caring Across Generations recently issued a report on state LTSS policy and aging trends. Read more here.

3) CMS has published three different reports about LTSS Section 1915(c) services. FY 14 data, 2012-2013 data, and 2012 beneficiary profiles.


OSERS recently published a guide for families and students about transition. Click here to read it.


1) ThinkWork Video: Organizational Transformation, From Workshops to Community Employment
Provider agencies across the country are transitioning from segregated workshop options to supporting integrated community careers for people with disabilities. Their latest video covers findings from a panel of experts who examined six characteristics considered essential for provider transformation, as well as one organization’s experience in making this transition.

2) DOJ recently announced plans for proposed rulemaking of Section 504. While the NPRM has not yet been printed, DOJ has released some FAQs about what is in the works. Read more here.

3) OSERS/RSA has released FAQs about the definition of competitive integrated employment. Read more here.

4) The National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) recently released a state policy framework and report on workforce development for people with disabilities. Read the report here. A related webinar was recently held for state legislators and their staff here.

Take Action

1) Request for Information: Identifying and Sharing Partnership Best Practices Between Community-Based Organizations and Health Care Systems
Through support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) is collaborating with the Nonprofit Finance Fund and the Alliance for Strong Families and Communities to identify and disseminate best practices for partnership models between community-based organizations (CBOs) and health care systems, especially those serving low-income and vulnerable populations.

Organizations working in this space are invited to participate in and share with other relevant groups the request for information survey to help advance knowledge about these critical partnerships. The survey is designed to:

Identify promising models and challenges for building effective partnerships;
Inform funding and policies; and
Advance effective partnerships across the nation.

Key findings from this survey will be synthesized and shared widely through publications, webinars, and other vehicles. Using survey responses, up to five partnerships will be selected to be showcased nationally as case studies.

Please complete the survey by Friday, January 27. Click here to participate.

2) CMS Seeks Input on PACE Innovation Act
CMS is seeking public input on potential adaptations of the model of care employed by the Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) for new populations, including individuals with physical disabilities.

The PACE Innovation Act of 2015 (PIA) provides authority to test application of PACE-like models for additional populations, including populations under the age of 55 and those who do not qualify for a nursing home level of care, under Section 1115A of the Social Security Act.

Comments must be received by 5 p.m. EST on February 10, 2017. Read more here about submission process.
3) 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.

Within ACL, NIDILRR works to generate new knowledge and promote its effective use to improve the abilities of individuals with disabilities to perform activities of their choice in the community; and to expand society’s capacity to provide full opportunities and accommodations for people with disabilities. NIDILRR conducts its work through grants that support research and development.

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

Comments are due by close of business on Monday, March 20.

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