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Commission on Disability & Employment MeetingSeptember 16, 2010: 9:00 AM Central Maine Commerce Center, Francis Perkins Room, Augusta, ME
Maine Jobs Council COMMISSION ON DISABILITY AND EMPLOYMENT (CDE)
September 16, 2010 MINUTES
Present: Mel Clarrage, Chair, Gayla Dwyer, Jenn Kimble, Jean Coltart, Karen Fraser, Auta Main, Gail Dyer, and Nancy Labbe Absent: Susan Giguere, Mary Redmond Luce, Larry Glantz, Norb Nathanson, and Rachel Dyer
The meeting began with quick introductions by attendees.
Mel Clarrage announced that there is a small report that is due today to the Maine Jobs Council and requested that a couple of members assist at the end of the meeting. He felt that parts of the report could be completed by cutting and pasting sections from the Annual Report.
The Annual Report has been completed, and copies have been submitted to the full Legislature and the Governor. Mel thanked Jennifer Kimble, Rachel Dyer and Nancy Labbe for their contributions. Electronic copies have been sent to the Chairs of the State Rehabilitation Councils and the State Independent Living Council. Copies will be forwarded to the Commission for the Deaf, Hard of Hearing, and Late Deafened shortly.
Mel is pleased with the final product, and as Chair, he looks forward to following up on the report recommendations.
On October 27, at noon, the Disability Rights Center, along with other groups, will be having a Candidate’s Forum; several of the candidates will be there, and Mel plans to have copies of the Annual Report there. He will circulate an email to members that will show the actual location. Karen suggested that Mel ask Larry Glantz to send out the announcement to his distribution list; Mel agreed.
Jenn asked if the document should be made available at the upcoming WISE events. Mel responded that the wider the distribution, the better. If more copies are needed, please let Nancy know.
Mel reported that the Annual Meeting will be held on October 27 at the Augusta Civic Center. Nancy will send out a Save the Date notice. The biggest piece of the Annual Meeting will be to review what the CDE did last year and to map out how to carry out some of the activities for the coming year.
The CDE will also need to do the formal election of officers. Mel pointed out that his term is running out; the bylaws state that he can serve one more two-year term, which he is willing to do. He has not had a conversation with Susan yet to determine if she is willing to continue serving as Vice Chair.
The Executive Committee will meet soon to map out what the meeting will look like.
Disability Resource Coordinator (DRC) Update
Auta Main distributed copies of an update on the Disability Program Navigator (now referred to as the Disability Resource Coordinator) Initiative as well as a Save the Date notice for Disability Mentoring Day 2010, which will be officially commemorated on Wednesday, October 20. Highlights of Auta’s presentation follow:
• The DPN project officially launched again on July 1st, 2010, and is expected to continue through June 30, 2011. Abbie Miller will continue for the year ahead with Goodwill Industries of Northern New England at the Portland CareerCenter, and Gwen LaPointe will continue part-time with Eastern Maine Development Corporation at the Bangor CareerCtr.
• Abbie Miller met with CareerCenter managers in Augusta, Lewiston and Wilton to assess AT equipment inventory and prospective future needs. She is planning a statewide AT Training for CareerCenter staff for late October 2010. • Gwen and Abbie are both working closely with Deb Bechard (Jobs for Maine’s Graduates) and Ahmen Cabral (Choices CEO) organizing Disability Mentoring Day scheduled for October 20. • Quarterly workshops will be offered through distance learning (webinar format) for CareerCenter staff beginning November 2010. The first workshop will be facilitated by the Office of Adult Mental Health.
• Abbie Miller recently co-hosted an exhibit booth with Eric Dibner and VR at the 20th Anniversary Celebration of the ADA in Bangor at Husson College.
• Auta Main, Libby Stone-Sterling and Steve Duval are in the process of completing the draft Lessons Learned/Recommendations highlights piece to wrap up the DPN grant. Auta will work with Larry Glantz in early October to fine-tune the document and get it ready for printing and distribution.
• Ticket to Work – BES staff at CareerCenters in Bangor, Aroostook and Washington Counties are continuing to provide Employment Network services. To date we have 9 tickets assigned (we had 12 but 3 were reassigned) and 6 applications recently submitted.
• BES submitted the Disability Employment Initiative (DEI) proposal to USDOL on September 8th. Many thanks to Libby, who wrote the bulk of the proposal! The proposal request is for $1.5 million over three years. Funds would provide for one Lead Disability Resource Coordinator (DRC), two DRCs and two Rehabilitation Counselors (VR) both located within CareerCenters in Regions 2 and 4. We spoke with Mel Clarrage and proposed that CDE continue to serve as the steering committee for the new initiative, should we be awarded the grant, as this has been a very successful partnership. Proposed strategies to be deployed include: Integrated Resource Teams (IRT); Integrating Resources and Services, Blending and Braiding Funds, Leveraging Resources; Asset Development Strategies; and Partnerships and Collaborations. Also includes plans for expansion of BES’s Ticket to Work Employment Network services. More details to follow.
Auta agreed to send Nancy electronic copies of the Update, Save the Date notice, and a map that breaks out population groups in Maine; Nancy will forward these out to members.
Mel reminded members that the CDE Annual Meeting will be October 27, which is also when Maine APSE is holding their Maine Employment First Summit.
Also, on November 15, there will be a DHHS Employment Summit (this is the conference that was originally scheduled for October 28). Intended for provider agencies receiving DHHS funds, the Summit will roll out DHHS's new Employment Policy. The first half of the day is geared towards leadership of agencies who are funded by DHHS. The afternoon will include breakout sessions for these agencies' direct service staff.
There is a Policy Committee scheduled for next week, and a full MJC meeting has been scheduled for October 15 at the Augusta CareerCenter.
Gail Dyer, who works with Garret Oswald on MJC activities, provided a brief update. She explained that she is currently gathering information from MJC committees for the annual Workforce Investment Act (WIA) report.
With Gail’s assistance, members then worked on the template that Gail had developed for MJC committees. It was agreed that some sections of the CDE Annual Report could be used for Gail’s report. Nancy will forward an electronic copy of the Annual Report to Gail, along with a first draft of the template.
Discussion was also held on the types of data being tracked and analyzed by BES.
Mel mentioned that as always the CDE is still looking for new members. He stated that if the other MJC committees happened to have people with disabilities who might be interested in this committee, perhaps some cross pollination could occur. Gail will keep that in mind as she works with all the other committees.
Discussion was held on possibly holding a CDE meeting before or after a WISE (Work Incentive Seminar Event) event. Jenn suggested advertising the WISE event together with the CDE meeting and hopefully recruit people to be more active in terms of more advocacy. Jean Coltart requested that Jenn send her information on the next event.
Jenn also mentioned that Social Security is also doing monthly WISE webinars and suggested that perhaps this would be something that the CareerCenters could provide access to.
Next Meeting: Wednesday, October 27, 2010 3:30 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Augusta Civic Center, North Wing Civic Center Drive, Augusta