Transformation Center Presents Peer Specialist Trainings in May

There will be two Certified Peer Specialist (CPS) Trainings beginning the week of May 18, 2015.



One will be at Waves of Wellness, Hyannis RCC.
The other will be in the Boston area.
The exact dates are being finalized at this time.


The application can be downloaded from our website:


The application deadline is April 15, 2015



The CPS class involves 10 full day classes. There will be 2 classes the first week followed by a 3-day retreat. After the retreat there will be 5 more full-day classes. For more information please visit our website:


Please distribute this information to anyone who may be interested.



Thank you,

The Transformation Center

Help DPH improve services and supports for families of children & youth with special health care needs

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) is conducting its five-year Title V Maternal & Child Health Needs Assessment. As part of the Needs Assessment, we are conducting a survey of families of children & youth with special health care needs. Family input is critical. The information from the survey will help us to improve services and supports for children and youth with special health care needs and their families.


The anonymous and confidential survey takes about 10-20 minutes to complete. After completing the survey, families will have the opportunity to enter a raffle for the chance to win one of twenty $50 gift cards.



The survey is for families of children and youth with special health care needs ages birth through 24 living in Massachusetts.


Children and youth with special health care needs are defined by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau as: “Those children who have or are at increased risk for a chronic physical, developmental, behavioral, or emotional condition, and who require health and related services of a type or amount beyond that required by children generally.”


Click here to get to the survey:


If you would like a paper copy of the survey, or if you have any questions, please call 617-624-5478 or send an email to (Paper copies are available in English and in Spanish. The online link is in English only.)

Thank you!
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Nicole Roos
Director of Special Projects
MA Department of Public Health
Division for Children & Youth with Special Health Needs
250 Washington Street, 5th floor
Boston, MA 02108
617-624-5478 phone / 617-624-5992 TTY / 617-624-5990 fax
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Where Race and Disability Meet: A Groundbreaking Collaboration is Achieved with School Officials After NAACP Complaint

March 26, 2015
Antioch School Officials Agree to Groundbreaking Collaboration to Address NAACP East County Branch Complaint of Civil Rights Violations in Schools


ANTIOCH — Officials of the Antioch Unified School District (AUSD) have announced a groundbreaking effort to identify the causes of disparities in school discipline by examining the subtle, complex, and often unintentional ways in which race, disability and discipline intersect.’



“When the civil rights advocacy organizations raised concerns, our leadership team made a strategic decision to shift focus from a defensive mode to concentrating toward collaborating on the central theme and shared goal of student success. As the saying goes, think globally and act locally, and that is precisely what we are doing,” said Donald Gill, Superintendent of Schools in the Antioch Unified School District.



“The achievement gap and equity issues, national themes of importance and urgency, will receive concentrated attention in our District, and we hope to serve as a model for others who face similar challenges.”


The District will hire nationally recognized experts to conduct a wide ranging review of the district’s disciplinary practices and special education services with particular attention to identifying implicit biases, stereotype threats, racial anxiety and other unconscious phenomena that could produce disparities.



“Implicit bias is a critical component of modern-day discrimination,” said Eva Paterson, President of the Equal Justice Society (EJS). “By recognizing that implicit bias hurts schoolchildren, the Antioch school district has taken the first steps to reverse the school-to-prison pipeline that too many Black children are forced into.”The effort will also identify improvements in the identification of students with disabilities and the delivery of special education services and positive behavioral interventions to remediate behaviors that have led to inappropriate disciplinary action.



AUSD is responding constructively to the complaint that the district disproportionately suspends African American students and students with disabilities, despite denying these allegations. Claire Smith, AUSD Board of Trustees President, said, “I am pleased to share that the Board of Education gave direction in closed session to accept a plan of action that will fortify our work in the areas of student equity and access and provisionally resolve the issues raised by the advocacy organizations.”



Willie Mims, Education Chair of the East County Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), which brought the complaint said the “disproportionate suspension of African American students greatly harms their chances for a quality education.”



Arlene Mayerson, Directing Attorney with the Disability Rights Education & Defense Fund (DREDF), added “It is imperative that district provide students with disabilities all of the supports and services they deserve. Many of these suspensions can be prevented by providing these students with appropriate academic and behavioral services to address their needs.”

According to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights, African American students in AUSD represented only 24.8% of the student population, yet received 57.3% of all suspensions and 61.4% of all expulsions. Further, African Americans students were 35.5% of students with disabilities identified under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), but received 69.3% of all suspensions and 76.2% of all expulsions to IDEA students.



The agreement responds to complaints of violations of the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution, Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1963, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1974 brought on behalf of the East County Branch of the NAACP by DREDF, EJS and the National Center for Youth Law (NCYL).
“We are very pleased the district is taking the forward-looking steps contained in this agreement which will increase educational opportunity for all students in the district.” said NCYL Senior Attorney Michael Harris.



“Collaborating, communicating, solving problems and sharing goals will allow us to move forward positively to enhance our commitment to help all our students to achieve their potential,” stressed Superintendent Gill.

The expert team will be led by Dan Losen, Director of the Center for Civil Rights Remedies (CCRR) at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) who will examine the district’s disciplinary policies, practices, and their disparate impact on African Americans and students with disabilities. Prof. Jeffrey Sprague of the University of Oregon will review IDEA/Section 504 practices, including assessment, behavioral and academic services. Prof. John A. Powell of the University of California, Berkeley Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society, Prof. Phillip Atiba Goff of the Center for Policing Equity, and Prof. Rachel D. Godsil of the Perception Institute will investigate the systemic effects of any implicit bias, racial anxiety, or stereotyping in the areas examined by the other team members. The team will deliver their findings by December 31, 2015 along with proposals for any necessary remediation.

Greater Lynn H.O.P.E. Presents From The Inside Out



From The Inside Out


Barbara Allen

Author of Nice Children Stolen From Car.

Barbara is the daughter of parents who hoarded.


Monday, April 27, 2015

10:30 a.m. – 12:00 Noon

Saugus Senior Center
466 Central Street, Saugus, Mass.
by April 23 to Mona Nadeau or 781-599-0110 Ext. 6654




Greater Lynn HOPE

Hoarding Outreach Partnership Effort
Reaching Out
Offering Help
Providing Hope






Element Care



Eliot Community Human Services


Greater Lynn Senior Services



Lynn Council on Aging



Lynn Housing Authority and Neighborhood Development



Northeast Justice Center



Tenancy Preservation Program




This event is for interested
residents; family and friends
of and people with clutter
issues; and health care
and human resources




Michele Martindale, LCSW
Hoarding Outreach Specialist
Greater Lynn Senior Services


2015 NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarship Accepting Applications

The American Association of People with Disabilities is pleased to announced that we are accepting applications for the 2015 NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarship. We are offering four scholarships, which can be used for for the spring, summer, or fall semesters of 2015, to 2nd year associate students; undergraduate sophomores, juniors, and seniors; and graduate students with disabilities who are pursuing communication or media-related degrees. Each recipient will receive $5,625 for the tuition and fees at their college or university.



Students will need to provide us the following items to apply for the scholarship:
• Completed 2015 NBCUniversal Tony Coelho Media Scholarship application (download from the AAPD website here)
• Resume
• Unofficial Transcript
• Two 300-350 word essays answering the following questions:
o What inspired you to pursue a communications/media related degree?
o How will you use your degree to positively impact the disability community?
• A letter of recommendation from a professor, academic advisor, or mentor



All applications and supporting materials should be emailed to by 5:00PM on Friday, April 24, 2015 in an accessible format.


ILCNSCA Main Office, 27 Congress St., Suite 107, Salem


This training session is intended for ILCNSCA accepted volunteer surveyors and for potential volunteer surveyors who wish to get involved in this community accessibility advocacy project. Required qualifications to become a volunteer surveyor include the following: a person with a disability and/or skills necessary to establish effective peer relationships, excellent verbal and written communication skills in English, literacy with internet and email applications, commitment and skills to work as part of the ILCNSCA team, reliable transportation, and a commitment to Independent Living Philosophy.



Those who attend the April 8, 2015 training can expect to be trained in the following: developing a familiarity and competence with measuring tools, how to conduct a survey, how to complete APAB Business Survey forms, and how to coordinate and complete APAB surveys with assigned businesses. Also will involve a practice onsite APAB accessibility survey as well as training to enter the survey information on the APAB online data entry portal. This will complete the APAB volunteer training. Accepted volunteer surveyors will also be expected to attend monthly APAB meetings which occur on the second Wednesday of each month from 2:30 PM-3:30 PM, during which time completed APAB surveys will be discussed and additional volunteer surveyor training needs will be addressed.



If you are interested in attending these training sessions and becoming an APAB volunteer surveyor, please RSVP by April 3, 2015. Please feel free to contact Robert MacIsaac at 978-741-0077 ext. 110 or via email to: or Shawn McDuff at 978-741-0077 ext. 140 or via email to: for more information. For communication accommodations, please make your request by
April 3, 2015.



We ask that you please refrain from wearing scents or scented clothing to accommodate people with environmental sensitivities. Photographs may be taken for ILCNSCA publication. If you do not wish to be photographed, please inform ILCNSCA at time of RSVP.

AAPD Breaks Agreement

It is with deep disappointment that we announce the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) has decided to break the agreement reached with the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) and ADAPT. AAPD had agreed to withdraw an amicus brief supporting changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act companionship exemption with the recognition that –
although well-intended – these changes would seriously hurt people with disabilities and their attendants.

AAPD has privately notified us that it will not abide by its agreement with us and now will not withdraw the brief. AAPD has not released any public statement announcing this decision. The
decision was communicated by two AAPD board members who, when asked, agreed that the decision to tell ADAPT and NCIL that the organization was withdrawing the brief was made to avoid a group of ADAPTers protesting at their fundraising gala.

We are deeply disappointed by the actions of AAPD, not only for breaking their agreement, but with the way the organization is making decisions that significantly impact the lives of people with disabilities. A core value of the Disability Community is communicated through the phrase “Nothing about Us without Us!” which means that no policy should be decided without the full and
direct participation of members of the group(s) affected by that policy. AAPD failed to involve anyone directly impacted by this decision in their decision-making process.

ADAPT and NCIL tried to change that and had secured a meeting with the AAPD board on the afternoon of the AAPD gala to discuss the issue and amicus brief. The ADAPT/NCIL group included a significant number of attendants and attendant service users negatively impacted by the DOL rule changes. The meeting with the board was cancelled when the CEO notified us that AAPD had decided to withdraw the brief. Assuming the AAPD board subsequently met and decided to break the agreement reached by their CEO, it did so without giving any affected individuals the opportunity to participate in the process. This is unacceptable.

The AAPD board is charged with making decisions for the organization, but they have now put themselves in the position to make policy and strategy decisions for the entire Disability Community. It is clear that AAPD will take positions against national, disability-led organizations, like NCIL and ADAPT who have expertise and long track records working on specific
issues, extensive national networks, and clear processes to assure their decisions are reflective of their grassroots constituencies. It appears that AAPD is willing to sacrifice the rights of people with disabilities in order to support the administration, and that the administration is using AAPD to undercut any criticism leveled against it by our community.

Whether or not you agree with ADAPT and NCIL on this issue, every disability rights organization should carefully consider the implications of AAPD’s actions for themselves and their constituencies. The actions of AAPD are inconsistent with our values of integrity, nonpartisan advocacy, and inclusive decision-making. They put all of our advocacy efforts at risk.

Kelly Buckland, NCIL
Bruce Darling, ADAPT