Happy Thanksgiving and I am thankful.

I am very thankful this Thanksgiving. On Friday November 13, 2015 the MetroWest Center for Independent Living in Framingham, MA held its Annual Gala and gave me an award for Independent Living Advocacy. I was very honored to receive this award from a sister independent living center and will cherish this award as well as the loving comments by Paul Spooner, Executive Director of MWCIL, and the write up in their program booklet about me. I am thankful.
Just after that event I received from the Commonwealth of MA Senate a citation signed by the President of the Senate, Senator Karen Spilka who was at the event on November 13, and our own Senator Joan Lovely for my receipt of the MetroWest Independent Living Advocacy award. I am thankful.
On Wednesday November 18, 2015 the Aging and Disability Resource Consortium of the Greater North Shore (just renamed Greater North Shore Link) gave me an award at the Partners meeting for Outstanding Leadership. I was moved to blushing and almost tears as I accepted this award for being the first President of the ADRCGNS, Inc (incorporated in 2012) and its founder pre-incorporation in 2003 with Carol Suleski, and then Paul Lanzikos, and then others joining in, all to bring down the barriers and increase access to supports services for those who are living with disabilities and those who are seniors and those who fit both groupings. Teresa Arnold, Executive Director gave wonderful words describing my work, and I am thankful.
On Wednesday evening, November 18, 2015 the North Shore Elder Services held its We Give Thanks annual event, and chose to give me an award for Advocacy. Rhonda Gauthier spoke lovingly to the crowd of 150 about my work advocating for those living with disabilities and seniors and those who are LGBT community members. She also shared what she had learned from me, the Independent Living motto ‘Nothing about me without me’ and all of our need to learn from our mistakes. I again was very honored and overwhelmed. Thank you North Shore Elder Services, and I am thankful.
This Thanksgiving I will be with my wife Marcia, my mother in law Pauline, our son Tom and his fiancé, two of Marcia’s sisters and their spouses and one of daughter, one of Marcia’s aunt and cousin. I am thankful to be the Executive Director, for the past 17 years of the Independent Living Center of the North Shore and Cape Ann. I will be missing my parents, two sisters and brother, and Marcia’s Dad John. I am thankful they all gave me so much love and support. I am thankful for all who are supporters of ILCNSCA and all my friends across the globe fighting for social justice and disability rights. I am thankful to have all of you and wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving.

Federal Government Proposes Stronger Protections for Transgender Folks in Shelters

Federal Government Proposes Stronger Protections for Transgender Folks in Shelters
by Nicolas Seip | 20 November, 2015

Today, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) proposed a new rule that would require emergency shelters to house transgender folks based on their gender identity.

The proposed rule is an update to HUD’s 2012 rule (Equal Access to Housing in HUD Programs Regardless of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity), which protected lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people from identity-based discrimination while seeking public housing or housing assistance from the federal government. Under the new rule, HUD would provide access to housing and services based off of a person’s gender identity, not the gender they were assigned at birth.

“A person seeking shelter is already in a very vulnerable situation, and they deserve to be treated with dignity when they request our assistance,” said HUD Secretary Julián Castro. “This rule takes us one step closer to full acceptance of transgender men and women, and will ensure they receive the proper services that respect their identity.”

Let’s put it into perspective: Jordan is a young woman experiencing homelessness. She’s also transgender. She visits her local emergency shelter, looking for a place to stay. The staff at the shelter welcomes her, but assigns her to stay in the male wing, as her driver’s license incorrectly says she is male. This puts Jordan in a difficult and potentially dangerous situation. Does she stay in the men’s wing of the shelter and risk judgment, abuse, and violence? Or does she leave the shelter and stay on the street, risking abuse, violence, and the elements? Under HUD’s new rule, Jordan would be able to say in the female wing while she gets back on her feet.

“Transgender people’s lives are at risk all over the country today because shelters refuse to house them appropriately,” said Lisa Mottet of the National Center for Transgender Equality. “This action by HUD advances a common-sense approach that has worked in many communities for over a decade.”

Needs of Transgender Youth Experiencing Homelessness

In our research, we’ve found housing to be the most frequently cited need of transgender youth experiencing homelessness, followed by access to transition related supports. Transition related supports include access to legal support, name/gender marker change, access to healthcare specific to transgender youth, access to hormones, and emotional support. HUD’s new rule would not only make housing more accessible to transgender young people experiencing homelessness, but also make things like incorrect government-issued IDs less of a barrier while looking for housing and services.

HUD’s announcement comes on Transgender Day of Remembrance, an international day held every November 20 to remember those who lost their lives to anti-transgender violence. This proposed rule would be a welcome change in a year marked by record violence against transgender Americans (especially transgender women of color). As a painful 2015 draws to a close, it’s important we celebrate the progress that was made this year, recognize the work we still need to do, and strive for a brighter tomorrow in remembrance of those we lost.

Secretary Castro will be hosting a Twitter chat with the White House on LGBT issues on Monday, November 23rd @ 4pm ET. Mark your calendar! The proposed rule is sure to be discussed.

If you believe that you’ve experienced (or are about to experience) housing discrimination, please contact HUD’s Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity for help at (800) 669-9777. You can also file a housing discrimination complaint online.

Thanksgiving Celebration!

The Recovery Learning Community’s Greater Lynn Hub
(Lynn, Lynnfield, Nahant, Saugus, Swampscott)
is opening a new space located at
1 Market Street, Suite 203
Lynn, MA 01901
Phone: 978-687-4228, ext 202

Thanksgiving Celebration
Date: Friday, November 20th
Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Location: Recovery Learning Community
1 Market Street, Suite 203
Lynn, MA 01901

Contact: Gerry McManamy
978.687.4288, ext. 202

Event to Benefit ILCNSCA! Check it out below and attend!

4th Annual Yule Wreath Workshop

Our Lord and Lady of the Trinacrian Rose Church Inc.

Saturday, November 28, 2015 from 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM (EST)

Salem, MA

This wreath making workshop will provide demonstration and the opportunity to create your own Yule wreath!

Fresh wreath and supplies will be provided!

All guests taking the Workshop are asked to bring the following:

wire cutters, garden clippers, scissors, garden gloves.

The cost is $30 to benefit Independent Living Center of the North Shore & Cape Ann, Inc. (Services and Advocacy for an Independent Life)

Due to space limitations register soon to save your spot!

Register at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/4th-annual-yule-wreath-workshop-tickets-19464887001

Have questions about 4th Annual Yule Wreath Workshop? Contact Our Lord and Lady of the Trinacrian Rose Church Inc. NO REFUNDS FOR THIS EVENT


ILCNSCA Holiday Open House Friday December 11, 2015 1:30 to 4 PM

Independent Living Center of the North Shore and Cape Ann, Inc. HOLIDAY OPEN HOUSE

December 11, 2015
Friday 1:30 – 4:00 PM
27 Congress Street, Suite 107
Salem, MA

Please RSVP at 978-741-0077 or check out www.ilcnsca.org for more information.
All are welcome to drop by, have a cup of coffee or cocoa, and enjoy a snack with staff
of ILCNSCA at this time of year ending and
New Year beginning.

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year
Please request communications accommodations at least two weeks in advance. ILCNSCA is scent-free to accommodate persons with chemical sensitivities. Please refrain from wearing scents such as perfumes or scented clothing.
At public events photographs and/or video may be taken for ILCNSCA publication. We will respect all requests to not be photographed, please inform us at time of RSVP or arrival.

Notice of MassHealth Public Stakeholder Listening Sessions on Overtime and Intra-Day Travel Time for Personal Care Attendants (PCAs) under the MassHealth PCA Program.

Notice of MassHealth Public Stakeholder Listening Sessions
Overtime and Intra-Day Travel Time for Personal Care Attendants (PCAs) under the MassHealth PCA Program.
The Massachusetts Executive Office of Health and Human Services (EOHHS) will host a series of public statewide listening sessions on recent changes to federal regulations implementing the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the MassHealth PCA Program’s implementation of these requirements. The purpose of these listening sessions will be to gather information from PCA consumers, PCAs, interested stakeholders and the general public on how to improve the PCA program in a way that ensures consumers receive all of their authorized PCA services while minimizing the need for PCAs to work overtime. These listening sessions will be an opportunity for MassHealth to obtain input on ways to enhance the health care experience of PCA consumers and to gather ideas on how to make the MassHealth PCA program more sustainable. We welcome all members of the public who wish to share their ideas with MassHealth and help us work through design challenges related to the recent changes under the FLSA.
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has issued a Final Rule revising DOL regulations that implement the FLSA. The result of this new rule is that PCAs may receive overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week for one or more consumers cumulatively and pay for intra-day travel time when traveling between one consumer employer’s home and another consumer employer’s home on the same day to provide PCA services.
What MassHealth is Doing
Beginning on January 1, 2016, PCAs will automatically receive overtime pay for hours worked in excess of 40 hours per week for one or more consumers combined and pay for intra-day travel time in which a PCA travels between one consumer employer’s home and another consumer employer’s home on the same day to provide PCA services. To facilitate this, MassHealth’s contracted fiscal intermediaries will track the cumulative hours worked by PCAs each week, even if they work for more than one consumer, and will automatically calculate any intra-day travel time.
Prior to January 1, 2016, if a consumer needs to schedule a PCA to work more than 40 hours per week, the consumer must contact his/her designated personal care management agency to make a request for
2015 2
prior authorization for premium pay for overtime, as described under MassHealth PCA regulations at 130 CMR 422.420(A)(13).
Listening Sessions
Information on the three public listening sessions is below. Please note that these sessions are open to all members of the public.
Call- In
Monday, November 30, 2015
McCormick Conference Room
21st Floor, One Ashburton Place
Boston, MA 02108
1:00-3:00 PM
1- 877-680-2612
Participant code: 5463977
January 22, 2016
Saxe Meeting Room
Worcester Public Library
3 Salem Square
Worcester, MA 01608
1:00-3:00 PM
Participant code: 3608246
January 27, 2016
Community Room
Mason Square Branch
Springfield Public Library
765 State Street
Springfield, MA 01109
1:00-3:00 PM
Participant code: 9593452
Disability-Related Accommodations
Communication Access Real-time Translation (CART) services and ASL Interpretation will be available. If disability-related accommodations are required for you to attend, or you need materials in other formats, please contact: Erin.Dore@state.ma.us.

ILCNSCA Receives $1000 from Salem Five Charitable Fund

Salem Five Bank President Ping Yin Chai presenting $1000 check to Mary Margaret Moore and Shawn McDuff for ILCNSCA from Salem Five Golf tournament

Salem Five Bank President Ping Yin Chai presenting $1000 check to Mary Margaret Moore and Shawn McDuff for ILCNSCA from Salem Five Golf tournament

The Independent Living Center of the North Shore and Cape Ann, Inc (ILCNSCA) was one of 30 non-profit organizations that received a donation of $1000 from the Salem Five Charitable Fund Golf Tournament. Staff of Salem Five bank each year nominate non-profit agencies that they as staff of Salem Five have a personal connection, usually through being a part of the Board, volunteering time, or in some cases, starting non-profit agencies. The funds from the Annual Golf tournament are then shared with those organizations selected from the Salem Five staff nominations.

This morning the presentations of the checks was made at the Salem Five Community Room with a breakfast for all recipients and the Salem Five Bank Management and staff. ILCNSCA was the recipient again of this donation, and will use those funds for social and recreational events. As the regional disability rights and independent living agency for the North Shore and Cape Ann, ILCNSCA is consumer run and consumer controlled. It serves those of all ages living with all types of disabilities to overcome the system, architectural, communication, economic and cultural barriers to living independently. ILCNSCA is appreciative of the support from Salem Five Charitable Foundation and will continue in its work to insure full inclusion of all in every aspect of community life.