Speaking out for People with
 Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Ohio - Updates on the Ball v. Kasich Class Action

On March 31, 2016, Disability Rights Ohio (DRO) announced it filed a lawsuit in U.S. federal court against the Governor of Ohio and other state officials on behalf of six individuals and one organization for alleged non-compliance of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Section 504, and Medicaid requirements.
VOR supports the rights of families in opposing this action.
 

Joint Report from HHS OIG, ACL, and OCR: Group Home Beneficiaries are at Risk of Serious Harm

This report, released in January, 2018 by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services,' Office of the Inspector General, Administraton for Community Liiving, and Office of Civil Rights acknowledged the systemic shortcomings in protecting residents of HCBS waiver group homes from incidents of abuse and neglect. OIG found that up to 99 percent of these critical incidents were not reported to the appropriate law enforcement or state agencies as required. The report stated, “Group Home beneficiaries are at risk of serious harm. OIG found that health and safety policies and procedures were not being followed. Failure to comply with these policies and procedures left group home beneficiaries at risk of serious harm. These are not isolated incidents but a systemic problem – 49 States had media reports of health and safety problems in group homes.

VOR Testimony at House Judiciary Committee Hearings

Rep GoodlatteOn March 6th, 2018 the House Judiciary Committee convened to examine the harmful effects of class action lawsuits aimed at closing Intermediate Care Facilites for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF's/IID). The hearing came at the request of Chairman Bob Goodlatte.Martha Bryant 2 Testimony was presented by Martha Bryant, Mother, RN, BSN & VOR member, Caroline Lahrmann, Mother, VOR Ohio State Coordinator & past president, and Peter Kinzler, Father, longtime VOR Member, Director & Legislative Committee Chair. Alison Barkoff of the Center for Public Representation. PK Testimonyspoke on behalf of those in favor of using class action lawsuits against ICF's/IID and opposed to providing notification to families and guardians of individuals residing in these homes.
 

VOR Reply to Congressional Letter to the ACL

On July 11th, Mary Lazare, Principal Deputy Administrator and Acting Commissioner on Disabilities at the Administration for Community Living (ACL) spoke at the Autism Society's 2018 Convention in  Washington, D.C. During her keynote speech, Ms. Lazare expressed recognition for Intermediate Care Facilities for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ICF/IID) as part of the full system of care. While no recording of the speech exists, third hand accounts of Ms. Lazare's comments have spread throughout social media. "Community Only" advocates were outraged, and have raised their voices demanding retraction of her comments and calling for her resignation.