Welcome to The Monthly Memo

 October, 2015

The Arc of New Mexico Mission

The mission of The Arc of New Mexico is to improve the quality of life for individuals with developmental disabilities of all ages by advocating for equal opportunities and choices in where and how they learn, live, work, play and socialize.  The Arc of New Mexico will promote self-determination, healthy families, effective community support systems and partnerships.

The Arc is not an acronym; always refer to us as The Arc, not The ARC and never ARC. The Arc should be considered as a title or a phrase.

www.arcnm.org

Twitter:Arc of NM@TheArcNM

Facebook: The Arc of New Mexico

Donate Now: https://www.arcnm.org/donate-now/

Randy Costales, Executive Director

Promoting and Protecting Human Rights Since 1955

The Story Continues: 2000 - 2005

During this time period John Foley retired and Rebecca Shuman was hired as The Arc’s 4th Executive Director.  Board Presidents included Judy Liddell, Karen Fricks and Simon Chavez.

Local Chapters exist in Roswell, Alamogordo, Las Cruces, Farmington, Taos, Clovis, Albuquerque, Deming, Clovis and Grants,

The Lewis Lawsuit was filed in January of 1999 by The Arc of New Mexico and Protection and Advocacy against the New Mexico Department of Health on behalf of people on the DD Waiver Wait List.  On April 25, 2000 Federal District Judge Martha Vasquez ruled in favor of Lewis that the New Mexico Medicaid Program violated the “reasonable promptness” requirement of the federal Medicaid statute, the Americans with Disabilities Act and the constitutional right to due process.  In May the state appealed the ruling to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals.  In August 2001 the 10th Circuit rendered its decision denying the Defendant’s motions to dismiss the lawsuit.

The Arc became one of five operating sites of the National Arc AmeriCorps Program teaming individuals with disabilities with individuals without disabilities. During the second year the program received additional funding from the Daniel’s Fund and the program expanded into Socorro and Farmington.

The Arc hired a full-time Fetal Alcohol Prevention Education Program Coordinator.

In 2003 The Arc hosted the First Annual Rebecca’s Piano Café fund raiser.

The Tri-chairs (Tanya Baker-McCue, Rebecca Shuman, and Carolyn Delgado) of the New Mexico Adult Task Force shaped the Self-Directed policy, adopted in Dec 2003.  This was an important step that helped create the Mi Via Self-Directed Waiver.

In early 2004 the Board of Directors and staff of The Arc developed a five-year strategic plan to secure and shape the future of The Arc of New Mexico:  create an environment for Self-Determination; build internal capacity and increase awareness and change attitudes;

The Arc hosted the first Institute on Self-Determination in 2004 attended by approximately 30 individuals from around the state.  The Institute was a multi-month program modeled after the Partners in Policymaking program.

Annual Self-Advocacy conferences were held in Albuquerque that featured nationally recognized speakers including Tia Nelis, Nancy Ward and Ann Thomas.

In 2002 The Arc Justice Advocacy Program celebrated 10 years of providing support and advocacy to individuals with disabilities who had been charged with crimes or had been victims of crime.  The program also made regular presentations to law enforcement agencies.

A Beyond Worship workshop, funded by DDPC, was held in 2005, and featured Ginny Thornburgh, Executive Director of Religion and Disability of the National Organization on Disability (NOD).  She presented ideas and information to help congregations make it possible for individuals and their family members to fully participate in faith communities of their choice.

The Arc received a Grant of National Significance from the Administration on Developmental Disabilities (ADD) to build community coalitions in Roswell, Anthony, Socorro and Farmington. The two- year project was called Community Means All People (MAP) and utilized the PATH process (Planning Alternative Tomorrows with Hope) to help individuals identify a vision for the future, goals and strategies to achieve the goals.  Individuals also received a small stipend to help them achieve one or more of their goals.

In 2005 The Arc hosted a dinner/awards event celebrating 50 years of service to individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

National Scene

In April 2000 the National Arc Board adopted the following Core Values:

- People First

- Democracy

- Visionary Leadership

- Community Participation

- Diversity

In a major victory the Supreme Court of the United States ruled, in June 2002, 6-3 in Atkins versus Virginia that executing mentally retarded individuals violates the Eighth Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishments, but states can define who is mentally retarded.

National Arc Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) Curriculum Project - The Arc of NM was part of a team that developed and piloted a curriculum to educate parents, teachers and the public health workers who serve them about FAS and other pre-natal alcohol-related effects.  The team included the National Arc, the University of Minnesota, and the Centers for Disease Control and Arc chapter representatives from New Jersey, Minnesota, Michigan, Missouri, Illinois and the District of Columbia. 

The Arc of New Mexico

2016 Legislative Priorities

Approved by The Arc Board of Directors on October 24, 2015

1. ABLE Act

Issue:  People with disabilities on Supplemental Security Income (SSI) are not allowed to hold more than $2,000.00 in resources or they lose their Federal benefits such as their SSI payments and Medicaid.

Position: Introduce legislation establishing the program allowing tax-advantaged savings accounts modeled on the Federal A Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act that permit a person with a disability  to save $100,000 before any benefits are lost.

 2. Maintain Services

Issue:  Medicaid continues to be the crucial source of funding for people with disabilities that allows them to live in their communities with the supports and services they need.  Any reduction in the state appropriation or even a failure to appropriate sufficient dollars will result in a loss of services and a corresponding reduction in the individual’s quality of life. 

Position:  Maintain current services for individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

 3. Waiting List

Issue: Individuals with developmental disabilities continue to apply for services and then be placed on a waiting list (called the Centralized Registry by the Department of Health).  People should not have to wait for services that are important to their ability to live and participate in their communities in a safe and fulfilling manner. 

• A.     Position: Protect the current DD Waiver appropriation and add new dollars to serve more people.

• B.     Position: Protect the state general funded programs and add new dollars to serve more people.

• C.     Position: Continue to support dollars in the DoH budget for flexible funding programs.

 4. Guardianship Services

Issue:  The funding for legal assistance and training for families seeking guardianship of a family member is not adequate to meet the need.  Furthermore, the funding for corporate guardianship services no longer meets the need and a waiting list for services exists.

Position:  Support the Developmental Disabilities Planning Council’s requested budget.

5. Restraint and Seclusion     

Issue:  Students in special education are frequently controlled and disciplined by being inappropriately restrained and placed in seclusion.

Position:  Support efforts to stop this practice in schools and require training for school staff.

Arc Southern Offices Host Open Houses

Open house events celebrating The Arc's 60th Anniversary were held in Silver City on October 13 and in Anthony on October 14. 

In Silver City the event included food, tours of the Disability Resource Center and brief presentations by Parents Reaching Out (thank you Erika Jaramillo) and The Arc.  Pictured at left are Patti West-Okiri, Randy Costales, State Senator Howie Morales and Vicki Galindo.   Thank you Vicki for a job well done!

The event in Anthony also celebrated Disability History Awareness Month and included food, brief presentations by Arc staff, a performance by the New World Drummers (including a dance performance by Arc employee Sarah Olguin) and a "Telling Your Story" presentation by Parents Reaching Out (thank you Adam Shand, Mariela Pijem and Daniel Ekman).  Kudos to Priscilla Salinas, Sarah Holguin and Sergio Resendiz for a very successful event!

Doris Husted Honored

Doris Husted, The Arc of New Mexico's Director of Public Policy, was recently recognized and honored by the University of New Mexico's Center for Development and Disability at the Southwest Conference on Disability in Albuquerque. She was awarded the 2015 Cate McClain Mentoring Leaders Award.  The award was presented to Doris by Pat Osbourn, last year's recipient of the award.

Congratulations Doris!

Arc Master Trust Program Hosts Dinner

The Arc Master Trust Program hosted a dinner on September 25 to thank local attorneys who have provided on-going support to the program.  The dinner was hosted by Jo Ann Baxter, Trust Program Administrator and Dinah Padilla-Harvey, Arc Director of Operations at Jo Ann's home.  Attendees included Susan Tomita, Lori Millet, Mary Ann Green and husband Eric and Randy Costales and wife Bertha.

News from The Arc of San Juan County

"Changing Seasons, Changing Lives" was held on Saturday, September 26 in Farmington at the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel.  The Arc of San Juan County board supports and sustains the only local chapter of The Arc in New Mexico, and organizes the annual event to increase awareness and raise funds.  Awards for Self-Advocacy, Amazing Family, and Thinking Outside the Box were presented to deserving people in the community.  Daniel Ekman, from the New Mexico Developmental Disabilities Planning Council's Center for Self-Advocacy, was the guest speaker.  Everyone enjoyed the live music, good food and the live and silent auctions.  A wonderful event for a fabulous cause that really does change lives in San Juan County.  For more information visit www.arcsanjuancounty.org.

Save the Dates

Disability Rights Awareness Day (DRAD)

"Working Together to Promote Disability Rights"

January 25-26, 2016

Hotel TBA

On-line Registration to open in November

The Summit on Social Equality/Arc Annual Conference

June 24-25, 2016

Hotel Albuquerque

Thank You for Your Support!

Since our last memo The Arc has received almost $1,000 in donations from the following individuals and organizations: Ling Faith-Heuertz, Vicki Galindo, Doris Husted, Van Nunley, Roger Weinreich, Randy Costales, Alan and Veronica Neuman, Wendy Corry, Loretta and Dennis Silva, Mary Ann Green, Lori Millet, Dinah Padilla-Harvey, James Bergen, John Cornett, Phyllis Taylor, Ken Harmon, James Kennedy, Ann Vickers Byrd and Imelda Garcia.

It is never too late to give - you can either mail us a check or make an on-line donation at https://www.arcnm.org/donate-now/.

 Please consider a gift of $6, $60, $120 or more.  Your gift will help The Arc continue to promote and protect the human rights of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families throughout New Mexico.

The Modified Dolls is an international organization aimed at improving the image of women with tattoos and piercings, and breaking down negative stereotypes, through community service.  Thank you to The Albuquerque Chapter who recently hosted their annual Zombie Walk on behalf of The Arc.

 

Pictured above is Dinah Padilla-Harvey, Arc Director of Operations, with members of the Albuquerque Chapter.