Restraint and Seclusion State Summaries

February 25, 2010 by cpehrson

The use of restraints and seclusion as a means of managing disruptive behaviors in schools has been a topic of widespread interest recently.

The U.S. Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, issued a letter July, 2009 to the Chief State School Officers urging states and territories to “develop or review and, if appropriate, revise their state policies and guidelines prior to the start of the 2009-2010 school year.”

His directive to schools was “to ensure that every student in every school under its jurisdiction is safe and protected from being unnecessarily or inappropriately restrained or secluded. ”  Duncan also urged them to publicize these policies and guidelines so that administrators, teachers and parents understand and consent to the limited circumstances under which these techniques may be used

The U.S. Department of Education has recently released a summary of the state laws, regulations, policies and guidelines regarding the use of restraint and seclusion techniques in place in schools across the  nation.

The report shows that 16 states or territories have no clear policies, guidelines or laws in place, although 33 indicated that plans to develop or revise laws or guidelines are under way.

The Utah report showed that there are “No policies or guidance addressing seclusion and restraint. The Utah State Board of Education Rules require the state to develop, review regularly, and provide to local school boards and charter school governing boards model policies to address disruptive student behavior.”

To view your state’s report, you can visit the state-by-state website.

Spread the Word to End the “R” Word Day- March 3, 2010

February 25, 2010 by cpehrson

On March 3, 2010, the second annual “Spread the Word to End the Word” Day will be held around the nation.

“Spread the Word to End the Word” is a campaign created by youth, in an ongoing effort with Special Olympics and Best Buddies International, to engage individuals, schools, organizations and communities by raising the consciousness of society about the dehumanizing and hurtful effects of the word “retard(ed)” and encouraging everyone to stop using the R-word.

The day will be devoted to educating and raising awareness of the positive impact individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities have in our communities and why the use of the R-word is hurtful, even in casual conversation.

Said one advocate, “This is not just a day of awareness, but a movement to end hate as a whole.” ”

The Special Olympics organization is encouraging people to rally and pledge their support with the goal of reaching 100,000 pledges.  Are you willing to take the pledge?

The CPD Website is a Great Place for Disability Information!

February 18, 2010 by cpehrson

Individuals with disabilities, family members, providers, and professionals have a great need to access information that will help them to understand specific disabilities, access services and resources, and  be aware of current disability issues.

There are many sources of information about disabilities available today.  Some people prefer to talk things over with professionals who are able to answer specific questions about an individual’s disability or lead them to the services they need–but they are not always available.  In the not so distant past, written or multi-media information found at libraries or purchased was the best source for information.  This still is a valuable source, but, unfortunately, much of this information becomes outdated quickly.

A much faster and updated source for information is the internet.  There are many excellent websites that concentrate on providing the most accurate and updated information about disabilities and disability resources and services.  There you can find the latest research that is being done to improve certain disability conditions, as well as up to the minute information about issues that concern people with disabilities, locally, nationally, and internationally.

The Center for Persons with Disabilities at USU strives to provide up to date information about disability issues in Utah, as well as report about the impact that CPD projects are having on people with disabilities across the nation and internationally. Our Twitter page includes information on CPD projects, plus updates from other organizations which might be of interest to the disability community. We encourage you to visit our website often to keep abreast of the latest information that is available. Our RSS feeds can alert you to new material as soon as it becomes available. You can also  find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.

Please visit the CPD latest Survey Question on our Home Page and let us know the best sources that you have found for disability information.

Hispanic Families Now Able to Access Services Online

February 17, 2010 by cpehrson

The Up to 3 Early Intervention Program at the Center for Persons with Disabilities at USU recently helped the Hispanic families who have children with disabilities in their program to get computers so they can access more resources online.  Rafael Gutierrez, the Hispanic Liaison for Up to 3, worked with the Electroregeneration Society in Salt Lake City, Utah in getting computers for 10 local Hispanic families at little or no cost to them.

The Electroregeneration Society is a nonprofit organization that offers affordable access to technology by refurbishing computer systems, including computers, monitors, keyboards, and mouses.  They provide free computers to nonprofit organizations, as well as offer low cost or cost-free equipment to individuals via their service-for-equipment program.   Individuals may obtain a computer via purchase or at no cost by completing 15 hours of service to their organization.

These computers will allow the Hispanic families enrolled in the Up to 3 program to access many services that were only available through telephone, mail or on-site before.  Now, it will be much easier for the Hispanic population to fill out online applications and get information about resources by using their new computers. Many agencies have web pages that are already in Spanish or can be translated into Spanish by online translation software.  The processing of the information online is more accurate and takes less time.

They can access many services online including the following:

  • Health: Physical, mental, dental, Medicaid, Sliding fee providers, Chip, etc.
  • Food: WIC, Food Stamps, Food Pantry
  • Education: Childcare, MHS, EHS, CDL
  • Housing: Rent, Heat, Section 8
  • Legal: Immigration, etc.
  • Utilities: Electricity, Phone, etc.
  • Driving, driving license
  • Employment: Job, Unemployment
  • Family support: welfare, resources
  • Finances: UIDAN, USU Family life Center

Gutierrez is providing follow up meetings with the Hispanic families that have received computers to teach them how to effectively use the internet to access services.  The next meeting will be held on Saturday, March 27, 2010, from 3:00-8:00 p.m. at the English Language Center Computer Lab. 1544 N. 200 W., Logan, Utah.

For more information, please contact Rafael Gutierrez.

Accessible, Affordable Housing Still Available

February 16, 2010 by cpehrson

The River Park Senior Housing complex, located at 784 River Walk Parkway, Logan, Utah, offers affordable 1-2 bedroom units for under $500 per month, including utilities.  There are still several vacancies available for those who are interested.

Affordable, accessible housing is not always easy to find for older people or people with disabilities who want to live independently. The last affordable senior apartments in Cache Valley were built almost ten years ago.  The Neighborhood Nonprofit Housing Corporation, in collaboration with the Utah Housing Corporation, was able to provide this community with an extra 40 affordable rental units. This beautiful river-front location, complete with garden areas and covered parking, will fill a great need for seniors and adults with disabilities living in Cache Valley.

For more information, call Sandra at 435-753-1112 x 0, or Chris at 801-942-6300 x 203.