Legal services to be topic of focus groups

October 22, 2015 by Sue Reeves

Focus Group Flyer(1)Non-profit legal services Utah Legal Services and the Disability Law Center will be conducting two focus groups in Cache County to better understand how to serve this area. One focus group will target professionals who work with vulnerable populations, and the other focus group will be open to the public.

Utah Legal Services provides free legal services to people with limited incomes. They can help with divorce and custody, especially when domestic violence is involved. They help people get certain types of public benefits, assist with wills and estates and provide a host of other services for people who can’t afford legal help.

The Disability Law Center assists individuals with disabilities with legal issues related to their disability.

On Oct. 29, professionals who serve vulnerable populations (e.g. those with limited incomes, senior citizens, individuals with disabilities) are invited to a focus group at Herms Inn. Lunch will be provided beginning at 11:45 a.m. The discussion will begin promptly at noon and will end at 1 p.m.

Also on Oct. 29, at 5:30 p.m., the public is invited to participate in a focus group at Options for Independence. Refreshments will be provided. All participants in that focus group will receive a $20 Walmart Gift Card.

To register for either focus group, contact Sheri Newton by phone at (435) 232-4269 or by e-mail at snewton@disabilitylawcenter.org.

If you are not able to attend either group, but would still like to participate, you may complete an online survey for a chance to win a $50 VISA gift card. Click here to complete the survey.

 

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DLC visits AT lab

July 29, 2015 by Sue Reeves

Group of people in assistive technology lab.

Clay Christensen describes recent AT fabrication projects to members of the Disability Law Center.

Representatives from the Disability Law Center, Utah’s protection and advocacy agency, visited the Assistive Technology lab at Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities recently.

“The DLC wanted to learn more about AT and explore further collaboration,” said DLC advocate Sheri Newton. “We wanted to see what’s available and the role of the AT lab in the state. We want to make sure Utahns with disabilities are getting the AT they need.”

AT lab coordinator Clay Christensen said the lab serves 600-1,000 people every year through device demonstration, the loan bank, fabrication, repairs and reutilization.

“Sometimes it’s a quick fix, at times it’s pretty overwhelming,” he said. Ideally, he said, the AT lab provides services to people who are waiting for insurance approval of new devices, or provides low-tech solutions to bridge the gap as they wait for higher tech devices.

While the lab receives outside funding, donations of used equipment are crucial. They can also be heartbreaking.

“It’s a pretty jagged pill when you work with a family to fit a chair for a kiddo and then the mom comes in with an empty wheelchair to donate it,” he said. However, it usually isn’t long before the wheelchair is repurposed for another family’s use.

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DLC produces transition report

June 19, 2015 by Sue Reeves

Image of three students walking, and pushing one in a wheelchair.

Project PEER students at USU.

The Disability Law Center, a Salt Lake City-based non-profit organization that is Utah’s designated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) agency, has produced a report on transition in the state of Utah. In the report, the DLC explores opportunities and barriers to the success of students with disabilities in competitive and integrated employment. It also provides insights from students, parents, rural communities, agencies, higher education, employers, and academics. Promising practices, challenges, and recommendations are provided in each area.

The DLC report recognized successes in school districts and programs that recognized and worked with student strengths and interests during transition planning, worked to increase parent involvement, generated positive employment experiences, utilized the support of state agencies, and programs located at universities, colleges and technical schools. The report mentioned two programs located at Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities: Project PEER (Post-secondary education, employment and research) and Aggies Elevated.

The report also made recommendations for improvements throughout the state.

To download an electronic version of the report, click here.

To visit the Disability Law Center web site, click here.

 

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