Federal Interagency Task Force Meeting by DTYd55R

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									                       Federal Interagency Task Force Meeting
                                   October 24, 2007
                                 10:00 am-12:00 pm
 Location: Headquarters of Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension, USDA


Attendees:
      Yvonne Jackson, PhD: Administration on Aging
      Floyd Godfrey: Administration on Aging
      Margaret Graves: Administration on Aging
      Leslie Green: Administration on Aging
      Courtney Roy: Administration for Native Americans
      Lisa Park: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Adm.
      Alicia Rodriguez: Office of Outreach and Diversity, USDA
      Tedd Buelow: Office of Rural Development, USDA
      James Burris, MD: Department of Veterans Affairs
      Katharine Delo Gregg: Corporation for National & Community Services
      Cheryl Oliver: Federal Transit Admin, DOT
      Gary Quinn: Indian Health Service
      Caroline Crocoll, PhD: Coop. State Research, Ed. and Extension, USDA
      Leopold Brandenburg: Social Security Administration
      Priya Helweg: Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
      Albert Byrd: Kauffman and Associates
      Cynthia LaCounte: Kauffman and Associates (Joined by Teleconference)
      Paula Arevalo: Kauffman and Associates

Yvonne Jackson began the meeting by welcoming the Task Force members and asking each
agency representative to introduce themselves.

Participants introduced themselves and the agency they represented.

Katharine Del Gregg, the new representative for the Corporation for National and Community
Services offered an explanation about a handout that she had passed out regarding several CNS
new program activities.

Yvonne Jackson spoke about the National Training and Technical Assistance Forum that was
held in Baltimore, MD in April 2007, which was also the last time the Task Force members
convened to hold roundtable discussions and individual break-out sessions with Title VI Tribal
representatives and to conduct table exhibits.

Each agency that participated in the Baltimore Forum was given the evaluation forms on their
individual sessions that were completed by tribal representatives.

Yvonne Jackson asked for input regarding the roundtable discussions. She shared her
observation that AoA received very positive feedback on the roundtable discussions and her
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conclusion that this format allows the Title VI Director’s to associate with “the Feds” in a less
intimidating way and to receive answers to their questions in a relaxed setting.

Leopold Brandenburg stated that the roundtable discussions allowed the Social Security
Administration to become re-acquainted with Title VI directors. He said it was a chance for SSA
to see again old friends to whom they had offered support in the past.

Caroline Crocoll from the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service
(CSREES) said that the Baltimore Forum was a nice opportunity for agencies to sit down and
talk with the Title VI directors. She felt the format used was very valuable.

Yvonne Jackson then noted that AoA is planning a 2008 Training and Technical Assistance
Forum which will also include a celebration to honor the 30th anniversary of the Title VI
Program. The Forum and celebration will be held outside of Minneapolis, MN at the Mystic
Lake Casino Hotel. Dr. Jackson noted that all agencies are being asked to participate and,
depending on the number of agencies able to attend, AoA again hopes to hold roundtable
discussions. She then asked Floyd Godfrey to provide details on planning for the Forum and
celebration.

Floyd Godfrey shared that AoA was working with KAI to plan the 2008 Training and Technical
Assistance Forum and celebration at the Indian-owned, Mystic Lake Casino Hotel complex. He
indicated that AoA was planning special activities to honor all of the current and past Title VI
directors and others who have been influential in making the Title VI program a success. The
Forum would include training similar to the Baltimore Forum.

Cynthia LaCounte shared information on the Mystic Lake Casino Hotel facility, including that
the whole facility is alcohol free. She noted that the casino is on the other side of the building
from the training rooms, so that those persons who may be uncomfortable going through a casino
can easily avoid it. She also indicated that the training rooms were all on one floor and that there
will be abundant space for agencies to have exhibit tables.

Yvonne Jackson again reiterated that all agencies will be invited to participate but, unfortunately,
AoA does not have funds to provide any travel assistance.

Yvonne Jackson discussed the AoA Title VI program newsletters, and chats and teleconferences.
She noted that in effort to get more Task Force involvement, AoA was lining up agencies to
contribute articles to the newsletter and to conduct chats and teleconferences in the 2007-2008
contract year. She referenced the schedule of Task Force chats, which indicated when agencies
would make presentations, noting that the next chat would be in November by SSA. She also
offered that if any agency was not listed and wished to be included, they should contact Floyd
Godfrey or KAI.

Yvonne Jackson then introduced to the Task Force the idea of coming up with a new project
focus for the 2007-2008 year. She noted that for the past few years the Task Force has focused
on long term care issues, but at this time, she believes a new program should be introduced. She
suggested that the Task Force consider Caregivers Programs. She and Meg Graves briefly
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discussed the Title VI Native American Family Caregivers Program. Yvonne Jackson noted that
AoA already has been talking with the Administration on Native Americans on caregiving
issues. She asked the agencies what they believed they could contribute if the Task Force made
caregiving an area of focus.

Leopold Brandenburg stated that SSA works within specific program boundaries, which might
limit the agency’s role in caregiving. Yvonne Jackson noted that many times grandparents
raising grandchildren, who are receiving Social Security payments, have trouble getting the
payments because they are often not the legal guardian of the children. After further
consideration, it was suggested that Social Security may best be able to contribute to family
caregiving through their Representatives Payee Program. For children under 18, this program
may designate a legal guardian who can receive the child’s benefits. It was noted that most often
Social Security decides that a grandparent is the preferred Representative Payee as they almost
always use the funds in the best interest of the child. The possibility was discussed that Social
Security could provide information on the Representative Payee Program to Title VI participants
who are caregivers, as well as information that helps caregivers navigate the SSA system. In the
immediate future, Mr. Brandenburg agreed to explore developing an article for the Title VI
newsletter on the Representative Payee Program.

Caroline Crocoll shared that CSREES has many programs, including “kinship care”, through
which they are focusing on the role of the caregiver. She felt that her USDA program could
contribute much to this new project focus.

Cheryl Oliver from the Federal Transit Administration stated that she was substituting for Lorna
Wilson, the regular Task Force representative for her agency. She briefly described her agency’s
initiatives that help Title VI programs secure buses for transporting tribal members.

Tedd Buelow from the Office of Rural Development, USDA, shared that his agency has a
program under which rural homeowners can apply for grants to provide maintenance and home
repairs, such as adding handicapped accessible ramps to the home. He noted this program is
especially valuable for caregivers who are worried about elderly relatives with such problems as
floors caving in or who need other home repairs that they cannot afford. Mr. Buelow agreed that
after passage of pending legislation on the home repair program, he would pursue development
of an article for the Title VI newsletter.

Lisa Park of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration asked for further
explanation of the goal of the Task Force in taking on family caregiving as a project focus.

Yvonne Jackson responded that she thought the Task Force should begin by compiling
information on what each agency provides to “caregivers”. She said that once information is
compiled, the Task Force could complete an assessment of what resources and services are
available for caregivers. The information that is compiled could be placed on the Title VI
website, www.olderindians.org, for programs to use as needed. She noted that in many instances,
even some of the federal agencies are not fully aware of all the resources that they have available
for caregivers. Once caregiving information is compiled, the Task Force could then consider the
potential for collaboration in this important area.
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Yvonne Jackson noted the importance of collaborative action by citing the activities in the
1990’s when AoA worked with SSA and IHS to visit the reservations and enroll hundreds of
people in Social Security programs. She felt that this was one of the greatest accomplishments of
the Task Force because it linked together the Task Force agencies to assist the Title VI Tribes
and older Indians.

It was clear from the Task Force discussion that most of the agencies have a significant role to
play in family caregiving, including the Veterans Administration, the Center for
Medicare/Medicaid Services, the Indian Health Service, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Services Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and even the Social Security
Administration. It was indicated that the Task Force, as constituted, is “not a closed group” and
other agencies involved in caregiving activities could be included.

Yvonne Jackson asked KAI to contact each of the Task Force agencies to collect information on
their family caregiving related programs. After collecting information, it will be shared with all
Task Force members. The Task Force then will decide what collaborative activities to undertake
to improve the programs that provide services to caregivers of older Indians.

It was agreed also that the agencies would continue to focus on issues of “long term care.”

Yvonne Jackson thanked the members of the Task Force for attending and the meeting was
adjourned.

								
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