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					Date: 03-24-10
Event: CIL-Net Training
Purple Language Services




   This text is being provided in a rough-draft format.
Communication Access Realtime Translation is provided in
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a totally verbatim record of the proceedings.


>> Sharon: This is Sharon ILRU. They're finks fixing the
technical issue as I speak. We should be joining you in one to
two minutes. Thank you again for your patience with us.
Thank you for joining us today.
>> Tim: Okay, thank you, Sharon. I notified everyone with the
new CART address and I'm ready to go live.
>> Sharon: Hold on just one moment. Okay, Tim, go.
>> Tim: Julie would you mind getting us started?
>> Julie: Yes, sir. Good afternoon, everyone. And welcome
to the get to the core of it information and referral
teleconference. Today's host will be Mr. Tim Fuchs. During
the presentation all participant lines will be muted.
Participants will be allowed to ask questions at several points
during the presentation. As a reminder, today's call is being
recorded. Now without further delay, I will turn your call over
to Mr. Tim Fuchs.
>> Tim: Good afternoon, thank you very much, Julie.
Welcome to the first piece of CIL-NET's new piece of get to
the core of it. This is part one, information referral. I'm Tim
Fuchs, operations Director of The National Council on
Independent Living. Today's teleconference and webcast is
presented by the CIL-NET, which is a part of the IL-NET and
that is a technical training for centers with independent living
and statewide Independent Living Councils. The IL Net is
operated by ILRU in Houston, Texas, in partnership with NCIL
here in Washington, D.C. and the association of programs for
rural independent living, APRIL, in north little rock Arkansas
and it was provided by the U.S. Department of Transportation,
RSA.


I want to make a few brief announcements before I begin our
call today. I want to add to that a thanks to you all for your
patience. We were sending out a new CART link and I have
now e-mailed that to everyone that indicated they were going
to join by CART today. I also posted it in the public chat on
the web nor screen. I apologize for that. Our CART Provider
is using a new link and we were not aware. That has been
sent out. I hope it is working fine. That is
www.streamtext.net/text.aspx?event=remotecustomer.again if
you indicated that you were going to use CART on your
registration form I sent it to your e-mail address and also
posted in the public chat. Again thank you four patience.


Now, our other more standard appear announcements. I just
want to mention that we are using a new webinar platform.
That is Talking Communities. Some of you have probably
used it before but for those of you that are new to it I hope you
find it easy to use. You can enter questions in the public chat
screen. And also send messages between participants or to
the presenters.


Also as Julie mentioned we are recording today's call. It will
be archived on ILRU's website 48 hours after today's
presentation.


We're going to break several times during the presentation to
answer your questions. At roughly 3:40 and 4:20 P.M. that is
eastern time. Our webcast participants as I mentioned you
can enter your questions directly in the public chat screen.
There on the web nor. For our teleconference participants
you'll be pressing O 1 on your keypad and that will put you in
the queue to ask questions. You'll ask your questions live on
the call. If you enter them in the public chat please
understand that we are going to wait until our Q-and-A breaks
to address them. I'll voice them to the presenters and they'll
respond to you.


The materials for today's call including the PowerPoint
presentation and an evaluation form are on NCIL's website.
I'm going to read this link out. If you have an access to
PowerPoint please do so now. If you're on the web nor of
course it is displayed for you. If you're on the telephone you
want to have this in front of you and it makes today's
presentation a lot more useful and easier to follow. Again this
is the url that was sent to you in the confirmation e-mail. If you
have gone there don't worry about it. But if you don't have
that handy I'm going to read this twice.
Www.ncil.org/training/i&r2010materials.html.
One more time that is
www.ncil.org/training/i&r2010materials.html. Okay, so thanks
so much. And please do so -- fill out that evaluation form at
the end of the call. It is very short. Does not take long to fill
out but it is very important to us. And with that, I want to begin
today's presentation. We will be going until 4:35 today
eastern time to make sure that you guys get the full
presentation.


I want to introduce our presenters. With us today we have
Darrel Christenson and Andrew Moody from the Arizona
Bridge to Independent Living in Phoenix, Arizona. We also
have Roger Howard from LINC, Incorporated from Boise,
Idaho. I enjoy working with all of you and I thank you for your
hard work and expertise.


Our first presenter today is Roger Howard. He is going to
walk us through the learning objectives and why information
referral is core service in the first place. Roger.
>> Roger Howard: Thanks. Excuse me, thank you, Tim.
Welcome, everybody to this first in a series of webinars on the
four core services. This one, of course, today is on
information and referral. And if we could move to the next
slide for the session objectives. Thank you.


The overall session objectives for today are to explain the
critical role of information referral as the gateway to providing
Centers for Independent Living consumers with information,
knowledge and resources in efficient and responsive manner.


Also to describe strategies to organize track and maintain
comprehensive and extensive resource information on
numerous disability-related topics; describe best practice
policies, procedures and staff training that resulted in highly
effective interactions with consumers; and to describe how to
conduct follow-up with consumers to determine effectiveness
of their Center for Independent Living information and referral
service delivery. Next slide, please.


Now why is I&R a service in the first place? Well, in
discussing this what we decided is that information referral is a
primary means to promoting consumer empowerment. It
supports an individual capacity for self-reliance and
self-determination, and according to the alliance for
information and referral systems, it enables education,
affirmation, collaborative planning and problem solving. So
through I&R we can work with folks to help educate them, to
affirm their capacity for self-reliance and self-determination, to
work with them on collaborative planning so that they can
reach their goals and objectives, and also to help them
problem solve through life's little problems.


I&R also provides a road map for navigating complex and
confusing systems. Anybody who has a disability or works for
a Center for Independent Living understands how complex
and confusing the service systems out there can be and
through information and referral when it is affectively provided,
we can really minimize the hassle that people face. Now,
we're going to go into the first segment of the webinar here
and Andrew and Darrel, please take it away.
>> Darrel Christenson: This is Darrel and thank you for being
here. We heard that the numbers were really huge here today
and so I want to thank everybody for participating from my
friend in Wisconsin to folks in -- across the country.


We're working on this we really wanted to make I&R appealing
and kind of in a way make it sexy. I think a lot of times we
look at I&R as, well, something that we have to do. And
maybe it is sort of drudgery or mundane but we really feel that
it's -- knowledge is power and in the independent living
movement the knowledge and information that folks have
about their community resources does empower people and
that is the crux of what the IL movement is about. It can be
sexy and we're going to hopefully make it so.
We want to take a look at two aspects of it, and one is sort of
the human approach and the first of entry and on this slide
screen or Slide No. 4 Andrew is going to start to talk about
that and the human aspect.


The other part then Roger will come back to us and talk to us
on the technical side of things. So whichever side of the brain
you're working with today, your human side or your technical
side, hopefully something that we say today will be helpful for
you and your staff and your Center and ultimately your
consumers.


So a backdrop there and with that I want to hand it over to
Andrew Moody.
>> Andrew Moody: Thank you, Darrel. My name is Andrew
Moody and I have been the information and referral program
court nature with ABIL for the past few years and I'm going to
talk more about the customer service aspects of I&R. Anyone
can pick up yellow pages or a resource guide, you know, for
social services in the area and, you know, read things off and
tell people, you know, what -- where to go for what service. In
my opinion though being a successful information and referral
specialist, you know, you need to have the customer service
aspect. You need to have a lot more than just reading
abilities. So we're going to start on the first slide with
customer service and for an information and referral specialist
to succeed at providing relevant information they must
possess not only knowledge but customer service skills as
well.


Like I said, you know, anyone can pick up a listing directory
and just read off the stuff to their perspective consumers. But,
you know, you're not going to get the full -- they're not going to
get the full angle of what they need and the services that they
need to be provided to them until, you know, the I&R specialist
really understands what is going on.


I&R specialist really needs to know what you can and cannot
do, you know, for the consumers. Know your boundaries.
Know your parameters. It is okay.


We all know our limitations and we all know what we can and
can't do in our job. I know that I can help somebody find
resources to help maybe pay some electric bills or perhaps to
pay for a first month, you know, rent or utilities.


But I know that, you know, there is not too many sources
throughout that can help somebody buy a car or, you know, or
buy a home right now. You know, that has no credit, you
know, the situation is really bad. So you need to know your
primaries and know what you can do as information and
referral specialist, know what the other agencies outside can
and can't do, and let, you know, if you can't help them, let
them down easy. Don't give them false hope. Don't give
them, you know, rays of sunshine. Be honest with them. Be
practical. And hopefully they're going to really understand
that, you know, you're doing the best that you can and they're
going to appreciate that rather than running them in cancels.


Our next slide is entitled listening skills. Listen and
understand the consumer's issues. You know, let the
consumer speak without interrupting. Most of the calls that I
get, you know, people just really want to vent. They want to
just talk and talk and talk. They want to get everything on their
chest out. And sometimes the first issue that is at hand is
really not the main issue and by letting them speak
uninterrupted, you know, it is going to give you the opportunity
to get to the underlying issue, the main problem that is going
on.


By letting them speak without interruptions, you know, it is
going to help you and it is going to help them and by that, you
know, we're going to be able to find out what they really need
and hopefully, you know, each problem that is built on top of
that will slowly fall like dominoes.


Being biases with your suggestions, you know, a lot of
resources are out there. They are from churches and from
ministries or state agencies and, you know, you may or may
not have the same moral or ethical values as a lot of these
other resources. But if you know that they're going to be there
in the person's best interests and they can help them out,
don't be biased. Don't pass on your expectations and your
morales but the point is to help the consumer. That is the
main point.


Our next slide is called communication skills. I'm sorry. Relay
information clearly and concisely to the consumers over the
phone. Like I said, most of my phone calls I probably take
about 300 contacts per month and a good maybe two-thirds of
them are over the phone. Be able to speak to them. Be able
to pass along the information clearly. By you not being able to
pass along the information clearly, it is going to leave lots of
holes in your service, leave lots of gaps and they're not going
to understand what is going on which means they're going to
be act contacting you again later on or contacting people for
the wrong service.


To help everybody and to accomplish all of the goals at once,
you know, speak clearly and be able to relay the information
clearly.


As well as that -- I'm sorry?
>> Speaker: Andrew if I could add to that for you, , too a lot
of times I think people have contacted folks that have made 8,
9, 10, 12 different calls. They have gotten the run around.
You know, they have been told to call this agency or that
agency. And I think also just to kind of go back to your point
about knowing your resources and knowing your limitations,
and the Center for Independent Living cannot necessarily be
everything to everybody. But when like you said here, too,
clearly and concisely share information with folks then they
can cut down that number of calls that may be inappropriate at
times, too.
>> Andrew Moody: Right. Being on the front lines that
happen to say me on a regular bases where people have
contacted displacement, given us someone else's number and
they contacted the other place and finally they give us the
number and even the number for ABIL and it really shows in
their voice, it shows how frustrated they are because here
they have a concern. They have a situation going on. And
they're just given the run-around. They just want an answer.
They just want to put -- you know, they just want us to put
them at ease. And, you know, if we can't, to be honest like I
said before, know your limitations. Try not to just pass them to
somebody else. Know your resources and try to let that be
the end of the path for them.


Like I was saying with communication skills, also, have good
written communication skills. You know, some people choose
to utilize e-mail. Some people that are deaf or hard of hearing
use TTY systems. I have a lot of consumers and they have a
disability that -- that caused difficulty with their speech. You
know, they don't want to sit there and try to, you know, try to
vocalize what they're trying to say. People that do that, they
get frustrated. Because they're trying to pass along
information to you and you're trying to help them. You kind of
go in circles on this. My consumers that have these
disabilities like to use e-mail and they like to send me an
e-mail or a written letter and basically put all their information
down on one e-mail, one piece of paper. And this way I get
the message and it is all right there and I can help them right
away.


People that utilize TTY services or relay services, you know,
there's a lot more communication styles than just oral
communication. As an information and referral specialist, we
really need to be versed in all of them.


In face-to-face with consumers, show your proper body
language. Show body language that is consistent with the
matter at hand. You know, body language can be just as
strong, if not stronger, than oral communication. If you are
speaking with somebody and they are frustrated, they're
upset, put your body and don't show that you're frustrated and
upset, too. Don't sit there with your arms crossed and your
head down. Look them in the eye and let them understand
that you are concerned and that you're here to help them.


You know, body language can be just as strong as oral
communication. You know, if the consumer sees that you
understand and you want to help them, it is going to make
matters a lot better for everyone.


The next slide is called de-escalation and also crisis
management. Now, crisis management and de-escalating the
contacts, phone calls, e-mails, it is very important because,
you know, when I get calls all the time people are sick of the
run around or people have been told that they can get
services through ABIL but we really don't provide those
services and they're just frustrated. They are upset. And by
them, you know, by me yelling at them and them yelling back
at myself it is not conducive and not going to help anybody.


You need to know really how to take the situation, de-escalate
it, bring it down to your level and be able to talk. Be able to
speak with them.


Do not take matters personally. If I was to take every matter
that I had in an argument with every person yelling at me
personally, there is no way I could be doing my job to this day.
Let the consumers vent without interruptions.


Again like I said earlier, these consumers just need someone
to listen. And they just want to vent. They just want to tell you
their life story that leads up to, you know, the present moment
and it is okay. Let them. By them venting and getting all their
frustration out and them talking to you is a way of just
de-escalating it and by the time it gets to the end of the story,
you know, they're just -- they usually are a lot more calmer
and they're ready to listen and they're ready to accept the
help.


Make sure consumers know that you're there to help. Let
them understand that, you know, we're here to at the. We're
here to help with your situation. We're here to help your daily
living. These are the services that we can provide you. And,
you know, whatever I can do to assist you, I can do to assist
you. I'm here to help you.


Utilize other resources around you. Now, you know, ABIL,
I&R issues is one core service. We have all the other request
services and we also have a number of different services that
ABIL provides to people with disabilities that are not core
services. Know your resources around you. Know who deals
with what program and how to get in contact with them. And,
you know, utilize them. Let them help you to help them.


Offer to follow-up at a later date. You have no idea how many
times I'll be on a phone call and I'll -- you'll be talking to them,
passing along resources and I say "Mr. Jones if it is okay with
you I would like to give you a call in two or three days to see
how things are and if you contacted the other organization and
see what they had to say and take it from there and maybe we
can help further." They become elated. And they feel
somebody is on their side. Somebody is truly, truly out to help
them. And they're not alone. And that is just it. Most of these
people think that they're alone in this world. And by you telling
them that you can offer a follow-up phone call it is going to
make matters so much better.


Not only for them but for you, too.
>> Speaker: Another point, too, Andrew, that we should relay
is that people do return phone calls. I think a lot of people
maybe on the line are always amazed by the fact that
consumers are shocked that we actually call them back. They
leave us a message with their name and number saying
please give me a call back. I have got questions about
services. Amazingly we actually do what they requested. We
call them back. And they said I can't tell you how many
agencies I've left messages with and nobody has called me
back. You're the first one to do so. Thank you. That's just a
huge part of that customer service that we draw here and in
every Center across the country needs to know that it is
customer service and that certainly starts with returning calls
in a timely manner.
>> Speaker: That is our job. Customer service is our job.
>> Andrew Moody: People say to me all the time, wow, you
know, this is Andrew from ABIL giving me a call back. You go
wow you actually did call me back. I will tell them on my voice
mail it says I will get back to them within 24 hours. I usually
call them within, you know, 2 to 3 hours. They're just so
shocked that somebody actually called them back to. me it is
shocking, oh, I'm doing my job. Do they not expect me to do
my job? It is actually, you know, nice to hear on my end which
helps my self-esteem that I'm doing my job correctly and it is
nice for them to know that somebody is out there to help them
out.


Our next slide is called time management and prioritizing
responses. You know, the first thing or the first that I have is
establish routines. Stick to them as long as possible, as much
as possible. We're not coming to work every morning -- I look
at my e-mails and I look at which ones need to be responded
to right there on the spot. Somebody may be being evicted,
somebody might have major healthcare issues. To me those
come first. And then what I do is I prioritize the rest of the
e-mails. I go through my voice mails and I listen to them
briefly and I pick out the ones that I need to respond to on the
spot. And then I work my way down to the ones that are as
important but can have a little bit more time between, you
know, to get back to them. That is the -- I have been doing
that from day one since I started with ABIL and when I worked
for other organizations in the past I've always done that. I try
to set priority lists. I try to keep a routine. By doing that over
and over again, you just get better at it.


Get in the habit of setting time limits. I try to give each phone
call between 5-7 minutes. Obviously each one is a
case-by-case. Some phone calls that take 10 minutes, 15
minutes, 20 minutes. And then you really can't help those.
Obviously you have to treat those, you know, with respect.
But I try to give them each, you know, 5-10 minutes or
7 minutes so I can move on and go to the next caller. But the
ones that need more help, the ones that need more time with
me, you know, obviously they get that.


Utilize a day planner. Utilize your Outlook calendar to
schedule events and follow-ups. I am -- because of my
disability I'm unable to write with a pen or pencil so I live by
my Outlook calendar and I enter dates and I live by that. I
come and I look in my Outlook and it says call Mr. Jones to
see about housing options. Call Mrs. Smith about
transportation and that is how I keep my follow-up
appointments. I always put a little note, you know, on the
calendar of what the situation was and what I advise them to
do and this way it gives me a little bit of a reminder. Then I
know how to start the conversation. I make sure that my
follow-up phone calls and my face-to-face appointments don't
mix and going along with other phone calls or other
face-to-face employments the days I'm out of the office. I
don't want to be considered -- I don't want to be called a liar.
And I want to make sure that I follow what I do. By telling
them I'm going to call them on Monday the 21st at 2:00, you
know, I want to keep my word. It is going to show that I'm
doing the right thing and ABIL is, you know, ABIL keeps their
promises.


My last point on this is keep resources close to hand so you
don't waste time. Don't waste time searching. We use -- I
have a directory of community resources that I keep on a
CD-ROM on my computer. ABIL also has a disability survival
manual that we have been keeping, you know, local resources
in. I keep one of those on my computer as well. You know, I
keep a directory of other services that ABIL provides with the
programs at my desk so I get a phone call. I know exactly
where to send them and I'm not shuffling through papers, not
wasting their time, not wasting my time. So I can get them,
you know, off the phone to the right person. And then I can
take the next call.


The next slide is prioritizing our responses. I think we talked a
little bit about this before. Consider the consumer's needs.
You know, if it is a consumer that is needing housing or having
their electricity turned off and they utilize durable medical
equipment or a respirator, those are the calls that I'm going to
contact first. Those are the ones that I'm going to put the
most time and effort in to help them out compared to
somebody that is just trying to find out where they can get
their, you know, their new tire for their wheelchair. That is
important but it is not life threatening.


Look at the deadlines. Look at their deadlines. Somebody
might be being evicted at the end of the month. And if it is
already a week left before the end of the month we need to
jump on it now.


Is it my fault they contacted me a couple of days before they
get evicted? No but I'm going to do everything in my power to
help them get the resources and services that they need.


What resources are available to them? What resources are
available to them at that moment? Again I try to keep my
resources up-to-date. As soon as I hear that one agency went
under but another team popped up. I make note of that. I put
that in my notes. I also send it to the other programs and
services here at ABIL so they have and up-to-date list as well.


There is another team member who can help them? Again,
ABIL has its four core services plus a bunch of other programs
and services. If somebody else can help them more than I
can, if somebody else is trained more by the Social Security
Administration can answer their questions, I'm not going to
hesitate to contact that person and put them in touch with the
consumer on the phone so they can get their questions
answered right away.


Keep your day planner, your calendar close to you. Close to
void, and any overlapping tasks. As I said I use my Outlook
calendar. Make sure my phone calls and my face-to-face
appointments are not overlapping with any office dates and
I'm going to be doing presentations or out of the office.


Also, don't forget your other consumers. Like I said, it is very
important to utilize, help the ones that need the most help right
away. But then when you have the time freed up, contact your
other consumers. Don't let them, you know, fall by the
wayside. And my next slide is a follow-up consumer.
Follow-up with consumers and consumer relationships.
Timely follow-up and call backs are simple ways to show you
care and you may miss consumers. Like I said by giving them
the call-backs, letting them know that you haven't forgotten
them. They're not alone. Somebody out there to help them.


Follow-up can earn you additional open consumers which
means additional agencies and funding and revenue. Where
customer service agency ABIL is a nonprofit but obviously our
funding is very important to keep our programs and services
open. By you giving good customer service to one consumer
hopefully they can recommend you to their friends who need
services by you opening up new consumers that opens up --
that equals new consumers, more revenue, more consumers.
And also my last point is how do you feel on a business you
solicited from -- I'm sorry. How do you feel when a business
that solicited with you follows up on a business? Personally it
doesn't happen as much as I like to see it but if I'm inquiring
about a program or a service from let's say a school or from a
store, a department store, and they actually contact me back,
it makes me feel really good to know that they're actually
doing their job and they're actually getting back to me and
they value me as a customer.


By them not getting back to me and leaving -- leaving me
hanging, and it is showing that they really don't want my
business. I'm going to look for business elsewhere.


The next slide is our contact information. Darrel Christenson
is our Director of Community integration over here at ABIL.
ABIL is Arizona Bridge to Independent Living. Darrel's direct
number is area code (602)296-0530. And his e-mail is
darrelc@abil.org. and again my name is Andrew Moody, the
information and program coordinator. My direct number is
(602)296-0536. And my e-mail address is
andrewm@ABIL.org. At this point we're going to be opening it
up for some questions.
>> Speaker: Before we do here let me just add that people
across the country can provide information and referral
services in different ways. Sometimes with smaller centers
only had a few staff. They made -- everybody may do
information referral. Everybody becomes a quasi expert in
information referral out of necessity because of a small staff
size. That works great for some. For others maybe a larger
center and they may say there is a point person for I&R.
Everything goes through that person because they're the first
of entry into the agency. And that can work quite well for
some. And I think what we like to do here is kind of a
combination of both. We're fortunately large enough that we
do have Andrew as a full-time staff person devoted strictly
towards I&R. Again he mentioned he does about 300 calls
per month. But we also do not work in silos and we have
other staff that are experts in certain fields and he can then
use the internal resources and internal staff to help him out
and help the consumer out. So there is a couple of different
models that can work here whether you're a smaller office in
Kauai or Maui or if you're downtown saint palm, Minnesota or
Phoenix here. There is a couple of different ways but
regardless of how you do it, information referral is a core
service and really folks it is the doorway, the entryway to your
agency. So just wanted to add that and at that then Tim I
think we can safely send it over to Q-and-As.
>> Tim: Thank you so much, ya'll. Julie would you mind
helping us with the Q-and-A session?
>> Julie: Sure. If you would like to ask an audio question
press star -- sorry. You can press 01 on your telephone
keypad. Your questions will be taken in the order in which
they're received. Again to ask an audio question if you would
press 0 then 1 on your telephone keypad your answers will be
answered in the order in which they're received. And it looks
like your first audio question comes from Miss Lamoy. Go
ahead, ma'am.
>> Audience Member: Question with regards to the
information and referral, when I do a referral, should I
follow-up with the agency and then with the consumer? How
long should I wait for the referral to go to -- let's just say to go
to the food bank and to follow up with food bank that they got
the referral -- let's say I referred Jane Doe to the food bank to
get food and then how long should I say, okay, Jane, did you
go to the food bank to get your food? What is the time that
you recommend to -- for me to do a follow-up call?
>> Speaker: Let me take that if I could.
>> Andrew Moody: Sure.
>> Speaker: We have utilized a volunteer peer mentor to do
follow-up calls at the end of the month and by that Andrew has
his list of all the folks he talks to at the end of the month. The
volunteer mentor comes in and ducts those follow-up calls to
the consumer saying, you know, was customer service
provided adequately? Did, you know, Andrew provide you
with good service? Was it helpful? Do you need any further
services from ABIL? It may be a segway into opening them
up as a new consumer. Or are there other things that we can
help you with? Those are done at the end of the month.
Andrew, do you want to add anything else?
>> Andrew Moody: You bet. When I -- what I try to do with
the consumer is find out the urgency of the situation. When
I'm speaking with a consumer that their family doesn't have
any food, you know, and it is showing that it is urgent and they
need, you know, a referral right now to a food bank or get food
boxes, obviously, you know, I can't -- you know, I can give
them the resource. I can't hold their hand to make sure that
they get the resources and the services that they need but I
could tell them, you know, if it is something urgent like food, all
right, Mr. Jones, today is Wednesday. I'm going to give you a
call on Friday just to see how things went. If it is something
like, you know, they're needing housing but, you know, they're
okay with housing for another few weeks, you know, then I'll
say, I'll give you a call in about two weeks. Let me know how I
can help you from there.


I usually do not contact the other agency because I -- I mean,
that is -- I usually don't contact the other agency because, you
know, I can't hold their hand and make sure that they do the
work. If it is a service that they need it is something that
they're looking, for they have to be responsible for that.


But I can contact the -- I can contact the caller or the
consumer and see where they're at in the process.
>> Audience Member: Okay, okay. So it is all about
independent living. So it is basically I give them the referrals
and they do the work?
>> Andrew Moody: Absolutely.
>> Audience Member: Okay, all right. Thank you.
>> Andrew Moody: Sure.
>> Julie: Your next audio question comes from Brian
Burrows. Go ahead, sir.
>> Audience Member: Good afternoon. You were saying that
you get over 300 I&R calls a month. And I would just be
interested in sort of a break down. How many of those are
electronic and how many are by phone?
>> Andrew Moody: Like I said about two-thirds are by phone.
I have got a much smaller number by electronic format. You
know, if I'm getting about let's say about 300 calls a month,
usually a good, you know, 100 or 120 are e-mails and maybe
from -- maybe there is like another maybe five or 10 that are
snail-mail, handwritten to me. Those are actually decreasing,
too.
>> Audience Member: Okay, thank you.
>> Andrew Moody: You bet.
>> Julie: I do have several other audio questions but I would
like to turn to Mr. Fuchs for any web questions that he might
have.
>> Tim: Thank you, Julie. I have got a number of good
questions. First one comes in from Jessie Broker and Jessie
asks, what if it takes or what do you do if it takes half an hour
for them to give you their story and where do you draw the line
between being a good listener and receiving the shotgun
version of someone's life story.
>> Andrew Moody: Usually within the first few minutes you
can tell where the call is going. You can tell if it is going to be
a life story or you can tell if it is leading to a point pretty fast.
You know, it is -- some day when is I have overwhelming
amount of calls to return obviously I have to kind of, you know,
get the shotgun version a little faster than if I had more free
time on my hands. It is just a -- a situation-by-situation call
and, you know, you really can't tell until you're actually into the
conversation for a minute or two. I wish I could give you an
answer on that. But like I said, it is a situation by situation.
>> Tim: Okay, thanks. You know, I might add that I've gotten
those calls myself and what I try to remember is that usually
this is someone who has been through agency after agency
after agency who has hung up on them. And it is a worthy
investment to spend a few minutes with that person even if it
becomes 20 or 30 minutes.
>> Andrew Moody: Absolutely.
>> Tim: If it is going to get them involved and have the
respect with the agency and have them being a long-standing
consumer.
>> Andrew Moody: Absolutely.
>> Tim: Okay, thanks. Next question comes from Lewis
Walen and Lewis asks, if you can expand on additional
revenue services or excuse me. Additional revenue sources
from open consumers.
>> Andrew Moody: Darrel, would you like to handle this one?
>> Darrel Christenson: Yes. It just can show better on your
funding grants down the line. It may be a United Way. It may
be perhaps some federal funds on your 704 report and Roger
will talk about reporting as well that we can show that we're
doing good service and so even for like our home modification
we get city funds for that and, you know, to show that we do
more than just build ramps and put grab bars in but we also
provide information and referrals. We also are doing other
things that shows for -- it shows well of the agency to any
funder. It may not necessarily directly be tied to I&R for, you
know, stuff -- for staffing of two positions or something like that
directly. But ancillary it does show that the Center is doing
work in the community.
>> Tom: Great. I have some more questions. It is 3:50 but
because we're going to go until 4:35 we have a few strap
minutes. We have a lot of questions. I'm going to continue.
Julie would you mind taking the next couple of questions over
the phone.
>> Julie: Okay. Your next question comes from Carolyn
Joyce. Go ahead, ma'am. Miss Joyce, are you there? We're
unable to hear you. You have your line muted. Go ahead,
ma'am.
>> Audience Member: Hello. Can you hear us? One of my
questions are, we're full-service nonprofit organization so we
have nine core services. We are getting great information and
most of that we already do, that we do prioritize our
consumers' questions and for those special individuals that
need that extra time, we do give them that extra time. But if
we would do all of that, we would be on the phone for the
whole day. So -- we are getting some great information from
you guys. Keep it up.
>> Andrew Moody: Thank you for the call and thank you for
the feedback. A lot of people are doing good stuff and that is
why centers are doing quality service in these economic times
and throughout the country. That is why we exist because
we're doing good service. And you know as
>> Darrel Christenson: As Andrew's colleague I know that
he'll tell you that I just harp on it that it is customer service.
And I have said for many years I have been working for
Centers for Independent Living for 23 years now and if you do
the right thing, and you do -- do it for the right reason, the
money will follow.
>> Julie: Your next question comes from Leslie Shafford. Go
ahead, ma'am.
>> Audience Member: Thank you and thank you for the
wonderful information. My first question, I guess I have two,
kind of a two parter. I'm just curious with the numbers that
were mentioned of 300 callers a month. Do you have a sense
of how many of those were repeat callers?
>> Andrew Moody: I mean there are quite a few repeat
callers, yes. Lots of times they'll go from contacting me on the
first time needing housing and then once they get housing
information then they need assistance for financing their first
month's or security deposit or needing financial assistance
turning utilities on. I don't have a percentage. Most of my
callers are repeats over a few months. Because, you know,
they just build and build and build and you know the services
kind of overlap, too. So it is a lot of -- a big chunk of it is
repeat callers and I would say maybe 50 to 75, you know, on a
monthly basis. But it is kind of hard to keep track over a six
month basis how many people have repeatedly contacted me
within the last six months.
>> Audience Member: That is probably what we have here,
too. I was just curious about that. It is a testimony to the kind
of service that you are delivering, too. Regarding the caller
who calls rather timidly and doesn't give their name. We have
a number of those folks who wish to remain anonymous and
we respect their anonymity. Problem is of course wanting to
do that follow-up call. Do you just stop the call after that or
have you found a way to have people provide information so
you can provide them further information?
>> Andrew Moody: Well, you know, I do get a lot of people
that, you know, they're first time callers or they don't know
what to expect when they talk to me and they don't want to
give out information -- they don't want to give out their own
information to me. Maybe it is because they think we're going
to sell our information to other solicitors and a lot of people
say that to me, too, thinking that we're going to sell out our
contact list to other organizations. I always say when I hear
that little bit of timidness in their voice I say this is just for my
own records. It is not going to go anywhere else. If they're
still reluctant and they don't want to give out the information
then honestly I let it go. I try to provide them with what they
need. I'll ask them, would you like me to give you a follow-up
call in a few days and if they say yes and I say would you
mind giving me your number and contact info? If they say no
thank you anyway, I just leave it at that.
>> Audience Member: Okay, thank you very much.
>> Andrew Moody: Sure.
>> Julie: Mr. Fuchs, do you have any more audio questions
you would like to go over? Mr. Fuchs?
>> Tim: I'm sorry, Julie I had my mute on.
>> Julie: No problem.
>> Tim: I would like to get back to the presentation. I know
there are folks waiting to ask questions. I apologize. We're
going to break again. If you're on the phone, jot down your
question and make sure to remember it so you can ask it later.
If you have entered your question in the public chat, don't
worry. We have gotten it. It is in the queue and we will get to
that in our final Q-and-A break coming up in about 20 minutes.
Now I want to stay on time with the presentation. I'm going to
turn it over to Roger to lead us through the rest. Roger, go
ahead.
>> Roger Howard: Okay, very good. Thank you, Tim. And if
we could go to the next slide. This next half of our webinar
we're going to talk about operationallizing your information
and referral services and this first slide is titled, I&R is a core
service. The art and science of connecting people and
resources. And I really think that's a good description of
information and referral and Andrew and Darrel have talked a
lot about the art of connecting people and resources and now
we're going to talk about some of the nuts and bolts of
operating information referral services and those include
recordkeeping and data management, information resource
management, which, you know, keeping track of all of the
publications and resources and referral sources that you've
developed over time. We're going to talk about policies and
procedures that can help guide the provision of your
information and referral service. We've seen that and it was
alluded to in the first half that there seems to be two primary
approaches to the provision of information and referral
amongst the CIL's around the country and that includes one
being shared responsibility amongst staff. And in some cases
it is all staff, versus having a dedicated staff position.


Then we're going to talk about community collaborations, and
those are the sorts of things that can help you develop an
effective network of services, organizations and agencies out
there. And so as I go through I'm going to give out some
basic information on these -- on these things here and then at
the end we'll provide you with additional resources to where
you can get more information.


Our next slide is with recordkeeping and data management.
Now obviously keeping track of contacts is important for a
number of reasons. And I will give some examples after I talk
here a little bit. After I introduce the key concepts regarding
recordkeeping and data management.


Now, keeping accurate records helps assure accountability
and it can do that both internally at the CIL so that we're
accountable for what we're trying to do and also can help us
assure accountability externally at the referral sources that we
use. Recordkeeping and data management can facilitate
long-term planning and resource allocation and, you know, by
keeping track of the number of calls, the types of calls that
you're getting, we can develop a clearer picture of current
community resources and then work collaboratively with other
organizations to find resources and address unmet needs.


If you're keeping good records it also can identify possible
systems advocacy issues, issues and situations can come to
light and it allows us to strategize, prioritize and have
initiatives to have changes in systems, policies and service.


And as we had heard before, if you're keeping good records,
then you have some verifiable data that you can put in your
funding request, grant proposals and use to back up your
policy initiatives. I'm sure a lot of folks out there have
prepared funding requests and grant proposals and it is very
typical that they require up-front a statement of need.


When we can back up those needs with actual data and
justify, you know, over recent time period that this is current
data, it can really help convince funders to back up these
projects that we want to initiate. And you know an example of
a policy initiative, some years ago here in Idaho -- and
because our information referral service is a primary point of
contact and we get a lot of calls as well, we noticed increased
calls from parents who had disabilities. They were having
problems in child custody legal issues and so we worked back
from there in addition to trying to help them with those issues
and found that some of our state statutes had discriminatory
language in some cases they rated the -- the presence of the
disability in one of the parents as even a greater concern than
abuse or neglect. And so we were then able to strategize with
the groups that we work with to initiate legislation and
convince the legislature to amend the laws and take out this
discriminatory language and we really were able to back that
up because we had kept records and could show the number
and types of calls we were getting.


Next slide, please. And some of the things that I want to talk
about as examples, this one working toward accountability,
you've got -- you have given out 23 referrals to energy
assistance but only six people -- six of the 23 people actually
received assistance when they went to apply for energy
assistance. Well, now we can look and say is this our problem
because we don't understand the eligibility criteria? Are we
sending people on wild goose chases? Or is it external? Is
the problem at the other end where perhaps the entity that
runs energy assistance has a new person there who is turning
people away that should be receiving services through energy
assistance?


And if in either case we can then take steps to address what
the problem is so that we're not sending people out on wild
goose chases and folks are getting the energy assistance they
need during the heating season.


Another example that goes to planning and resource
allocation would be increased contacts for transportation after
the only accessible taxi in a particular town has closed its
doors. And we can over the course of time prior to the next
deadline for applying for a transportation grant amass
statistical data for that town and that geographic area that we
can show the transportation department what the need is to
back up our identified need for funding to either start a
voucher program there or purchase a vehicle that has been
leased out for $1 a year to a private provider.


Another example would be 10 calls regarding the lack of
effective communication for medical employments. Folks are
going to a particular medical facility. They're calling us later
and saying, you know, I'm a person -- I'm deaf. I'm in there for
important medical procedures. Not necessarily emergency
ones. And they're not providing interpreters.


Well, it may be only 10 out of 3000 calls a year but that is a
significant problem. And that alerts us that we can either take
steps -- not either. It is not an either or situation. To do
awareness education and training with the medical facility to
make sure that they understand what their responsibilities are
and ensuring effective communication. And we can also help
educate those folks that called about their rights to effective
communication and if something isn't resolved then we can
help them find the avenues to file formal complaints to try and
force the issue.


Next slide, please. Now, since we're talking about
recordkeeping, we've included a copy of the form that is used
here at our Center for Independent Living just as an example.
Toward the end of the presentation I'll point you in directions
that you can get other similar resources like this.


But this is just something, a paper form that we use. It can be
computerized where we get the basic information from folks,
name, address, where they live, what they are called. Along
the left-hand side of the form we have organized it in terms of
what they called about, the information requested, in the same
way that it is presented in the 704 report in terms of overall
services that are authorized under the Rehab Act. And, you
know, having them listed if someone on staff is not the point
person for I&R, it makes it so much easier for them to
categorize what is being said they can make a checkmark.
They don't have to be trying to write a bunch of stuff down
while they're listening to somebody explain their issues.


Then it is hard to see in this example here but what we have
done is bolded assistive healthcare, pharmacy and
transportation because those are the issues that we're
reporting on in our 704 report in terms of specific follow-up
that -- that is trying to be tracked.


We've done the same thing with the categories of disability so
that it's consistent with what we're reporting on at the end of
every calendar year. And then a lot of the rest of the stuff is
just kind of basic stuff place to jot notes, who the person was
referred to, if we sent any materials, what those were so we
can kind of keep track in case we need to reorder brochures
or pamphlets.


And then because we operate as one of the things that we do
a reutilization program for assistive technology, we try to keep
track of calls where a person has requested a piece of
information or a piece of equipment rather that we don't have.
And again that can kind of help us in terms of determining our
resource allocation as to, you know, you need to be buying
more shower benches to loan out. Those sorts of things.


And I noticed after this was put up that as in most
organizations, we had several versions of this as it keeps
getting improved and on a version that I have right here on my
desk it also asks if the person is registered to vote and we
don't necessarily always ask that but, you know, that is the
kind of thing that we try to do to try tone courage people to at
least participate in the political process to some degree.
Okay, moving on to the next slide on information resource
management. Now before we were actually talking about
managing the data about the calls and the contacts that we've
had and the types of calls and all that. And now we're talking
about actually managing the informational resources that we
use to support those folks that called. And, you know, we
want to make sure that we can manage the informational
resources that we have so that they can be found or retrieved
quickly and accurately and so as far as steps for information
resource management goes, we, and many other Centers,
develop and maintain accurate resource lists, link our Center
-- excuse me -- has probably about 40 different lists, resource
lists that are made available to anybody that needs them from
agencies that provide personal assistance services to
assistive technology and how to receive help getting clothing
and furniture which can be a real barrier to
deinstitutionalization. And in housing we have listed
accessible apartments and housing and utility assistance,
home modifications where people can get information about
financial resources for that and a contractor referral list that
folks can access.


And it's important that, you know, if you're going to develop
those sorts of resources that they be maintained. We've had
instances where because we published these and contribute
them widely, we've actually found our resource lists appearing
on other people's websites or handed out as printed materials
with their logos and stuff on them. And that is okay. We don't
care. But the problem is it is a list from three years ago. And
so, you know, we would rather folks hand out our list or refer
people back to us so we can make sure that those have been
maintained and updated as much as possible.


It is also important, a lot of Centers for Independent Living
have accumulated lots of documents, publications, DVDs,
things like that, and is really handy to kind of have those
cataloged so that they're easy to find. And folks can also be
helped very efficiently with web-based resources. If the
Center has a resource room with a consumer desk, if you will,
an accessible workstation with a phone, computer with
Internet access, maybe that computer has been book marked
with favorite sites that we know many people have benefited
from in the past so folks don't have to be searching all over
the Internet.


And by having someone available as needed to help folks
walk through and navigate the Internet and work on the web.


Then of course it is very important that information resources
be provided in accessible formats. Next slide, please.


And continuing to talk about managing information resources,
this slide is entitled "catalog example" and what we're talking
about here is basically what is called a taxonomy. That is a
system of classification of information and probably the most
widely recognized taxonomy system would be like the Dewey
decimal system in a library.


I'm not advocating that folks go that far; although I have seen
it in use and it worked very well. But, you know, more simply if
you have got your information resources grouped by type and
what I was trying to show here was when someone might call
their construction in a new hotel and want to make sure it is
accessible I will stay there should be an ADA nerd alert here
on this slide. It should be ADA Title III. So you know you're
just going to your section of your resources that is on the
Americans With Disabilities Act going to the documents that
have to do with Title III of the ADA, going to the ADA
Accessibility Guidelines which are part of Title III of the ADA,
and working your way down through common problems in new
construction which has examples for hotels such as no
detectable warnings in hazardous areas. And, so, you can
easily find your way to the kind of information that folks are
looking for and if you're going to develop electronic databases,
it is important that you make them as useable as possible.
Make sure that they're searchable alphabetically, by type of
service, by the geographic areas that services are located in
and the areas that they serve, if there is eligibility criteria and
that sort of thing. And it is also important to cross-reference
your entries. For instance, medical services probably should
be cross-referenced to organizations that provide medical
transportation.


Moving on to our next slide on policies and procedures. What
we have here are suggestions for the kinds of policies and
procedures that can really come in handy as you're trying to
operate an information and referral service. The first listed is
policies on the provision of information. You may want to
have some dialogue within your organization, are we going to
be a limited response information referral service and pretty
much just give out the name of the organizations, the phone,
the address? Or are we going to go into the stuff with more
detail and provide data on the application process, any
policies that an organization that we're referring to that might
affect how somebody interacts with them. And, if so, you're
going to want to have policy that delineate how your Center is
going to do that.


With referral provisions, the next entry on this slide, you may
want to, for instance, have a policy on how often your
resource lists or your databases are updated and how that is
going to happen. For instance, we heard from Darrel and
Andrew that they use a volunteer peer mentor at the end of
every month to do the majority of the follow-up calls that they
haven't made themselves, you know, because it was
something that needed to be followed up within a couple of
days.
Important for information referral to have policies on crisis
intervention. Anybody who is providing an information referral
knows that we sometimes get calls where it's become obvious
that it is domestic violence. There is abuse or neglect.
People may be talking about suicide and having set policies in
place on how to address those, especially when the duty to
warn varies from local and local and state-to-state and then
we have the information referral specialist do their job and do
it affectively and make sure that folks are safe.


Policies on cooperative relationships that might spell out when
your organization is going to develop memorandums of
agreement with others or just to have informal relationship
with them. Is your Center going to take the lead in having
monthly meetings of the local other information referral
providers? And it can also help avoid duplication of effort.


For instance, our state council on the deaf and hard of hearing
puts out a great statewide registry of sign language
interpreters. And so we don't have to do that. We have
access to theirs. And they can refer people as well to the
kinds of resources that they may need that we have.


Other policies and procedures that can come in handy might
include promotion and outreach. How are you going to let the
public know that you provide information and referral and what
to expect when they call.


Policies on follow-up calls, are you going to follow-up on every
one that you can if you have that information? Are you going
to put in time frames, those sorts of things.


Then disaster preparedness. Of course in the case of a
disaster, information referral services, a Center for
Independent Living can be so important.


And, in addition to providing people with the kinds of
resources they need to survive and thrive during a natural
disaster or unnatural one, the information referral service
might want to have its own plan to continue to provide
information referral and that can be developed with help from
other local groups that are already working within the disaster
preparedness so that interruptions of service are as little as
possible.


Moving on to the next slide which talks about the primary --
the two kinds of primary approaches for how a Center for
Independent Living provides. The shared approach versus
the individual approach. Of course the shared approach when
a Center makes it the responsibility of most or all staff to
provide information referral and this can be very flexible
because it doesn't hinge on one person being available when
someone calls or contacts the Center.
It can empower staff because they're developing their
customer service skills, they're developing knowledge of
community resources. But from time to time the shared
approach can lead to inconsistent consumer service because
it just depends on if you call on a given day who is it you're
going to talk to and what their background and experience is?


With the individual approach, obviously when a person like
Andrew has a primary responsibility for the provision of
information and referral they can really be specialized. They
can get training on dealing with difficult situations. They can
spend their time organizing the resources. They can have
contact with other agencies and organizations so that people
know each other, know what they're doing. That sort of thing.
And having somebody that's primary designated for
information referral can free up other staff and support them
so that they have somebody to go to if they're unfamiliar with
some resources.


One of the maybe drawbacks of having a dedicated I&R
person is determining when is an I&R more than an I&R
because as information specialists and committed people at
Centers for Independent Living, we really, really want to do
what we can to help people realize their potential and reach
their goals and so sometimes it is hard to let go and I -- I don't
have any set point to give you about that but I think that it is
something that every Center needs to think about in terms of
when an I&R becomes more than an I&R and maybe needs to
be handed off for a consumer service record to be opened.


Our next slide has to do with community collaborations. With
the proliferation of 211 systems, this is a great advantage for
us and everyone. And of course 211 systems tend to focus on
Human Services but they do a lot more and they're much
more general. Whereas Centers for Independent Living have
great knowledge and expertise, specific to disability issues.
And so by working collaboratively with the local 211 we can
help them increase their resources and their ability to make
good referrals and also make sure they're not referring every
single disability related question to the Center because
frankly, you know, we have limited -- somewhat limited
capacity to respond.


Other community collaborations that can be very beneficial for
a Center for Independent Living are the Aging and Disability
Resource Centers, the ADRCs that have started to appear in
various states supported by the administration on aging. And
primary function of the ADRCs is the provision of information
and assistance on long-term support options and as they
become operational, I know they plan on providing options
counseling for people, helping to provide streamlined access
to services and so developing a good working relationship with
the ADRC can be very helpful and I think a couple of weeks
ago I even heard of an approach where one day a week the
information specialist from a Center for Independent Living
works on-site at the ADRC and an option's counselor, benefit
counselor from ADRC trades places and works at the CIL.


And then of course if you can identify other providers of
information referral in your local area, then you can share
resources and databases, try not to reinvent the wheel when it
is not necessary.


And I haven't been watching. How am I doing on time?
>> Tim: You're doing fine, Roger, because we got a late start
we're going to take as much time as we can for Q-and-A.
We're right on track. Thanks.
>> Roger Howard: Okay. Moving onto the resource page.
I'm sorry, I think we skipped one. That is me. Maybe the
resource page is after me. The slide that appears right now
just my contact information. And so now we're looking at the
information -- okay, there we'll stay on this one. In terms of
getting more information on information and referral resources
and the provision of information referral, I would strongly urge
folks to contact the alliance for information and referral
systems known as AIRS, A-I-R-S and they can be found on
the web at www.airs.org and the alliance for information
referral systems has done a huge amount of work including
they have developed standards which are fairly extensive and
actually very useful for information referral providers to use. It
is a fee-based organization that the center of independent
living would have to join, but I think the rewards could be very,
very much. I think there is quite a bit available on their
website that can help without having to join.


One of the things that I would like to mention just to give you a
flare for the alliance for information referral services is their Bill
of Rights. I do not have a slide on this. But their Bill of Rights
states that the information referral service maintains accurate,
comprehensive, unbiased information about the Health and
Human Services available in their community. The I&R
service provides confidential and/or anonymous access to
information as needed. The I&R service provides assessment
and assistance based on the inquirer's needs. The I&R
service provides barrier free access to information. The I&R
services recognizes the determination and I&R service
acquires that they are empowered to fully -- to the fullest
extent possible. So you can see just from those examples this
is the sort of nationwide organization that falls very much in
line with the kinds of philosophies that we adopt and we put
forward.


For forms, procedures and policies, the Western New York
Center for Independent Living used to run Research and
Training Center on Independent Living management. They
still have on their website a compendium and it has all kinds of
information specific to the operation of Center for Independent
Living and there you can find forms, policies and procedures
and as I understand it these are all forms, policies and
procedures that Centers for Independent Living have
developed over time and have donated for this compendium
for anybody else to go on their news. If you want to look for
some policy examples for the kind of things that I had
mentioned like crisis intervention, that might be a good place
to start.


And then I also have on this slide local and regional alliances
and 211. The reason I put that on there without any contact
information is because if you, for instance, were to Google
AIRS, res-AIRS it also has at license for Virginia, Wisconsin,
Illinois, almost every state has a regional alliance. And, of
course, there were too many for me to list them all. I just put
that in because they're ease dry find and can be a really good
resource for you as you work toward improving and
maintaining your information referral services. And with that I
think we're going to go ahead and break for questions.
>> Tom: Thank you so much, Roger. Actually I wanted to
jump in here just real fast and say because we started a little
bit late I want to take as much time as possible for the
Q-and-A and so if we could go ahead actually to the next
slide. I want to -- there it is. Thank you. Wrap up and
evaluation. I want to remind you all that at the end of today's
call and those that needed to leave sharply at 4:30, go to the
link. This is also available in the url confirmation e-mail that I
sent to you and read out at the beginning of the call. Please
do fill out this evaluation form. Like I said it is very quick to
complete. It is very important to us, too. So I wanted to get
that out of the way. For those of you that are able to stay,
we'll go ahead and get to as many of these questions as we
can. We do have a lot pending so if we don't get to your
question today, what I'll do is I will share that with the
presenters after the fact. We'll respond to you within the next
day or so at most. Let's go ahead and take questions. If
you're going to ask a question on the phone if you could hold
to it one question. Just out of respect for everyone that is
waiting to have their question answered. Thank you very
much. Julie would you help with us that?
>> Julie: Yes, sir. If you would like to ask an audio question
press 01 on your telephone keypad. Again to ask an audio
question press 01 on your telephone keypad. The first
question comes from Vito. Go ahead, sir.
>> Audience Member: Yes, we have a -- in these times of
economic crisis and trying times here, we're referring folks to
resources, you know, over again, over and over again. We're
wondering what strategies you employ that kind of ensure that
you're not sending people to resources where you know or
you may not know that they're out of fund or they go through
funding cycles where they're available in April and they're not
in May and that type of thing.
>> Darrel Christenson: That is a really good question
because a lot of times we don't hear whether or not people
actually get the service that we sent them to and get that
feedback. I say if you utilize some volunteer peer mentors
and have them call maybe some of the agencies that might be
in question about those services or cutbacks and service and
see what their eligibility is. Maybe they have now started a
waiting list. Maybe they dropped a service. You know, get
some information, utilize your peer mentors an extension of
staff. That might be an idea.
>> Roger Howard: I'll take a quick stab at that as well. It is --
you know, we talked about doing follow-up calls with folks.
But we always ask folks, you know, if you don't get what you --
you know, if you're not getting what you're trying to need call
us back. When folks do if we can kind of track that sometimes
we can contact other agencies and try to find out, you know,
what is going on. Are your resources completely dried up? If
so for how long? Is there anything that we can do in
collaboration with other groups to dress the problem? You
know, if it has been cut the Medicaid mental health services
maybe there is something that we can do about that together.
>> Tim: Thank you very much. Julie next question.
>> Julie: The next question comes from Dorie Box. Go
ahead, ma'am.
>> Audience Member: Hello. Hi, this is Dorie Box. Did
someone answer a question from Dorie Box.
>> Julie: Go ahead with your question, ma'am.
>> Audience Member: I submitted it in the public chat and
didn't get a response over the phone.
>> Julie: Okay.
>> Audience Member: It has to do with the callbacks. We're
from Michigan and disability network for Center for
Independent Living in Michigan and our volume of traffic is
enormous. We really don't have the staff and the time to do
the callbacks. That's one issue I want to bring up. Another
issue is that I struggle with how it were to make my agency
that I work for appear if we make ourselves responsible for the
follow through of other agencies and organizations that we
refer our consumers to.
>> Darrel Christenson: You're not responsible for these
services that other agencies provide.
>> Audience Member: I know. I'm talking about appearance.
I'm concerned about appearance.
>> Darrel Christenson: Sure. You know, and I think Andrew
has talked about that from down here, too, that people refer
folks over to us and say you know call ABIL. They can -- they
have such and such and such and such. They get upset at us
because we have never had that service. And so you know
we just have to tell them that there was some
misunderstanding. Andrew, how do you handle that?
>> Andrew Moody: Like I said, you know before, that is why I
don't actually contact the agency that I'm referring to. I don't
want to get into too depth, the situation of their -- I want to
space myself out a little bit. I do try to do as many callbacks
as I can. I always ask the consumer if they would like for me
to give them a call back. Most of them say no. Thank you but
don't worry about it. We still have our peer mentor, volunteer
at the end of the month go through our calls and find out, you
know, what the end result was. To find out if we can assist
them any more. But I always say whatever I can resource I
say, you know, you may want to contact this agency for their --
for assistance in financial resources. I say but let me just let
you know in this's economy a lot of agencies don't have the
resources right now. I try to give them a brief overview. I kind
of let them know this is the best that we can do.
>> Audience Member: Could I respond to that?
>> Andrew Moody: Please.
>> Audience Member: I find it is more important for us to do
our homework in advance before -- if I have time to do that,
that is like a priority for me. I don't like to refer any one to any
agency unless I'm fully aware of what the agency does.
>> Andrew Moody: I try contact the agencies regularly but the
services change so much in today's economy and funding I
don't want to be on the phone all day with the agencies but
with the consumers.
>> Audience Member: We get a lot of updates with the
agencies here.
>> Andrew Moody: Once I get the updates and we get a lot,
too, from our other consumers as well as staff who utilize the
services more on a regular basis and as soon as I get those
updates I do make changes to my records.
>> Audience Member: Thank you for your feedback.
>> Julie: Mr. Fuchs do you have any audio questions you
want to go over?
>> Tim: I do, Julie before. I get to that I want to get to one I
have gotten from four or five different people. I know that
we've address they'd but I just want to see if there are any tips
that we can give and a few different inti raisings, a lot of
people are wondering when does an I&R become a CSR and
how do you handle that and are there any triggers or definite
policies that you have to help guide that tips for the audience.
>> Darrel Christenson: Roger, do you want to handle this
one?
>> Roger Howard: I address it as best I can. What we found
is so many people with disabilities that call us have such
capacity to do whatever they need to do on their own with the
-- pointing in the right direction and giving the information and
referral resources they need, off they go. We never hear from
them again. They're happy. But oftentimes when folks call
and they have a number of issues. They may have only called
about one, you know, they're calling about housing. And then
as you get to talking with them you find out the reason they're
calling about housing is because they're waiting for their
roommate to come home and beat them. And so you know I
mean sometimes, you know, we're starting to okay, now,
maybe you need to come in here. We can send the vehicle to
come and get you if that is going to happen. And it goes from
just being a request for looking for an accessible apartment to
helping somebody put together a whole package that they're
going to need to move elsewhere. And I don't mean to use
such a strong example but oftentimes we find that, you know,
folks we're explaining for instance how to contact Social
Security and what steps to take to resolve a particular problem
and the person is -- you know, for whatever reason not able to
follow through with that. We're going to invite them to open up
a CSR and work with one or more folks here to see if that can
happen.
>> Tim: Thank you, Roger. Okay. Here is another question
before we go back to the phone. This one comes from Alexa.
And aelection a wondering regarding not imposing your
morales on consumers what do you suggest you do when you
have an issue like a parent who is looking for something like a
child and you're not sure it fosters Independence. Do you
remain studiously neutral or try to indicate that such is not
really your general focus?
>> Andrew Moody: No. You try to look at their perspective
and where they're coming from as a parent and then lay out
the options. Lay out -- help them to see the pros and cons,
you know, of each of their options that they have available to
them. They may not, first of all, know that they have options.
And if they do then they may have not even processed the
pros and cons of each of those choices but helped them in
their terms, in their views and morales and ethics and
perspective, help them to kind of see, you know, the answer
for themselves because there's no way that they're going to
work hard toward achieving our goal if it's not their goal. And
so I think that's really critical. Really helping them to kind of
process it through so it becomes their answer. Then they're
very motivated to reach those goals.
>> Tim: It is quarter till the hour. Let's take one more
question over the phone and like I said thank you so much for
your patience, everyone. If you have not gotten a response
live on the call we've cataloged these questions. We will
respond. If you are waiting on the phone and you're not going
to get a chance to ask your question, please let me offer
myself as a point of contact. My e-mail is tim@ncil.org and I
would be happy to forward your questions to the right
presenter. Julie take one more question from the phone
before we send.
>> Julie: That question comes from Robin Histoff. Go ahead,
ma'am. Go ahead, ma'am.
>> Audience Member: I think I&R and one of the most vital
services that we offer. I think, you know, with all the things
you mentioned earlier, it can be education, affirmation, and I
can't count how many times people have said how glad they
were to be able to articulate their whole question and
sometimes problem solving and figuring out their problem is in
the process. And I'm wondering in this day of constant
funding cuts, how to keep our communities and national
policymaker as wear of the value of ILCs. This is something
that takes up a lot of our time when you're allowing people to
speak and not giving them a short answer you will not have
the number of places of this and the 211. How do we keep
our advocacy efforts up for the support of ILC?
>> Darrel Christenson: I think it kind of comes back to what I
keep preaching and if you do the right thing for the right
reason somebody is going to follow. If you can follow it
through the tracking mechanisms and you know show the
community the work that you're doing, give yourself credit for
what you're doing. That is going to go a long way. If you
happen to have a chance to go to a funder and have
consumers that can say and tell, you know, funders how to
change their life and they provided the inspiration, motivation
and the pom-poms to make a change in their life. You can
catch it from again both ways and it is numbers game and it is
a human impact game.
>> Tim: Thank you, everyone. Again if we did not get to your
question my apologies. Not only will we make sure you're
responded to but I got a note from Richard petty the folks at
I&R are offering to put up a wiki web page with the answers to
all the questions so everyone can both see the questions and
the answers and get something out of it. Thank you so much
to them for offering to do that. I want to thank all of you for
being here today. And for staying with us until the end. I
especially want to thank our presenters, Roger, Darrel and
Andrew. You guys did an excellent job preparing, this holding
today's call and thanks to you, too, for staying a little bit late to
make sure everyone got responses to their questions.


I'm going to mention a couple of things. Again, please do fill
out the evaluation form that was sent to you. Also, please be
aware, this is the first in a series. Like I said there are four
more of these calls coming. It is on the four core services and
I know that makes five calls total. We're soliciting out
individual and system advocacy and we'll do two on those.
Announcements are sent out shortly and registration are
opening for those as we move into the spring and early
summer and also if you have not seen go to our website,
registration is open now for our next on-site training. Which is
happening May 12th through 14th in Atlanta Georgia. Called
keep it real, it is on youth leadership development and Centers
for Independent Living. I think it is a fantastic training. If
you're not aware of it check it out on our website. Thanks
everyone for being with us today. Again if you have a
lingering question didn't you type in the public chat, go ahead
and e-mail it to me at Tim county at ncil.org. Presenters if you
could hold the line. Everyone else have a wonderful day.
>> Cart Provider: Please disconnect. Your event has ended.
   This text is being provided in a rough-draft format.
Communication Access Realtime Translation is provided in
order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be
a totally verbatim record of the proceedings.

				
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