September - October 2005 News for people with disabilities, their friends, families and communities. Volume 23, Issue 5
6th Annual Freeport Wheel-A-Thon Raises $23,700! RAMP
reach their goals. Celebrates
This Stephenson County event
takes place every year at Freeport’s
very own Krape Park. The Wheel-A- BY JULIE BOSMA
Thon not only continues to grow EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
financially but we have also been Can you remember when you
adding new events to promote were 25 years old? Were you still
awareness and to increase the fun. living at home? In your first apart-
This year’s festivities included face- ment? First ‘real’ job? Do you
painting for children and our new remember being able to stay up
version of a cakewalk, the Cake-N- late and still get up early the next
Roll for adults and children alike. day?
The Rockford Chariots players For some of us, that 25th year in
joined us again this year and chal- our life is getting to be a distant
lenged some of us to a good wheel- memory. At 25, you have the
chair basketball game. Thank you world ahead of you. You are pret-
BY JACKIE NIEMAN than we had hoped for considering the Chariots! ty much done with your formal
SERVICES MANAGER This year’s event ran smoother
decrease in corporate sponsors. It education, you have had your
Wonderful weather, good friends, feels so good to work for an agency than ever. Over 70 wheelers regis- heart broken a few times and you
excellent food, face painting, wheel- that is appreciated by the community tered this year and we had a crowd of have some cash to call your own.
chair basketball, lots of disability and, specifically those lives we touch well over a hundred! The grand total You have begun to settle down
awareness - these all come to my day to day. The Wheel-A-Thon not raised from this event totaled over into what your life pattern will be
mind when I think of this year’s 6th only raises much needed money to $23,700. This includes our two events with family, work and maybe
Annual Freeport Wheel-A-Thon. support our services, but it allows our in June that lead up the Wheel-A- even own a home.
RAMP did it again – we raised more consumers and their families to give Continued as Wheel-A-Thon... At 25, RAMP is in the same
money than last year and more money back to the agency that helped them on Page 6 place. We have sown our wild
oats, have learned a ton, had our
Four or M or e… .A cc e s s ible Ground Flo o r - heart broken many times and still
know that the world is at our feet.
A G ui de t o t he La w Re quiring We are almost ‘all grown up’ now
A c c e s sibilit y in Multi-family Housing and the possibilities for our future
are endless. We are full of energy
BY KIM MONTGOMERY
ple with disabilities a longer lifespan, that a failure to design and construct and enthusiasm and know that
EDUCATION & ADVOCACY COORDINATOR
significant numbers of people will be multifamily dwellings to include cer- whatever we put our minds to, we
Fair Housing Facts able to remain in and safely use their tain features of accessible design will WILL accomplish!
Did you know that since 1991, any dwellings longer. be regarded as unlawful discrimina- We look back over the past 25
multi-family housing built consisting Section 804 of the Fair Housing tion. years with gratitude for the
of four or more units is required by Act Amendments of 1988 was The Fair Housing Act is intended lessons we have learned and
law to be accessible and adaptable to passed to protect people with disabil- to place modest accessibility require- proud of the progress we have
give people with disabilities greater ities from discrimination in housing. ments on covered multifamily made. The landscape has surely
freedom to choose where they will As a protected class, people with dis- dwellings. These modest require- changed over the past 25 years
live and greater freedom to visit abilities are unique in at least one ments will be incorporated into the and we are delighted that we
friends and relatives? Federal Fair respect because they are the only design of new buildings, resulting in played a major role in those
Housing Law proactively addresses minority that can be discriminated features, which do not look unusual changes.
the needs of an evolving population, against solely by the design of the and will not add significant addition- Yet, while we look back fondly
looking ahead at future needs. With built environment. The Fair Housing al costs. Fair housing units are not and relish our accomplishments
the aging of the population, the Act remedies that in part by estab- fully accessible, nor are they purport- over the past 25 years, we are
increase in incidence of disability lishing design and construction ed to be; however, new multifamily
that accompanies aging, the effects requirements for multifamily hous- Continued as 25th Anniversary...
of war and the fact that advance- ing built for first occupancy after Continued as Fair Housing...
on Page 13
ments in medical science allow peo- March 13, 1991. The law provides on Page 15
202 Market St.
Inside Rockford, IL 61107
Address Service Requested
U.S. Postage PAID
Permit No. 812
- Medicare Part D Information 2 - Outstanding PA . . . . . . . . . . 11
- Murderball Movie Review . . 3 - Lifetime Homes . . . . . . . . . . 12
- Back to School . . . . . . . . . . . 4 - 25th Anniversary Party . . 13
- Details from DeKalb . . . . . . . 5 - Deaf News . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
- Stephenson Scoop . . . . . . . . 7 - Development Corner . . . . . 15
- The Buzz in Boone . . . . . . . 10 SLANT archives on www.rampcil.org.
2 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
C om p e t it ion vs. F raud
Look Before You Buy called them. A representative from happening right here in “River City“. Medicare beneficiaries’ id numbers
The Scooter Store came to her apart- Another issue is the service aspect. and submitted claims for equipment
(from The Scooter Store)
ment, got all of her Medicare infor- The manufacturer of medical equip- that was never provided to them.
GUEST EDITORIAL ment will only honor warranty work Suppliers have submitted claims
mation, took her prescription for the
BY BECKY LICHTY
new scooter, and left. Several weeks on equipment through the provider of including pictures of fake deliveries
later, Rebecca received a phone call the equipment. If Rebecca’s power of equipment with people who have
Competition: The effort of two or saying that her equipment was ready wheelchair had a motor go out 3 been paid to pose on the equipment.
more parties acting independently to for her and they were going to deliver months after she got it, only The Doctors have signed blank Certifi-
secure the business of a third party by it. When The Scooter Store rep Scooter Store would be able to repair cates of Medical Necessities and sup-
offering the most favorable terms. showed up he had a brand new power it free to Rebecca. If she went to pliers have filled them out and
Fraud: Deceit, Trickery wheelchair for her. another dealer, they would charge her submitted them to Medicare.
In our community there is both honest Immediately Rebecca said that it for that part, since she didn’t get the Suppliers have persuaded people to
and deceitful competition. It is my was not what the doctor had ordered power wheelchair from them. Where purchase power wheelchairs that did-
feeling that recently there has been an and asked them to take it back and is The Scooter Store now? Either n’t need them and they would bill
influx of deceitful competition geared bring her the scooter that would work nowhere to be found, or “cannot Medicare for them.
toward the elderly and people with better for her in her apartment. The schedule you for 3 months”. How Lastly, that physicians were given
disabilities. answer to that request was a very sim- mobile will Rebecca during that time? “kickbacks” for writing prescriptions
Being a business owner, I welcome ple, “NO!”. When Rebecca called her physician for power wheelchairs.
competition because it keeps us on Firstly, the doctor had not ordered a to let him know that she received the In April of 2005, the US Depart-
our toes. We pride ourselves on our power wheelchair, so why they pro- power wheelchair, she was told that ment of Justice filed a suit against The
service. We strive to do the right thing vided her with one is curious. Sec- this wasn’t the first time he had heard Scooter Store charging them with
for our customers. It upsets us when ondly, a power wheelchair is more of that happening to one of his submitting fraudulent power wheel-
we see outside competition, that does- expensive than a scooter. She is not patients. What can we do to stop chair claims. According to the DOJ,
n’t play fairly, come into Rockford the only person in her apartment this?! the Texas based company has billed
and take advantage of citizens in our building that had this experience. Again, I welcome competition, but the government for more that $400
community. Another woman that I know of had I do not welcome fraud of taxpayer million in claims since 1997.
Over the past six or seven years, the same thing happen. Medicare will dollars. How many times is it happen- The choice is yours. Where you get
Government spending on power pay $1,583.19 for a scooter and ing and how many times is Medicare your mobility products is completely
wheelchairs has increased drastically. $4098.24 for a power wheelchair. The paying more than they should? Will I up to you. You have the right to make
Last year, the Department of Health difference is $2,515.05. That means have Medicare benefits when I need that decision. All I ask is that you take
& Human Services released a report that for Rebecca alone, Medicare paid them? care in selecting a provider. Medicare
documenting that Medicare expenses $2,515.05 more than what they In September of 2003, Medicare will only help with power mobility
went up 450% between 1999 and should have. Double that for the sec- launched an investigation called products every so often. If you are
2003, to $1.2 Billion for power ond woman in Rebecca’s building “Operation Wheeler Dealer”. After stuck with something you cannot use,
wheelchairs alone. The report went and the Scooter Store walks away documenting the fact that Medicare Medicare won’t help again for
on to say that they found that only with an extra $5,030.10. had been paying millions of dollars in approximately five years.
13% of those it surveyed met the Just assume that The Scooter Store fraudulent claims for power wheel- If you feel that you have been a part
Medicare coverage requirements. did the same thing at four other older chairs and scooters, they linked the of this fraud, by ANY provider, report
Very recently we received a phone adult facilities in Rockford. Four claims to unscrupulous practices of it. I would suggest that you call the
call from a woman (we will call her facilities x 2 people at each facility is some Medicare enrolled suppliers. following places:
Rebecca) who had gotten a scooter 8 people. Multiply that by $2,515.05 Some scenarios are: Kim Montgomery (RAMP) 815-
from us in 1999. It was worn beyond and you get $20,120.40 billed to Medicare has been charged for 968-7467; Better Business Bureau,
repair so her physician wrote a pre- Medicare that shouldn’t have been. power wheelchairs when the cus- 815-963-2222; Attorney General Lisa
scription for a new scooter. Having Now THAT is fraud, deceit, trickery, tomer has been provided a less expen- Madigan, 815-967-3883; or Medicare
seen TV ads for The Scooter Store or whatever you want to call it, but sive scooter. Beneficiary Help Line, 800-633-
touting “no expense to you”, Rebecca that, my friends is what appears to be Suppliers have gotten hold of 4227.
Me di c a r e Pr escr ip tion Drug Cov e rage I n fo r m a ti o n
BY PATTY STORY much they cost. There will be month- period (November 15th through drug coverage is available now on
INFORMATION & REFERRAL SPECIALIST ly premiums, deductibles and co- December 31st of each year). They the Medicare website,
Medicare is a Federal health insur- payments. Social Security is will then have to pay more for their www.medicare.gov or the Social
ance program for people age 65 or providing extra financial help to pay premiums (1% for each month they Security website, www.socialsecuri-
older and some people with disabili- these expenses for people with limit- could have had it but didn’t take it). ty.gov. Another very helpful website
ties. Medicare was enacted into law ed income and resources. To qualify Therefore, it is better to choose a is www.illinoisbenefits.org, which
in 1965 and went into effect in 1966. for this extra help, an application plan and sign up early. has a question and answer section
Medicare isn’t intended to pay for from Social Security must be com- Your local RAMP office can help and is very user-friendly.
100% of medical bills, so there are pleted. If approved for the extra help, you complete the paperwork. Call Now is the time to find out about
some out-of-pocket expenses. There the premiums, deductibles, and co- any RAMP office to set up an this important program so you will
are also some things that Medicare payments may be paid by Medicare. appointment to discuss your options. be ready when it is time to sign up.
doesn’t cover. One of these things is Social Security has been sending Information about the prescription
prescription medication. applications for the extra help to
Beginning in 2006, Medicare Pre- many people on Medicare. These Medicare Part D Workshop
scription Drug Coverage will be should be completed and mailed in Lifescape Community Services is offering a FREE workshop to anyone
implemented. There will be several as soon as possible. interested in learning more about Social Security’s new Medicare Part
private companies (prescription drug People can begin applying for the D coverage and the subsidy program that gives “extra help” to the
providers) who will be approved by prescription drug coverage on seniors over age 65 and individual with disabilities who receive
Medicare to provide this coverage. November 15th, 2005. Medicare. Call 963-1609 to make your reservation.
Anyone on Medicare can be eligible The initial enrollment period for
October 27th & November 29th
for this coverage, but they must this coverage ends on May 15th,
10:00 a.m.; 1:00 p.m.; 5:30 p.m.
select a provider and sign up for their 2006. If someone does not enroll
prescription drug plan. The plans during this period they must then Lifescape Community Services
will vary in what they cover and how wait until the next annual enrollment 705 Kilburn Avenue, Rockford, IL 61101
Joy exists only in self-acceptance. Seek perfect acceptance, not a perfect life. - Anonymous
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 3
Game on! Murderball Movie Review
A REVIEW BY ED HOOPER
self, he told me. And Zupan feels that
REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION FROM getting injured was the best thing
RAGGED EDGE MAGAZINE ONLINE AT that’s happened to him (His reaction
is not uncommon among quads who
Murderball is getting rave reviews have survived and carved out a life
from film critics like Roger Ebert of for themselves.). Their reconciliation
the Chicago Sun-Times, who pre- on-screen is quite moving.
dicts an Oscar for it for best docu- Murderball is about winning and
mentary. It won both the Sundance losing. It’s about driven athletes. But
Audience Choice Award and the it’s mostly about survival and mov-
Special Jury Award for editing. ing forward after one is injured. It’s
But the critics got one thing about people, people who succeed
wrong: Murderball doesn’t dispel and people who fail. Sound familiar?
myths and stereotypes. It takes big It’s about life.
fat bites out of those sugary sweet, In real life, it doesn’t have to be
pathetic images and stereotypes, quad rugby — you can find your
chews ‘em up and spits ‘em out. It’s Murderball Photo courtesy of THINKFilm passion and pursue your dreams with
not a magic pill that will make pity Hogsett are in reality articulate, He spins around and gets the feel. He any sport or work or art. It’s whatev-
and stereotypes go away, but it is good-natured guys, quite different wants to hit something. He feels free. er motivates you. You can move past
quite simply the best film ever made from their rugby personas. They He feels hope. All the while, a phys- the devastation of being severely
on disability. have wry, sarcastic senses of humor, ical therapist is telling him to be injured and live a happy, fulfilling
It amazes me that these filmmak- and they want gold, not hugs. They careful; he’s too fragile. (Quads in life.
ers were able to render such an hon- want women, not mommies. And the movie theater watching this If you able-bodied folks want to
est portrayal of living life from the they succeed. Women love quads, scene just laughed.) Zupan comes up get some inkling of what living with
seat of a wheelchair. Somehow, and we love women. Women see to him; Cavill inches forward, then a disability is like, go see Murder-
either by the sheer exposure to the quads as safe and exciting because lightly bumps Zupan’s everyday ball. You’ll learn more in 85 minutes
people or by some innate under- there’s an instinctive curiosity chair. You can tell he wants to give than you could in a lifetime of polit-
standing, directors Henry Alex women have about how “things Zupan a good solid whack. A quad ically correct “education.” This
Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro “got work.” If they get too curious, they rugby player is born. movie is that good.
it,” and this film is a joy to watch, find out exactly how things work. Finally, there is Chris Igoe, whom Editors Note: Rumor has it that on
especially the way we did, at a Anyway, those “rugby faces” on I met at the screening and liked September 16th, Murderball will be
screening with family and about 12 Zupan, Cohen, and Hogsett we see at instantly. Zupan and Igoe were best coming to Rockford’s Colonial Vil-
other quads. tournaments don’t seem to be who friends. After the drunken accident lage Theatre, 4228 Newburg Road.
This movie is funny. It is sad. It is those guys are at all. So that insight that broke Zupan’s neck, Igoe Confirmation of this information
fiery, fast, frank, explosive, sexy, is refreshing. blamed himself. The two became was not available at time of print.
tender, loving, and the action is Then there’s Bobby Lujano, who estranged, Igoe nearly suicidal with Call 1-800-FANDANGO for updated
bone-jarring, just like quad rugby, comes off just like, well, Bobby guilt. Igoe has finally forgiven him- show times.
aka Murderball. Lujano. His scenes are poignant,
The music is perfect. The editing powerful, thought-provoking. When
superb. his father hugs him after the USA
What more could you ask for? loses to Canada in Athens, the love
How about an obsessive villain, Joe leaps off of the screen and into your
Soares, and a scary-looking good heart. If you’re a softy like me, you
guy, Mark Zupan, who looks like he will cry.
just jumped out of the X-Games, tat- Murderball also follows a newly
toos and all? Soares left Team USA injured guy, Keith Cavill. His por-
when he wasn’t chosen to be on the trayal had me flashing back on my
2000 Paralympic team; out of early days of rehab. Watching his
revenge he became the coach of ride home from rehab, with his quad
Team Canada. This prompted some hand stuck out the window feeling
Team USA members to call Soares a the scary air of freedom, was emo-
traitor. Zupan said, “I wouldn’t piss tional. We’d all had that same feel-
on him if he was on fire.” Game on! ing: “Ok, I’m out, but now what?
That’s the underlying conflict that I’m screwed.” It’s painful to watch
drives Murderball to its conclusion: him go through what every new
USA vs. Canada, Soares vs. Zupan spinal cord injury goes through, but
and every member of Team USA. that’s what shapes us. That’s what
But there’s a much higher message makes us strong or that’s what
coming out of this movie, because breaks us.
the filmmakers focused on the peo- In a scene later in the film, Zupan
ple. Even Soares is softened in the visits the rehab center and puts Cav-
end, thank God. ill into his rugby chair. Cavill lights
Zupan, Andy Cohen and Scott up for the first time since his injury.
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4 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
Getting to School - Appropriate Transportation
BY RICHARD HUNT transportation is required, it must other medical equipment such as professional expertise and skills to
YOUTH EDUCATION ADVOCATE
be provided at no cost to the family. oxygen tanks or ventilators. make the decisions when transport-
The Individualized Education Plan Routing becomes a critical com- Transportation on a regular school ing. If training is necessary, it
(IEP) is a description of services to ponent when formulating trans- bus should be the first priority of all should be addressed during the IEP.
be provided to children with dis- portation for students with disabili- students with disabilities when pos- All IEP’s are to be reviewed
abilities during the course of a ties. Several factors must be consid- sible. School district policy and stu- annually to address the educational
school year. The IEP team designs a ered during the IEP process. The dent needs should dictate the appro- and related services for students
student’s education plan, establish- educational program location must priate transportation mode. with disabilities. If circumstances
es goals and objectives/benchmarks be in the least restrictive environ- Transportation should not violate occur that require changes to be
and determines related services that ment in which the IEP can be the integrity of the student’s educa- made to ensure that safe transporta-
may be needed for the student to implemented. Educational pro- tional requirements. tion remains available to and from
benefit and be successful while in grams should be located as close to One of the most important pieces school, then your child’s IEP
school. One of the areas the IEP a student’s residence as possible. to providing transportation is to be should be reconvened to address
team must consider is transporta- Considerations for the type of vehi- certain that all staff involved have and meet those needs.
tion. It is documented on the IEP as cle transporting students include been properly trained and have the If your child has a disability and
a related service. If it is anticipated size, seating arrangement and experience needed to safely trans- you have questions regarding their
that the IEP team might recom- accessibility. Every possible effort port all students. Education and education needs, please call your
mend an aide, vehicle adaptations, should be made to keep students transportation staff may lack the local RAMP office.
non-routine bus schedule or precau- who use wheelchairs in their wheel-
tions due to medical conditions, chairs when transporting.
someone knowledgeable of the dis- Transferring a student from their
trict’s transportation system should wheelchair to a seat on the bus
Top 10 Tips for Back to School Time
be involved in the development of should only be done with the
the IEP. knowledge and agreement of
When transportation becomes an school, family and only with appro-
issue, there are questions that must priate safety precautions and equip-
be asked by the IEP team. Can the ment. It may also be necessary to
student utilize regular transporta- include input from a student’s doc-
tion? If not, can regular transporta- tor to assure the student can safely
tion be safely utilized if supplemen- be transported given the environ-
tary staff, equipment or services are ment, health issues, behavioral con-
provided? If not, what type of spe- cerns and the length of the ride.
cial transportation is required? Is an State regulations require that the
aide or other qualified personnel IEP team put forth every effort to from RAMP’s Youth Education Advocacy Team
available? Is a responsible adult restrict the travel time on the bus to
available for pick-up and delivery 60 minutes or less. 1. Pull out current IEP for this school year.
of student? In addition, it may be Students with special needs can 2. Review goals, objectives, schedule, how much time will be spent
necessary to review alternative and should be included on regular in regular education classroom, etc.
transportation options to meet stu- transportation when it is appropri- 3. Are related services set up to begin at the start of school?
dents needs, such as parents, rela- ate and does not endanger them- 4. Meet your child’s teacher(s). This is a perfect opportunity to
tives and public or private trans- selves or others. This includes the establish a working relationship with the teacher/team to avoid
portation services. When special transportation of wheelchairs or an adversarial relationship.
5. Do you know what questions to which you need answers ?
6. Have there been any changes over the summer (i.e. medication,
Did you know.... treatment, diagnosis) of which the IEP team needs to be aware?
7. Set up a system of communication with the school.
there are 13,000 Illinois residents under 8. Do you need to request a meeting of the IEP team to update/
the age of 60 who live in nursing homes? revise the IEP? A meeting can be requested at any time by
parents or members of IEP team.
Many of these people could live in the 9. Do you have a copy of the school’s disciplinary handbook?
community with the proper supports. Tell 10. Do you have a copy of the Parent’s Rights Handbook from
Illinois State Board of Education (blue book)? If you need a
your State Legislators to support the copy, contact RAMP or go on the ISBE website
Community First Act. (www.isbe.net/spec-ed/html/parent_rights.htm).
Your time may be limited, but your imagination is not. - Anonymous
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 5
by the support of the DeKalb
County community over the past U.S . Cel l u l a r He l ps Ra i s e
Details years and hope to see many of you
Fun d s fo r RAMP
at the 5th Annual DeKalb County
From DeK alb Gather your friends, family, and
co-workers and enjoy a family
friendly morning at RAMP’s
office on the corner of Annie Glid-
BY GRACIE WARREN den and Lincoln Highway. The
DEKALB SERVICES MANAGER, AND
action begins at 10:00 a.m. on Sat-
urday morning when people start
arriving to register, socialize and
DeKalb Wheel-A-Thon is get first pick at decorations for
October 1st their wheelchairs. At 11:00 a.m.,
Over 120 people wheeled, walked, we kick off the event and after you
pushed or volunteered at last have completed the route that
year’s 4th Annual DeKalb County takes you through the beautiful
Wheel-A-Thon. This year, on NIU campus, you will arrive back
October 1, we hope to surpass this at RAMP’s office for a picnic
number and the total of $21,000 lunch and an awards ceremony.
brought in by business sponsors, To learn how to participate in Over the last year, U.S. Cellular, through its C.A.R.E. Program,
consumers, NIU students and the 5th Annual DeKalb County raised funds for RAMP through donations of used cell phones.
business teams. Wheel-A-Thon, call 756-3202 The total amounts of funds raised through this program was
Once again, Senator Bradley voice/tty. $2,501. Recently, we learned that U.S. Cellular was matching this
Burzynski and Sal Bonanno of This year’s Wheel-A-Thon is amount, making the total donation to RAMP $5,002. Pictured
DeKalb Associates have gracious- sponsored in part by the Daily
above is RAMP’s John Beck (center) accepting the check from
ly agreed to be our co-chairs for Chronicle, DeKalb Associates and
the event. We have been blessed
U.S. Cellular’s Shana Welch (left) and Jay Roberts (right).
Kishwaukee Community Hospital.
I D EA B ur den of P roof -
Sc h a ffer vs. Weast 1 5 th An n u a l Be l v i d e r e
BY THE RAMP YOUTH EDUCATION disabled child and a local school
Mopa r Ha p p e n i n g
ADVOCACY TEAM district reach an impasse over the
RICHARD HUNT, JULIE CRAIG, child’s individualized education
HEATHER PERKINS & CINDY program, either side has a right to
bring the dispute to an adminis-
The Individuals with Disabilities trative hearing officer for resolu-
Education Act (IDEA) was put tion. At the hearing, which side
together because children with has the burden of proof-the par-
disabilities were being excluded ents or the school district?”
from their non-disabled peers, When parents and school dis-
not receiving an appropriate edu- tricts do not agree about the ser-
cation, and not being allowed to vices the district has offered,
be a part of their communities. either party can file a due
Although IDEA has brought process. Once the hearing officer
many changes and has improved has made a decision, either party
the outcomes for children with can appeal the decision in the “Lil' Red Package” won one of the “Best of Show” awards
disabilities, there is still a long state and/or federal court (Circuit
way to go. Courts). The Circuit courts have
With current rules and regula- heard many cases on IDEA where On July 17th & 18th, Chicagoland Mopar Connection held its
tions of IDEA, parents are a part burden of proof has been an 15th Annual Belvidere Mopar Happening at the Boone Coun-
of the IEP team but they do not issue, and have come to different ty Fairgrounds. RAMP had a booth in the Ladies Oasis and
have the final say. If parents do decisions. Currently, the Circuit gave out information about RAMP services and handed out
not agree with what their child’s Courts are split 7 to 4, in favor of funnels and shoe polish that was supplied by ITAC.
district has offered to provide school districts having the burden RAMP staff had the privilege of picking out one of the “best
their child, they have the option of proof. of show”. This was a difficult task to choose just one out of
of filing complaints, mediation At this time, over 20 disability the many great restored hot rods, classic and vintage cars. And
and due process. organizations and 8 states have the winner is....Lil' Red Package (pictured above) owned by
On October 5th, the U.S joined Virginia in filing amicus
Supreme Court will be hearing
Joe and Maryanne Thiel of Wisconsin. Chicagoland Mopar
briefs in support of Brian
the case of Schaffer vs. Weast. Schaffer. Illinois is one of the
awarded the winner with a plaque.
This case will decide who has the states that have joined Virginia The Chicagoland Mopar Connection donated all proceeds
burden of proof; the parents filing through Attorney General from the event to RAMP and Friends Forever Humane Society.
due process against the district or Madigan.
the district, which is responsible It is up to you as parents,
for providing a free appropriate friends, and family members of
public education in the least children with disabilities to
restrictive environment. In a ensure that the rights of our
recent Wrightslaw newsletter future are not put in jeopardy.
(www.wrightslaw.com), the ques- Call RAMP to learn how you can
tion presented is “Under the show your support for Schaffer in
Individuals with Disabilities Schaffer vs Weast.
Education Act, when parents of a
Providing Services and Advocacy for People with Disabilities for 25 Years
6 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
Continued from Cover
Thon, the Golden Corral Kickoff and
our Cedarville Summer Celebration.
In addition to raising additional
money for the Freeport Wheel-A-
Thon, these events helped get the
word out to increase participation.
RAMP staff can never sufficiently
thank all the volunteers and planners
for their time and efforts. Ray and
Jeri Nieman have been organizing RAMP Board Treasurer Jack Sos-
the picnic every year since this event nowski of Honeywell having a blast
began. Jeri ensures that the meat and at the Wheel-A-Thon.
chips are donated and then, to top it Services finishing a close third. The
off, they have the meat cooked and Highland Community College company whose employees com-
ready before the first wheeler gets in Cougars showed their support for bined to raise the most money was
line for lunch! Rene Meyers of the RAMP at the 6th Annual Freeport
Kaitlyn Nesemeier singing the MetLife whose eleven participants
Freeport Park District works to Wheel-A-Thon.
National Anthem along with the raised a total of $1,290.
ensure the park is in tiptop condition Petsche (Highland Community crowd to kick off the event. Also participating were AMCORE
and helps us haul coolers, food, signs, College), Cindy Rackow (RAMP), money to support RAMP but gives Bank, Ashley’s Hope, C & K Wild
etc. around in her Gator! We thank Lee Ann Smith (U.S. Cellular), Patti you a chance to meet others who feel Wheelers, Cornerstone Credit
our friends of RAMP such as Sandra Wilburn (RAMP) and Dawn Zuehlke strongly about independence for Union, Dream Team, Freeport
Beck, Megan Borchardt, Cody and (Highland Community College). people like me. RAMP, keep up the Health Network, Highland
Tyler Hale, Tana, Mason and Participants make the event! great work and I will see you next Community College Cougars,
Whitney Hellwig, Jess Johanasson, We are very grateful for the efforts of year!” Way to go Kay! Metlife Claims, Metlife
Anthony Kendrick, Mr. and Mrs. all of our participants. As mentioned Coming in second was Lee Ann Underwriters, MS Support Group,
Patrick Kennedy, Brianna & Ali earlier, over 100 people participated Smith from U.S. Cellular with $928, Prairie Grass Hill Farm, Teddy
Kraft, Michelle Miller, the Scott & in this year’s event, with 70 partici- followed by Debbie and Heath Bears, Union Savings Bank, and
Debbie Nesemeier family, Trent pants bringing in a total of $12,064. Roush with $914, Pat Diddens with West Side Wheelers. The top three
Obert, Anna & Toni Perkins, Tom However, we wish to thank and con- $750, Bob Beck with $745, Terrie teams received a plaque and gift cer-
Pulley, and John, Kasey and Kortney gratulate our participants who raised Glick with $430, Donna Brately with tificates to local businesses.
Whitmer who all assisted the morn- the most. The individual who raised $380, and Ashley Leary with $350. Congratulations to the winners and
ing of the event. A huge thank you the most this year was Kay Woods Team Challenge grows thank you to all participants.
goes to Representative Jim Sacia for with $1,200! When asked why she A huge thank you goes out to all the
teams that participated this year. The Support of Business
kicking off the event. And of course, worked so hard to support the
MS Support Group had t-shirts made Sponsors continues to grow
we could not have pulled the event Wheel-A-Thon and RAMP, Kay
The funds raised from our business
off without the hard work of our very responded “I am all for being able to for their team, the Highland Cougar
sponsors this year were very impres-
own staff! THANK YOU ALL! stay independent and RAMP has the Team was dressed to impress, and
sive. Their generous support totaled
Special thanks to this year’s know how and ability to direct one to MetLife’s employees came through
$9,700 in actual dollars and several
Wheel-A-Thon Committee. They do this. When I had an issue trying to with three teams this year. This year’s
thousand more through in-kind sup-
are: Dana Haynes (MetLife), Anita obtain a variance from the City of competition was extremely close
Freeport, RAMP assisted me with port. We thank the many businesses
Hottmann (Honeywell), Connie with the top three teams raising $700
some legal advice and attended that contributed. As beneficiaries of
Kraft (RAMP), Leslie Mastroianni plus. Coming in first was Monroe
(Fehr-Graham & Associates), Rene meetings with various departments Clinic, with Mr. D’s Landscaping
Meyers (Freeport Park District), to get the approval. RAMP stood by taking a close second and MetLife
Debbie Nesemeier (MetLife), Jeri me for the almost 2 ½ years it took to
Nieman (Jackie Nieman's grandma), get the variance approved. The
Heather Perkins (RAMP), Carolyn Wheel-A-Thon is not only to raise
Lane Hellwig enjoys a popsicle and
Breanna Wilburn looks forward to waves for the camera after the
the Wheel-A-Thon every year. Wheel-A-Thon picnic.
Wheel-A-Thon participants compete for cakes in a side-event, the Cake-N-
Roll (RAMP’s version of a Cakewalk).
Serving the community for 65 years
Our personal, professional service includes:
* VERY COMPETITIVE PRESCRIPTION PRICING * SENIOR DISCOUNTS - OVER AGE 50!
* FREE PRESCRIPTION DELIVERY * 1 CALL - WE TRANSFER PRESCRIPTIONS
* MEDICARE BILLING * COMPLETE HALLMARK CARDS & GIFTS DEPT.
* DIABETIC SUPPLIES
WE ACCEPT MOST PRESCRIPTION INSURANCE PROGRAMS
Highcrest Centre - 1660 North Alpine Road
Pharmacy - 399-2502 Home Health - 399-2504 UPS - 394-2863 Gift/Photo/Stamps - 387-2037 MS Support Group’s Wheel-A-Thon team picnics after wheeling the course
Open 8am-9pm Daily, Sat & Sun 9am-5pm 24-Hour Automated Line - 484-8626 through Krape Park.
Instead of loving your enemies, treat your friends a little better. - E.W. Howe, American Novelist
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 7
Landscaping - Northwestern Illinois to support the Freeport Wheel-A-
Mutual Insurance - Proto Cutter - Thon. Our invitation offered the
State Bank - Stephenson County opportunity to either participate in
Farm Bureau - Stephenson County the Wheel-A-Thon or support it with
Pork Producers - Women of the a donation. Many responded by sign-
Moose Freeport Chapter ing up to participate and helping us
Wheelchair Suppliers raise the tremendous amount of
DeKalb Home Care - Garrity Home money earlier described. Many oth-
Tom Hellwig (left) and Tyler Hale ers who were unable to participate
(right) participated and volunteered
Care - Mobility Connection –
at the event. Rockford Park District - Visiting sent us a supporting donation.
Nurses Association To date, we have received $615
these businesses’ generosity and car- Mr. D’s Landscaping won second
place in the Wheel-A-Thon Team from 20 individuals and businesses.
ing for their community, RAMP asks In-Kind Sponsors
Challenge by raising over $700 for We greatly appreciate this support,
you to patronize them often! Avon Lucille Rackow - Beach’s
RAMP’s services. which certainly increases the Wheel-
Supper Club - Brown’s Shoe Fit Co.
Media Sponsors A-Thon’s success.
Bronze Wheel Sponsors ($300) - Country Kitchen - Cub Foods -
23 WIFR - The Big Easy 93.7 and We thank the following for their
Country Kitchen - General Casualty Culver’s - Dairy Queen - DeMeester
Hit Radio Q102.1 - The Journal generosity.
- Kiwanis Club of Freeport - Morse Flower Shop - DeVoe Floral -
Standard Citizens State Bank, Lena - Tim
Electric - Northern Illinois Physical Diamond Dave’s Taco Company -
Gold Wheel Sponsors ($1,000) Therapy Dasko - Terry Fox-Wubben - Furst-
Econo Foods - Fitness Lifestyles -
All-American Escrow & Title Co. - McNess Co. - William Higgs -
Aluminum Wheel Sponsors Freeport Country Club - Gran Prix
Stephenson Co. Chapter of Thrivent Beverly Kruse - Joan Larson -
($100) Lube Center - Hartman’s - Hinckley
Financial - WalMart Robert & Mary Luecke - Vicky
Aero Group - Bocker Group - Brad Springs - Jiffy Lube, Inc./Rock River
Silver Wheel Sponsors ($500) Niedermeier - Donald Ostrowski -
Nieman Air Hammering & Drilling - Lubrication - Lena State Bank -
4T’s Trucking - Cornerstone Credit Alfred Parker - People First - Ronald
Brian Stewart & Associates - Lindo Theatre/Classic Cinemas -
Union - Freeport Health Network - Pieper - Connie Roethe-Smith -
Country Inn & Suites - Fraternal Mama Lena’s - Rite-Way Furniture
Freeport Home Medical - MetLife - Linda Runge - David Swank -
Order of Eagles #679 - Imperial & Appliance - Save-A-Lot -
Monroe Clinic - Newell Rubbermaid Pauline Thorp - U.S. Bank - Cynthia
Palace Chinese Restaurant - J.H. Serendipity Candy - Sullivan Foods
- Federal Express - Freeport Park Wilson - Anthony Wool
Barkau & Sons Auto Sales - Jack Wheel-A-Thon Appeal
District - Golden Corral Myers Consulting - Lender Tree & In May, RAMP mailed an invitation
the participants were mostly kids & Mason Hellwig; Patti Wilburn;
STEPHENSON but the adults soon joined in and the
competition grew fierce.
Jackie Nieman; Heather, Toni &
Anna Perkins; Brett Blair; Kari
SCOOP An intense thunderstorm rolled in
at the end of the evening but this
Landman; Julie Bosma; Becky
Maggio; Laurie, Alan & Jordan
didn’t stop the fireworks from tak- Boeck. We also want to thank those
ing place once the skies cleared. that baked items for the bake sale
RAMP made $233 from the event and Cake-N-Roll: Jacque Nelson;
towards the Wheel-A-Thon and the Heather & Whitney Hellwig; Mari-
The Cake ‘N’ Roll activity at the
Summer Celebration attracted
Village of Cedarville has asked us to an Smith; Julie Craig; Deb Obert;
many participants. do it again next year with added Patti Wilburn; Lori Garner; Toni,
Summer County Crime Stop provided free
activities. So if you didn’t get to the
event this year, make sure you don’t
Anna & Brett Perkins; Linda Stil-
son; Jordan Boeck; Jeri Nieman;
Celebration Was hot dogs, chips and pop for every-
miss out again next year! Alice Dahm; Angie Esling; Diane
one. There were craft vendors with
A Hit various items to admire or purchase.
A big thank you to all those who DeSpain and anyone else who may
BY CINDY RACKOW volunteered: Kris & Jamie Brad- have brought something and/or par-
Freeport Park District loaned us
YOUTH EDUCATION ADVOCATE bury; Connie & Brianna Kraft; Jeff ticipated.
their mini-golf game, there was a
It’s always a little scary to put on a wheelchair course to maneuver and
new event, but the Summer Cele-
bration in Cedarville looks as
relay games for the kids to partici- PECATONICA PHARMACY
though it will turn into an annual The biggest hit of the whole event Complete Prescription Service H O M E R E M E D I E S
event. The gym at the Community was RAMP’s Cake-N-Roll. This is Most Insurance COSMETICS - GIFTS
Center on June 25th was packed our own version of the traditional
with people of all ages enjoying cakewalk but the participants use a
Plans Accepted Hours: M-F 9-6; Sat. 9-1
food, vendors and games. The Vil- wheelchair to go around the circle in
lage of Cedarville and Stephenson an attempt to win a cake. Early on, 413 Main Street Pecatonica, IL 239-1200
SALES & SERVICE
(815) 965 - 8090
Products & Vehicle Modifications for Mobility, Accessibility & Comfort
Knowledgeability, Quality & Attention to Our Customers’ Needs
ROGER & BECKY LICHTY, OWNERS 2400 11th Street, R ockford, IL 61104
Providing Services and Advocacy for People with Disabilities for 25 Years
8 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
RAMP PEOPLE WHO SERVE YOU
RAMP is a Center for Independent Living organized as a not-for-profit cor-
poration and governed by a Board of Directors.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
President Rick Haefele Published bi-monthly by Regional Access & Mobilization Pro-
Willie Wierman Social Security Administration ject, Inc., the SLANT is distributed by mail free to anyone who
AMCORE Bank requests it. Large print, Braille, and audio cassette versions are
Vice-President Prairie State Legal Services also available upon request. Contact any RAMP office to add
Arles Hendershott Love your name and address to the RAMP SLANT mailing list.
Milestone, Inc. Harlan Knuth
If you would like submit an article or news release to the
Treasurer SLANT, send your information to us by the first Friday of Febru-
Jack Sosnowski Sharon Opsahl ary, April, June, August, October or December. We may need to
Honeywell Sensing & Control Midwest Life & Health Group call you to verify information, so be sure to include your name and
Secretary Caroline Seabaugh phone number.
Dawn Zuehlke Self-employed Printing and postage costs are partially defrayed by our advertis-
Highland Community College ing revenue, so we urge you to patronize our advertisers.
Past President Retired from Sundstrand editor - design - layout contact us
Joe Marshall Linda Sullivan Nicole Hytinen 202 Market Street
Landstar System, Inc. IETC Rockford, IL 61107-3954
Caroline Seabaugh (815) 968-7467 V/TTY
(815) 968-2401 TTY
office hours (815) 968-7612 FAX
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR M-F : 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
email the editor
Julie Bosma website firstname.lastname@example.org
Chairman Jeanne Kerns Peter Roche
Daniel J. Nicholas Kendal Kerns Kim Schweitzer
Bruce Atwood Larry Liebovich John Thayer Remembering RAMP
Tara Blazer Mary Norman Jean Van Landingham Have you remembered RAMP in your will?
Edward Enichen Harry Ritter Ray Wood You can do so by adding a simple codicil, or amendment, to
STAFF your will. If certain RAMP services are special to you, provide
specifically for them. For more information, contact John Beck,
Boone County: Melissa Yerk Erickson, Services Manager; Jennifer Jacky,
Development Director, at RAMP’s Rockford office, (815)968-7467.
Independent Living Advocate; Becky Maggio, Independent Living Advocate.
Consult your attorney in regard to changes to your will.
DeKalb County: Julie Craig, Youth Education Advocate; Susie Halverson,
Independent Living Advocate; Patti Story, Office Assistant/I & R Specialist;
Gracie Warren, Services Manager. How You Can Help
Stephenson County: Brett Blair, Brain Injury Case Manager Assistant;
Kristine Bradbury, Parent Mentor; Dana Crone, Brain Injury Case Manager; Donating money, making in-kind contributions, or volunteering your
Jeff Hellwig, Independent Living Advocate; Connie Kraft, Personal Assis- services are ways to help RAMP serve the community and people with
tant Coordinator; Jackie Nieman, Services Manager; Heather Perkins, Youth disabilities.
Education Advocate; Cindy Rackow, Youth Education Advocate; Patti
Wilburn, Office Assistant/I & R Specialist. Your involvement will help provide the resources RAMP needs to
Winnebago County: Rhonda Barrigas, Services Manager; John Beck, strengthen and expand our efforts to promote an accessible society for
Development Director; Julie Bosma, Executive Director; Sarah Bouton,
Office Assistant/I & R Specialist; Sandy Coates, Deaf Services Independent I wish to help RAMP promote an accessible society:
Living Advocate; Lynn Foster, Community Reintegration Coordinator; Jodi
Glennon, Deaf Services Advocate; Kari Landman, Deaf Services Manager; Name...............................................
Kim Montgomery, Education & Advocacy Coordinator; Christy Morris, Address ...........................................
Brain Injury Case Manager; Jacque Eckhardt-Nelson, Administrative City..................................................
Director; Richard Hunt, Youth Education Advocate; Nicole Hytinen, Mar- State, Zip.........................................
keting Coordinator/SLANT Editor; Lynn Rehnberg, Brain Injury Case Phone ..............................................
___ I enclose my donation $ .........
Manager; Deb Rogers, Development Associate; Joanne Rouse, Services
___ Phone me to discuss volunteering, in-kind gifts, or other methods
Director; Karen Salazar, Personal Assistant Coordinator; Janet Salley, Sign of financial support.
Language Interpreter Scheduler; Alison Swansbro, Financial Assistant;
Melinda Wachlin, Office Assistant/I & R Specialist.
RAMP serves people with disabilities in Boone, DeKalb, Stephenson,
and Winnebago counties. We serve you from four offices:
- 1022 W. Lincoln Highway, DeKalb, IL 60115
Phones: 815/756-3202 Voice; 815/756-4263 TTY; 815/756-3556 (fax)
- 530 S. State St., Suite 103, Belvidere, IL 61008
Phones : 815/544-8404 Voice/TTY; 815/544-1896 (fax)
- 773 West Lincoln Boulevard, Third Floor, Freeport, IL 61032
Phones: 815/233-1128 Voice/TTY; 815/233-0743 (fax)
- 202 Market Street, Rockford, IL 61107
Phones: 815/968-7467 (V/TTY); 815/968-2401 TTY; 815/968-7612 (fax)
RAMP Staff www.rampcil.org
There is nothing wrong in making a mistake - as long as you don’t follow it up with encores. - Anonymous
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 9
CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Want to add your event? Call Nicole Hytinen, RAMP SLANT Editor, (815) 968-7467 v/tty.
MONTHLY SPECIAL DATES
Anger Alternatives: A fresh approach to handling a misunderstood emotion. September 8-29 : Freeport Park District - Fishing Club. Poles and bait
Weekly classes start the 1st Tuesday of every month, 10a.m. - noon at Hope are provided if needed. Bring your favorite chair and sit on the bank of the
Reformed Church, 5770 Spring Creek Road. The cost is $7/person per week. Yellow Creek in Krape Park and catch that big one! Minimum group size is
For more information, contact Ron or Tanya Muzzarelli at 815-877-8372. 8 participants. Thursdays from 6:15-7:15 near the boat docks at Krape Park.
Caregiver Support Group: 1st Thursday of every month in the private $12.50 for Freeport residents and $13.50 for non-residents. Register by call-
dining room at VanMatre HealthSouth Rehabilitation Hospital, 950 S. ing 235-6114 and reference ID # 481-1.
Mulford Rd., Rockford. 10 - 11 a.m. For more information, call Debbie September 14, 15 & 19 : The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile. Provides
Miller, RN at 381-8950. free health care to uninsured or underinsured children ages 0-18 who need
Chronic Pain Support Group (through American Chronic Pain Assoc.): care. By appointment only, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. at Capron Elementary School,
2nd Monday of every month, 10 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. at the Winnebago Pub- 200 N. Wooster St., Capron. To schedule an appointment call 815-971-
lic Library, 210 N. Elida, Winnebago. For more information, call Beth 5800. For more information on the Care Mobile, call 815-971-6627
Moore at (815)247-8885 September 17 : Pet Fest 2005 - Friends Forever Humane Society, 966
Epilepsy Support Groups: Rockford: Contact Dina Romaro at 964-2689. Rudy Road in Freeport. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Cat show from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
Family Support Center of Rockford Public Schools: Provides train- Dog show from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Plus pet related activities and vendors,
including a pet agility demonstration. Raffle and food. (815-232-6164).
ing/opportunities for parents, every Thursday, 3-4 p.m., Roosevelt Com-
September 20, 21, & 22 : The Ronald McDonald Care Mobile. Provides
munity Education Center, Room 324. Call 966-3250, ext. 2500.
free health care to uninsured or underinsured children ages 0-18 who need
Fibromyaliga Support Group: Every 2nd Tuesday of the month from
care. By appointment only, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. at McDonald’s Restaurant,
6:30-8 p.m. at Camelot Towers, Womens Center. Call Norma Cassioppi,
1313 N. State St., Belvidere. To schedule an appointment call 815-971-
398-6237 for more info. Speaker every month. 5800. For more information on the Care Mobile call 815-971-6627.
Forest City Post Polio Support Group: “A Beam of Hope” Every 2nd September 23 : Freeport Park District - Hay Ride/Cookout/Camp Fire
Tuesday, 6:30-8:30 p.m., OSF St. Anthony Medical Center, St. Francis Rm, Songs. Take a hayride and roast hot dogs around the campfire and enjoy
5665 E. State St. Call Georgia Sullons, President, at (815) 988-4093. singing your favorite songs, 6-8 p.m. at the fire pit in front of Oakdale
Freeport Multiple Sclerosis Support Group: Every 1st Monday of the Lodge. $4 for Freeport residents, $5 for non-residents. Register by Septem-
month, 6:15 p.m., various locations For more info, contact Jackie Nieman at ber 16th by calling 235-6114 and reference ID # 523-3.
RAMP - 233-1128, Pauline Miller - 235-4874 or Mary Calivoda - 233-1852. October 1 : The 5th Annual DeKalb County Wheel-A-Thon. 11 a.m. at
GROW Mental Health Support Group: GROW in Illinois meets every 1022 West Lincoln Highway in DeKalb. Use a wheelchair to travel a 1.5
Tuesday at 6:15pm at the Rochelle Community Hospital. GROW is a confi- mile route through NIU's Campus to help create awareness of disabilities
dential, anonymous 12 step support group that has been in Illinois for 26 and to raise money for RAMP. See page 5 for more information.
years. For more information please call Cindy Reynolds at 815-985-6307 October 13 : RAMP's 15th Annual Luncheon. 11:45-1:30 p.m. at Cliff-
Huntington Disease Support Group: 2nd Sunday of each month from breakers, 700 West Riverside Blvd, Rockford. See page 13 for details.
2-4 p.m. in the St. Francis Room at St. Anthony’s Hospital in Rockford. October 15 : Flu Clinic at the Boone County Middle School, 8 a.m. – 4
This support group is for anyone affected by Huntington’s Disease, their p.m. For more information contact the Boone County Health Department at
caregivers and professionals. For more info, call Ted or Kathie at 282- 815-544-2951.
0600 or Wendy or Henry at 232-1599. Next meeting will be in October.
Multiple Sclerosis Support Group (east side): 1st Tuesday of every
month, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Swedish American Hospital, 1401 E. State St.,
in the 1st floor conference room. Please contact Donna Sonneson at 633-
3471 or Carol Delheimer at 877-4253 for more information.
Multiple Sclerosis Support Group (west side): 1st and 3rd Thursday of the
month, 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., Rockford Memorial Hospital, 2400 N. Rockton
Ave., in the cafeteria meeting room 4. Call Deniece Burnell at 877-4256 .
National Fraternal Society for the Deaf: 1st Thursday of month, 7 p.m.,
Center for Sight & Hearing, 8038 MacIntosh Lane, Rockford.
NISDOG - Northern Illinois Spasmodic Dysphonia
Organizational Group: Meetings scheduled by demand. All speech
disabilities welcome. Contact Sue at 895-6456 or email@example.com
for more info or to express interest in a meeting.
NU-Voice (Speech Disability Support Group): Every 2nd Sunday, Van
Matre Healthsouth, 950 S. Mulford, Rockford, Gene Storey, President,
NU-Voice Club of Rockford, 288-7258, or Ken Hawes, Speech Patholo-
gy Department, Rockford Memorial Hospital, 971-5074.
Parents & Grandparents of Children with ADD, ADHD and
Sensory Integration Disorder Support Group: 2nd and 4th Thursday
of each month from 6-8 p.m. at Zion Lutheran Church, 925 5th Ave.,
Rockford. To register, call Jeanne Thomas at 964-4609.
Silver Bullet Scooter Club: Meets the 1st Sunday after the 3rd of
each month at 3 p.m. for cocktails and to share information. Open to
all adults with disabilities. Silver Bullet Lounge, located in the Pump
Handle Inn on the corner of 11th St. and Harrison Ave. in Rockford.
Stateline Stroke Support Group: Last Tuesday of every month.
Meets in the main dining room of VanMatre HealthSouth Reha-
bilitation Hospital, 950 S. Mulford Rd., Rockford. 3:30-5:00 p.m.
Social time is 3-3:30 p.m. For more information, call Debbie
Miller, RN at 381-8950.
Traumatic Brain Injury Support Group: Every 3rd Tuesday, 7-
8:30 p.m., Van Matre Healthsouth, 950 S. Mulford, Rockford. Call
Dave Beutel, Julie Pick or Linda Urbanski, 971-9876 for further info.
Vision Impaired Exercise Class: Every Mon & Wed - 9:30 to
10:30 am, Center for Sight & Hearing, 8038 MacIntosh Lane,
Rockford. Call 815-332-6800 voice or 815-332-6820 tty for info.
Providing Services and Advocacy for People with Disabilities for 25 Years
10 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
R A M P H olds Aw arene s s Activitie s a t Sa fe Ni g h t E v e n t
BY BECKY MAGGIO pleasure of holding disability aware- obstacle course using a wheelchair activities. Many participated in each
INDEPENDENT LIVING ADVOCATE and shooting a basket at the end of
ness activities for the youth that activity several times. They were
Youth Services Network (YSN) held attended. There were three aware- the course. Station #2 had vision able to ask questions about different
its annual Summer Safe Night at the ness stations that focused on mobili- awareness activities where youth types of disabilities and talk about
Belvidere Park Pool on July 29th. ty, vision and hearing impairments. were blindfolded and asked to put a friends or family members they
Safe Night is a semi-annual party in Youths visited each station and after Mr. Potato Head together or asked to knew with disabilities. Safe Night
a safe place that YSN holds for completing the activity they entered find as many safety pins as possible was sponsored by ALERTA,
Boone County youth 5th to 8th their name in the raffle for prizes that out a bowl of rice using just touch. Belvidere Park District, Belvidere
grade. Entertainment included swim- were awarded at the end of the night. Station #3 had hearing awareness Police Department, Kiwanis Club,
ming, dancing, and other activities. Station #1 was a mobility awareness activities. Youth could learn to use RAMP, Rosecrance, RSVP, Univer-
RAMP staff and volunteers had the activity that involved negotiating an sign language to spell their name or sity of Illinois Extension Boone
learn signs for common phrases or County (4-H), Youth Services Net-
activities. Youth were very eager to work and YMCA.
participate and really enjoyed the
Cassie Pridie, RAMP Volunteer (back) and DaMarco Stokes (front) assem- Belvidere Police Chief Jan Noble participates in one of RAMP’s mobility
bled a “Mr. PotatoHead” while blindfolded. activities at Safe Night, hosted by Youth Services Network.
Coming soon to Belvidere… Seeking Committee Members
BY CHRISTINA VANDER ZEE designed to provide multiple BY MELISSA YERK ERICKSON also those who push strollers and
LIFESCAPE COMMUNITY SERVICES BOONE COUNTY SERVICES MANAGER
opportunities for socialization pull carts to carry goods and sup-
Adult Day Services will soon be and re-motivation therapy. In times when people are beginning plies.
offered in Belvidere. Opening Bright Side offers the following to understand the importance of Some local businesses and agen-
date to be announced. Lifescape’s opportunities to its participants: equal access and disability aware- cies have already recognized the
Bright Side Adult Day Services - Music, exercise, and arts & ness, and as Boone County contin- importance of accessibility and how
provides safe, therapeutic day- crafts activities. ues to change and manifest new making a few simple changes and
time care designed to meet the - Medical monitoring including growth to the area, the Boone Coun- accommodations can enhance their
needs of functionally and/or cog- medication administration by a ty RAMP office is seeking residents quality of service to the community.
nitively impaired adults through registered nurse. and representatives from local busi- Almost everyone, at some point in
an individual plan of care. A vari- - Qualified, professionally nesses and agencies to form a his/her lifetime, will experience the
ety of social, health, and other trained staff at a 1 to 6 staff to proactive educational advocacy need for an accommodation to
related support services are pro- participant ratio. committee. This committee’s pur- access a building or service. This
vided in a protective setting for - Hot, nutritious lunches and pose is to act as a support, a committee’s mission will be to see
the infirm elderly as well as dis- snacks. resource, and an educational tool for that Boone County answers to that
abled individuals ages 21-60. The - Rehabilitation therapy. businesses, agencies, and our entire need and becomes accessible to all.
goal is to promote a community - Round trip transportation in community to become more aware If you are interested in finding out
based program designed to meet wheelchair accessible vehicles. of issues of accessibility and pro- more information or would like to
the needs of functionally Bright Side participants can vide possible solutions to benefit be a part of this committee, please
impaired adults in a structured, attend one to five days per week all! We recognize this will not only contact the Boone County RAMP
comprehensive program provid- for up to eight (8) hours per day. benefit people with disabilities but office at 544-8404.
ing health and social services in Respite service is provided both
addition to therapeutic activities. to meet the needs of caregivers in Networking Group for Parents
Bright Side’s service allows care- the workforce and also caregivers
givers to continue with employ- in the daytime home setting. For Are you a parent? Do you have questions regarding your children? Do
ment and daily living routines more information regarding you want to network with other families from the area?
while their loved ones thrive in a Bright Side Services, please con- RAMP’s Boone County office is proud to announce the formation of a
stimulating, caring environment tact Kelly Schleich at 964-2433. parent’s group, in affiliation with Parents Care & Share of Illinois. The
group’s purpose is to network area families of children with disabilities
Boone County Council On Aging in order to discuss pertinent issues that affect your everyday life. We will
share resources, ideas, and more so that you can be informed and pre-
The Keen Age Center pared for your child’s future.
PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION - WHEELCHAIR LIFTS - CALL FOR A RIDE We are hoping to hold our first meeting at the end of September. If you
MEDICAL CAR ESCORT - INFORMATION & ASSISTANCE - COMPUTER LAB are interested, please call Jen for more information at 815-544-8404.
IN-HOME CARE - SUPPORT GROUPS - SENIOR CENTER
OUTREACH - VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES - MEDICARE ASSISTANCE
**Keep an eye out…In November, The Salvation Army
2141 HENRY LUCKOW LANE BELVIDERE, IL 61008
815/544-9893 (VOICE & TDD) 800/961-5336 will be accepting applications for Christmas Assistance.
WEBSITE - WWW.KEENAGE.ORG Call 815-544-3892 for more information.
Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. - Lao-Tzu, Chinese philospher and founder of Taoism
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 11
Back to the Basics: What is the Home Services Program?
BY JENNIFER JACKY Although services between the dif- - Require services which cost the monthly cost of $1,290.72 per person.
INDEPENDENT LIVING ADVOCATE A total of 1,980 people were served
ferent programs do vary, they all have same or less than the cost of a nursing
The Home Services Program (HSP) the same goal which is to preserve the home on the AIDS Waiver with an average
offers individuals with disabilities, dignity of individuals and their fami- - Have less than $10,000 in non- monthly amount of $1,127 spent on
who are at risk of premature or unnec- lies by providing options that address exempt assets for customers age 18 or each individual.
essary institutionalization, the alterna- the personal needs and preferences of older, or $30,000 in family assets for Through homes services, customers
tive of in-home assistance where the customers. Some of the services customers under the age of 18 are given the opportunity to enhance
home care does not exceed the cost of that may be provided are personal - Apply for Medicaid and cooperate their ability to expect and achieve a
a health care facility. In order to pro- assistant or homemaker services, with the Department of Healthcare more self-directed life. Not only do
mote independence amongst their adult day services, 24-hour Electronic and Family Services the guidelines set by DRS allow indi-
customers, HSP offers an individual- Emergency Home Response, assis- - Be a resident of Illinois and U.S. viduals the opportunity to function as
ized approach in order to enhance the tive equipment or home remodeling, citizen or legal resident active participants in the services that
person’s ability to lead a more satisfy- and pre-vocational services. These or - Have a physician’s approval of the they receive, but the HSP staff sup-
ing life. other possible supports and resources initial plan of care ports and advocates for the
The Department of Rehabilitation may be available to the customer - Score a minimum of 29 points on Independent Living Philosophy,
Services (DRS) was placed in charge based on his/her specific needs the Determination of Need where individuals are in control of
of HSP in December of 1979. For the according to the program that he/she Assessment. their own lives and act as productive
1980 service year, HSP was awarded is eligible for. The HSP has grown drastically members to the community.
a budget of $3 million for both In order to be eligible to receive since its inception. Between July 1, Information used in this article is
administrative and case services assistance through HSP, an individual 2003 and June 30, 2004, the HSP from the Home Services Program
costs. At that time, the program must: served 31,071 customers statewide. 2004 Annual Report. The full report is
served a total of 1,256 individuals - Be age 59 or younger, unless The spending for the HSP totaled available at
statewide. In 1990, DRS added the applying for the AIDS or Brain Injury $298,239,700. On average, $937.32 http://www.dhs.state.il.us/ors/she_drs
AIDS-specific home care program. Waiver is spent monthly on assisting an indi- -hspar2004.asp. The statistics are
The Brain Injury Waiver was added to - Have a severe disability lasting at vidual on a waiver for physical dis- compiled on a statewide basis.
DRS’ services in 1999, and then least 12 months or the duration of life abilities, with 25,412 people benefit- Further information on Department of
expanded to include the Cognitive - Be at imminent risk of health care ing from these services. Through the Rehabilitation Services can be found
Rehabilitation and Supported facility placement (such as a nursing Brain Injury Waiver, 3,679 individu- on http://www.dhs.state.il.us/ors/ or
Employment program. home) als are assisted with an average by calling your local DRS office.
vices (EMS) and was able to revive
him and bring him back. The EMS
person on the other line was instruct-
ing her to perform CPR for a person
without a tracheotomy. Sheila
explained that this wasn’t the case.
She was able to blow air through the
hole in his neck as well as compress-
ing his chest. It isn’t the first time she
saved his life by performing CPR.
BY KAREN SALAZAR
I asked how having the Home
PERSONAL ASSISTANT COORDINATOR
Services Program has impacted his
I had the pleasure of meeting with life. He replied by saying “I have a
RAMP consumer, Mike Hammond quality life here with my family now
and his PA, Sheila Hammond, who Mike Hammond with Sheila Hammond, who is his Outstanding PA and wife. rather than when I was in the nursing
happens to be his significant other. Also pictured are their daughters Abby and Kayla and the family dog, Molly.
home.” Mike and Sheila live with
Mike is a recent participant in our plegic. He is non-ambulatory and wounds. Sheila has learned how to their two daughters, Abby and Kayla.
Community Reintegration Program uses a wheelchair. Sheila stood by perform respiratory and wound care who also provide assistance to their
where he was able to leave the nurs- Mike during his long stay in a skilled from other health care professionals dad. The Home Services Program
ing home and move back home after nursing care facility and then a nurs- and by learning through hands-on helps an individual to be more inde-
a long period of rehabilitation at a ing home. I asked Mike to describe experience. pendent where they can experience a
local nursing home. how he felt about Sheila, and he Mike shared regarding a time better quality of life with loved ones.
When I arrived at Mike’s home, I replied, “ She’s my angel” as well as when he coded (stopped breathing). Thanks, Sheila, for all of your hard
saw memorabilia for race car driver, being “dedicated, loyal, and patient.” Sheila called emergency medical ser- work and dedication.
Dale Earnhardt. His dog, Molly, Sheila has experience working in
greeted me at the door. I saw the the dietary department at a local
large ramp that was built so Mike nursing home. This knowledge is
could enjoy his porch and come and invaluable as she prepares his high
go as he pleases. protein diet. Not only does she carry
Mike sustained an injury where he out the many tasks that a Personal
broke his neck at his C4 vertebrae Assistant usually performs, but has
and severed his spinal cord which learned how to suction his tracheoto-
resulted in him becoming a quadri- my and change dressings for his
Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power. - Lao-Tzu, Chinese philospher and founder of Taoism
12 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
Lifetime Homes, the Power of We
BY KIM MONTGOMERY meeting to inform local leaders, homes he demonstrated the features
EDUCATION & ADVOCACY COORDINATOR builders, architects, realtors and any of universal design with a fully Lifetime Home (visitability)
Recently, I had the good fortune to other interested parties about the accessible kitchen and master bath features include one zero
accompany Julie Bosma, RAMP’s needs and the funding. As a result of with a walk-in/roll-in shower. All
step entrance on an accessi-
visionary Executive Director to a that meeting, Leslie Mastroianni of entrances to these units, including
conference on social enterprise pre- Fehr-Graham and Associates identi- the garage and patio are zero step ble route into the home
sented by Yale School of Manage- fied a funding source to assist with with barely a bump for a threshold. with a 36” wide entry door,
ment, The Goldman Sachs modifications to existing homes for John also offered to gift back the doorways with a clear
Foundation Partnership on Nonprof- people with disabilities. Together grant funds to RAMP. We expect this width of 32” for all first
it Ventures. Our reason for making with Judy Eikstadt of Northwestern unit to qualify for $10,000 in funds. floor rooms, reachable con-
the trip was to learn ways that other Illinois Community Action Agency, During the Parade of Homes week,
trols (meaning outlets no
nonprofit organizations have created Fehr-Graham and RAMP successful- RAMP employees, (including those
business ventures that support the ly applied to the program, which will who use wheelchairs!) staffed the lower than 15”, switches
mission of their organization as well provide much needed home modifi- Parade Homes to answer questions and thermostats no higher
as provide financial support to sus- cations for people with disabilities in and get feedback on the designs. than 48” off the finished
tain their work. It was a fascinating Freeport, Pecatonica and Savannah, Builders Tom and Joyce Niehaus floor), and blocking in the
three days. Illinois. Senator Sieben also hosted of Byron are also building homes bathroom walls to accom-
At one of the luncheon presenta- similar forums in other areas of his with Visitability features and fol-
modate the future addition
tions, Jonathan Tisch, Chairman and district and strongly supports the lowed suit in offering back the grant
CEO of Loews Hotels and author of concept of Visitability and refunding funds. Tom and Joyce have previous of grab bars, if needed.
“The Power of We”, spoke to the of the grant program. An excellent experience with homebuyers who
group about succeeding through example of the power of we. have disabilities and they decided for lifetime homes and creating the
partnerships. Tisch’s talk really hit To raise awareness for Visitability that their model home should be certification process for the homes
home as I considered how we are in our Rockford Service area, we accessible, as well. It is a good idea and their builders.
striving to promote Lifetime Homes. became involved with the Equal for all builders/developers and I bet What else has this collaboration
Here is a recap of how “The Power Opportunity Committee of our very many of them just never thought of it. resulted in? Bonnie Henry discov-
of We” applies to what we hope to be active Rockford Area Association of During the parade, thousands of ered that a 4” step requirement to the
the future in new home design and Realtors who embraced the idea. people saw visitability and universal garage entrance was no longer neces-
construction and how partnerships Their Board passed a resolution to design in action and the response has sary in the City’s Building Code due
can enhance the mission and power support RAMP’s efforts to provide been overwhelmingly positive. We to the more recent requirement that
of any organization. education and awareness. have provided information to many the garage floor have a 2% slope.
We identified the most profound We met with Dennis Sweeney of callers in response to what we now She proposed that the requirement be
lack of accessible housing in our ser- the Homebuilders Association of the call Lifetime Homes (homes with repealed and the City Council passed
vice area (Freeport and Stephenson Greater Rockford Area, who invited visitability features), thanks to the it unanimously, making it possible to
County), and invited our State Legis- us to share the information about power of we. create the zero step entrance to the
lators, Senator Todd Sieben and Rep- Visitability and the grant program at Lifetime Homes came about when house through the garage. Neleta
resentative Jim Sacia to a meeting at their membership meeting. Follow- we asked a group of interested par- Schene from Insight Communica-
our Freeport office. We presented the ing the meeting, builder Gary ties to come together and help us tions assisted in the development and
problem along with some ideas for Oehlberg stepped forward to say he decide how to best “market” the con- production of a public service
solutions that did not require them to would build a spec house using the cept of Visitability. Bonnie Henry announcement, produced and aired
go to the State for new funding. One visitability guidelines and donate the and Kevin Ciabotti from the City of by Insight and shared with other
of those ideas we called “Visitabili- grant funds back to RAMP! This Rockford Building Department, local media. John Strandin, Commu-
ty”, a concept in new home design builder also agreed to enter the home Dennis Sweeney of the Home- nications Director for the City of
and construction that incorporates in the Parade of Homes to allow peo- builders Association of the Greater Rockford helped us organized a suc-
four very basic features which allow ple to experience the features of vis- Rockford Area, Joyce Niehaus and cessful news conference at one of the
these homes to be accessible and itability first hand. Kay Galloway of the Rockford Area homes during the parade and Mayor
adaptable. We also identified an We later spoke to developer John Association of Realtors, Scott Long, Larry Morrissey took time out of his
existing funding source, The Illinois Slack, who said that he, too, would President of the Northern Chapter of crazy schedule to attend, showing his
Accessibility Grant Program, which build a spec home in his condo com- the American Institute of Architects, support. We co-marketed with the
offers builders who build spec homes munity, Village of Boulder Creek, Jackie Neil Boss of the ARC of ARC raffle house, which was built
with these features $5,000 for each and do it in time for the Parade of Northern Illinois, Jim Peterson of with Visitability features, we created
home they build. Homes. John not only built these Northwest Community Center, Nele- signage for the homes and Dennis
The Senator and Representative homes (a duplex!) with the basic fea- ta Schene of Insight Communica- Sweeney offered us a page of adver-
offered to host an informational tures of visitability, but in one of the tions, and John Beck, Julie Bosma, tising in the parade book and allowed
Nicole Hytinen and Deb Rogers of RAMP’s Nicole Hytinen to con-
RAMP utilized the power of we to tribute an article which was also
reinvent the word visitability. We all printed in the book.
For all your engineering, design, and analysis needs.
felt that, though visitability aptly Most recently, Illinois Valley Cen-
Aerospace, medical, and industrial products. ter for Independent Living, just south
describes the features that allow peo-
ple with disabilities to visit a home, it of us asked to join us in the promo-
also brings with it a stigma that says tion of Lifetime Homes in their ser-
“these are homes for people with dis- vice area, the State Independent
Proud Supporters abilities, all people don’t need that Living Council of Illinois has indi-
stuff”. We decided that Lifetime cated interest in promoting the con-
of RAMP Homes more accurately describes cept in the Springfield area, and then
the ways these features allow people maybe statewide! Numerous indi-
and Its Mission of all abilities to live comfortably in viduals have called to say “it’s about
their homes through any event life time”, and “thanks for what you’re
throws their way and that the fact doing”.
that people with disabilities can visit Through the Power of We, Life-
is just an added bonus. This group is time Homes will become the way
now in the process of more clearly we build and it will happen in our
4216 Maray Drive, Rockford - (815) 399-8803 Lifetime.
defining the specific requirements
The most immutable barrier in nature is between one man’s thoughts and another’s. - William James, American psychologist and philosopher
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 13
RAMP’s 25th Anniversary Party 25th Anniversary no longer used because society is so
Continued from Cover accessible that this fact about a per-
son is not relevant.
even more excited to set the pace for - All public places are fully acces-
the next 25 years. Our goal is that sible with Braille signage, visual
when we reach the year 2030, cele- fire alarms, ramps, and so on.
brating RAMP’s 50th Anniversary, - All people speak both English
we will be able to report things like: and American Sign Language and
- All homes are being built with are taught to be bi-lingual from the
“visitable” features so that persons moment they enter school.
with any type of physical disability - Technology allows people with
can visit their family and friends severe disabilities to fully partici-
and/or easily modify a house to live pate in the work world.
in themselves! These are our dreams and the
- There is no “special education”. direction in which we are heading.
All children with disabilities receive Our ultimate goal is to make soci-
a fair and equitable education and ety, both attitudinally and physical-
fully share their educational experi- ly, accessible for all people regard-
On August 18, RAMP hosted a party to celebrate its 25th Anniversary. ence with their non-disabled peers. less of their abilities or disabilities.
Guests enjoyed great food, free caricature drawings, music, assistive
technology displays, a FORTE performance and a special presentation
- The descriptor of ‘disability’ is
from Senator Brad Burzynski and RAMP’s current and former leaders.
Thank you to everyone who joined us for the special occasion.
RAMP’s 15th Annual Luncheon
(Top left) Ken Kerns, one of the founders of RAMP, speaks to guests
about when RAMP started up 25 years ago. (Top right) Laurie Ander- John Foppe to speak at RAMP’s Luncheon
son of the Rockford Park District demonstates one of their new BY JOHN BECK
accessible golf carts. state of the independent living move-
DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR ment has never been stronger.
We are very excited to announce that Through the first nine months of this
the keynote speaker of this year’s year, our staff has already helped
event is John Foppe. Born without 1,187 people with disabilities (1,287
arms, John Foppe has led a remark- all of last year) work toward a life of
able life, one that involves using his greater independence and communi-
feet for everything from shaving to ty involvement.
driving a car. He’s met a Pope, fired We hope to surpass the success of
up a pro football team, skied in Aus- last year’s Luncheon attended by 370
tria, and climbed the steep steps of a people. With your help, we will.
Hindu Temple. Through sharing his The cost of the luncheon is $35.
heartwarming and humorous stories, Look for your invitation in the mail
John delivers a high-impact presen- or call RAMP at 968-7467 to make
tation on overcoming adversity and reservations.
(Top left) Ryan Moore of Independence Technology demonstrates
TM fostering personal growth. His mes- The major sponsor of the Annual
the iBOT Mobility System, a wheelchair that allows users to climb
curbs, stairs, raise yourself to look others in the eye or lower your- sage is: “Our only real handicaps are Luncheon is The Blazer Foundation.
self to fit comfortably under a desk or table. (Top right) Friends of those mental and emotional ones that
RAMP Theatre Ensemble (FORTE) performed a disability awareness prevent us from participating fully in
puppet show at the celebration. life.” To hear John speak is an oppor-
tunity to be renewed and to move on
with a new perspective on life.
Our Luncheon seeks to entertain
CLASSIFIEDS and educate a broad range of people.
The desired result is for people who
NORTH MAIN MANOR
attend to be more aware and support- PARK TERRACE
ive of RAMP’s mission of promoting BREWINGTON OAKS
For Rent: Woodland Park Apartments, 2690 Rudeen an accessible society that allows and
*Free Heat & Water
Close #13. Office. Private Community in a Quiet Park expects full participation by people *Laundry Facilities
Like Setting. Wheelchair Accessible. One Bedroom with disabilities. *Intercom to Screen Visitors
*Convenient Bus Service
The Luncheon also provides
Lowers available. Laundry, Carports, New carpet, Tile RAMP the opportunity to inform and If you are 50 years or older
or have a disability,
and Blinds. On-Site Management and Maintenance. update the community on our current Contact our Rental Office at
223 S. Winnebago Street
First Month Free. $425.00 per month - you pay electric efforts and successes. In this 25th 987-3890
bill. Please call Kathleen at 815-830-0670. year since RAMP’s inception, the
Providing Services and Advocacy for People with Disabilities for 25 Years
14 www.RAMPCIL.org RAMP Slant
N Deaf Rights Unde r the A DA
e accessible parking for individuals
with physical disabilities.
with full accessibility still continues
to be a daily battle. Deaf and hard-of-
for their rights. Yes, it does seem like
fighting at times and it’s frustrating
w The deaf and hard-of-hearing com-
munity has also seen increased
hearing people are told “NO” too
often when they request a sign lan-
that more businesses, hospitals, and
employers are not familiar with the
s awareness of the communication
barriers faced when making an
guage interpreter. Even the United
States Department of Justice under-
law. The need for qualified inter-
preters is so important when a deaf or
DEAF appointment with their doctor, hav-
ing a meeting with their boss, attend-
ing the local theater, or appearing in
stands that an interpreter is needed at
a large majority of public entities.
They have issued an analysis that
hard-of-hearing person is requesting
the accommodation. Too many times
an entity doesn’t want to pay or feels
BY KARI LANDMAN court for a traffic ticket. This surge of states: they can use a family member or
DEAF SERVICES MANAGER awareness, brought about by the It is not difficult to imagine a wide friend who can sign. This is not
We recently celebrated the 15th ADA, has made it easier for individ- range of communications involving acceptable and puts the welfare of
Anniversary of the Americans with uals to request a sign language inter- areas such as health, legal matters, the deaf or hard-of-hearing individ-
Disabilities Act (ADA). On July 26, preter when needed. The ADA states: and finances that would be suffi- ual at risk because a professional, un-
1990, former President George H.W. A public accommodation shall fur- ciently lengthy, or complex to biased interpreter is not being
Bush signed this law that would open nish appropriate auxiliary aids and require an interpreter for effective provided.
the door of accessibility to individu- services where necessary to ensure communication. 56 Fed. Reg. at If you have experienced many
als with a variety of disabilities. This effective communication with indi- 35567 “NO’s” when requesting a sign lan-
was a major accomplishment for all viduals with disabilities. 8 C.F.R. I am grateful that the ADA passed guage interpreter for your appoint-
the individuals who worked diligent- 36.303 (c ) and was signed to increase the inde- ments and you’d like to know more
ly to see this federal law come to Unfortunately, the process is not as pendence of deaf people as they go about your rights as a deaf or hard-
fruition. It’s exciting to see society’s easy as only requesting. Despite the about their daily business, but I’m of-hearing person, please call Jodi
increased awareness towards every- progress the ADA has produced and disappointed that we haven’t come Glennon or Sandy Coates in
day barriers such as curb cuts, manu- its empowerment of people with dis- further in 15 years. The ADA RAMP’s Rockford office at
al doors, adaptive equipment, & abilities, receiving services provided empowers those who want to fight 815/968-7467.
D e af Events Surv e y De a f E v e n ts
Deaf Men’s Social. Every Wednesday, 9:30 AM, Dozen Donut Shop,
We want to hear from YOU!!! North 2nd St., Machesney Park.
September 4-5 - Open Captioned Movie: Charlie & the Chocolate Fac-
DEAF NEWSLETTER tory. ShowPlace 16 in Rockford. Rated PG. Check local paper for times.
Want Deaf Newsletter? YES/NO
September 11-12 - Open Captioned Movie: Wedding Crashers.
ShowPlace 16 in Rockford. Rated R. Check local paper for times.
Want Deaf Events/Social? YES/NO September 17 - Stephenson County for the Deaf 12th Annual Picnic.
How many miles are you willing to drive? ________________ Flagstaff Shelter, Krape Park, Freeport, IL. 11:00 AM to Dusk. Food,
drinks, door prizes and games provided. Adults- $6 Children (5-12)
Want Events for kids? YES/NO $3 Under 5- Free.
September 18-19 - Open Captioned Movie: 40 Year Old Virgin.
Which day of the week you prefer to attend an event? ShowPlace 16 in Rockford. Rated R. Check local paper for times.
September 23-24 - Illinois Deaf Golf Association. Golf Outings at
Red Tail Golf Course and exciting events at the Holiday Inn in Crys-
Please check: tal Lake, IL. For more information, e-mail IDGA25@aol.com or
Morning - 9 am to 11 am _______ check IDGA website at www.IDGA25.com.
Afternoon - 1 pm to 3 pm _______
Evening - 6 pm to 8 pm _________ September 25-26 - Open Captioned Movie: Must Love Dogs. Show-
Place 16 in Rockford. Rated PG-13. Check local paper for times.
WORKSHOPS Octber 2-3 - Open Captioned Movie: Skeleton Key. ShowPlace 16
Want to learn about……. in Rockford. Rated PG-13. Check local paper for times.
ADA? YES/NO October 8 - DeafNation Expo. Free Admission for Exhibitions, Work-
Wills? YES/NO shops and Entertainment. Prairie Stone Sports and Wellness Center,
Loans for Houses/Cars? YES/NO 5050 Sedge Blvd., Hoffman Estates, IL. Exhibit Hours: 9 am to 6 pm.
VRS? YES/NO Free admission to exhibitions, entertainment, seminars and workshops,
Taxes? YES/NO film and video show, and children’s activities. For further information
Health? YES/NO and a free admission ticket, log on to www.deafnation.com.
To subscribe Deaf Illinois News, log on to: www.deafillinois.com.
Which day of the week you prefer to attend a workshop?
_________________________ Want to learn Sign Language? Check out a website!
Do you have a friend, neighbor, relative, or co-worker who is deaf or
Please check: hard-of-hearing and uses sign language? Would you like to learn sign
Morning 9 am to 11 am _______ language so that you can communicate with him or her? Then check out
Afternoon 1 pm to 3 pm _______ this website: www.aslpro.com.
Evening 6 pm to 8 pm _________ This website offers over 6,000 American Sign Language (ASL)
signs from 4 different dictionaries. You can pick from the Main, Reli-
Please mail back your answers to gious, Conversational, or Baby Signs dictionaries. It’s an easy and
Jodi Glennon, Deaf Services, fun-to-use website. It offers a video link so that you can actually see a
3-D picture of someone signing the word.
202 Market Street, Rockford, IL 61107. This is a great resource if you’re interested in learning sign language
Thank you!! and increasing your vocabulary so that you can communicate with
those who are deaf or hard-of-hearing.
Friendship is always a sweet responsibility, never an opportunity. - Kahlil Gibran, Lebanese poet, writer, artist and mystic
RAMP Slant www.RAMPCIL.org 15
Fair Housing... the Fair Housing Act is enforced by the available housing fully accessi- believe that our cities and counties
HUD, a Federal Agency. The way ble. should adopt the requirements of the
Continued from Cover the Act is written, municipalities Both wheelchair users and deaf Fair Housing Act in local building
housing built to comply with the don’t have to explain it or enforce it people using the TTY system codes. Doing so would provide
guidelines will be a dramatic and are not held responsible for vio- received significantly less encour- awareness at the front end of a pro-
improvement over units built in the lations. Complaints must come agement to pursue a rental agreement ject, ensuring that builders and
past. through HUD, who can then find and were less likely to be offered a developers understand the require-
remedy through any entity involved rental application than non-disabled ments of this law and then follow its
in the planning, design and operation customers. guidelines, thereby allowing citizens
1) All dwelling units in buildings
of that property. This means the Nearly 20 percent of housing with disabilities more opportunities
containing four or more dwelling
landowner, the developer, the archi- providers with on-site parking to enjoy choice in housing options
units if such buildings have one or
tect, the contractor, the leasing agent refused to make the reasonable going forward.
more elevators, and 2) all ground
and anyone else who was involved in accommodation of providing a des- More Information
floor dwelling units in other build-
discouraging the use of that property ignated accessible parking space for Anyone can obtain a copy of the
ings containing four or more units.
by people with disabilities. a wheelchair user. “Fair Housing Act Design Manual”
To be a covered unit, all of the fin-
Remedies Discrimination is not the only from the U.S. Department of Hous-
ished living space must be on the
HUD will investigate all complaints obstacle that people with mobility ing and Urban Development through
same floor, that is, be a single-story
and seek to rectify situations where impairments face in searching for their website: www.huduser.org.
unit, such as single–story townhous-
builders, developers and landlords rental housing. At least a third of the Type the words Fair Housing Act
es, villas, or patio apartments.
have not followed the requirements advertised rental properties in the Design Manual into the search bar.
In other words, if the building has
of the Fair Housing Act. In one of the Chicago area are not accessible to The manual can be obtained in this
single story units and an elevator, all
most far-reaching cases, developer wheelchair users. manner for only a $5.00 shipping
units are covered. If there is no ele-
Archstone-Smith is required to retro- The report, in its entirety can be cost. Architects, builders, and devel-
vator, only the ground floor units are
fit thousands of apartments in 71 read or downloaded from the HUD opers should all have a copy of this
covered. If the dwelling itself is
buildings across the country. An esti- website: www.huduser.org, ordered in their library.
multi-story it is not covered.
mated 12,000 apartments would on-line or by calling (800) HUD- If you are a person who requires
Detached, single family houses are
have to be surveyed with the predict- USER. these features due to a physical dis-
ed cost of modifications to exceed Education & Awareness ability and these features are not
$20 million. In addition, the compa- As an advocacy organization whose available to you in buildings ready
The language of the law refers to
ny agreed to pay $1.4 million to the mission is to promote an accessible for first occupancy after 1991, then
“handicapped persons”. RAMP dis-
three disability organizations that society that allows and expects full you are experiencing discrimination
courages the use of the term “handi-
filed the lawsuit in December. In participation by persons with disabil- under the Federal Fair Housing Law.
capped”. References to
another case, two Reno apartment ities, it is our job to provide educa- Anyone who believes they have
“handicapped persons” have been
complexes, an engineering firm and tion and awareness as it relates to this experienced housing discrimination
changed to “person with a disability”
an architect accused of discriminat- mission. People cannot freely partic- should contact HUD at 1-800-669-
for the purpose of this article.
ing against people with disabilities ipate in a society that builds barriers, 9777. You may also get more infor-
The public use and common use
have agreed to make $1.67 million in in this case, in housing. mation at HUD’s fair housing
portions of such dwellings are readi-
improvements and pay damages and RAMP is a solution-oriented website: www.hud.gov.
ly accessible to and useable by per-
attorney fees under a settlement agency whose intent is to partner Remember this…four or more,
sons with a disability. (public
reached with the U.S. Department of with our governments, businesses, accessible ground floor.
entryways, common rooms, laundry
Justice. A California developer will schools and others to build aware-
pay $1.2 million to help retrofit units ness for the issues faced by persons
All the doors designed to allow
and common areas at a San Diego with disabilities in our society.
passage into and within all premises
condominium complex that failed to As a solution to this issue, we
within such dwellings are sufficient-
comply with the accessibility provi-
ly wide to allow passage by persons
sions of the Fair Housing Act. Celebration.
It certainly would have been more Development Kiwanis Club of Rockford con-
All premises within such dwellings C
cost efficient to have made these pro- tributed $1,000 to help purchase a
contain the following features of
visions in the planning and building O PowerPoint projector.
An accessible route into and
stages of these projects. R Knights of Columbus Council
through the dwelling. Chicago Study N #735 contributed $1,094.70 to sup-
Light switches, electrical outlets, Recently, HUD released a ground- E port RAMP’s independent living
thermostats, and other environmental breaking study, Discrimination R services in Boone County.
controls in accessible locations. Against Persons With Disabilities – Dan and Ruth Nicholas con-
Barriers at Every Step. HUD select- RAMP’s Contributors tributed $2,500 to support RAMP’s
Reinforcements in bathroom walls
ed Chicago to conduct this study due RAMP appreciates the growing 25th Anniversary Celebration.
to allow later installation of grab
to the city’s strong group of advo- support we receive from the com-
cates. The findings show that people munity. Financial gifts, regardless
Useable kitchens and bathrooms
with disabilities face discrimination of their amount, are important to
such that an individual in a wheel-
in up to half of rental inquiries. support our work to increase
chair can maneuver about the space.
opportunities for people with dis-
The building code used to satisfy Highlights of the study abilities. During the past two
these requirements is the American include: months, RAMP benefited from the
National Standard (ANSI A117.1). Deaf people using TTY systems to generosity of the following:
A well kept secret? inquire about advertised rental units An anonymous donor con-
Chances are, most people reading were refused service in one out of tributed $10,000 to support
this article didn’t know this require- four calls. When leasing agents RAMP’s independent living ser-
ment of the law. In fact, I have spo- accepted TTY calls, users received vices.
ken with Building Department significantly less information than Jennifer Carpenter contributed
Officials in several cities in our ser- comparable hearing customers, $401.94 through her United Way
vice area who were not aware of about the application process. designation to support RAMP’s
these requirements. You might ask, People with disabilities are fre- independent living services.
as I did, how can this be a law in quently denied their requests for rea- The Ben Harding Family
force since 1991 and no one even sonable modification and reasonable Foundation contributed $2,000 to
knows about it? The answer is this; accommodation necessary to make support RAMP’s 25th Anniversary
Providing Services and Advocacy for People with Disabilities for 25 Years
2 NE NS
The Rockton Avenue location has moved to Harrison Avenue.
A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. - William James, American psychologist