Category Archives: Disabilitiies

“New Housing Concepts Emerge For Adults With Developmental Disabilities” – disabilityscoop

dd housing“A rendering of a home in Crossbridge Point, a new community for adults with and without developmental disabilities that’s planned for Whitestown, Ind.” – (ILADD, Inc./Charles M. Brown Architect, Inc.)

by Michelle Diament

“Communities of varying shapes and styles are popping up across the country, all aiming to address the severe shortage of housing options for those with developmental disabilities.

Among the newest projects underway is a 15-acre community planned about 20 miles outside of Indianapolis that will offer homes for adults with and without developmental disabilities. The $12 million project that’s expected to open in 2023 will include various size homes as well as a community center and feature clubs and classes promoting independent living skills. Known as Crossbridge Point, the community being developed by the nonprofit ILADD, Inc. is among the first aimed at people with developmental disabilities that will allow families to purchase homes, though the plan also calls for rental units to be available.

“’Families increasingly are telling us they want the permanence and equity of home ownership,’ said Mark L. Olson, president and CEO of LTO Ventures, which serves as consultant and project manager for the development and others like it. ‘It provides certainty in that a landlord cannot sell a home out from under tenants who may be leasing. It gives the family more control over accommodations or modifications that may need to be made. It builds equity that the adult with IDD can tap into later in their life after the parents are gone. It protects against rent increases or landlord discrimination.’”

Continue reading this article at

Hamilton Relay Offers $500 High School Scholarships: Application deadline is January 30, 2021

hamilton relay scholarship

As the Telecommunications Relay and/or Captioned Telephone service provider for Pennsylvania, Hamilton Relay acknowledges that opportunities for higher education affect the future of Pennsylvania’s high school students.

We are pleased to once again extend the Hamilton Relay Scholarship opportunity to graduating high school seniors in Pennsylvania who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking to assist in their goals of continuing their education.

Hamilton Relay selects one candidate from each of the states where Hamilton is the contracted service provider. All candidates are required to submit an application, write an essay under the topic of communication technology and provide a letter of recommendation in order to qualify. The application documents can also be found online here.

The scholarship deadline is January 30, 2021 and applications must be received or postmarked by that date. The scholarship is in the amount of $500 and the winner will be determined on or before March 1, 2021.

If you have any questions about Hamilton Relay or the Hamilton Relay Scholarship Program, please contact Amy Strawser directly. In addition, Amy and Sudan Bradley, will be hosting an informational webinar with details and instructions for applying for this scholarship award. The dates and links to registration for this webinar are listed below. We will be offering three different dates to accommodate your schedule, each date provides the same information.

Hamilton Relay is excited to give back to the community by offering this scholarship opportunity to students who are deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or have difficulty speaking. We look forward to learning more about the outstanding students in Pennsylvania.

Amy Strawser, Pennsylvania Outreach Coordinator | (412) 944-7424 |

Please register for an informational Pennsylvania Relay Awards & Scholarship webinar at the link below. If accommodations are needed (ASL or CART services) please let us know at least one week in advance.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

“Medicare premiums, deductibles will Increase slightly in 2021” – AARP

medicare-premiums.imgcache.rev.web.900.518Getty Images

by Dena Bunis

“Medicare premiums and deductibles for Part A and Part B will increase modestly in 2021, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced Friday. Standard monthly premiums for Part B will cost $3.90 more, rising to $148.50 in 2021, up from $144.60 in 2020.

“Part B deductibles will rise $5 next year to $203, up from this year’s $198.

“Medicare Part B covers doctor visits and other outpatient services, such as lab tests and diagnostic screenings. Premiums for some Medicare enrollees will be higher than the standard because these monthly payments are based on income. Part B beneficiaries with annual incomes greater than $88,000 will pay more ($207.90 for individuals with incomes between $88,000 and $111,000, for example).

“The $3.90 monthly Part B premium increase is less than had been expected earlier this year, when analyses by CMS actuaries indicated that the 2021 Part B premium could increase by as much as $50 a month for some beneficiaries.”

Read this article in its entirety at AARP; click here.

Resource sharing: MATP Workgroup Listening Sessions

“Your input matters! The Department of Human Services and other stakeholders are working on suggestions to improve Pennsylvania’s Medical Assistance Transportation Program (MATP). Whether you use the program now or are eligible to use the program to get to your medical appointments, we welcome your feedback.


We invite you to attend one of the following three online sessions. You will hear more about the suggestions and have the chance to ask questions and give us your thoughts.

  • Option 1: Tuesday, November 17 from 6:00-7:30pm. (Register here)
  • Option 2: Wednesday, November 18 from 1:00-2:30pm. (Register here)
  • Option 3: Friday, November 20 from 10:00-11:30am. (Register here)

There are two ways to attend a session. You will receive more information closer to the date:

  1. Download and use the GoToWebinar software on your computer, tablet, or smart phone (video is not required).
  2. Call with a landline or cellphone (you can listen to the session, but not ask questions if calling directly from a landline or cellphone).

If you have questions about these sessions, please submit them here. Thank you for considering this opportunity to provide your opinion. We look forward to hearing from you.

Another gem from “Time Goes By: What it’s really like to get old.”

Ronni Bennet, the person behind the Website, Time Goes By: What it’s really like to grow old, keeps finding internet gems. This one is a real grabber; it’ll bring a tear to your eyes. And hope to your heart.

ticket to sit

Know a person age 60 and over or a person with a disability who wants to borrow an iPad, a computer & more? | Read this.

tech owl


TechOWL can assist with an iPad, computer, and more for older adults and people with disabilities in Pennsylvania. Please see the above flyer and this listing of TechOWL’s Assistive Technology Resource Centers and contact list.  If you know of anyone that can benefit from this technology, please refer them to the appropriate TechOwl Resource Center from the attached contact list.


The Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council wants your help: “please take this survey”



Hello, Pennsylvanians! The Pennsylvania Developmental Disabilities Council (PADDC) is developing our Five Year Strategic Plan and we need your help. We want to know what you think are the most important issues facing people with disabilities in Pennsylvania. The survey may take you about 10-15 minutes to complete.

First, we ask you for some basic demographic information. Then we will ask for your feedback in specific areas. You can answer the survey anonymously or provide your name if you wish. Your input is very important to us. This is your chance to be a part of the DD Council’s planning for the next five years.

Please note that we are specifically seeking the input of individuals with a disability and their families. We ask that you complete the survey by October 21, 2020. Thank you for your help!

Click here to begin the survey:

Welcome to the Disability Equality in Education September newsletter

DEE newsletter

“In this newsletter (click on the graphic to download the newsletter)  you will find lots of resources to engage students in a conversation on disability. The information and resources are created  and vetted by disabled people to ensure that the conversation you start in your classroom has the voice of disabled people.

“This unique project asks educators to include disability as you do race, sex and gender in your curriculum. Disabled people and their achievements, issues and history are invisible, yet we make up almost 20 percent of the population.

“We want to educators with you to create more resources to help you to bring disability into the regular classrooms so that the generation you are teaching are free of the prejudice, stereotypes and ignorance that we as disabled people experience every day of our lives.”

Visit the Disability Equality in Education Website:

“‘A powerful shift’: Disability advocacy, once an afterthought in presidential races, gains new traction” – STATNews

disability advocacyA woman votes at a polling site in Queens, N.Y., during the New York Democratic presidential primary election in June. JOHANNES EISELE/AFP VIA GETTY IMAGES”

by Juliet Isselbacher

For decades, the disability advocacy community has fought for a permanent — and prominent — place in the mainstream political discussion. The 2020 presidential race has seen a sea change.

“Advocates gained new traction during the campaign, pushing the full slate of Democratic candidates to discuss and define their stances on disability policies like never before. Amid social media pressure from activists, former Vice President Joe Biden, now the presumptive Democratic nominee, put out a full disability platform in May. Advocates say the platform — while not as comprehensive as they had hoped — marks a moment of significant progress after years of disability policy being treated as a political afterthought.

“’To watch the shift from us having to beg candidates — like literally beg candidates — to include the word “disability” as they rattled off diversity categories to [them] coming to us to say, “I want to engage with your folks” … [this] was such a powerful shift,’ said Rebecca Cokley, founder and director of the Disability Justice Initiative at the Center for American Progress, a progressive policy think tank.”

Read this article at STATNews its entirety, click here.

“Overlooked No More: Roland Johnson, Who Fought to Shut Down Institutions for the Disabled” – The New York Times

He survived 13 years of neglect and abuse, including sexual assault, at the notorious Pennhurst State School and Hospital outside Philadelphia before emerging as a champion for the disabled.”

roland johnson trailblazer

Credit … via the Johnson family”

by Glenn Rifkin

“In 1958, when Roland Johnson was 12, his parents sent him to the Pennhurst State School and Hospital outside Philadelphia. There he would spend 13 tormented years living through the nightmare of institutionalization that was commonplace in mid-20th-century America.

“Terrified and confused, Roland, who had an intellectual disability, quickly discovered the inhumane realities of Pennhurst, including neglect, beatings and sexual assault. And as a Black child, he encountered the toxic racism roiling life both outside and within the institution’s walls.

“’After that long ride up there, it was just horrible,’ Johnson wrote of his arrival at Pennhurst in a posthumously published autobiography, ‘Lost in a Desert World’ (2002, with Karl Williams). He described himself as having been ‘lost and lonely,’ as if ‘in a desert world.'”

Click here to read this article at The New York Times in its entirety.

Overlooked is a series of obituaries about remarkable people whose deaths, beginning in 1851, went unreported in The Times. This latest installment is part of a series exploring how the Americans With Disabilities Act has shaped modern life for disabled people. Share your stories or email us at