What Is the Census?

The 2020 census is coming! It’s important to be counted. Learn about the census and how to complete it in this video (también disponible en español)

Airport Virtual Reality Video

This virtual reality video, created by Interactive Media Institute, details step-by-step the air travel process so that individuals can become acquainted with a generic airport environment prior to taking a flight to help prepare them for their trip.

En Español:

Training Needs of Professionals Who Serve People With I/DD and Mental Health Needs and Their Families

Up to 40% of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) experience co-occurring mental illness. Despite the prevalence of mental health needs among people with I/DD, little is known about the best approaches for supporting the needs of people with I/DD and co-occurring mental health challenges and their families. This uncertainty has led to the dependence on outdated and potentially bad approaches to mental health care, such as seclusion, restraint, and psychotropics, which may cause individuals with dual diagnosis an increase in their struggles with poor mental health, as well as a lack of family support resources and services available for people and their families.

Previously, The Arc explored the family support needs of families that include a person with the dual diagnosis of I/DD and mental health needs. One critical recommendation coming from this investigation was the need for more training around I/DD and mental health for disability, mental health, and education professionals. In 2019 as part of its work as an FSRTC partner, The Arc conducted focus groups that probed the training needs of and barriers that disability, mental health, and education professionals face when serving people with I/DD and co-occurring mental health challenges. The focus of these groups included:

  • Discussing and better understanding the training needs and challenges that disability, mental health, and education professionals face when serving people with I/DD and co-occurring mental health challenges and their families;
  • Identifying key topics and issues that professionals should be trained on regarding serving people with I/DD and mental health challenges; and
  • Developing recommendations on the best opportunities for training format and delivery across all professionals.

Public Charge Amicus Briefs

States: California, Washington, New York, Illinois

Filed: 2019

Courts: Northern District of California, Southern District of New York, Eastern District of Washington, Northern District of Illinois

Overview: A coalition of national disability advocacy groups filed four amicus briefs in support of litigation to stop the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from implementing its new “public charge” rule. Twenty-one states–led by California, Washington, and New York–as well as Cook County, Illinois, have filed cases against the Trump Administration to block the new rule. The advocacy groups – representing tens of thousands of people with disabilities and their families across the country – claim that the new public charge rule will prevent people with disabilities from entering this country or becoming legal residents in violation of federal disability law.

Status: The public charge rule is currently temporarily enjoined from being implemented nationwide during the national public health emergency declared by the Trump administration.

Case Documents

Briefs:
California v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (District Court)
New York v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (District Court) 
Washington v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (District Court)
Cook County, Illinois v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (District Court)
California v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Ninth Circuit)
New York v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Second Circuit)
Washington v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Ninth Circuit)
Cook County, Illinois v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Seventh Circuit)

Decisions:

California v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Cook County, IL v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security

New York v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Washington v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Related Media

Press Release: The Arc Applauds Federal Injunctions Against Public Charge Rule

Press Release: Disability Advocacy Groups File Amicus Brief Opposing the Administration’s Public Charge Rule as Illegal Disability Discrimination

Press Release: Supreme Court Lifts Stay on Public Charge Rule: Implementation Will Have Chilling Impact on People with Disabilities

The Hill: Disability rights groups join challenge to ‘public charge’ rule

Do Your Part: Engage With Your Members of Congress

Sharing your point of view with your Members of Congress is an important part of our democracy – it’s their job to represent you and they want to hear from you! There are so many important issues at stake: affordable health care coverage, access to Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income, paid family and medical leave, funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, civil rights protections, and much more.

Do you tell your Members of Congress what it takes to live an independent life in your community? Your Members of Congress need to hear directly from their constituents on how these programs and laws make a difference – and that they should be preserved, not cut.

Tip: Connect with your local chapter. You can find the one closest to you at arcmini.wpengine.com/find-a-chapter.

Reminder: You have three Members of Congress: two Senators, who represent the entire state, and one representative in the House of Representatives. It’s your responsibility as a citizen and disability rights activist to connect with your Members of Congress.

Find your Senator
Find your Representative

1. Pick up the Phone: The easiest way to tell your Members of Congress how you feel about an issue, or ask their support or opposition for a bill, is to call their office.

2. Request a Meeting: In-person meetings are a very effective way to educate elected officials and/or their staff about The Arc and current issues. Contact your local chapter (find yours here) to find out if they have a meeting coming up. Often, your Senator or Representative will not be available. Request a meeting with a member of their staff. Staffers make recommendations and advise their Members of Congress regarding particular issues. Meeting with a staff member is worthwhile.

3. Attend a Town Hall: Showing up matters! Members of Congress often host town hall meetings to hear from constituents during Congressional recess. Find out if your Members are hosting one at townhallproject.com, show up, and ask them where they stand on issues that are important to you.

4. Connect Online: Do you follow your Members of Congress on Facebook and Twitter? Are they posting about topics that are important to you? Comment with your opinion or tag them in your posts.

Employment of People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: 2017 Snapshot

Despite recent progress in employment legislation and local-level employment initiatives, finding and securing meaningful and community-based employment opportunities continues to be a major challenge for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) – including people with autism, Down syndrome, and other diagnoses across the country. The Family & Individual Needs for Disability Supports (FINDS) survey asked caregivers about some of the underlying causes for the large gaps that exist in employment outcomes for people with disabilities. The results indicate that there is a significant need to immediately address and improve practices that facilitate education and employment for people with I/DD.

2010 FINDS National Survey Family and Individual Needs for Disability Supports: Technical Report

Most of the growth in services in the last half century has been to support people living in their own or a family home. However, between 2009 and 2011, the economic difficulties of the prolonged national recession began to slow the growth or in some places to result in actual reductions in publicly funded supports to families throughout the United States. Family caregivers play critically important roles in supporting the well-being of people with ID/DD. This is true for family members who are the primary caregiver as well as for those whose family member with ID/DD live in their own homes or in supported residential settings. As our society continues to depend on the active engagement of family caregivers for the support of individuals with ID/DD, it is important to understand and respond to the needs of those caregivers. In 2010 The Arc of the United States conducted a national internet survey that aimed to capture the perspectives of people with ID/DD and their family caregivers. The Family and Individual Needs for Disability Supports (FINDS) survey focused on issues including educational, housing, employment and support needs of people with ID/DD and their families. Family caregivers in 2010 reported substantial ongoing challenges to providing lifelong supports to family members with intellectual or developmental disabilities.

FINDS Community Report Data Tables

As our society continues to depend on the active engagement of family caregivers for the support of individuals with ID/DD, it is important to understand and respond to the needs of those caregivers.

The 2010 Family and Individual Needs for Disability Supports (FINDS) survey focused on issues including educational, housing, employment and support needs of people with ID/DD and their families. Family caregivers in 2010 reported substantial ongoing challenges to providing lifelong supports to family members with intellectual or developmental disabilities. View the Data Tables to get a more robust analysis of the data on family caregivers collected throughout the survey.