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History “We're remarkable creatures in the ways we can adapt. As long as there's no isolation, as long as there's freedom to try things and decide for yourself what you want to do. As long as you're defining your own limits.”

■ MnDHO changes–pg 3 ■ Nominations due–pg 4 ■ Elders’ wisdom–pg 11

— Ed Roberts

in the making

Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage PAID Mpls. MN Permit No. 4766 Address Service Requested

Volume 21, Number 8

Minnesota’s Disability

Community Newspaper

August 10, 2010

Hundreds celebrate the ADA, eye the challenges ahead by Jane McClure Celebrating past accomplishments while looking at the challenges ahead was the theme of Minnesota’s 20th anniversary celebration of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). More than 750 people flocked to Nicollet Island Pavilion July 26 to mark the anniversary. Entertainers Josh Blue and Nic Zapko, elected officials and people with disabilities were featured, as were information displays by numerous Minnesota organizations run for and by persons with disabilities. “There’s much to celebrate – there’s much that needs to be done,” Dave Durenberger told the crowd. The former U.S. Senator recalled the efforts needed to pass the ADA two decades ago, saying the fed-

eral legislation has roots in Minnesota law and policy that date back more than 50 years. He said he was proud to have been involved in such an effort while serving in Congress. But he also noted that that happened at a much less politically divisive time. Two senators, Robert Dole of Kansas and Daniel Inouye of Hawaii, were instrumental in passing the ADA. Both have disabilities, said Durenberger. “They had only two arms between them, but they used them to make civil rights for all of us a possibility.” Many people, businesses and advocacy groups said the ADA couldn’t be passed for costs and practicality reasons. Durenberger recalled being told that companies and gov-

ernment couldn’t afford to make the changes outlined in the ADA. His response? “We can’t afford not to do it.” U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar also recalled the ADA’s beginnings, saying the act “knocked down the shameful wall of exclusion.” She, Durenberger and other elected officials who spoke praised Minnesota for leading the nation in physical accessibility improvements. More needs to be done. “The dream of equality under the law is still an unfinished reality,” she said. Klobuchar also took time to recognize one of her predecessors, the late Sen. Paul Wellstone. Wellstone was a champion of disability rights. ADA - cont. on p. 14

With captioning in the background, Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin addressed in the crowd at the ADA celebration on the importance of jobs and public accommodation. See more photos on pages eight and nine. Photo by Ali Mohamed

METO case continues to make its way through courts by Jane McClure More than a year after it was filed, a civil lawsuit against the state of Minnesota, the Minnesota Extended Treatment Options (METO) program and METO staff continues to make its way through the U.S. District Court system. Former patients of the facility and their family members continue to push for an end to the use of restraints and seclusion as means of controlling patient behavior. On Aug. 30, attorneys for the three families involved in the case will argue in U.S. District Court for a temporary injunction that would prohibit the use of various types of restraints and the use of seclusion at METO. The motion for the injunction was filed in midJuly and is just one of many actions taken in the case in recent weeks. Court documents state that “Because Defendants have refused to stop the use of seclusion and restraints, Plaintiffs request this Court promptly issue a preliminary injunction immediately enjoining any fur-

ther use of seclusion and restraints on residents of the METO program, or any successor program, including mechanical restraints, manual restraints, prone restraint, seclusion, individual isolation, electroconvulsive therapy and chemical restraints.” The lawsuit seeks damages for violations of the federal civil and constitutional rights of people with developmental disabilities abused at METO, asks the court to enter an injunction against METO to prohibit its restraint and seclusion practices, and declare as unconstitutional the Department of Human Services’ position that restraint is permitted against people with developmental disabilities. METO has long been a topic of scrutiny for the disability community. Its practices have been closely monitored by the Minnesota Disability Law Center, parents and family members of residents, and a number of disability rights, advocacy and service provider organizations.

Use of restraints and placement of patients in seclusion at METO are at the heart of the ongoing lawsuit, which was filed July 10, 2009 in U.S. Federal District Court in St. Paul. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of people with developmental disabilities and their families. Three of the plaintiffs were restrained at METO, a state mental health treatment facility in Cambridge. METO is a program of the Minnesota Department of Human Services. Court documents state that staff there routinely restrained patients in a prone face-down position and placed them in metal handcuffs and leg hobbles at risk of injury, causing them to struggle, cry and yell once they were in the restraints. METO also placed patients in seclusion rooms for extended time periods, and deprived them of visits from family members. The lawsuit also states that restraints and seclusion were used by METO as a practice of behavior modification, coercion, discipline, convenience

and retaliation. METO staff allegedly restrained some patients hundreds of times, and used these tactics for conduct as benign as touching a pizza box, not staying within eyesight of staff, or even after patients were calmly eating a snack or watching television. State officials have argued that restraint of patients at METO is necessary. But those who speak for the families say that their case is one about human dignity and respect for those with developmental disabilities. Shamus O’Meara, a partner with the law firm of Johnson & Condon, P.A., represents the three families, the named plaintiffs in the lawsuit. “It’s ironic that we were filing motions in this case on July 26, the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act,” said O’Meara. “It shows that we still have a long way to go.” The families involved are the Jensen, Brinker/Allen and Jacobs families. The Jensens were the initial plaintiffs. The Brinker/Allens and Jacobs

families joined the case later. All allege abuse of their children at METO, through use of restraints as well as seclusion. They contend that incidents that promoted such treatment were minor and should have been handled differently. One young man had his arm broken and his family claims he was denied medical attention and proper treatment for a time. Over the past several months various motions as well as a case settlement have been debated. At one point the state asked for more time to file an answer and to file a response to the complaint. But on June 29 Judge Franklin Noel denied that request, stating in court documents, “This case has been pending almost a year. Based upon repeated assurances that the parties were making progress in reaching a settlement, the Court postponed adopting a Pretrial Schedule until May 2010. In their current stipulation, filed only 5 days before the first due date in the Pretrial Schedule adopted on May 12, 2010, the

parties again report significant progress in settlement negotiations. The only suggestion the parties make regarding the substance of their progress is that they were ‘discussing use of a mediator.’ At the scheduling conference in May, the Court had difficulty understanding the parties’ vastly different views of this case, in part because the Defendants have yet to answer the complaint. Although the parties contend in their stipulation that the filing of an answer will be ‘counter productive to the negotiations’, the Court cannot conceive of how the filing of an answer would in any way prejudice settlement negotiations. This case is almost a year old, and the Court doesn’t even know what the issues are, as Defendant has not yet answered the complaint.” Noel continued, “If Defendant concedes that Plaintiffs’ complaint has merit, it should settle. If not, it must answer, so that issues in dispute can be joined. The parties request to METO - cont. on p. 14


August 10, 2010

Tim Benjamin, Editor I am still thinking about what a great time I had, along with so many others, at the ADA 20th Anniversary celebration on July 26. It was a beautiful day at the Nicollet Island Pavilion, and being close to the river made it very cool and comfortable. The Minnesota weather couldn’t have been kinder to us.

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) has been a great success in civil rights law. To think that less than 20 years ago, curb cuts were uncommon and very few transportation opportunities were available for people using wheelchairs and other mobility devices. In 1990, “reasonable accommodation” was not a term that people in general understood. Not to date myself, but I remember going to the mall and not being able to get to the second floor without going outside and up the hill where the second-floor entrances were. It’s only in the last 10-15 years that I didn’t have to plan, half a block ahead, where to get up on a sidewalk. Even then, I’d often find myself blocked with no curb cuts ahead. I remember starting college without the school or my instructors having any idea what I would need to be able to attend classes, take notes, write papers or complete tests. (Ac-

tually, I wasn’t exactly sure what I would need to be successful either.) Disability services offices were just starting to pop up on college campuses, and they were usually very understaffed. I remember feeling very awkward when classes had to be moved to a different building because the classroom that was initially designated for my class was not accessible. And more than once, I’d have classes in classrooms where the only place I could park my wheelchair was in the doorway. Many of these are not concerns today, even though there are new concerns for students with disabilities. I’ll never forget those uncomfortable feelings, the sense that I was a burden to the more “worthy” students. I could be confident in other situations, but on a college campus, I fell into the trap of self-discrimination and learned helplessness. This is just one area where the ADA has afforded us some real change and opportunity. The ADA has allowed people

with disabilities to recognize their own rights, giving us the power to reject those awkward feelings—and not to feel them in the first place. I know many of you know exactly what I’m talk about. Some of you were in those classrooms with me, juggling who would park where. Whether in a classroom, a restaurant, a store, on the streets, or in your own homes, many of you know exactly this feeling of inadequacy—whether you’re developmentally disabled, physically disabled or live with any of a number of other disabilities that put barriers between us and success. We have come a long way. And still, we have a long way to go. Transitional services from one educational level to the next are still not up to any solid standards. Even with an education, job opportunities remain very slim for most people with disabilities. We have fairly accessible transportation, but transportation is still a major problem in em-

ployment. Recently, we’ve heard stories of bus drivers not stopping at bus stops for people using wheelchairs because it takes too much time. Also, the personal care attendant program has many hurdles to jump for a person with a disability to maintain a job. No employer wants to hear; “the bus wouldn’t stop” or “my PCA was late and that’s why I’m late.” No employer should feel obligated to keep someone employed who has these problems, but no employee should have to be at a disadvantage for their lack of ability to control outside resources. Thanks to the ADA for opening employers’ minds and improving public understanding! We still have barriers, and battles to fight. One small example that kept coming up in press coverage of the ADA is the need for people to generally adopt “people-first” language. Too many times, we were still described as “handicapped” or “disabled” people.

Language in many ways defines who a person is, and it’s just common courtesy to recognize a person before you characterize a person. We are people: people with disabilities, yes, but also people with abilities, with genius, with creativity, with courage, with concerns, with humanity and dignity. The expected budget cuts facing our state will probably not reduce the number of challenges we face; they will probably increase them. The population of people with disabilities and with needs for support is growing. I don’t know what the answers are, but I do know that we can’t afford to waste the skills of any of our citizens or waste our resources on any of our citizens. Let’s remind people with legislative responsibilities that all Minnesotans need to live independent, productive lives, and that the state needs to help ensure that each citizen is as successful in life as they strive to be. ■

History Note

Fight for human rights was lengthy by Luther Granquist The Minnesota House, in 1973, had approved a bill supported by Handi-Registration, a self-advocacy group seeking to protect the civil rights of persons with disabilities. The bill expanded coverage for persons with disabilities in all areas covered by the Minnesota Human Rights Act. The Senate, however, refused to extend coverage in public services to persons with disabilities and, regarding public accommodations, only outlawed discrimination by taxicab companies. In 1975, the group, then known as Independence for Impaired Individuals, supported Rep. Russell Stanton’s proposal to provide coverage for persons with disabilities in both these sections of the law.

LeAnne Nelson (now LeAnne Dahl) and Mel Duncan testified in support of this bill, as did Bob Tuttle from the St. Paul ARC. The bill passed the House unanimously and the Senate by a vote of 44-1. That widespread support was possible only because the bill also specified that no person could be required to modify property in any way. This provision reflected a concern at the time that costly accommodations might be ordered. During that session these advocates also sought to amend the Human Rights Act to make it an unfair discriminatory practice for an insurance company to deny or to charge more for coverage because a person has a disability

unless actuarial data supported that action. To overcome opposition from insurance companies, Sen. Skip Humphrey, who carried the bill, agreed to place these provisions in the unfair practices section of the insurance law instead of in the Human Rights Act. In support of the bill, Nelson told the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee that an insurance agent attempted to get insurance coverage for her, but the insurance company refused because she had cerebral palsy. She pointed out that her condition was stable and that in 36 years she had not been hospitalized once. The Senate approved the bill by a vote of 59-0; the House by 126-0. The 1973 Legislature had

Access Press Co-Founder/Publisher (1990-1996) .................................................. Wm. A. Smith, Jr. Co-Founder/Publisher/Editor-in-Chief (1990-2001) ....................... Charles F. Smith Board of Directors ....................................................... Brigid Alseth, Mike Chevrette, Anita Schermer, Carrie Selberg, Tom Squire and Kay Willshire Editor ......................................................................................................... Tim Benjamin Assistant Editor ......................................................................................... Jane McClure Business Manager/Webmaster ............................................................ Dawn Frederick Cartoonist ..................................................................................................... Scott Adams Production ...................................................... Ellen Houghton at Presentation Images Distribution ......................................................................................... S. C. Distribution Advertising Sales Manager ................................................................... Raymond Yates Access Press is a monthly tabloid newspaper published for persons with disabilities by Access Press, Ltd. Circulation is 10,000, distributed the 10th of each month through more than 200 locations statewide. Approximately 650 copies are mailed directly to individuals, including political, business, institutional and civic leaders. Subscriptions are available for $30/yr. Low-income, student and bulk subscriptions are available at discounted rates. Editorial submissions and news releases on topics of interest to persons with disabilities, or persons serving those with disabilities, are welcomed. We reserve the right to edit all submissions. Editorial material does not necessarily reflect the view of the editor/publisher of Access Press. Paid advertising is available at rates ranging from $12 to $28 per column inch, depending on size and frequency of run. Classified ads are $14, plus 65 cents per word over 12 words. Advertising and editorial deadlines are the last day of the month preceding publication, except for employment ads, which are due by the 25th. Inquiries should be directed to: Access Press • 1821 University Ave. W. • Suite 104S St. Paul, Minnesota 55104 • 651-644-2133 • Fax 651-644-2136 Email: • Web site:

created the Minnesota Commission for the Handicapped, now called the State Council on Disability. The Commission supported both 1975 bills. Regarding the insurance proposal, Dick Ramberg, then Deputy Director of the Commission, informed the Senate committee that a survey the commission did in January 1975 underscored Nelson’s testimony about discrimination against persons with disabilities seeking insurance coverage. The State Council for the Handicapped, as it was called in 1983, and the Department of Human Services joined forces that year to close some of the gaps remaining in the laws passed in the 1970s. Patti Hague from the State Council and Mary Hartle from the Department testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee in support of a proposal introduced by Sen. Allan Spear to incorporate requirements

Joan Ryan, Chuck Frahm, and Chuck Van Heuveln of HandiRegistration met with Governor Wendell Anderson prior to 1974 Governor’s Conference on Handicapped Persons Photo courtesy of Jane Belau from the federal Section 504 Regulations into the state Human Rights Act. His bill, which passed by a margin of 58-0 in the Senate and 117-3 in the House, broadened protections in the Act regarding program access and physical access. The bill also included requirements for reasonable accommodation in the employment section, but, as approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee, any accommodations for a job applicant which cost more than $2,000 were deemed unreasonable.

On the Senate floor that amount was lowered to $50. Even with that limitation, however, aggressive advocacy over a decade ensured that by 1983 the state Human Rights Act provided persons with disabilities in Minnesota far broader protection than they would have had in many other states. ■ The History Note is a monthly column sponsored by the Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities, and www.

August 10, 2010


This Month’s Issue Sponsor

UCare provides health care plans, services UCare (www.ucare. org) is an independent, nonprofit health plan providing health care coverage plans and administrative services to more than 200,000 members. UCare was created in 1984 by the Department of Family Practice and Community Health at the University of Minnesota Medical School. Today, UCare partners with health care providers, counties, and community organizations to create and deliver innovative health coverage for: Individuals and families enrolled in income-based Minnesota Health Care Programs, such as MinnesotaCare and Prepaid Medical Assistance Program, Adults with disabilities and Medicare beneficiaries with chronic health conditions, Minnesotans dually eligible for Medical Assistance and Medicare, Medicare-eligible individuals throughout Minnesota and in western Wisconsin. UCare addresses health care disparities and care access issues through its UCare Fund grants and a broad array of community and outreach initiatives. Delivering health care

value is UCare’s top priority. UCare works to: • Improve access to needed services by all members and the community-at-large. • Bring high-quality care to every member. • Demonstrate cost-effectiveness. • Reinvest in the communities it serves. • Enhance the health care infrastructure of the providers who care for UCare members. Members of UCare’s UCare for Seniors Medicare Advantage plan gave it a 9 out of 10 for Overall Rating of Health Plan. This 2009 Consumer Assessment of Health Care Providers and Systems (CAHPS) score is higher than the national average and all other Minnesota Medicare Advantage plans. Moreover, UCare’s summary rating of health plan quality in 2009 was 4.5 out of 5 stars, as reported by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). This rating places UCare among the highest-rated health plans in Minnesota and the nation. The health plan recently received a Top Workplaces 2010 honor from the Star Tribune. ■

MnDHO update: Clients must plan for transition by Access Press staff The end of the Minnesota Disability Health Options Program (MnDHO) is coming soon, yet not everyone covered through the program has started to make plans for a transition. That concerns staff of the program, who want to make sure everyone is covered and be assured everyone is making informed decisions. In February, it was announced that MnDHO or UCare Complete would be ending on Jan. 1, 2011. In a recent update, UCare staff reminded clients that member meetings to explain the transition are coming up soon. Invitations to meetings have been sent out. Those meetings, which began Aug. 6, will continue through September. At those meetings staff from UCare, AXIS Healthcare, the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS), the Disability/ Senior Linkage Lines, and county human service agencies will provide resources and in-

formation about program options. These meetings are essential in making a good decision for your particular needs. Many of the MnDHO clients receive home and community-based services such as personal care attendant (PCA) and waiver services. The Department of Human Services will work with the counties to plan for the transition of these services from UCare to a client’s home county. For those who are eligible, home and community-based services will be managed through the county fee-for-service system. This important transition of services will be addressed in the meetings this summer and fall. Upcoming meeting dates and places are: • Tuesday, Aug. 17, 1–3 p.m., Central Square Community Center, North & South Centennial Rooms, 100 7th Ave. N, South St. Paul • Friday, Aug. 20, 1–3 p.m., Maplewood Community Center, Room C, 2100 White

Bear Ave. N., Maplewood • Tuesday, Aug. 31, 1–3 p.m., Ridgedale Library, RHR Room, 12601 Ridgedale Dr. Minnetonka • Friday, Sept. 10, 1:30 – 3:30 p.m., UCare, Training Rooms A & B, 500 Stinson Blvd. NE, Minneapolis • Friday, Sept. 17, 1:30 – 3:30 p.m., UCare, Training Rooms A & B, 500 Stinson Blvd. NE, Minneapolis

or toll free at 1-800-688-2534 (TTY); or through the Minnesota Relay at 711 or toll free direct access at 1-800-6273529 (TTY, Voice, ASCII, Hearing Carry Over), or 1-

877-627-3848 (speech to speech relay service). Or clients can call their UCare representatives at 612-676-3554 or 1-800-7071711 (toll free), or the Disabil-

ity Linkage Line at 1-866-3332466 (toll free). Clients who are hearing impaired can call the TTY line at 612-676-6810 or 1-800-688-2534 (toll free). ■

Information on the changes is being posted on the MnDHO section of the UCare web site. Go to and choose “UCare Complete” from among the choices under the “Health Programs” tab on the top menu. Other assistance is available. Clients can call UCare at 612676-3200 or toll free at 1-800203-7225. The information is available in other forms to people with disabilities by calling 612-676-3200 (voice) or toll free at 1-800-203-7225 (voice), 612-676-6810 (TTY)

BDC Management Co. is now accepting applications for our waiting lists at the following affordable communities Albright Townhomes Buffalo Court Apartments Elliot Park Apartments Evergreen Apartments Franklin Lane Apartments Hanover Townhomes Lincoln Place Apartments Olson Towne Homes Prairie Meadows Talmage Green Trinity Apartments Unity Place Vadnais Highlands Willow Apartments Woodland Court Apartments

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(Please call each individual site for specific building information. All listings are accessible.)


August 10, 2010

Nominations due Aug. 31 for annual award Do you know an individual or group with a record of outstanding service to Minnesota’s disability community? If so, it’s time to submit nominations for the annual Charlie Smith Award. Nominations are due Tuesday, Aug 31. Forms are available on the Access Press Web site or by call 651644-2133. The winner of the 2010 award will be honored Nov. 5 at a banquet at the Marriott Hotel in Bloomington. Tickets and table sponsorship information will be available soon. The banquet is one of the most-anticipated events of the year for Minnesota’s disabil-

ity community. Guests enjoy a cocktail hour and social time, a huge silent auction and raffle, musical entertainment and speeches. The facility is fully accessible and there is ample space for all. Charlie Smith Jr. was the founding editor of Access Press. The annual award is given in his honor. With the help of his parents, Rose and Charlie Smith Sr., he started the newspaper in 1990. Access Press remains Minnesota’s statewide disability community newspaper and is one of only a few such papers in the United States.

Until his death in 2001, Charlie Smith was a tireless advocate for Minnesota’s disability community. He was a fixture at news events and at the state capitol. He was active in a number of organizations and was well-versed in state and federal law and issues. The award is given in his name to honor people who have contributed as much to Minnesota’s disability community as he. Think of the people you know throughout the state and consider supporting their names in nomination.

Past Charlie Smith Award winners are: • 2009 Anne Henry, Minnesota Disability Law Center • 2008, Pete Feigal, Tilting at Windmills • 2007, Jim and Claudia Carlisle, People Enhancing People • 2006, John Smith, University of Minnesota • 2005, Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities (MN-CCD) • 2004, Rick Cardenas, codirector of Advocating Change Together • 2003, Margot Imdieke Cross, Minnesota State Council on Disabilities

The four finalists for the award in 2009 were U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison; Mike Gude of The Arc of Minnesota; McCarthy Builders owner Brian McCarthy; and Rachel Tschida, formally director of communications and community relations at AXIS Healthcare. Finalists can be nominated again. Part of the event is the silent auction and raffle. Last year’s inaugural silent auction was a lot of fun as banquet attendees were able to bid on items ranging from sports and theater tickets to a stay at an accessible cabin. New and vintage items were up for bid. The

Charlie Smith raffle featured items ranging from a gift certificate to Izzy’s Ice Cream to a cute teddy bear basket. Contact Dawn at Access Press if you are interested in donating to the silent auction or raffle, at 651-644-2133 or ■

Employment, access eyed Minnesota gets a C+ on ADA Report Card; is top grade by Jane McClure Minnesota earned a C + on the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Report Card issued this summer by the Center for Planning and Policy Studies at Indiana University’s Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. On a 4.0 scale, that’s a 2.30 average. When asked about overall community improvement over the past five years, Minnesota scored a 3.06 out of 5 possible points. While a C+ may not sound like anything to show off, Minnesota had the highest overall grade in the Great Lakes region, according to Vicki Pappas, director of the center for planning and policy at the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. The institute analyzed survey data and worked with DBTAC-Great Lakes ADA Center and ADA

Minnesota on the project. Those agencies helped publicize the survey and now, the report card results. The other five states— Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Wisconsin—earned Cs. “At first I was disappointed that we earned a C+,” said Cindy Tarshish of ADA Minnesota. But then she looked at the grades given to other states. “In the context of what we saw elsewhere, I think we did fine.” “Unfortunately the results were pretty much what we expected,” said Pappas. “Results were consistent from state to state.” But Tarshish said ADA Minnesota is looking at the survey results as a motivation to continue advancing the gains already made through the ADA, and to focus on areas needing

work. “One focus of our 20th anniversary celebration in Minnesota is to continue the fight and this is an incentive for us to do that,” she said. More than 500 Minnesotans took part in the survey this spring. In 12 subject areas, Minnesota’s grades ranged from C to D+. Access to local government and community programs and services, removal of physical barriers in buildings, and accessibility requirement for new construction and renovation each received a C+, their highest grade point averages. Job accommodations, Web site accessibility, use of communication supports and alternative formats, educating people with disabilities about the ADA and access to accessible transportation earned Cs. C– grades were given to the areas of employment opportunities for people with disabilities, and educating business people and government officials about the ADA. Education about filing ADA complaints got the lowest grade, at D+. “Minnesota organizations need to do much more to educate people about how to file complaints and see complaints through,” Pappas said. But all five other states also earned D+ grades. Those analyzing survey results expected employment to be a priority and noted that it was. But they were surprised

to not see removal of physical barriers in buildings not rank more highly. “No one got a B there,” said Pappas, “and that’s a surprise because of all of the years of emphasis on making buildings accessible.” The survey revealed that respondents were quite informed about the ADA. Fifty percent of Minnesota respondents indicated that they have good to excellent knowledge of the law. Respondents get their ADA information from the Internet, ADA Minnesota, Minnesota Disability Law Center and Minnesota State Council on Disability. The fact that ADA Minnesota is viewed as a resource is encouraging to Tarshish. Pappas said it is our hope people with disabilities, their families and caregivers can use the survey information as they advocate for improved services. “We hope people look at their priorities, how those fared in the survey and continue to work toward improvements.” Tarshish agrees, saying the results should be a motivating factor. Survey respondents identified their top priorities for action as more employment opportunities for people with disabilities, accessible transportation, education business and government officials about their rights and responsibilities under the ADA, and providing accommodations for

employment. Other areas cited as needing attention include removal of physical barriers in buildings, educating people with disabilities about their rights and responsibilities and accessibility requirements for new construction and renovation. The ADA Report Card Project was sponsored by the DBTAC-Great Lakes ADA Center and ADA Minnesota, with support from the U.S. Department of Education and National Institute of Disability and Rehabilitation Research. The survey was conducted and analyzed by the Center for Planning and Policy Studies at Indiana University’s Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. The mission of the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community is to work with communities to welcome, value, and support the meaningful participation of people of all ages and abilities through research, education, and service. The Institute collaborates with community agencies, schools, advocacy organizations, government, institutions of higher education, and other community partners to effect improvements in quality of life. The survey was conducted from May through June. Re-

spondents were asked to grade their communities in how the ADA was being implemented. They were also asked areas in which compliance needs to be improved. A total of 512 people with disabilities, their family members and advocates took part in the survey. Thirty-six percent of respondents were people with disabilities, with advocates making up another 36 percent. Parents and family members comprised 17 percent, with 11 percent of respondents classified as “other.” Respondents were from 62 of Minnesota’s 87 counties. Minneapolis and its surrounding suburbs topped the responses at 35 percent, with 23 percent from St. Paul and its surrounding suburbs. Another 16 percent came from northern counties, 9 percent from central Minnesota and 17 perfect from southern Minnesota. Tarshish said that she would have liked to have seen more results from Greater Minnesota. “People in those communities are dealing with all kinds of issues, especially in the areas of transportation and employment,” she said. “It would have been nice to hear from more of them.” ■

August 10, 2010


Pete’s Reflections

Thanks to one who shows us the way by Pete Feigal

My old friend, Bob Peters, one of the most active and humble man in the disability community developed a deep, terrible infection in a bed sore. The multiple award winning activist lives with passion, dignity, bravery and class. His time spent prone was dedicated to writing, organizing, and inspiring others. He wrote to me today and he’s on the mend. Here is part of my e-mail reply. Bob, You are amazing! You are one of my heroes, someone with true vision and deep, strength and faith. If you can make it, so can I. My MS has turned from relapsing/remitting to full progressive, so I'm in my own wheelchair now, the “Black Flash!” Both eyes are gone so I have the new software to continue writing my articles. I lost a year when my angel,

Melanie, was put on the wrong antidepressants and made a very serious attempt to end her life. It was maybe the hardest and loneliest time of my life, catching rides with her mom to go see her, literally crawling blind and unable to walk through our apartment. After six months of no housework, things were getting pretty ugly in the apartment. One day in a burst of energy, I tried to clean the house, busy little beaver that I am when I get those bursts of strength. You try to do all the things you couldn’t do in the last two weeks, and end up putting yourself back in bed for the next three. Deciding to start with the glass: Why would a blind man take it into his head to clean all the GLASS in the place? Habits and patterns change glacially slow. I guess Patsy Cline and Willy

Nelson wrote my theme song, “Crazy.” I found a spray bottle under the sink that I was sure was glass cleaner and went to town. I did a great job, considering I could barely even FIND the glass! “You missed a spot,” my cats told me. And as I cleaned, whistling a little tune as “Snow White” taught me. As I cleaned I noticed that the room was taking on a new fresh scent, as an extra bonus. Was I proud of myself. Turns out I had not chosen wisely, and instead of glass cleaner, I had been using a homemade concoction of vodka and essential oils that Melanie used as air freshener. But returning to my story, I fought a colon tumor last winter that almost took my life after totally blocking everything up. Seven months of torture, while the insurance companies, hospitals, clinics all

arguing. Living with these “character builders” has taught me a lesson in sociology: The worst crime you can commit in America, home of the brave, is to be sick and poor, or with no insurance. With the help from literally hundreds of friends, helping me with prayers, cards, e-mails and money, I was able to have a series of operations, and I’m still dancing! The muscles that control my swallowing and vocal cords are becoming paralyzed. So the decade when Melanie and I spent 200 days a year doing speaking engagements is fading fast. I will miss it. One time I had to do six speaking engagements in Bemidji, finishing at 10 p.m. Melanie drove us to northeast Michigan, singing the Melissa Ethridge sang: “Baby, you can sleep while I drive,” so I could keynote a conference at 9 a.m.

So, like you Bob, I'm turning more and more of my time to writing. Bob, do you see how many ways you inspire me? How your life and sufferings were not in vain? How you were terribly injured in your youth, and were deprived of so many things. But it didn’t stop you, or embitter you, or make you hard and cold as my wounds did to me. You embraced life even stronger, with a wife, family, friends, a cause to live, fight and die for. You make me believe I was also put on this earth for something, not just to spend my life in institutions? There are more adventures, more victories, more love and battles and defeats to come, and the road is still out there but I'm traveling on a different path. The MS and depression are brutal but subtle. I’m trying to work on my inner self, to

open doors that I've worked on over the years, blowing out the cobwebs, letting in new, fresh in. Bob, again you’ve shown me the way. That no matter what happens to this body, this mere flesh, my spirit, my soul will forever be my own. As I told my depression and MS this morning in the hour-long ritual of awaking, finding what still works, and then getting out of bed, telling them the same thing I've told all my enemies, unhearing institutions, hardened institutions of authority, collection agencies, cold medical professionals, compromise, appearance, greed: “Take what you want, Man; You will cause you have. But don't come shufflin’ after my soul.” ■

Hennepin County celebrates the ADA anniversary Hennepin County offered information and entertainment in honor of the 20th anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act July 29 at the Hennepin County Government Center in Minneapolis. Visitors learned about services offered by Hennepin County to persons with disabilities, such as video-based interpreting for persons who are deaf and adaptive technology for accessing print and computers at Hennepin County libraries. Actress/comedian Leslye Orr and pianist Ted Brown performed. Orr’s accomplishments include creating the award-winning stage comedy Ruthia Jones from Hennepin County’s Minneapolis Central Library showed visitors a “Women Who Drink,” and variety of technical aids available to library users, from keyboards with large-print labels to writing and illustrating a text-to-speech software.

Actress/comedian Leslye Orr offered a skit about the significance of the ADA anniversary with the help of Jim Ramnaraine, Hennepin County’s ADA coordinator.

children’s book about inclusiveness and disabilities, “The People on the Corner.” A former member of the Children’s Theatre Company and Ballet of the Dolls, Orr was born legally blind and has taught national workshops about the possibilities of disabilities. Brown, a vocalist and pianist, has performed for 32 years with the local variety band Windjammer and has been a member of the Anoka-

Hennepin Community Education adult choir Merry Music Makers. One of the highlights of his career was performing at the International Very Special Arts Festival at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. Brown has performed at numerous workshops and conferences on behalf of VSA Minnesota, the state organization on arts and disability, as well as independently. ■

Pianist and vocalist Ted Brown rocked the Government

Photos courtesy of Hennepin County Center with a new and classic pop selections.


August 10, 2010

Regional news in review . . . Boy recovering after hit-and-run A five-year-old St. Paul boy, who was struck and seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver July 8, is recovering and the driver is facing criminal charges. Godswill Udoh was struck and injured while in a crosswalk at Marion and Thomas. The little boy is autistic and lives with his family near the intersection. He had climbed out a window and left the home without anyone noticing. He may have been going to a nearby recreation center. Udoh was hospitalized after the accident but is expected to make a full recovery. After the accident his family made a public plea for the hitand-run driver to be caught. The driver was caught thanks to alert staff at the Ace Auto Parts store nearby on Rice Street. The day after the accident two young men came in seeking a replacement fender and auto parts. Their vehicle matched the description of the one that struck Udoh. Employees copied down the vehicle license number and the seventeen-year-old driver was located. He told police he was distracted while driving. Charges are pending. [Source: Pioneer Press]

Changes to GAMC still problematic Changes to the General Assistance Medical Care (GAMC) program continue to cause problems for clients with disabilities and low-income clients, according to a recent Star Tribune article. The newspaper described the plight of Maple Grove resident Eric Halstensen, who is wondering if he has a brain tumor. The 34-year-old told a reporter, “I could die in my sleep tonight and not even wake up. I think about it all the time.” Halstensen had no health problems until April. But he also is unemployed and has no health insurance. After a fall at a northern Minnesota golf course, doctors found and removed a large tumor on his spinal cord and diagnosed him with a rare form of cancer. Facing more than $50,000 in medical bills, Halstensen quickly signed up for General Assistance Medical Care (GAMC), a state program that provides coverage to about 34,000 poor adults without children. But changes to GAMC, which went into effect June 1, mean he cannot get a scan because the treatment is no longer covered. But his troubles weren’t over. Citing rules that went into effect on June 1, local health care workers told him he couldn’t

get the scans that might save his life because that kind of care was no longer covered by the state program. Health care advocates and state lawmakers said this is an example of the problems caused by program changes. “We are seeing real barriers to access and real dilemmas for providers,” said state Rep. Erin Murphy, a St. Paul DFLer who led negotiations on the program changes. “I’m worried there will be life and death consequences as a result of the solution we were able to muster.” Since June 1, the state Department of Human Services has received 180 complaints from GAMC clients, with about 25 involving difficulty or delay in getting specialty care, according to state officials. [Source: Star Tribune]

QuikTrip claims are resolved The Justice Department announced in July that a comprehensive settlement under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with QuikTrip Corporation, a private company that owns and operates more than 550 gas stations, convenience stores, travel centers, and truck stops in the Midwest, South and Southwestern United States. Under the consent decree, which was filed along with a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska, QuikTrip will create a $1.5 million compensatory damages fund for individuals who were victims of discrimination based on disability, as well as take various steps to make its stores accessible. The Justice Department initially opened the investigation in response to complaints about inaccessible parking by two individuals with disabilities in the Omaha, Neb., area. The lawsuit filed by the Justice Department alleges that the investigation revealed a nationwide pattern and practice of discrimination on the basis of disability. QuikTrip Corporation worked with the Justice Department to amicably resolve the matter without active litigation. “On July 26, 2010, we will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the ADA, a landmark civil rights law that ensures equal access and equal opportunity for individuals with disabilities. Ensuring full and equal access to all businesses open to the public is a top priority, and the Justice Department is committed to vigorous enforcement of the ADA to ensure equal opportunity

for individuals with disabilities,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “Convenience stores and gas stations are a critical part of everyday life in America, and these facilities must afford equal access to individuals with disabilities,” said Assistant Attorney General Perez. “QuikTrip has worked cooperatively with the department so we could resolve this case without active litigation and has affirmed its commitment to serving individuals with disabilities by taking the necessary actions to achieve ADA compliance at all of its stores.” [Source: U.S. Department of Justice]

Report released of LGTG seniors PFund, the only Minnesota-based foundation dedicated exclusively to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality, has released a first-of-its-kind report on LGBT seniors issues in Minnesota, “Equality as we Age: a Report on LGBT Seniors in Minnesota.” The report captures the voices and policy recommendations of a wide- ranging, multi-ethnic group of LGBT and mainstream community and nonprofit leaders. These leaders participated in a PFund-sponsored community forum and in-depth interviews on LGBT seniors’ issues earlier this year. The report provides an overview of common challenges Minnesota’s LGBT senior community members face and recommends changes needed to facilitate improved health and wellness, visibility, social interaction and services. “Our hope is that this report will inform policymakers and senior services providers on the concerns of the LGBT communities they serve,” said Alfonso Wenker, director of programs of PFund Foundation. “Additionally, we hope it guides future investments and action from community, business and philanthropic leaders to examine and advocate policies that ensure all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people have equal access to, safety and security at senior serving agencies, equal rights and social interaction.” The report includes a number of policy recommendations, focused on strategies focused on addressing issues related to the availability and accessibility of culturally appropriate care: policy initiatives that focus on community well-being and increased visibility and social engagement, and legal rights that Regional news - cont. on p. 15

August 10, 2010


People and places

News about people in our community Courage Center joins network

Darcy Pohland

A reporter is honored

Courage Center’s Activity Based Locomotor Exercise (ABLE) program has been named one of five communitybased fitness and wellness facilities of the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation’s NeuroRecovery Network (NRN). This cooperative network of cutting-edge rehabilitation centers provide and develop therapies that promote functional recovery and improve the health and quality of life for people living with paralysis and spinal cord injury. Funded by the Reeve Foundation through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the NRN translates the latest scientific advances into effective, activity-based rehabilitation treatments. Eight employees from Courage Center recently participated in a national summit in Louisville, Ky. The team spent five days of intensive, specialized training to learn how to appropriately deliver the NRN’s therapies. They learned about intervention techniques on TheraStride equipment for locomotor training; Functional Electrical Stimulation (FES) for upper/lower extremity; strengthening using FES bikes; and treatment and assessment protocols. The NRN interventions, including locomotor training, come from years of basic research and expertise developed at hospital-based centers and from European-based rehabilitation best practices. Through this research there is scientific and clinical evidence that supports the effectiveness of intensive therapy to improve a person’s health, independence and quality of life. Courage Center’s ABLE is open to people with a spinal cord injury and other neurological conditions. “It is our goal that, as a member of the Reeve Foundation NRN, Courage Center will improve overall health for people living with spinal cord injuries and improve access to services at the community level,” said Susan Howley, executive vice president for research, at the Reeve Foundation. Courage Center will begin accepting clients for the ABLE program in September. [Source: Courage Center]

The late Darcy Pohland is one of the new members of the Museum of Broadcasting Hall of Fame. The 2010 members were announced last month, after a vote of their peers. Pohland died earlier this year. Injured in a diving accident during her college days, Pohland used a wheelchair. She worked at various capacities at WCCO TV before becoming an on-air reporter, handling breaking news as well as features. Pohland is one of three posthumous winners. The others are former WCCO Radio personality Bob DeHaven and Minnesota radio and television pioneer Marty O’Neill. Other honorees are KSTP-TV anchor Cyndy Brucato; WCCO Radio reporter and Almanac co-host Eric Eskola; Gopher Communications and KROX Radio, Crookston owner Frank Fee; Minnesota Public Radio’s First Classical Music Host Arthur Hoehn: Northland’s NewsCenter KBJR 6/Range 11, Duluth anchor Michelle Lee; Twin Cities Top 40s radio personality Donald K. Martin and former Mankato and Austin area radio station owner Phil Nolan. Receiving the 2010 Museum of Broadcasting Hall of Fame Distinguished Service Award is Brad Nessler, a Minnesota New vice president named native and nationally known ABC and ESPN sportscaster. They UCare has hired Hilary Marden-Resnik as the nonprofit will be honored at a ceremony in October in Golden Valley. health plan’s new Senior Vice President of Administration. She [Source: Minnesota Broadcasters Association] assumed her new responsibilities July 12, and reports to UCare’s President and CEO, Nancy J. Feldman. Marden-Resnik succeeds Terry Chism as Senior Vice President of Administration. Chism, who joined UCare in 1996, will retire in early August. Marden-Resnik most recently was Vice President of Human Resources at Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) in Minneapolis. Prior to joining HCMC, she was Director of Human Resources at HealthEast Care System and also held human resources positions at Fairview Health Services and Golden Valley Health Center. “Hilary brings a broad knowledge of human resources to UCare, along with great energy and enthusiasm

for this opportunity to support our mission and goals” said Feldman. As a member of UCare’s senior management team, MardenResnik provides strategic guidance and executive leadership for human resources, organizational management and facility operations issues, leads strategic planning, and oversees corporate information research and materials production. MardenResnik holds an undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Wisconsin, a graduate degree in industrial relations from the University of Minnesota, and a juris doctor (Summa Cum Laude) from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul. UCare ( is an independent, nonprofit health plan providing health care and administrative services to more than 200,000 members. UCare addresses health care disparities and care access issues through its UCare Fund grants and a broad array of community initiatives. The health plan received a Top Workplaces 2010 honor from the Star Tribune. [Source: UCare]

Special Olympians do well Katie Timmer, Eric Sherarts, Kievin Odero and Michelle Boss, all of Minneapolis, competed as part of Team Minnesota at the 2010 Special Olympics USA National Games in Lincoln, Neb., July 18-23. They were among the top winners as 94 members of Team Minnesota earned 91 medals in 43 unique events at the 2010 National Games. The team included 16 track and field athletes; eight aquatic athletes; a male and female fullcourt basketball team; eight bowlers; eight golfers; two gymnasts; eight bocce athletes; a softball team and a volleyball team. A complete list of Team Minnesota’s results, including team rosters, can be found at www.specialolympicsminnesota. org/National_Games_Athlete. php. Timmer, 35, earned a Division 1 gold medal in female ninehole competition, shooting 57-56-52 for a total score of 165. Fellow Team Minnesota golfers Michael Copler, Desiree Greene, and Michael J. Madden also earned gold medals in their divisions while Aimee Anwiler, Michael Briddell and Michael C. Lawrence earned silver. Sherarts, 41, brought home two silver medals: one in Division 14 bocce team competition with teammates Erik Westenfield, Marshall Erickson and Jacob Pfleger; and one in Division 39 bocce doubles competition with partner Pfleger. Odero, 19, won two gold medals and one silver medal in track and field events. He won an individual gold medal in the Division 15 200-meter run with a time of 26.21 seconds. Ordero also earned a gold medal as part of the Team Minnesota 4x400 relay team, along with teammates Jerad Magnuson of Austin, Jesus Ortega of St. Paul and Nick Vandenburgh of Oak Grove. Ordero placed second in the Division 17 long jump with a distance of 4.51 meters, and he placed fourth in Division 13 of the 400, finishing in 1 minute, 1.68 seconds. Boss, 25, earned a Division 1 silver medal as part of Team Minnesota’s female basketball team. Minnesota defeated Michigan to advance in their division but fell to Kentucky in the gold medal game. Jamie Scattergood, Michelle Alvord, Tammy Kveen and Michael Krueger, all of Bloomington, also earned medals. Scattergood, 28, and Alvord, 41, earned a Division 1 silver medal as part of Team Minnesota’s female basketball team. Kveen, 40, earned a gold medal and three silvers in aquatics events. She placed first in Division F04 of the 25-meter breaststroke with a time of 37.17 seconds. Kveen swam 1:24.73 People/Places - cont. on p. 15

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August 10, 2010

Hundreds turn out to celebrate 20 years of the

Above and left: U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar spoke about ADA accomplishments and the challenges ahead. All of the speakers had ASL interpreters as well as captioning projected above the stage.

At right: Former U.S. Senator David Durenberger recalled the beginnings of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in his speech.

Minneapolis City Council Member Robert Lilligren addressed the crowd.

Peter Berg of the Great Lakes ADA Center reviewed signifi- Minneapolis City Council Member Diane Hofstede welcant amendments to the ADA as part of his speech. comed ADA Celebration participants to her ward.

Pages 8-9 photos by Jane McClure & Ali Mohamed

At left: Kim Moccia from the Minnesota STAR Program had technology available for visitors to see.

Below: Jerry Pouliot of Minnesota Relay explained the program and services offered Above: Hennepin County Commissioner Peter McLaughlin by Minnesota Relay, a state addressed the crowd. County, city and state officials attended. service for deaf and hearing-impaired Minnesotans.

Above: Visitors to the ADA Celebration could learn about assistive technology and other aids for voters.

August 10, 2010

ADA and reflect upon the challenges ahead

A large crowd turned out at the Nicollet Island Pavilion for the ADA Celebration.

Above and right: Many disability service and community organizations had booths at the ADA Celebration. Visitors could gather information on a wide range of topics.

ADA Celebration attendees enjoyed a delicious lunch.

Josh Blue having fun with the crowd.

Actress Nic Zapko told stories of growing up deaf.

Jewish Childrens and Family Services, foreground, had materials on display.



August 10, 2010

People and Places

Litchfield man gives back to his community by Bret Hesla A longtime Litchfield Public Schools volunteer, whose many projects include assertiveness training for special education students, is the winner of the school district’s 2010 Friend of Education Award. Brian Heuring won the annual award after he was nominated by three teachers for his extensive volunteer work in the district’s elementary school classes. “Many have been touched by this man’s helpfulness and integrity,” said Cheryl Whitchurch, one of the nominating teachers. Heuring’s own school days were in the Litchfield Public Schools system so he is giving back to his alma mater. He loves his volunteer duties, which are varied. “With the third graders, I usually help out with things like craft projects,” he said. “With the kindergarteners, I mostly play games with them.”

“The teacher always says, ‘Listen to Brian. He knows what he’s talking about.’ At least somebody’s on my side,” Heuring said with a laugh. “I think I’ll make a T-shirt with that written on the back.” “In addition to his helpfulness in the classroom, Brian has volunteered for several years in Ripley Elementary’s Thumbs Up after-school program,” said Whitchurch. “Thumbs Up uses a Mega Skills curriculum to strengthen social skills such as responsibility, respect, caring, teamwork, perseverance, and effort. Brian teaches by example as he naturally models the Mega Skills in all of his interactions with students and staff.” When asked by one of the teachers on the award selection committee why it was important to him to volunteer, Heuring replied simply, “I like

to help people.” His mother, Sharon, who was listening nearby said, “Short and sweet, just like his father.” His father is deceased. Heuring’s volunteer work includes presenting an assertiveness training for a special education class at the high school. The training was developed by St. Paul-based Advocating Change Together (ACT), with whom Heuring has been connected for many years in learning the skills of self-advocacy and now passing those skills along to others. “Brian is a great leader for the self-advocacy movement,” said ACT co-director Mary Kay Kennedy. “He does a ton of preparation before leading a training. I’m sure he brings that same level of professionalism to the volunteer work in the schools.” “I was really proud to get this award,” said Heuring, who

Brian Heuring accepts the Litchfield 2010 Friend of Education Award from the nominating committee. Pictured l-R: Kris Haugo, kindergarden teacher; Brian Heuring; Janelle Green, 3rd grade teacher; and Cheryl Whitchurch, 3rd grade teacher. Submitted photo

was honored at the school the recognition, Heuring also July 12, with school district district’s annual year-end rode on a float in the annual staff walking alongside. ■ breakfast in June. As part of Litchfield Watercade parade

Access grants awarded to nine area arts organizations Nine arts organizations in the Twin Cities have been awarded a total of $100,794 for projects to make the arts more accessible to people with disabilities. Funding for these ADA Access Improvement Grants for Metro Arts Organizations is from the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, which voters approved in 2008. VSA Minnesota administers this program for the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council. The purpose of this grant is to enable nonprofit arts organizations in the seven-county Twin Cities area to make improvements to their programs, projects, equipment, or facilities that will enhance access to the arts for people with disabilities. Such activities must advance the mission of the arts group; have the potential for significant or long-term impact in involving more people with disabilities as participants

or patrons in arts programs, improve accessibility services and report measurable out- for individuals who are deaf and hard of hearing and to add comes additional services for persons with vision loss. Funds would Grant recipients are: Mixed Blood Theatre Co., support: purchase of a new Minneapolis, $11,718—To Assisted Listening System; carry out a number of targeted increased AD/ASL interprefacility improvements to im- tation at matinees; and a surprove accessibility for artists, vey/research/focus group comaudiences, and future employ- ponent to determine potential ees with mobility impairments. deaf/hard of hearing and sight The project lays a foundation impaired audiences, to make for aligning programming, information of reaching them audience development, and a part of Illusion’s overall facility resources that provide marketing plan, and to idenaccess for people with disabili- tify Illusion’s long-term AD/ ASL needs. ties. Rosetown Playhouse, Northern Clay Center, Minneapolis, $4,544—To help Roseville, $1,161.17—To fund the purchase of a reha- purchase two Personal PA bilitation pottery wheel, as well hearing assistance devices that as the purchase and installa- will work with the theatre’s tion of a secondary automatic sound systems to make an door opener to be used with an easier listening experience for interior entrance to Northern audience members who are hard of hearing. Clay Center’s classrooms. The O’Shaughnessy Hall at Illusion Theater & School, Minneapolis, $15,000—To St. Catherine University, St.

Paul, $15,000—To improve access to The O’Shaughnessy for patrons and performers with disabilities by creating entrances to the theater and dressing rooms that are in compliance with the requirements set forth in the ADA. Circus Juventas, St. Paul, $15,000—To refine and promote its “Wings” program which makes circus performing arts classes and performance opportunities available to children and youth with physical and developmental disabilities. Funding would help cover cost of staff, special equipment, outreach activities and class fee subsidies to recruit additional participants. Interact Center for Visual & Performing Arts, Minneapolis, $13,875—To purchase furniture and equipment that will make it possible for more artists with disabilities to have

inspiring, supportive and accessible opportunities to engage in art making. In Interact’s 14-year history, artistic quality has grown exponentially, but some equipment is not accessible at all, lighting is inadequate for vision impairments, and furniture is worn out and not always safe. Young Dance, Minneapolis, $9,496—All Abilities Dancing is an initiative to build physically integrated dance into the fabric of the organization. Funds from the ADA Access Improvement grant will go specifically towards outreach, teacher training, curriculum development, and an ASL interpreter for all company classes, rehearsals, and performances. Upstream Arts, Inc., Minneapolis, $15,000—To increase accessibility to specific groups of individuals with disabilities, Upstream Arts will

Help Access Press serve you! Take an online reader survey. Weigh in on which web/newspaper features you like or dislike, and what you would like to see! Go to No Internet access? Call for assistance at 651-644-2133 and ask for Jane

host a series of trainings for its teaching artists, led by local experts including disability service providers and Special Education teachers. Upstream will also host a week-long intensive training on American Sign Language. Earlier this year other groups were funded. They include The Soap Factory, Textile Center of Minnesota, Chicago Avenue Fire Arts Center, and Minneapolis Musical Theater, all of Minneapolis, History Theater and Sample Night Live! of St. Paul and DanceWorks Repertory Ensemble, Lakeville. Two more rounds of grants (up to $15,000 each), along with updated guidelines and application forms, will be announced later this year and will be available at www. For more information, contact VSA Minnesota, 612-332-3888 voice/tty, ■

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August 10, 2010


People and Places

Singer, songwriter Long shares elders’ wisdom by Clarence Schadegg Larry Long is a Twin Cities singer and songwriter, who uses his work to inspire others. He is executive director of the Minneapolis-based nonprofit Community Sense of Place and recently started the program Elders’ Wisdom. Larry Long started the Elders’ Wisdom Children’s Song program with the belief that people are never too old—or too young—to learn tolerance and understanding. www.’s profile on Elders’ Wisdom, Children’s Song asked “Can Tolerance Be Taught?” which takes a closer look at how our program is exploring that question through our work in schools and communities. Clarence Schadegg interviewed Long for Access Press. Access Press: Why did you start Elders’ Wisdom? Long: Elders’ Wisdom, brings together all of the elements of building community. It is intergenerational. It passes the story—the torch from one generation to the next. It teaches the values of respect— to honor the life of another. We truly do stand on the shoulders of others. In a personal way—it was my grandfather who helped heal me when my father passed away 45 years ago when I was 13.

Access Press: How do the experiences of older people from Elders’ Wisdom empower younger people to keep positive even when surrounded by negative events that in some cases derail the future of so many young people? Long: I didn’t realize the depth of this until someone observed the impact of this work on children—empathic relationships—and how intergenerational learning helps heal others in a way that is deep and meaningful. Access Press: How does music and poetry help the feeling of defeat and rejection among younger people? Long: I can only speak to this in a personal way. This is what Martin Keller wrote about my experience in his article, Finding His Voice— and Helping Others Find Theirs. “You wouldn’t know it that the man whose made a lifetime singing and sharing stories could barely utter a sentence as a child.” My grandfather would console me, he explains, by saying ‘Moses stammered and look what he brought to the people.’” But the youngster soon discovered that whenever he sang, both his fear and stutter disappeared. Since then he’s helped others find theirs: The family

Singer-songwriter Larry Long, far right, honors elders through his Elders’ Wisdom Children’s Song Programs. Submitted photo

farmer, Lakota Warriors, civil rights workers, the local violinmaker, the school cook . . . His hundreds of ballads readily capture a personalized history of our time, while embracing our common humanity with stories about those history makers who are known and those who are all but forgotten. Access Press: Have you had people with disabilities participate in your programs on Elders’ Wisdom? Long: Recently, we honored an elder at Sanford Middle School. His name is William Lewis Dye, Jr. His song is

We remember Milton Robert Floyd, a teacher and volunteer at Vision Loss Resources, died after a July 10 scuba diving accident in Wisconsin. The Minneapolis resident was 60 years old. He taught craft and beading classes at Vision Loss Resources and was a well-liked square dance caller and scuba instructor. Services were held July 15 at Lake Harriet Christian Church in Minneapolis. Memorials are preferred, Floyd was well known and well liked among Vision Loss Resources’ clients and staff. He is survived by wife, “CJ” (Carolyn); daughters Amber Floyd and Lindsay Wincek (Mike); mother, Virginia York; siblings Terri (Jack), Vera (Mike), Scott, Shelly and many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and one fluffy cat, Sigmund Floyd. He was preceded in deaf by his father. Memorials are preferred. Virginia Ricci died July 23 after a long battle with ALS. She was 72 and lived in St. Paul. She was very active at Thompson Hall and its Deaf Club, and has served as its chairperson. Thompson Hall, located in St. Paul, is one of the nation’s oldest and

largest social clubs for the deaf. Ricci is survived by children Mark Sottile (Angie), Jeff O’Neill (Julie), Jennifer O’Neill & Gina Alvarado (Chris); grandson Kellen O’Neill; and siblings George, Johnny, Fred, Danny, Gloria, Rose, Lorraine, Palma, Ann & Mary. She was preceded in death by three brothers and a sister. Ricci was retired from St. Paul College. Services were held July 26 at the Church of St. Pascal Babylon in St. Paul, with burial at Union Cemetery. Memorials are preferred in lieu of flowers to MN Deaf Hospice Group. John Callahan, a cartoonist whose work could be as funny as it was macabre, died July 28 at age 59. The causes were complications of quadriplegia and respiratory problems. At the peak of his career, Callahan’s cartoons appeared in more than 200 newspapers. When a car accident in 1972 severed his spine, Callahan was already an alcoholic. He wasn’t driving, but the driver, whom he barely knew, was drunk when he smashed Callahan’s vehicle into a utility pole at 90

miles per hour. He was paralyzed from the chest down and lost the use of many of his upper-body muscles, though he could extend his fingers and eventually, after therapy, hold a pen in his right hand. To draw, he guided his right hand slowly across a page with his left, producing rudimentary, even childlike images. Like his friend Gary Larson, creator of “The Far Side,” Callahan made drawings with a gleeful appreciation of the macabre that he found in everyday life. There was the drawing of a blind black man begging in the street, wearing a sign that read: “Please help me. I am blind and black, but not musical.” In another, a sheriff’s posse on horseback surrounds an empty wheelchair. The caption gave him the title of his 1990 autobiography: “Don’t Worry, He Won’t Get Far on Foot.” Callahan often defended his work with a shrug, saying simply that he thought it was funny, but he also said that people who were genuinely afflicted tended to be his fans. This information was excerpted from the New York Times. ■

“Don’t Let No One Ever Stop You.” He has extreme vision loss. When his song was sung, he wept, while a Somali elder placed his arms around him in comfort. Access Press: How do you believe self-advocacy may benefit elders and youngsters who experience the negative side of our society? Long: When ones sense of self is lifted—one loses their fears—can understand justice —and that their own individual struggle is not just their own— but the struggle of others—a

rising tide lifts all. When those who are on wheels have access to theatres, schools, sidewalks—they’re no longer in the closet—they are not only seen by the world but are able to share the world with others and the world discovers all of these life stories and incredible people that use to be relegated to the backrooms. This goes for everyone who was held captive—either by others or by their own fears of rejection. It is a benefit to all. Dr. M. L. King once said something to the affect—when the

slave is set free—so is the slave-owner that dysfunctional relationship is no longer there and equality has replaced it. All of this is at the core of our country’s values we just have to remind our youth of this pillar of equality and justice. Long performs throughout the region and is available for performances. Anyone wanting more information about Long, his songwriting and performing, and his work with elders and other communities can visit his web site ■


August 10, 2010

Accessible performances The following performances will be Audio Described (AD) for people who are blind or have low vision, or interpreted in American Sign Language (ASL) for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Selected performances offer reduced admission prices for the patron and one companion. When calling a box office, confirm the service (ASL or AD), date, time, ticket price and anything else needed, e.g. length of performance, etc. If you attend a show, please share your feedback with the performing organization, interpreter, and VSA arts of Minnesota. Accessible performance information is compiled by VSA arts of Minnesota, 612-332-3888 or

See for complete listing and for Accessible Movie Theaters Wicked Aug. 11 – Sept. 19 Touring company at Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls. ASL: Tues., Aug. 24, 7:30 p.m. AD Sun., Sept. 5, 6:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $38 for ASL; discounted tickets are limited to a pair for each patron requiring ASL plus a companion; reg. $38 - $14350; Phone: 612-339-7007 or 612373-5639; hotline 612-3735650; TTY 612-373-5655; Email: accessible@broad w a y a c r o s s a m e r i c a . c o m. Web: www.hennepintheatre

Minnesota Fringe Festival Through Aug. 15 23 Audio Described shows, 14 ASL-interpreted shows, 6 disability-theme shows at 19 accessible venues in Mpls. and St. Paul. Shows last under one hour. Tix: $4 Fringe button is required. One show $12 ($10 senior, student, MPR member); 5-show punch pass $50; 10-show punch pass $100; Ultra Pass $225. Advance reservations ($2 fee) guarantee seat; fee is waived for people using access services, with the code “access.” Phone: Tix: 866-811-4111; Office: 612-872-1212; daily recording: 612-706-1456, box 4. E-mail: robin@ The Scottsboro Boys Web: Through Sept. 25 Guthrie Theater, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. Captioning: Sat., Triumph of Love Aug. 14, 7:30 p.m. AD: Sat., Through Aug. 28 Aug. 21, 1 p.m., sensory tour 10:30 a.m.; also Fri., Aug. 27, University of Minnesota Show7:30 p.m. ASL: Thurs., Sept. boat Players at Harriet Island 2, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., Sept. 3, Regional Park, St. Paul. ASL: 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to Fri., Aug. 13, 8:00 p.m. Tix: $20 for AD/ASL (reg. $29- $20; E-mail: showboat@umn. 65); Captioning $25; Phone: edu; Phone: 651-227-1100. 612-377-2224, TTY 612- Web: www.riverrides. com or 377-6626. Web: www.Guth

A Streetcar Named Desire Through Aug. 29 Guthrie Theater, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. AD: Fri., July 30, 7:30 p.m. ASL: Thurs., Aug. 12, 7:30 p.m. Captioning: Fri., Aug. 13, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $20 for AD/ASL (reg. $15-40); Captioning $25; Phone: 612-377-2224, TTY 612-377-6626. Web: www. Sample Night Live Sept. 1, Oct. 6, Nov. 3 Numerous performing artists at History Theatre, 30 E. 10th St., St. Paul. ASL: Sept. 1, Oct. 6, Nov. 3, 7 to 10:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $10 (reg. $20); Online enter coupon code ASL. Phone: 612-2014000. Web: www.samplenight The Polish Pugilist Aug. 19-28 Performers from the local music, theatre and dance scene perform at a downtown Minneapolis location (*NOT wheelchair-accessible) revealed upon ticket reservation. ASL: integrated into the production on August 19, 21, 26, 27, 28, 8 p.m. Tix: Limited

admissions, $25-$15. E-mail: at 12 Twin Cities community garden spaces, with some movement required of the auCity of Angels dience. Sighted guide sugAug. 20 - Sept. 19 gested. ASL: Sun., Aug. 29, 4 BloomingtonCivicTheatre,1800 p.m. at JD Rivers’ Children’s W. Old Shakopee Rd. ASL: Garden, Glenwood Ave. & Thurs., Sept. 9, 7:30 p.m. AD: Washburn Ave. N., Theodore Fri., Sept. 10, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Re- Wirth Park, Mpls. AD: Sun., duced to $21 (reg. $25-28); Sept. 19, 4 p.m. at Bronx Park Phone: 952-563-8575. Web: Community Garden, 2500 w w w . b l o o m i n g t o n c i v i c Georgia Ave. & Cedar Lake Trail, St. Louis Park. Tix: By donation, advance reservations Minnesota Renaissance requested: Phone: 612-619Festival 2112. Web: www.mixedpreci Weekends, Aug. 21– Oct. 3 Sign Language Saturday offers interpreters at most perDefeat of Jesse James formances during the day. 20 Days reenactment miles south of the Twin Cities, September 10-12 3 miles south of Shakopee off The James-Younger gang’s atHighway 169 at 145th St. ASL: tempted bank robbery in 1876 Sat., Sept. 11, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. will be reenacted at 408 DiviTix: $2095, Senior (60+) $1895; sion St. in downtown NorthChild (6-12) $1195. Phone: field. ASL: Fri., Sept. 10, 7 952-445-7361; E-mail: info@ p.m.; Sat., Sept. 11, 1 p.m.;; Web: Sun., Sept. 12, 12:30 p.m. (bleacher area with wheelchair spaces available). Tix: $4 celTales of Hoffmann: ebration button; Phone: 507A Picnic Operetta 663-0008 or 507-645-5604. Weekends, Aug. 21 - Sept. 26 Web: Mixed Precipitation performs

A Taste of Asia Sept. 12 Mpls. Institute of Arts, 2400 Third Ave. S. ASL: Sun., Sept. 12, 1 p.m. Tix/Phone: 612870-3131 or TTY 612-8703132; E-mail: dhegstro@arts mia. org Web: www.artsmia. org. On the second weekend of each month, free tours are offered for visitors with memory loss, Alzheimer’s and their friends or care partners. Steel Magnolias Sept. 17 – Oct. 10 Bloomington Theatre and Art Center Black Box Theater, 1800 W. Old Shakopee Rd. AD: Fri., Oct. 1, 7:30 p.m. ASL: Sun., Oct. 3, 2 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $11 (reg. $16-18); Phone: 952-563-8575. Web: www. bloomingtoncivictheatre. org. The Glass Menagerie Sept. 10 – Oct. 17 Jungle Theater, 2951 Lyndale Ave. S., Mpls. AD: Thurs., Sept. 23, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $10 (reg. $20-35); Phone: 612-822-7063. Web:

Fair offers accommodations The Minnesota State Fair, which is Aug. 26 – Sept. 6 in Falcon Heights, offers many accommodations for visitors. General admission tickets to fairgrounds at the gate are $11 (ages 13-64), $9 (65 & over), $8 (ages 5-12), free under 5. Thrifty Thurs.: Aug. 26. Seniors & Kids Day: Aug. 30. Ticket Deal Tues.: Aug. 31. Read & Ride Day: Sept. 1. Seniors Day: Sept. 2. Kids Day: Sept. 6. Pre-fair discount admission tickets are available online thru Aug. 17 and at Cub Foods July 25 Aug. 25. Accessible parking is offered in several lots for vehicles with a valid placard. Cost is $11 or use your prefair admission ticket. Access points for parking are at Larpenteur and Underwood; Snelling at Hoyt; or Cleveland and Commonwealth. Additional accessible parking is available south of Como Ave. There is also a free park and ride lot for wheelchair-accessible bus service on the south side of Oscar Johnson Arena, 1039 deCourcy Circle. Exit Snelling and Energy Park Drive and travel east on Energy Park Drive. Buses run every 20 minutes. Be aware that limited wheelchair accessible buses operate from park and ride lots at Roseville Area High School, Nova Classical Academy and the U of M Minneapolis campus every day. Weekday service is at St. Rose of Lima, Gloria Dei and Grace churches.

UCare is one of many groups offering those handy free tote bags at the Minnesota State Fair. Drop-off for passengers is • Sat., Sept. 4, 8:00 p.m.: KISS, at Como Loop Gate Nine. $40, 60, 70. Metro Transit also provides ASL interpreters are available several wheelchair accessible to assist guests from 9:30 a.m. buses on routes to the fair. to 2:30 p.m. Inquire at the guest For visitors who use wheel- services office in Visitors chairs, wheelchair battery Plaza. Assistive Listening Decharging is available at the Care vices are available during and Assistance Center across Grandstand events at Visitors from Heritage Square on Dan Plaza. Patch Avenue. The center is For those who want to visit open daily 9 a.m.-11 p.m. the Midway, accessibility Vista Mobility offers wheel- guides are available. chair and electric scooter The 2010 State Fair Accesrental; reservations are recom- sibility Guide will be in mended. It is near Como Av- downloadable format in Auenue Loop Gate Nine. gust. It will include more info. Visitors may request ASL Phone: 651-288-4448 or TTY interpreters or Audio Describ- 651-642-2372, or E-mail: tick ers for Grandstand Shows at, accessi least two weeks in advance. or ASL Grandstand shows with interpreting include: Tix: Minnesota State Fair • Tues., Aug. 31, 7:30 p.m.: box office, 651-288-4427; Carrie Underwood with Sons TTY 651-642-2372; Ticketof Sylvia, $39, 49, 59. master, 800-745-3000 (subject • Fri., Sept. 3, 7:45 p.m.: A Prai- to convenience charge). Web: rie Home Companion with or www. Garrison Keillor, $23, 28. ■

August 10, 2010


Upcoming events To list an event, email Help us Access Press survey Access Press is in the midst of a strategic planning process. Help the newspaper by taking an online reader survey. Weigh in on which newspaper features you like or dislike, and what you would like to see that is missing. If you do not have Internet service or cannot use a computer, call the newspaper office at 651-644-2133 and ask for an alternative format or assistance. The survey is at

Advocacy Give them a call Metro Center for Independent Living has set up a PCA “You Need to Hear Me” call-in line The purpose of this call-in line is to provide consumers, PCAs/DSPs, families, and interested others the chance to share anonymous comments, reactions and concerns with Department of Human Services and Minnesota Legislature regarding the impact of recent legislative changes which are affecting their lives. How it works: Call 651-6032009 to connect to the “You need to hear me” message line. The caller will hear a short pre-recorded message. The phone will not be answered, ensuring caller anonymity. The callers may leave a short message describing the impact of these changes on their lives, or the lives of their family. The messages can be complaints, concerns, suggestions or general comments. Zip code will be asked for only so comments can be communicated to specific legislators.

Special events

hibits, ASL storytelling, and an anniversary gala. FFI: or email Jeans to Gems Opportunity Partners’ sixth annual benefit gala is Fri, Oct. 15 at Sofitel Minneapolis, Bloomington. This year’s theme, “Jeans to Gems,” celebrates style, fun, and the mission to help people with disabilities build independence and gain new skills through advanced learning, deep community supports and meaningful work. A gourmet dinner, entertainment and silent and live auctions are features. Tickets start at $100; sponsorships are available. FFI: Noel McCormick, 952- 912-2494, or nmccormick@opportun Almost anything goes Minnesota Association of the Deaf Citizens and Miss Deaf Minnesota Ambassadorship program host Almost Anything Goes 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Sun, Aug. 15 at Boom Island, 724 Sibley St., Minneapolis. Wear clothing you can get wet and dirty in and play childhood games including tug-o-war, egg toss, water balloon toss and more. Game tickets, food and drink available for purchase. FFI: Kim Wassenaar,

Workshops, conferences Consumer and Family Conference 2010 Journey to Wellness: Body. Balance. Being is Brain Injury of Minnesota’s conference 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sat, Aug. 28 at Calvary Lutheran Church, 7520 Golden Valley Road, Golden Valley. Keynote is The Journey through Spiritual Crisis-Helping Children and Families Find Hope; Margo Richardson, Chaplin, Hennepin County Medical Center. Attend presentations on a variety of topics. Cost $20; attendee minimum age is 16 years old. Must have the ability to participate in a full day of activity and presentations. Pre-registration requested. FFI: 612-378-2742 or 800669-6442

Save the date Access Press hosts its annual Charlie Smith Award Banquet Fri, Nov. 5 at the Minneapolis Airport Marriot, 2020 E. America Blvd., Bloomington. Save the date for an evening of fun and help Access Press honor the 2010 Charlie Smith Award winner. The newspaper is accepting donations for its silent auction and raffle. Charlie Smith Award nominations are now being accepted. FFI: 651-644-2133; dawn@, www.access Creative Options Creative Options, a one-day energizing conference for Deaf renaissance people with disabilities and the A week-long celebration, Re- staff who support them, is 8 naissance of the Minnesota a.m. – 4 p.m. Mon, Sept. 20, Deaf, is planned with a series 2010 at Eagan Community of statewide events Sept, 24- Center. This year’s featured Oct. 2 in Faribault and through- speaker is Derrick Dufresne, out the Twin Cities. Help the the founder and president of Minnesota Association of Deaf Community Resource AssociCitizens celebrate with history ates, Inc. Breakout sessions tours, a brunch, a picnic, ex- for self-advocates include: The

Art of Work presented by Upstream Arts, Theatre for Life with Wilbur Neushwander-Frink, and Living Your Passion presented by self-advocates Evan Smith and Jeff Pearlman. Sessions will also be held for direct staff. Scholarships for self-advocates are provided by a grant from the Minnesota Governor’s Council. FFI: Susan Hilden, 651365-3731, or Adaptive technology classes Free adaptive technology classes are offered by Hennepin County Library, at the downtown Mpls library, 300 Nicollet Mall. Classes are free but you must pre-register for these classes for persons who are blind or have low vision. In addition to classes there are often volunteers available to introduce patrons to the equipment and software available. Volunteer hours vary, so it’s best to call ahead. The Blind and Low Vision Computer User group meets in Room N402 1-3 p.m. the second Saturday of each month, with a different speaker. Funding for Adaptive Technology classes is provided by a generous grant from the Hudson Family Foundation. FFI: 612-630-6469, Adoption Learn about adoption through Lutheran Social Services. Discover the tools and support for families who would like a flexible, proactive adoption process, and learn how LSS can partner with you to grow your family. LSS can help families adopt children locally and from countries around the world. Next session is 6-8 p.m. Tue, Aug. 17 at Center for Changing Lives, 2400 Park Ave., Mpls. FFI: Lynne Haggar, 612879-5230, www.minnesota

family support groups, over 20 support groups for people living with a mental illness, 2 anxiety support groups, and Vet Connection groups for returning soldiers. Led by trained facilitators who also have a family member with mental illness, the support groups help families develop better coping skills and find strength through sharing their experiences. A family support group meets in the St. Paul area at 6:30 p.m., on the second and fourth Wed. FFI: Anne Mae, 651-730-8434. A NAMI Connection peer support group for adults recovering from mental illness meets bi-weekly in Roseville. The free group is sponsored by the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Minnesota. Trained facilitators who are also in recovery lead NAMI Connection groups. The group meets 6:30 p.m. 2nd and 4th Wed at Centennial Methodist Church, 1524 Co. Rd. C-2 W., Roseville. FFI: Will, 651-5783364, Anxiety support group The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota (NAMI-MN) sponsors free support groups for persons with anxiety disorders. The groups help individuals develop better coping skills and find strength through sharing their experiences. An Open Door Anxiety and Panic support group meets in St. Paul at 6:30 p.m., first and third Thu, at Gloria Dei Church, 700 Snelling Ave. S. St. Paul. FFI: NAMI, 651-645-2948, www.

Hope for recovery The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota (NAMI Minnesota) hosts a free, one-day education workshop that provides families and individuals with information on mental illnesses, practical coping strategies, and hope for Support groups, recovery. Workshop is 9 a.m.meetings 3 p.m. Sat., Aug. 14 at NAMI Minnesota, 800 Transfer Rd., Mental illness Suite 31, St. Paul. Registration The National Alliance on Men- requested. FFI: NAMI, 651tal Illness of Minnesota 645-2948, (NAMI-MN) sponsors free support groups for families Caregivers support group who have a relative with a Parents and caregivers of chilmental illness. NAMI has 23 dren with Fetal Alcohol Spec-

Be Seen by Thousands! Put YOUR company message here ! Call 651-644-2133 TODAY!

trum Disorders (FASD) can join a caregiver’s support group organized by The Arc Greater Twin Cities. The free group meets on the first Tuesday of each month from 10:00 – 11:30 a.m. at Arc Greater Twin Cities, 2446 University Ave. W., Suite 110, St. Paul and at 6-8 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at Sabathani Community Center, 310 E. 38th St., Mpls. The group is an opportunity for participants to support one another, share successful parenting techniques, discuss the challenges and hopes of raising a child with FASD, and become better educated about the disorder. The FASD Relative Caregivers Support Group is sponsored by Arc Greater Twin Cities and the Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Regional Network. FFI: Janet Salo, 952-920-0855 UCare meetings UCare hosts informational meetings about its UCare for Seniors Medicare Advantage plan. Meetings are held all over the region. UCare for Seniors has more than 75,000 members across Minnesota and western Wisconsin. UCare (is an independent, nonprofit health plan providing health care and administrative services to more than 185,000 members. UCare serves Medicare-eligible individuals throughout Minnesota and in western Wisconsin; individuals and families enrolled in income-based Minnesota Health Care Programs, such as MinnesotaCare and Prepaid Medical Assistance Program; adults with disabilities and Medicare beneficiaries with chronic health conditions. And Minnesotans dually eligible for Medical Assistance and Medicare FFI: 1-877-523-1518 (toll free), .

elementary students in the St. Paul Public schools in reading and math. Under the guidance of a classroom teacher, volunteers assist students one-onone or in small groups determined by classroom need. By contributing as little as two hours per week, you can give a struggling student the extra attention needed to help them succeed. Volunteers age 55 and older are eligible to receive free supplemental insurance, mileage reimbursement and other benefits through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) sponsored by Volunteers of America of Minnesota. FFI: Connie at 612617-7807 or e-mail cerickson Volunteer with RSVP Volunteers age 55 and older are eligible to receive free supplemental insurance, mileage reimbursement and other benefits through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) sponsored by Volunteers of America of Minnesota. RSVP/Volunteers of America of Minnesota and AARP Foundation need volunteers with good budgeting and organizational skills to help manage finances of older or disabled low-income individuals. Have a few hours a month to volunteer? Money Management Program staff will train and match you with someone in the community. FFI: Money Management Program Coordinator, 612-6177821

Be a literacy volunteer Enthusiastic individuals needed to make a lasting difference in the life of an adult learner. Help someone in your community learn English, prepare for the GED or increase their basic math, reading and computer skills. Ongoing training and support is provided Volunteer through the Minnesota Literacy Council. FFI: Allison Tutor a Child, Change a Runchey, 651-645-2277, ext Future 219,, Volunteers are needed to tutor ■

Be our friend! Join our cause! Access Press is on facebook Link up with us. Join in on discussions Donate to Minnesota’s disability community newspaper Facebook is a free social networking Web site that allows people to connect with friends, share ideas and support issues and causes. Sign up and search for Access Press


August 10, 2010


Cont. from p. 1

“Paul always believed that you had to help everyone in the community,” she said. Many elected officials offered their congratulations and their support for the future ADA fights. St. Paul native Blue, an internationally known comedian, had the crowd howling with laughter at his tales of life with cerebral palsy. Zapko provoked laughter and applause as she told humorous stories of growing up deaf. But it was the inspiring testimony of average Minnesotans about how the ADA and public accommodations have changed their lives that captivated the audience and drew heartfelt responses. “For a lot of us, we remember just trying to get a job,” said Claudia Fuglie. Others described being denied even the chance to apply for positions, or struggling to get through everyday life without accommodations for cab rides, school and work. Rachel Parker, who is blind, works at PACER Center. She described her long fight to get audible traffic signals installed where she walks. She joked about how now the device has to be fixed. Peter Berg of the Great Lakes ADA Center reviewed

the significant amendments to the ADA that were just signed by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. The amendments were published by the federal government on the day of the celebration. “These are significant changes,” Berg said, and it is critical that community members be aware of them. Holder signed final regulations revising the Department’s ADA regulations, including its ADA Standards for Accessible Design. In general, these final rules will take effect six months after the date on which they are published in the Federal Register. Compliance with the 2010 Standards for Accessible Design is permitted after that date, but not required until 18 months after the date of publication. Berg said the changes affect many areas important to people with disabilities, including regulatory changes on public access and commercial facilities, service animals, housing, correctional facilities, lodging, auxiliary aids and other services. A complete summary of the changes is available at www.adagreat and click on Final Rules amending Title II and III of the ADA Released. ■


Cont. from p. 1

extend the deadline for the Defendants to answer the Complaint is DENIED.” DHS officials declined comment when contacted by Access Press. METO has already been investigated by the state’s Ombudsman for Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, which found a practice of abuse at the facility. Among its findings released in fall 2008, the ombudsman reported that documents in individual records revealed that people were being routinely restrained in a prone face-down position and placed in metal handcuffs

and leg hobbles. In at least one case, a client that the metal handcuffs and leg hobbles were secured together behind the person, further immobilizing the arms and legs, reported it to the ombudsman staff. Some individuals were restrained with a waist belt restraint that cuffed their hands to their waist. An individual with an unsteady gait was routinely placed in this type of restraint, putting that person at risk of injury if they should fall. METO policies stated that a person was not to be restrained for more than 50 minutes. But that practice was apparently

not followed. Ombudsman office staff found numerous examples of documented incidents where after 50 minutes in a restraint, staff would continue the restraint but document it on a different restraint use form, sometimes with no indication that it was a continuation of the previous restraint. Documentation also revealed that in most cases where restraints were used the person was calm and cooperative about going into the restraint but began to struggle, cry and yell once they were restraints. In some cases, clients appeared conditioned to

“assume the position” for application of restraints where they would lie on the floor and put their hands behind their back without resistance. The ombudsman also found METO failed to attempt any alternatives to avoid using restraints; the length of time some patients were restrained exceed even METO’s own guidelines; and the agencies that had protective obligations for METO patients or responsibility to serve as checks and balances over the actions of the program failed to protect the patients or turned a blind eye to the problem. ■

Radio Talking Book • September Sampling Program reminder When the Radio Talking Book (RTB) Listener Survey was done in fall 2009, one finding was that many people do not know when they can hear certain programs on the radio. As an example, there was a question “Is there a topic you wish was offered on the radio that is not on now?” A number of people said “history”—yet RTB offers history books on Monday through Friday at 9 a.m. Others responded “health, fitness, or wellness. RTB has two health programs on weekly, Fridays at 1 p.m. and Saturdays at 3 p.m., in addition to the 10 a.m. exercise program. Some people even answered “politics”— yet RTB has daily newspapers twice per day, and a news commentary program Monday through Friday at 5 p.m. There were also numerous magazines suggested that are already part of weekly programming. If listeners have questions about when a topic is covered or when a magazine is read, call Tony Lopez, Program and Volunteer Coordinator, at 651-642-0880 or 800-652-9000. RTB on Facebook The Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network recently started using a presence on Facebook to let people know the latest news about the radio. Read book reviews by the volunteers who are recording them, as well as any other breaking news. There are also many historic photos on the site. Books available through Faribault Books broadcast on the Minnesota RTB Network are available through the Minnesota Braille and Talking Book Library in Faribault. Phone is 1-800-722-0550. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. The catalog is also online and can be accessed by going to the main Web site,, and then clicking on the link. Listeners living outside of Minnesota may obtain copies of books by contacting their home state’s Network Library for the National Library Service. Listen to the Minnesota Radio Talking Book, either live or archived programs from the last week, on the Internet at Call the staff at the Radio for your password to the site. Chautauqua Tuesday – Saturday • 4 a.m. Dogtown, Nonfiction by Elyssa East, 2009. Dogtown, near Gloucester, Mass., thrived until the Revolution. It was vacated in 1839 and is now a ghost town with a history of witches, pirates, and strange tales. Read by Lynda Kayser. 13 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 19.

Hoover Bartlett, 2009. John Gilkey is an unrepentant book thief who has stolen a fortune in rare books. He steals for love —the love of books. But equally obsessed with books is the detective who finally caught him, Ken Sanders. He will stop at nothing to catch the thief plaguing his trade. Read by Barbara Struyk. Seven broadcasts. Begins Aug. 23. Choice Reading Monday – Friday • 4 p.m. Wolf Hall, Fiction by Hilary Mantel, 2009. Henry VIII is in the midst of a years-long power struggle between the Church and the Crown. Thomas Cromwell steps into the impasse and becomes the country’s most powerful figure after Henry. If the king dies without a male heir, the country could be destroyed by civil war. Read by Leandra Peak. 23 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 18. PM Report Monday – Friday • 8 p.m. The Dead Hand, Nonfiction by David E. Hoffman, 2009. The Cold War was an epoch of massive overkill. The two superpowers had perfected the science of mass destruction and possessed nuclear weapons with the combined power of a million Hiroshimas. Read by Art Nyhus. 23 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 11. Night Journey Monday – Friday • 9 p.m. Jelly’s Gold, Fiction by David Housewright, 2009. Rushmore McKenzie is helping grad students looking for gold hidden in St. Paul in 1933. But a student is killed and it becomes more than a treasure hunt. L—Read by John Gunter. Nine broadcasts. Begins Aug. 31. Off the Shelf Monday – Friday • 10 p.m. The Girl Who Played with Fire, Fiction by Stieg Larsson, 2009. Magazine publisher Mikael Blomkvist is going to run an exposé of sex trafficking. Then his reporters are killed and evidence points to a woman he trusts. L—Read by Bert Gardner. 21 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 9.

Past is Prologue Monday – Friday • 9 a.m. The Big Burn, Nonfiction by Timothy Egan, 2009. On Aug. 20, 1910, a huge fire started in several states in the West becoming the largest-ever American forest fire. Ultimately it saved the forests it was destroying. Read by Hugh Jones. 13 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 11.

Potpourri Monday – Friday • 11 p.m. The Media Relations Department of Hizbollah Wishes You a Happy Birthday, Nonfiction by Neil MacFarquhar, 2009. Many in the Middle East have interesting lives obscured by the curtain of violence. Read by Leila Poullada. 15 broadcasts. Begins Aug. 23. Good Night Owl Monday – Friday • midnight The Disappeared, Fiction by Kim Echlin, 2009. Anne is sixteen when she meets Serey, a Cambodian student forced to leave his country during the Khmer Rouge regime. Then borders are reopened and Serey risks his life to search for his family. Read by Jenny O’Brien. Five broadcasts. Begins Aug. 30.

Bookworm Monday – Friday • 11 a.m. La’s Orchestra Saves the World, Fiction by Alexander McCall Smith, 2009. When La organizes the orchestra, it is to relieve her boredom and restore the town’s morale. What she doesn’t expect is Feliks, the Polish refugee, who begins to stir her feelings. Read by Natasha DeVoe. Six broadcasts. Begins Aug. 30.

After Midnight Tuesday – Saturday • 1 a.m. Apple Turnover Murder, Fiction by Joanne Fluke, 2010. Hannah finds Professor Ramsey, who had a relationship with her, dead with one of her turnovers in his hand. But there were many who didn’t like him. Read by Diane Ladenson. Eight broadcasts. Begins Aug. 26.

The Writer’s Voice Monday – Friday • 2 p.m. The Man Who Loved Books Too Much, Nonfiction by Allison

Abbreviations V - violence, L – offensive language, S - sexual situations.

August 10, 2010

NEWS IN REVIEW - Cont from p. 6 increase access to benefits and financial resources. The full Blindness reports the experiences of 11 deafblind students at a report and recommendations can be found at www.PFund technical college in the United States. Most of the study participants have Usher syndrome, which {Source: PFund] causes varying degrees of hearing and vision loss because of retinitis pigmentosa. Four students were affected prior to Manager accused of theft entering high school, three while in high school, and two after A manager at two Elk River care facilities forged dozens of entering college, putting them at different stages in their accepchecks for thousands of dollars last year using the accounts of tance of and adaptation to their disabilities. several residents with cognitive disabilities, according to poThe study provides insight into the adjustments these stulice and state health officials. The manager was fired and the dents face in their daily lives, as well as into the academic facilities have overhauled their audit procedures. supports offered by the college and those that are still needed. The 11 residents at MacGregor Place and Lavine Place, both The students were interviewed using open-ended questions, owned by Opportunity Partners of Minnetonka, had a com- allowing them to relate their experiences in detail. bined $9,000 stolen during the second half of 2009, the invesThe authors share several students’ personal experiences: tigators determined. Michelle Moreland, 45, of Big Lake has One student, determined to live independently despite his been charged with felony financial exploitation of a vulnerable mother’s reservations, expressed the need to find different adult, said Police Chief Jeff Beahen. Moreland is accused of ways to complete common tasks. Another told of the additional forging about 50 checks, the chief said. State Health Depart- concentration and energy required to remain on a rowing team ment reports say Moreland was fired after confessing to police as her vision deteriorated. She eventually decided to leave the in March, though they do not identify her by name. team despite her coach’s encouragement to stay. The unauthorized checks ranged from $100 to $500, accordThe full text of the article, “College Students Who Are ing to the criminal complaint filed in May. Moreland told Deafblind: Perceptions of Adjustment and Academic Suppolice she would take the cash from forged checks and obtain ports,” is available at: orders to pay her bills, the complaint added. 12-19.pdf ■ In a statement, Opportunity Partners pointed out that the [Source: AER Journal] thefts were detected by its own “internal auditing procedures” and that all residents have been reimbursed. Opportunity PartComputerized Desktop Publishing: ners provides training, employment and services to about 1,500 people in the Twin Cities area with developmental disabilities, Advertisements brain injury, autism and other conditions. Changes have been Brochures made to prevent such a problem in the future and a state review Catalogs July 1 found the homes to be in compliance. Moreland’s next Flyers court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 12. Logos [Source: Star Tribune] Newsletters

Deafblind students are studied Attending college is not only about academics, but also about new experiences and gaining self-reliance. When students are deafblind, they may face additional complications. For a successful college experience, both students with disabilities and their instructors must make more adjustments. An article in AER Journal: Research and Practice in Visual Impairment and

PEOPLE/PLACES - Cont. from p. 7 to earn individual silver in the 50 breaststroke in Division F04 and also won individual silver in the 50 freestyle in Division F15 with a time of 1:02.33. Kveen competed with Minnesota’s female 4x25 freestyle relay team to also earn a team silver medal in Division F01. Krueger, 18, competed with Minnesota’s softball team to take second place in Division 2 competition. Minnesota advanced after victories against Florida and Kentucky but fell to Louisiana in the gold-medal game.

The 2010 USA National Games was the largest sporting event held in the history of Nebraska, bringing together 2,666 athletes, 746 coaches and 6,300 volunteers. Athletes from 48 states won a total of 4,923 medals in 13 sports: aquatics, basketball, bocce, bowling, flag football, golf, gymnastics, power lifting, soccer, softball, tennis, track and field and volleyball. ■ [Source: Special Olympics Minnesota]

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August 2010 Issue  

August 2010 Issue

August 2010 Issue  

August 2010 Issue