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Volume 22, Number 3

Help us get the news to all Postal increase poses a challenge to paper Dear Access Press readers and supporters, Access Press, Minnesota’s disability news source, needs your help to continue to provide news and information throughout Minnesota. Access Press is available online, but there are many who still wish to receive a print copy of the paper. For many years, we have mailed hundreds of newspapers to upper Midwest regional sites and Greater Minnesota, such as Mankato, Marshall, Willmar, and Duluth. Postage rates have recently increased dramatically and it is becoming almost financially impossible for us to get the paper out to these locations in the same way. We are working hard to seek solutions to this dilemma, but we need help from our readHelp - cont. on p. 5

Anne Henry enjoying her paper

Temple Grandin

As a kid, Temple Grandin admits to being socially inept. “I had outbursts at the wrong time. I would talk loudly in an unmodulated voice,” she said. “In time, however, I learned what I could or could not do.” In theory, this sounds like any childhood. In Grandin’s case, there is one other key fact that needs to be noted . . . Read more about Temple Grandin on page 3

Roll With It provides sports options, fun for competitors of all ages Organization serves the greater St. Cloud area

by Shannon Koestler Lily Schreifels uses her crutches to walk because she has cerebral palsy. In her wheelchair on the basketball court, she plays her heart out and nothing can stop her. “Wheelchair basketball is my favorite sport. I hate doing killers (conditioning drills). Shooting is my favorite thing to do during practice,” Schreifels said, a participant in Roll With It. Roll With It is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing sports training, competition, and recreation with a variety of wheelchair and adapted sports activities for children and adults with physical disabilities. Roll With It (RWI) promotes disability awareness and assists wheelchair/adaptive sports teams and activity participants. The assistance is in the form of collecting donated items and raising money for sport wheelchairs, uniforms, equipment, officials and travel expenses. Schreifels is a sixth grader at Monticello Middle School. She also plays power soccer. Without Roll With It, she wouldn’t be able to enjoy sports. She is from Becker. “One of the great things about Roll With It is that it is open to all ages and anyone can be involved or volunteer, said RWI Executive Director Jan Larson. “Although we would like to see RWI expand to other areas of the state, our main focus is around the St. Cloud area.” The program would like to expand in the future. As it is, RWI provides much-needed activities for

Advocates want cuts to be restored by Jane McClure With so much still in play during the 2011 legislative session, Minnesotans with disabilities should not be treated like hockey pucks. Disappointment over Gov. Mark Dayton’s proposed budget and its $775 million in health and human services cuts has given way to calls to reduce the cuts to service. The challenge of protecting essential services takes on greater urgency as the Minnesota House and Senate work toward a March 25 deadline to have budget bills ready. State lawmakers are to adjourn May 23, so there isn’t a lot of time left to

March 10, 2011

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make critical spending decisions. A slightly better than expected budget forecast released in late February prompted a large group of self-advocates, their family members and service providers to join The Arc Minnesota at a March 1 news conference at the State Office Building. Using a theme of “the political puck stops here,” the group urged Dayton and state legislators to accept ideas for innovations in disability services and protect supports that make independence possible for people with disabilities. At the March 1 press con-

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“I think using animals for food is an ethical thing to do, but we’ve got to do it right. We’ve got to give those animals a decent life and we’ve got to give them a painless death. We owe the animal respect.”

–Temple Grandin NEWS DIGEST Central Corridor light rail construction will bring changes for all who travel University Avenue and near the University of Minnesota. Read about the project, learn how to stay informed of changes and see cartoonist Scott Adams’ take on the situation. Pg 13

Lily Schriefels takes a shot. Photo by Shannon Koestler

athletes who would otherwise have to travel long distances to enjoy sports participation. “Through this program individuals gain courage and strength along with team leadership skills,” Larson said. Athletes can become part of a team, learn cooperative skills and enjoy the character-building experiences that team membership and sports participation can bring. The sports offered by RWI are sports that can be enjoyed for years to come, promoting healthy lifestyles and self-sufficiency. Another benefit of RWI is the community awareness it develops, educating the general public Roll With It - cont. on p. 12

ference, hockey pucks were handed out to self-advocates to give to their legislators. “For years now people with disabilities and their families have felt that their lives and sense of security have become political hockey pucks, passed and knocked around as they’ve faced cuts to their services and uncertainty about their future,” said Steve Larson, The Arc Minnesota’s Public Policy Director and Co-Chairman of the Minnesota Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities. He said that with the smaller projected deficit, Dayton needs to reduce cuts to services that affect vulnerable people. Cuts - cont. on p. 15

Open and Shut Case is the latest public art project presented by Self Advocates of Minnesota (SAM) and other advocacy groups. Come meet the artists, see their work and enjoy refreshments at Newell Park in St. Paul April 3 at a free, fun event. Pg 7 Crisis Connection, which was threatened with funding shortfalls, has been taken over by Human Services Inc. Learn about this new partnership and what it means for the statewide crisis counseling hotline. Pg 6 Deadline to file your taxes is April 18 this year. Find out about free help with tax preparation, get tips on preparers and consider additional deductions you can use. Pg 4

INSIDE

Nathan Bauer of Richfield is among those advocating for communitybased services.

Regional News, pg 6 Peoples & Places, pp. 8-9 Accessible Performances, pg. 10 Events, pg 11 Radio Talking Book, pg 13


Pg 2 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

EDITOR’S DESK Tim Benjamin

Will the real Access Press please stand up? As you can see we’ve made some major design changes that we really hope you’ll like. We’ve tried to make the paper easier to read and a little more, as they say, 21stcentury. I hope you’ll recognize the symbolism in the four boxes—all four are pretty much the same, except for one. It doesn’t need fixing, it’s just not the same (and, as somebody said, it’s a diamond, not a square). A special thanks to Kirsten Wedes. Kristen was just the person we needed, with a truly interesting concept of differences. She understood that differences don’t always needing correcting. Thanks, too, to all the others who helped Access Press through this challenging process. Let us know what you think. I was hoping, with a forecasted budget deficit of about $1 billion less than expected, that Gov. Mark Dayton would restore more of the previous years cuts to community-based services. I shouldn’t blame the governor, though; he’s only one piece of the budget puzzle.

HISTORY NOTE

‘Educable’ children and their needs prompted debate in Minnesota by Luther Granquist Advocacy groups, supportive members of the

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 Anita Schermer Carrie Salberg Kay Willshire Advertising Sales Cheryl D. Pfeifer

Minnesota Legislature, and a University of Minnesota professor collabo-

Executive Director Tim Benjamin Assistant Editor Jane McClure Business Manager/Webmaster Dawn Frederick Cartoonist Scott Adams Production Ellen Houghton with Presentation Images Distribution S. C. Distribution

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 25 th. Inquiries should be directed to: Access Press 1821 University Ave. W. Suite 104S St. Paul, MN 55104 651-644-2133 Fax: 651-644-2136 email: access@accesspress.org www.accesspress.org

I know personally that some of the cuts are creating administrative mistakes. Just recently, on a Friday afternoon (bad-news letters always come on Friday and you have to wait out the weekend), I got a letter from the state denying all my personal care attendant (PCA) services. Talk about raising your blood pressure. I didn’t need an ER visit, but boy oh boy, was it a long weekend. Each night I woke at 2 a.m., thinking what if it’s not a mistake? Which respiratory care unit will I choose? Will I get a choice? Which facility is most conveniently located to the Department of Human Services (DHS) and the capitol, where I’ll be spending all my extra time lobbying for my needs? First, I’ll have to get an appeal started Monday morning. Should I just go and be admitted to the hospital now? What would I tell the ER was wrong with me? That I’m panicked and I just want to surrender now and get the terror over with? At 8:30 on Monday morning, I started calling the help desk, but much to my dismay I kept getting the

rated to achieve approval by the 1957 legislature of a law, which mandated that schools provide “special instruction and services for handicapped children” considered “educable” according to standards of the state Department of Education. They also obtained approval of a law permitting school districts to provide “special instruction” for “trainable” children, children who could “reasonably be expected to profit in a social, emotional or physical way from a program of teaching and training . . . .” The failure to mandate services for “trainable” children reflected a longstanding controversy about whether these children should be served by schools or by public welfare agencies. Since 1915, the state

had provided limited funding for school districts that chose to educate children with disabilities. But the first special education standards set by the state Department of Education in 1919 excluded children in what became known as the “trainable” category: “All children with a mental development below fifty per cent shall be regarded as too defective for proper care and training in the public schools and shall, so far as possible, be sent to the proper state institution at Faribault.” Subsequent versions of these standards explicitly restricted admission to special classes to students with an IQ from 50 to 80, although a note added to the 1943 and 1950 standards declared that “pupils with intelligence quo-

recording: “We are experiencing a high call volume, call back at later date.” Click. I redialed again and again, always receiving the same message. Thanks to the experience of my PCA agency and their access to the help desk, we found out it was probably “just a mistake.” This kind of mistake should be unacceptable and preventable, but I think state agency workers are having their own anxieties and problems lately. Unfortunately, this mistake not only caused me undue stress but caused DHS to do my paperwork twice. I can only imagine what the cost of an appeal would have been. However, I truly believe that anyone who gets a letter like this or has hours decreased should appeal and let the department explain how you can stay safe and remain independent with a reduction in services. Ask them to identify what the cost savings are, after all the appeals and extra hospitalizations for lack of proper care. There seem to be too many forces lately in society (look to Madison, for instance) suggesting that we should just be good children and do what were told— especially if we’re receiving benefits from the state. But people like me (and you?) must keep reminding ourselves and others that we are of benefit to the state, and to our families and friends. And we must appeal and advocate for our rights to live free and selfdirected lives. Isn’t that the American ethic? Isn’t that our most basic human right? Thought so. Maybe it’s because we’re diamonds that we just cut a little harder than your regular square. ■

tients below 50 are a responsibility of the local community and should not be neglected.” The St. Paul schools had in fact provided classes for these students, first in 1934 at a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project at Hill School and then at Crowley School. In 1951 the state Department of Education changed direction and authorized state funding for children with less than a 50 IQ. By 1955, 12 communities had special classes for “trainable” children. That year the legislature, in response to a proposal by the Minnesota Society for the Mentally Retarded, established a commission of eight legislators to make a detailed and comprehensive study of the needs of handicapped children.

Two legislators who later became governor led the commission, Elmer L. Andersen and Al Quie. The commission consulted extensively with Dr. Maynard Reynolds from the University of Minnesota. The legislature’s actions in 1957 reflected the recommendation of the commission which, in turn, reflected the debate whether “trainable” children belonged in school at all. Following that session, Reynolds chaired a subcommittee of the Advisory Board on Handicapped, Gifted and Exceptional Children. While the entire subcommittee agreed that there was “a public responsibility for Trainable Retarded children,” Reynolds and others favored sending these children to school. Dr. Dale Harris, Director of the University’s Institute on Child Development opposed that position. Ultimately, the group recommended that “the life long program for Trainable Retarded” individuals be placed in the Department of Public Welfare but that schools which chose to provide classes for them would be supervised by the Department of Education. As a result it was not until 1971 that the legislature mandated that schools in Minnesota serve all those children. History - cont. on p. 5


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

BEST OF THE BLOGS Welcome to the print version of Access Press Unbound. Thanks to our startup funder, Minneapolis Foundation, we are sharing posts from our employment/education, arts and entertainment and service animals blogs. Check them out at www.accesspress.org and watch for updates. Watch for more blogs to be launched soon. Call 651-644-2133 or contact access@ accesspress.org for sponsorship information.

Animals at your Service: Pet Accolades matches dogs to mentally ill clients by Clarence Schadegg Let me introduce you to Pet Accolades, a recently formed nonprofit, whose staff matches people who live with mental illness with a dog. The dogs help clients with various tasks. “Clients will not be charged for the training or the dog”, said Mary Jo Rawson, executive director of Pet Accolades. “Pet Accolades will follow the Delta Society Therapy Dog program. We will open classes to the public for a fee that will go to support our mission. The dog must pass the exam set forth by the Delta Society. The length of time will depend on the dog and the handler.” Clients and their dogs will become members of Pet Accolades. The team “shall become members of the Delta Society and participate a minimum of two years in Pet Accolades, or Delta Society’s programs, Rawson said. She identified three types of agency-trained dogs as service dogs, therapy dogs and companion dogs. Each is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. For consideration of an application, prospective clients must provide a prescription or a letter from a doctor stating that a dog would “medically benefit” the person. Cli-

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ents also must be capable of being the dog’s handler. Once accepted, the client must also complete a client education program that prepares the client for dog ownership. To qualify for a Service Dog, companion dog or a therapy dog, applicants must also produce proof of mental illness. The person must have a psychiatric disability as defined by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders or have a traumatic brain injury. The client must be able to work effectively with the dog, Rawson said, without symptoms that would cause harm to the dog. Rawson said the potential dog owner must also be “needing to learn any special skill(s) to maintain mental health attainable through the process of training a dog, or by dog ownership.” To learn more and to contact Pet Accolades, email Mary Jo Rawson at maryjo@petaccolades. org. The phone number is 651-315-1166. To apply for a Pet Accolades dog, go to www.pet accolades.org and sign up for the newsletter. The organization is using Facebook and Twitter, and will use electronic media to announce when applications for dogs are being accepted. ■ Clarence Schadegg can be reached at Clarence@accesspress.org

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A Better Life: Temple Grandin provides advice, encouragement to Minnesotans (Editor’s note: This is the first of a two-part series of a recent interview with noted author, instructor and consultant Temple Grandin on dealing with autism in the workplace.) As a kid, Temple Grandin admits to being socially inept. “I had outbursts at the wrong time. I would talk loudly in an unmodulated voice,” she said. “In time, however, I learned what I could or could not do.” In theory, this sounds like any childhood. In Grandin’s case, there is one other key fact that needs to be noted: at age three, she was diagnosed with a form of autism. Once this was discovered, her world changed. “Oh, I had some bad moments in grade school and high school,” she said. “I was the nerdy kid. But, with some help, I eventually learned where I fit in. Once that happened, life got better.” Here is what happens when life gets better: you earn a bachelor’s degree in psychology. You follow that up with a master’s degree and a doctorate in animal science. You move from that into a teaching position at Colorado State. You write several books on autism, Asperger’s syndrome and how we communicate with animals. You have a movie based on your life produced by HBO that wins several Emmy Awards. Finally, you get invited to partake in events like the February 17 Autism and Employment Forum, sponsored by the Autism Society of Minnesota. There, Grandin spoke firsthand of the many issues … and benefits … an employer deals with they hire a person diagnosed with autism. “The first thing you

need to know is not all of us are like the (Dustin Hoffman) character in ‘Rain Man’,” Grandin said. “It’s a very wide spectrum from people who throw uncontrollable temper tantrums to the (computer) geeks in Silicon Valley. Those guys are brilliant. But they all deal with similar issues.” To many folks, a diagnosis of autism or Asperger’s Syndrome is enough to slam a door shut before a prospective employee gets to say hello. Grandin said that is a major mistake. “Some of the most talented people I know are autistic,” she said. “It is part of who they are. The problem is not in dealing in their work output. It is simply knowing how to deal with their social issues.” Grandin speaks from experience. She recalled a time when, despite the fact she was one of the

Temple Grandin

top reporters on the staff, she was in danger of being fired from her job at a magazine. “What I didn’t know was that a new boss didn’t like me personally because of my social ineptness,” she said. “My friend Susie, who worked in graphics, pulled me aside and told me about it.” Grandin decided on a direct approach. She put together a portfolio of her best work and marched it in to her boss. The result? Instead of being fired, she got a raise. “The lesson here is you need to get yourself judged by your work output first,” Grandin said. “That is what good em-

ployers care about the most.” The reason is simple: like computers, many people with autism don’t pick up on social subtleties. “I was 50 years old before I knew what an ‘eye cue’ was,” Grandin said. “It is hard for an autistic person to multitask. But they can focus like a laser on a specific project.” If treated early, a person with autism will usually function as well in the work place as well as anyone. But how does a parent–and employer– get to that point? Check back soon. ■ Dave Wright can be reached at DaveW@ accesspress.org

Accessing the Arts: Woebegone over Keillor by Roxanne Furlong I recently attended Garrison Keillor’s A Winter Concert, at Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul. The three-night engagement featured 69-year-old Keillor singing familiar songs—some of his own and some famous melodies to which he penned new lyrics. Accompanied by the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra with conductor Phillip Brunelle, it was the last time Keillor would collaborate with the orchestra. Together, they played old-time favorites including Cole Porter’s Let’s Do It and

Keillor-faves Cat, You Better Come Home, Lake Wobegon Hymn, Homage to the Aunts, and Goodbye to My Uncles. And talk about a sentimental old fool! During Keillor’s Homage to the Aunts, while he spoke of a long-ago time with his aunt, walking around the back of her house to her garden, where she chose the ripest tomato for him, “no tomato was sweeter” … I found myself sniffling and reaching for a tissue to wipe tears from my eyes as I wondered if I gave my own nieces and nephews—now grown with families of

their own—a bit of wisdom, sage advice, or the sweetness of a fond memory. The show featured Keillor’s usual nostalgic trip to Lake Wobegon and beyond, but he seemed even more bittersweet and wistful this night. So sentimental, in fact, that Keillor left me wondering if he may be seriously thinking about retiring. This was my first time seeing Garrison in his “prairie home,” having previously seen him once at the Minneapolis Orpheum Theater, or Keillor- cont. on p. 15


Pg 4 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

TO THE EDITOR

Huntington’s Hoopathon offers hope to many Minnesotans To the editor: As the President of the Minnesota Chapter of the Huntington’s Disease Society of America, I came to speak to the local St. Paul Jaycees, Minneapolis Jaycees, Minneapolis Kiwanis, and Minneapolis Uptown Rotary Clubs to share my family’s battle with Huntington’s disease (HD), to raise awareness for the disease and to speak about the Huntington’s Disease Society of America. My wife was diagnosed

with HD 15 years ago, forever changing my life and the life of my two children. Huntington’s disease is a devastating, hereditary, degenerative brain disorder for which there is, at present, no effective treatment or cure. HD slowly diminishes the affected individual’s ability to walk, talk and reason. Eventually, the person with HD becomes totally dependent upon others for his or her care. However, most disheartening is that each child of a parent with

HD has a 50 percent chance of inheriting the gene that causes HD—a sobering reality for me, my son, and my daughter. Hundreds of Minnesota families and more than a quarter of a million Americans have HD or are “at risk” of inheriting the disease, which is equivalent to the number of people who have cystic fibrosis or muscular dystrophy. Thirteen years ago, my son, BJ Viau, decided to take action against HD and founded the Twin Cities

Hoopathon, a basketball community event to help benefit Huntington’s disease research. Today the event has grown larger than we could have imagined. The 2010 Hoopathon was one of the most successful events the Viau family has organized, with over 600 people in attendance and $45,000 raised toward a cure for HD. Please take a few minutes to watch the brief video (www.youtube.com/ watch?v=0H SeSotfmOw) of my son speaking about

the Twin Cities Hoopathon and his fight against Huntington’s disease. Huntington’s disease profoundly affects the lives of entire families— emotionally, socially and economically. But you can help in three ways. First, you can make a donation to HDSA to support Minnesota families so they can attend the HDSA National Convention at our First Giving website: www.firstgiving.com/ hdsaconvention. Second,

you can forward this letter and share the video of my son’s story with your news director and five friends to help spread awareness for the disease. And third, through your media outlet you can help share our story and the stories of other HD Minnesota families with your community. Bryan Viau President, Huntington’s Disease Society of America- MN Chapter www.hdsa-mn.org or www.hoopathon.com ■

Don’t overlook tax breaks for people with disabilities Many of the millions of lecting tax preparation tax software when filing people with disabilities help or they may get hit their taxes. may be paying more in with fines and fees if the “Many people depend taxes than necessary, acreturn isn’t correct or filed upon their tax refunds to cording to Allsup, a nalate. The BBB also caucover bills and basic living tionwide provider of Sotions against tax preparers expenses,” said Dana cial Security Disability who claim they can obtain Badgerow, president and Insurance (SSDI) reprelarger refunds than other CEO of the Better Busisentation and Medicare tax preparers. According ness Bureau. “Therefore, plan selection serif you choose to have The BBB reminds taxpayers someone else do vices. Taxes are due they are legally responsible your taxes, it’s imApril 18 this year. portant you know for what’s on their own tax their background, as There is free assisreturns, even if they’re tance for low-inwell as their qualificome Minnesotans prepared by someone else. cations.” The BBB through the Acreminds taxpayers countability Minnesota to the IRS, if your returns they are legally responprogram, which has clinic are prepared correctly, ev- sible for what’s on their around the region. Call ery preparer should derive own tax returns, even if them at 651-287-0187 or substantially similar num- they’re prepared by somego to www.account bers. one else, and offers the abilitymn.org for help. In 2009, the BBB refollowing advice on how There is also free infor- ceived more than 3,000 to find a trustworthy tax mation to help Minnesocomplaints against tax preparer, as well as some tans and North Dakotans preparers. Commonly, things to keep in mind. properly screen their paid complainants stated that the Check reports on inditax preparers, through the tax preparer made errors in vidual tax preparers at Better Business Bureau of their return which resulted www.bbb.org Minnesota and North Da- in fines and fees. The IRS When taxes are prekota (BBB). The BBB en- reports that roughly 80 per- pared, consider what is courages taxpayers to do cent of Americans enlist available for people with their research before sethe help of a tax preparer or disabilities. “People with

disabilities often aren’t should consider filing a disabilities on its website. aware of tax credits and tax return if credits could People with disabilities deductions that could help mean a refund.” may rely on additional them save money,” said Lump-sum SSDI benbenefits for income. GenPaul Gada, a tax attorney efits must also be considerally, workers’ compenand personal financial ered. Because it can take sation benefits and complanning director for the years to receive disability pensatory damages for inAllsup Disability Life benefits, most people inijuries aren’t taxed. AddiPlanning Center. “In fact, tially receive a lump-sum tionally, long-term disabilcertain credits are refund- amount, which includes ity (LTD) insurance benable, meaning you can get back payments. Paying efits are not included in money back even if you taxes on this amount in taxable income if you paid owe no taxes.” one year is a mistake and the premiums with afterAllsup reminds people could be financially costly, tax dollars. However, they with disabilities and their pushing you into a higher are taxable and must be tax preparers to know how tax bracket. The IRS alincluded in your income if SSDI and other benefits lows taxes on this lumpyou paid LTD premiums are taxed. Up to 50 percent sum payment to be spread with pre-tax dollars as part of SSDI benefits are taxover previous tax years of a cafeteria plan, for exable each year. The using the current-year tax ample, or your employer amount is determined by return. This means recipi- paid your premiums. adding one-half of your ents do not have to go Another key step is to SSDI benefits to all claim tax credits. of your other income Allsup reminds people with Tax credits offer one sources. For 2010, of the most effective disabilities and their tax taxes are owed on ways to lower taxes preparers to know how SSDI because they provide any amount above $32,000 for couples and other benefits are taxed. a dollar-for-dollar filing jointly and tax reduction or re$25,000 for individuals. through the time or exfund. Some important tax “The average monthly pense of filing amended credits people with disSSDI benefit for 2010 was returns. However, the cal- abilities are commonly eli$1,064 or $12,768 for the culations are complex, and gible for include: earned year. As a result, many Gada advises seeking tax income tax credit (up to people relying on SSDI assistance. Allsup provides $5,666), specific credit for will not owe taxes,” Gada a list of free tax help rethe disabled (up to $7,500) said. “However, they still sources for people with Tax help - cont. on p. 15

Diamond Hill Townhomes Diamond Hill Townhomes is a great property located near the Minneapolis International Airport. Our waiting list is currently closed. Call for updated openings as this can change from time to time. We have two and three bedroom townhomes that are HUD subsidized and rent is 30% of the total household's adjusted gross income. We have a large number of mobility impaired accessible units.

To check for future waiting list openings please call (612) 726-9341.


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Pg 5

The not-so-friendly skies: Delta socked with penalty The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has assessed a civil penalty of $2 million against Delta Air Lines for violating rules protecting air travelers with disabilities. The penalty was announced February 17. The civil penalty is the largest penalty ever assessed against an airline by the Department of Transportation in a nonsafety-related case. “Ensuring that passengers with disabilities receive fair treatment when they fly is a priority for the Department of Transportation,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “We take our aviation disability rules seriously and will continue to enforce them vigorously.” The DOT requires airlines to provide assistance to passengers with disabilities while boarding and deplaning aircraft, including the use of wheelchairs, ramps, mechanical lifts and service personnel where needed. Carriers also must respond within 30 days to written complaints about

History - cont. from

their treatment of disabled passengers, and specifically address the issues raised in the complaints. In addition, airlines must properly code and record their disability-related complaints in connection with required reporting to the department. An investigation by the DOT’s Aviation Enforcement Office of disability complaints filed with Delta and DOT revealed many violations of the requirement to provide assistance getting on and off the airplane. The carrier’s complaint files also showed that it frequently did not provide an adequate written response to disability complaints from passengers. The Aviation Enforcement Office further found that Delta also failed to properly report each disability complaint in reports filed with the department. Of the $2 million penalty, $750,000 must be paid by the carrier and up to $1,250,000 may be used to improve its service to passengers with

p. 2 policymaking.com

With an Eye to the Past on the DD Council website includes comments by Andersen, Quie, and Reynolds on these issues as well as copies of the Commission and Board reports, Department standards, and other related special education studies. The History Note is a monthly column sponsored by the Minnesota Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities, www.mncdd.org and www.partnersin

Would you like to make history? Access Press is interested in reader submissions for the monthly History Note column, to complement the articles written by Luther Granquist and other contributors. Submissions must center on events, people and places in the history of Minnesota’s disability community. We are in interested in history that focuses on

disabilities beyond what is required by law. Delta may target up to $834,000 of the civil penalty amount toward the development and implementation of an automated wheelchair tracking system at the carrier’s major hub airports. Up to $236,000 may be used toward developing and distributing customer service surveys for passengers with disabilities to rate Delta’s

actual costs of these improvements by Delta will be significantly greater than the credited amounts. The penalty is not a surprise to some travelers on Delta and its smaller affiliated airlines, including White Bear Lake resident Carrie Salberg, whose problems with Delta partner Compass Airlines were described in the February issue of Access Press. Salberg,

Although Salberg’s complaint wasn’t part of the DOT’s investigation, it is one of many complaints against Delta. accommodation services and provide specific feedback to the carrier on how it can improve. In addition, up to $150,000 may be used to expand audits of the carrier’s compliance with Air Carrier Access Act rules and for consultation to help improve the quality of Delta’s services to passengers with disabilities at airports and up to $30,000 to enhance its website to improve air travel accessibility. The

who is an experienced traveler, has muscular dystrophy. In January she was asked to get off of a plane because the pilot had concerns about her ventilator’s 12-volt dry cell battery. Even though Salberg was told and had documentation stating that her ventilator batteries were safe for the flight, the pilot’s decision was that she couldn’t be on the flight. Although Salberg’s complaint wasn’t part of the DOT’s

all types of physical and cognitive disabilities, so long as the history has a tie to Minnesota. We are especially interested in stories from Greater Minnesota. Please submit ideas prior to submitting full stories, as we may have covered the topic before. Past History Note articles can be found on www. accesspress.org Contact us at access@ accesspress.org or 651644-2133 if you have questions. ■

Help

- cont. from p. 1 ers and friend organizations to make sure that Access Press gets to our all of our readers each month. If your organization regularly ships items to independent living centers, medical clinics, university libraries and other public places outside the Twin Cities, could you please consider shipping Access Press papers at the same time? Even if you only

investigation, it is one of many complaints against Delta. “I am happy that the Department of Transportation recognizes the seriousness of the violations,” said Salberg. Though, given her experience with Delta doing the bare minimum to “get rid” of the problem, and the fact that they received a similar (though not quite as high) fine in 2003, she didn’t know how much confidence she had in Delta doing the right thing. Only time will tell whether Delta takes the violations as seriously as the DOT, she said. As for Salberg’s specific complaint, getting results took time. She had no contact with Delta until after the airline was contacted by the Star Tribune newspaper. (The Star Tribune also published an article detailing Salberg’s travel problems.) She was told by a Delta representative that the flight crew was working off of manuals that were outdated, possibly

as old as eight or nine years. The representative said that all manuals would be updated and staff would get more training. Salberg was offered only $200 in vouchers for each person in her traveling group. “I told the Delta rep I was not happy with that—it wasn’t enough to even cover the cost of the flight,” Salberg said. She was later offered $300 vouchers for each person and a full refund. But that didn’t make up for what they went through. More problems followed. Almost two weeks went by before her account was given credit for the refund, minus about $140. What was considered a “full” refund didn’t include the taxes and fees for each ticket. Salberg contacted the Star Tribune reporter, who in turn contacted Delta again. The refund showed up in Salberg’s account several days later. But baggage fees incurred on the trip weren’t refunded. Delta - cont. on p. 15

ship to a few destinations, this would still help us get the news and information that only Access Press offers to those who depend on it. We are contacting other regional papers through the Minnesota Newspaper Association, but if you know of any other publications that might be willing to share distribution costs or if you know of other leads, we would appreciate hearing this as well. We

would also welcome financial contributions to meet this need. We are committed to our mission as a regionwide news source. Please help us to ensure that Access Press is truly available to our entire community. If you can help, please contact Tim Benjamin at 651-644-2133 or access@accesspress.org Thank you for your help. Brigid Alseth, Access Press Board Chair

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Pg 6 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3 told the Pioneer Press. “We have a vision for tapping into Crisis Connection’s unique expertise to improve the efrunning into financial ficiency and effectiveness Changes at Crisis difficulty, the agency, of our mental health serConnection which operates with the vices, but first we need to help of paid staff and work with the community Crisis Connection, a many volunteers, has an to find a way to make nonprofit telephone estimated $1 million their current services ficounseling service, is budget. But efforts to nancially viable.” under new leadership. raise funds had fallen Crisis Connection is Oakdale-based Human short. Minnesota’s only 24/7 Services Inc. (HSI) anHSI will attempt to crisis hotline. A Star Trinounced in February that restore Crisis bune article published in it assumed control of the Connection’s financial 2010 described how the service. stability, said Mark agency faced a crisis of its Crisis Connection is Kuppe, HSI CEO. The own due to tight funding. more than 30 years old new entity is called HSI- The agency fields more and operates out of the Crisis Connection LLC. than 50,000 calls per year. Minneapolis suburbs. It “Crisis Connection One of the options to keep provides crisis counselsaves and improves thou- Crisis Connection going ing, intervention and re- sands of Minnesotans’ was to merge with another ferral. Last year news lives, and so we want to agency. reports indicated that do all we can to save CriCrisis Connection Crisis Connection was sis Connection,” Kuppe fields Minnesota calls for

the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, Minnesota Farmers’ Assistance Network and a men’s help line. Crisis Connection also supplements a Hennepin County mental health crisis line. But although residents throughout the state use Crisis Connection, many counties don’t provide funding for its services. HSI is a community human service agency that works with children, adolescents, adults, the elderly and families who struggle with aging, transportation, chemical and mental health, & domestic and sexual abuse. It has four centers in Washington County. ■ [Source: Pioneer Press, Star Tribune, HSI]

New service in Austin area

ministrators, case managers, mortgage bankers, real estate professionals, housing developers, service providers and other members of the community in which people with disabilities live. More information is available by calling Tammy at 507433-8994 ext. 103. ■ [Source: Austin Daily Herald]

REGIONAL NEWS

families, and others who help them. It serves people in the Austin area. Consumer-controlled Housing Access Services housing is housing arranged with the needs and has opened its doors to advance the consideration preferences of the consumer in the forefront, of consumer-controlled housing options by people rather than the needs and preferences of the service with intellectual and deprovider or service velopmental disabilities funder. Advocates said who are on a waiver this type of housing through the Department of Human Services, their clearly contributes to the

well-being of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Housing alone is insufficient to support most persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities in the community. Supports and services are also crucial elements. These include advocacy groups serving people with disabilities, county and state elected officials and ad-

Two charged in Medicaid swindle

Services, and her husband, Stephen Adewale Soledolu, 32. Media reports about the case have A Brooklyn Park couple brought forward the 2009 was charged last month Minnesota Legislative with swindling the state’s Auditor’s report which Medicaid program out of found hundreds of cases nearly $1 million by alin which care agencies legedly submitting false billed the state claiming claims for home care and that employees worked nursing services. Sole more than 24 hours in a Provider Nursing Services day. Billing rules were allegedly billed the state’s changed after that and Personal Care Assistance hour limits were placed program (PCA) between on individual PCAs. 2006 and 2008 for home The Brooklyn Park care of patients who were agency has been under in the hospital and substate scrutiny since 2008. mitted claims for workers “Fraud in programs init didn’t employ. The tended to help the most charges against Sole Pro- vulnerable Minnesotans is vider also says the agency unacceptable,’’ Human submitted bills showing Services Commissioner care aides working more Lucinda Jesson said in a than 24 hours in a single statement.”We must do all day and, in one case, 42 we can to find and prehours a day for a week vent it.’’ straight. Medicaid, known in In all, it alleges overMinnesota as Medical Asbilling of $975,295. sistance, is a state-federal Named in the complaint health insurance program were Anita Gayle for the poor, the disabled Soledolu, 39, owner of and the elderly poor. ■ Sole Provider Nursing [Source: Star Tribune]

More Regional News on p. 14


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Pg 7

‘Open and Shut Case’ explores human rights through art Human rights open doors. Doors of opportunity. Doors of change. At least that’s the hope. Or maybe “human rights” is just a vague concept? What are human rights really worth to someone with a developmental disability? Those questions will be partially answered 1-3:30 p.m. Sunday, April 3 when a new interactive art exhibit goes on display in St. Paul’s Newell Park. Newell Park is at the southeast corner of Fairview Avenue North

providing an opportunity for the people with developmental disabilities to see themselves as artists, period.” Besides the art pieces, the exhibit will have another component: a fun game that mimics the popular television game show “Family Feud.” The game will have a human rights theme. Members of the public will be able to step up and compare their knowledge of human rights against the ideas of the artists. Winners will receive prizes.

Brian is pleased with his artwork.

and Pierce Butler Route. Advocating Change Together (ACT), Self Advocates Minnesota (SAM) and Remembering With Dignity (RWD) present “Open and Shut Case,” a new, participatory exhibit about human rights by artists with developmental disabilities. The exhibit and interactive game on human rights will teach visitors about the artists’ human rights. Visitors may learn more about their own views during the event. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served. Come see the exhibit and help SAM members in their work to educate about human rights and change the public’s image of disability. “The project had two equally important goals,” said Halle O’Falvey, RWD organizer and teaching artist for the exhibit. “We’re educating society about human rights and the power for these artists. We’re also

View the art and meet the artists starting at 1 p.m. The game starts at 1:30 p.m. The event ends at 3 p.m. with a ceremony celebrating disability rights and the 2007 Human Rights Convention on Persons with Disabilities “Open and Shut Case” offers new art created by people with developmental disabilities who are members of SAM, a statewide network of self-advocacy groups. The artists got together last year and began brainstorming a way to portray the impact of human rights. “I see myself as a good artist now,” said New Ulm resident Mike J. Kastner. He is a member of the SAM Leadership Circle. The group focused on the 2007 United Nations human rights convention, zeroing in on a dozen key rights and principles. Members of ACT and SAM were in New York for this convention and participated. “It was awe-

some, amazing, and productive” said a SAM member. The artists worked with eight guiding principles of human rights. One is respect for inherent dignity, individual autonomy including the freedom to make one’s own choices, and independence of persons. Another is non-discrimination and a third is full and effective participation and inclusion in society. Other principles are respect for difference and acceptance of persons with disabilities as part of human diversity and humanity, equality of opportunity, accessibility, equality between men and women and respect for the evolving capacities of children with disabilities and respect for the right of children with disabilities to preserve their identities O’Falvey proposed the idea of image of doors, closed doors and open doors. The open doors represent opportunity, and closed doors represent lack of rights. Doors are about transition. There is a lot of change during transition. The ideas of people with disabilities have basic human rights, like to chose where they want to live, will take society a long

Carla, Carol and Carol worked on their art. Photos by Halle O’Falvey

time to embrace and accept. The proposal was accepted and the work began. A two-day workshop was developed and an art installation with closed and open doors was born. Each artist came from one of the six SAM regions in the State of Minnesota. Self-Advocates from the Leadership Circle had to apply to be part of the project. At the workshop each artists chose their own right; one that spoke to them was about how they live their lives. And the brainstorming began, breaking down those rights and principals to basic interactions. It reflected how they live day to day. It reflected what these rights mean to them as people who live with

disabilities. When that was done the group created the art installation. “I love doing art. It makes me feel good about myself, and I know I can do it. I want to do more art projects,” said Carla Webster-Norman, a SAM Leadership Circle member from St. Paul. “Open and Shut Case has been an inspiring, energizing effort,” said O’Falvey, who also developed and curated RWD’s 2009 art project, “SEE THEIR FACE.” “It is a very important aspect of life; this art thing,” she said. “It must be included in our lives to appreciate the beauty and luster surrounding us every day, especially in these turbulent times. It improves our critical thinking, our problem

solving, our big picture view, so, we see, we notice, we observe.” RWD works to highlight and celebrate the lives of people with disabilities who lived and died in the Minnesota State institutions. “We turn numbers to names,” said Carol Robinson when describing RWD’s work to convert numbered grave markers to proper headstones. ACT is a St. Paulbased, non-profit disability rights organization. It is run by and for people with developmental disabilities and other disabilities. ■ For more information on the event, contact O’Falvey at 651-6410297 or rwd@self advocacy.org


Pg 8 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

PEOPLE & PLACES Freezin’ for a reason: Polar Bear plunge for Special Olympics

One Polar Plunger at the Prior Lake event hit the water with a belly flop.

Brave Minnesotans around the state are jumping into frozen water to raise funds for Special Olympics Minnesota as part of the Polar Bear Plunge. As of March 1, more than 6,500 Plungers had already taken the icy dip, together raising more than $1.2 million. An additional 3,000 Plungers have already registered online for the remaining four Plunges and have so far raised an additional $335,000. Coordinated by law enforcement, the 14 Polar Bear Plunge events statewide provide fun-loving adrenaline junkies an opportunity to be “freezin’ for a reason”—and to have a blast in the process. Plungers can still register online at www.plungemn.org and the last 2011 plunge will be held March 12. Polar Bear Plunge fundraisers help Special Olympics Minnesota offer year-round sports training and competition to more than 7,100 children and adults with intellectual disabilities. In 2010 more than 7,000 valiant individuals took the plunge to support Special Olympics Minnesota, together raising more than $1.4 million. Participants often plunge in teams of coworkers, friends or club members and raise money by asking for pledges. Each participant must raise at least $75. Polar Bear Plunge events have already been held in 2011 in the following Minnesota communities: White Bear Lake, Willmar/Spicer, Maple Grove, Rochester, St. Peter, Prior Lake, Duluth, St. Cloud, Alexandria, and South Metro. Plunges were to be held March 5 in Brainerd and Minneapolis, and March 12 in Eden Prairie and Grand Rapids. For more information on Polar Bear Plunge or to register, visit www.plungemn.

This Prior Lake polar plunger and her friends showed Irish spirit in their plunge.. Photos by Joe Szurszewski

org or contact polarbearplunge@somn.org or 800783-7732. Polar Bear Plunge events are organized by Minnesota law enforcement as part of the Law Enforcement Torch Run, the largest grassroots fundraiser and public awareness vehicle for Special Olympics in the world. With a mission to raise funds for and awareness of the Special Olympics movement worldwide, law enforcement officers and personnel from all 50 United States, 10 Canadian provinces and territories and more than 35 nations carry the “Flame of Hope” in honor of Special Olympics athletes in their areas and around the world. More than 1,200 law enforcement officers and personnel representing more than 75 agencies throughout Minnesota participated with the Torch Run initiative in 2010. The Torch Run is an actual running event in which officers and athletes run the “Flame of Hope” to the Celebration Ceremonies of Special Olympics competitions. The Torch Run is also a diverse initiative encompassing a variety of fundraisers, including the Polar Bear Plunge.

Checking for cystic fibrosis A dozen public safety hockey teams from the Twin Cities metro area took to the ice February 27 to will raise money and awareness for cystic fibrosis (CF) at the Second Annual “Checking for CF” hockey tournament at Schwan’s Super Rink in Blaine. This tournament was started by Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) paramedics Andy Peter and his wife, Jamie, whose 5-year-old niece was diagnosed with CF. They wanted to do something to raise awareness and help find a cure. As a native Nebraskan who moved to Minnesota, it was always Peter’s dream to play hockey.

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“One day a light bulb went off in my head, and I knew what would get people excited about raising money for CF. We live in Minnesota, the ‘state of hockey.’ I didn’t play hockey, but I wanted to – and I was sure we knew a lot of cops, medics, and firefighters who would probably play hockey. Why not put on a public safety hockey tourney to support CF?” That’s how the Hennepin Generals and the other public safety hockey teams in the metro area were formed. The event included hockey games as well as raffles and a mustache contest. In 2010 the tournament raised $10,000. About half of that came from the Hennepin Generals. The goal for 2011 is $25,000. A final total wasn’t available when Access Press went to press. “We decided if we weren’t going to be the best skaters out there, we might as well be the best at fundraising,” said Peter. Joining the Hennepin Generals in the 2011 tournament were HealthEast EMS, North Memorial EMS, Allina EMS, St. Paul Police, Minneapolis Police, Eagan Police, Roseville Fire, New Brighton Fire, Woodbury Police/Fire, Excelsior Fire and Superior Fire. For more information, go to the Hennepin Generals web page at www.hennepingenerals.org.

Sled hockey tourney held The Minnesota Northern Sled Hockey team hosted the Minnesota Wisconsin Sled Hockey League Tournament on February 11-13 in Richfield. Teams from Chicago, St. Louis, San Antonio, Colorado, and Phoenix competed, in the last games will before the Midwest League‘s Wirtz Cup tournament, in March. Many teams have returning Paralympians, including the Northern, fresh off the 2010 gold medal national team win in Vancouver. The team is proud to play hard against the San Antonio Rampage Sled Hockey team, a tough-as-nails competitor comprised solely of wounded soldiers, and supported by Operation Comfort. The Minnesota Northern is a team comprised of players of differing abilities, including paraplegics, People/Places - cont. on p. 9


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Pg 9

Second Annual Winter Walkabout a Success!

Vinland’s Second Winter Walkabout was a huge success as $8,458 was raised in pledges donations and raffle ticket sales. The event Feb. 19 at Vinland National Center in Loretto drew a crowd of more than 150 outdoor enthusiasts. Inside a heated tent, attendees listened to live music performed by the Scandinavian ensemble Skålmusik, enjoyed a hot lunch, and entered raffle drawings. Walkabout attendees folded 140 origami cranes for the Cranestorm Project, an awareness project organized by the Brain Injury Association of Minnesota. The goal of the project is to accumulate 100,000 origami cranes to represent each Minnesotan living with a brain injury. All proceeds raised from the Second Annual Winter Walkabout benefit Vinland’s “Expanding the Promise” capital campaign. You can learn more about the campaign online at VinlandCenter.org/ExpandingthePromise. Access Press was one of the event sponsors. Above left, a group ventured out on snowshoes. At right, one of the participants started out on the Trail. ■

People/Places - cont. from

p. 8 amputees, and able-bodied players. Sled hockey is known as an ability equalizing sport, as all players use the same equipment, and rules only slightly modified to regulation ice hockey. The Northern were the 2009 National Disabled Hockey Festival Division B champions, held in Buffalo, NY. The Northern are also proud to introduce player Taylor Lipsett, a two-time Paralympian and gold medalist, to Twin Cities fans. The Northern are a part of USA Hockey – Minnesota, and are a 501(c) (3) nonprofit based in the Twin Cities area. Players come from all over the state to compete within the Midwest League, and at the National level. After the March 18-20 Chicago tournament and the Wirtz Cup, the Northern are anticipating playing host to over 30 teams from across the country for the USA National Hockey Disabled Festival, April 1-3. The games will be played at the National Sports Center’s Schwan Super Rink complex, and features all aspects of Disabled Hockey disciplines. The National Festival is the premier sled hockey event, and it rotates between cities throughout the country each year.

Employees are honored Midway Training Services of St. Paul employs more than 70 people in its various branches and divisions. Recently MTS recognized several employees who exemplify high standards in assisting consumers, collaborating with partners, sharing enthusiasm, and demonstrating team work. The Advocate of the Year is Keeyana Harper, for her excellent efforts in promoting self-advocacy skills, supporting the consumers she works with so they continue to grow and achieve, and advocating on their behalf. Driver of the Year is Frances Lawson, for her tremendous safety record, flexibility, organizational skills and compassion in meeting the needs of MTS consumers. Coach of the Year is Nick Winkel, for his “above and beyond” efforts in supporting a company work crew, charged with cleaning the Metrodome. He started his day when most of us were sleeping, communicated well with our business partners, and taught the jobs to our crew which met the standards of the job.

Co-employees of the Year are Ki Lewis and Brad Wire, for their initiative in operating our Chore Services, flexibility in schedules, teamwork, teaching our consumers and demonstrating a constant “can do” attitude in performing all their duties.

Special Olympics Minnesota athlete in funding fight On March 2, Special Olympics Minnesota athletes and Best Buddies participants, along with coaches, program leaders and family members from around the country will converge on Capitol Hill to fight for the passage of the David Hill Eunice Kennedy Shriver Act of 2011—important funding to support sports, education, recreation and healthcare programs through the Departments of Health and Human Services, Education and State. The delegation from Special Olympics Minnesota included athlete David Hill of Welch, President and CEO David Dorn and Vice President of Area Programs and Initiatives Michael Kane. “We really appreciate the opportunity each year to have a chance to meet with Members of Congress in person as part of the nationwide Special Olympics movement. Although we know that our representatives are aware of our program, when they have a chance to speak directly with an athlete, we know that it makes quite an impact,” said Dorn. “What many people do not know is that we train some athletes to be self-advocates and public speakers, and Capitol Hill Day gives them a chance to bring their message to people of influence.”

Throughout the day, participants met face-to-face with member of Minnesota’s Congressional delegation. In addition, they saw Special Olympics Virginia athlete David Egan testify to the importance of both organizations to the personal development and employment potential for people with intellectual disabilities in front of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) committee. Later that evening, participants attended a reception to honor Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Senator Michael Enzi (RWY) for their leadership in passing the historic Rosa’s Law, which replaced “mental retardation” with “intellectual disability” within federal legislation. Special Olympics first organized Capitol Hill Day for its constituents in 2005, and Best Buddies joined them for the first time last year. Together again this year, the organizations advocated for continued support of programs designed to aid people with intellectual disabilities such as Healthy Athletes, Special Olympics Project UNIFY® and numerous Best Buddies initiatives. These specific programs—rooted in education and health—are currently at high risk of being lost without the necessary funding. ■


Pg 10 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

ACCESSIBLE PERFORMANCES Dido Through March 20 Theatre Pro Rata at Gremlin Theatre, 2400 University Ave., St. Paul. ASL: Thurs., March 10, 7:30 p.m. Tix: $14-41 (sliding scale); Phone: 612-8749321. Web: www.theatre prorata.org

Island, St. Paul. AD: Fri., March 11, 8 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $18 for AD patron + companion (reg. $25); Phone: 651-2271100; info: 612-724-3760; E-mail: info@franktheatre. org Web: www.franktheat re.org or www.riverrides. com

Princess Academy Through March 27

The Winter’s Tale Through March 27

Stages Theatre Co. at Hopkins Center for the Arts Studio, 1111 Main St., Hopkins. ASL: Thurs., March 10, 12:30 p.m.; Sun., March 19, 1 p.m. AD: on request. Tix: $11, $9 child or senior, group $8.50; plus $1.50 handling fee for single tickets; Phone: 952-979-1111. Web: www.stages theatre.org

The Diary of Anne Frank Through March 10 Park Square Theatre, 408 St. Peter St., St. Paul. AD, ASL: Thurs., March 10, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to half-price ($18.50); Phone: 651-291-7005. Web: www. parksquaretheatre.org

Cabaret Through March 27 Frank Theatre at Centennial Showboat on Harriet

Guthrie Theater, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. Open Captioning: Fri., March 11, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $20 (reg. $24-64); Phone: 612-377-2224, TTY 612377-6626. Web: www.guthrietheater.org

Goats Through March 27 Minnesota Jewish Theatre at Hillcrest Center Theater, 1978 Ford Parkway, St. Paul. AD: Sun., March 13, 1 p.m. Tix: $22; Phone: 651-647-4315. Web: www.mn jewishtheatre.org

Get Up Your Irish! A Celebration Through Music and Dance March 11-20 SteppingStone Theatre, 55 Victoria St. N., St. Paul. ASL: Sun., March 13, 3 p.m. AD: Fri., March 18, 7 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $8

access rate (reg. $14; youth/senior 55+ $10; groups 20+ $7); Phone: 651-225-9265; E-mail: info@steppingstonetheatre. org Web: www.stepping stonetheatre.org

In Conversation: David Hyde Pierce March 13 Guthrie Theater, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. ASL: Sun., March 13, 7 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $20 (reg. $25$50); Phone: 612-3772224, TTY 612-377-6626. Web: www.guthrie theater.org

Song of Extinction Through March 20 Theater Latté Da at the Guthrie Theater’s Dowling Studio, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. ASL, AD: Thurs., March 17, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $20 (reg. $1830); Phone: 612-377-2224, TTY 612-377-6626. Web: www.Guthrietheater.org

A Tale of the Twin Cities March 12 - April 3 History Theatre, 30 E. 10th St., St. Paul. ASL, AD: Sun., March 20, 2 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $15 (reg. $32); Phone: 651-2924323; E-mail: box ofc@ historytheatre.com Web: www.historytheatre.com

Barrio Grrrl!: A New Musical Through March 27 Mixed Blood Theatre & Children’s Theatre at Children’s Theatre, 2400 Third Ave. S., Mpls. ASL, AD: Fri., March 25, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Ask about special price rates (reg. $1640); Phone: 612-8740400; E-mail: tickets@ childrenstheatre.org; Web: www.childrenstheatre.org

Woyzeck on the Highveld March 24-26 William Kentridge & the Handspring Puppet Co. at Walker Art Center, McGuire Theater, 1750 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls. AD: Fri., March 25, 8 p.m.; touch tour 6:30 p.m.. Tix: $30 ($25 member). Phone: 612-375-7600. Web: http://calendar. walkerart.orgcanopy. wac?id=5731

Murder on the Nile Through March 27 Lakeshore Players Theatre, 4820 Stewart Ave., White Bear Lake. ASL: Sun., March 27, 2 p.m. (If no ASL seats are reserved within two weeks of the show, the ASL will be cancelled). Tix: Reduced to $10 (reg. $18-20); Phone: 651-429-5674; E-mail: tickets@lakeshore players.com; Web: www. lakeshoreplayers.com

Bare March 18 - April 3 Mpls. Musical Theatre at Illusion Theatre, 528 Hennepin Ave., Mpls. AD, ASL: Sun., March 27, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $18 (reg. $25); Phone: 612339-4944. Web: www.aboutmmt.org

Olé! Olé! Olé! April 1-2 Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus at Ted Mann Concert Hall, 2128 4th St. S., Mpls. ASL: Fri., April 1, 8 p.m. Tix: Reduced to halfprice (reg. $18-35, Sat. $21-40, includes box office & facility fees); Phone: 612-624-2345; Email: nto@umn.edu; Web: www.tcgmc.org or www.tickets.umn.edu/ Online/

The Pirates of Penzance March 18 - April 10 Gilbert & Sullivan Very Light Opera at Howard Conn Fine Arts Center, 1900 Nicollet Ave. S., Mpls. AD: Sat., April 2, 2 p.m.; 1:15 tactile tour. Tix: $18, children under 12 $8; GSVLOC Tickets, 1412 W. 47th St., Mpls. 55419; Phone: 651-255-6947, MF 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. Or order online ($2 fee). Web: www.gsvloc.org/

STOMP March 29 – April 3 Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, 345 Washington, St. Paul. AD:

Sat., April 2, 5 p.m. Tix: $27 standing room, $30 partial view, up to $80; if using ASL or Captioning, request seat in that area; Phone: 651224-4222, TTY 651-2823100. Web: www.ord way.org/accessibility

ists at History Theatre, 30 E. 10th St., St. Paul. ASL: Wed., April 6, May 4, June 1, 7-10:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $10 (reg. $20); Online enter coupon code ASL. Phone: 612-2014000. Web: www.sample nightlive.com

The Hallelujah Girls April 1-17

Heaven March 25 – April 10

Lyric Arts Company of Anoka, 420 E. Main St., Anoka. ASL: Sat., April 2, 7:30 p.m. Tix: $8-14 for guests requiring ASL + companion; Phone: 763422-1838; E-mail: jessica @lyricarts.org ASL seats held until two weeks prior to the show, then released to the general public. If there are no reservations, the interpretation will be canceled. Web: www. lyricarts.org

Flying Foot Forum at the Guthrie Theater’s Dowling Studio, 818 2nd St. S., Mpls. AD: Fri., April 8, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $20 (reg. $18-30); Phone: 612-377-2224, TTY 612-377-6626. Web: www.Guthrietheater.org

Beauty & Power: Renaissance & Baroque Bronzes from the Collection of Peter Marino Through May 15 Mpls. Institute of Arts, 2400 Third Ave. S., U.S. Bank Gallery. ASL: Sun., April 3, 1 p.m. Phone: 612-870-3131 or TTY 612870-3132; E-mail: dhegstro@artsmia.org Web: www.artsmia.org

Madagascar Live! April 1-3 Orpheum Theatre, 910 Hennepin Ave. S., Mpls. ASL: Sun., April 3, 2 p.m. Tix: $18-44; Limited seats available at the lowest price level to patrons using ASL interpreting or Captioning on a first-come basis. E-mail: accessible @broadwayacrossamerica. com; Phone: 612-3397007 or 612-373-5639; hotline 612-373-5650. Web: www.hennepintheat retrust.org/accessible

Monthly Gallery Tour April 2, May 7 Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Place, Mpls. One-hour tour begins in the Bazinet Garden Lobby the first Sat. of each month. DeafBlind ASL can be arranged with two weeks’ advance notice. ASL: Sat., March 5, April 2, May 7, 2 p.m. Tix: free, Phone: 612-375-7564; Email: access@walker art.org; Web: http://info. walkerart.org/visit/direc tions.wac#Directions.

Little Shop of Horrors March 18 – April 3 Mu Performing Arts at Ritz Theater, 345 13th Ave. NE, Mpls. AD: Sat., April 2, 7:30 p.m. Tix: $23-31, reduced by $5 for AD patrons; $2 discount for senior/student; Phone: 612436-1129; Web: www.mu performingarts.org or www.RitzDolls.com

Lend Me a Tenor April 8-17 Fargo-Moorhead Community Theatre, 333 Fourth St. S., Fargo. AD: Sat., April 9, 7:30 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $8 for AD patron & companion (reg. $20, senior/student $14, child $8); Phone: 701-2356778. Web: www.fmct.org

To Kill a Mockingbird March 25 - April 17 Park Square Theatre, 408 St. Peter St., St. Paul. AD, ASL: Sat., April 9, 7:30 p.m.; Fri., April 15, 11 a.m. student matinee. Tix: Reduced to half-price ($1850); Phone: 651-291-7005. Web: www.parksquare theatre.org

Murderess March 19 – April 10 Theatre Unbound at Lowry Lab Theater, 350 St. Peter St., St. Paul. AD: Sat., April 9, 7:30 p.m. Tix: sliding scale between $12-26; Phone: 612-721-1186; Email: info@theatreun bound.com; Web: www. theatreunbound.com/

American as Curry Pie March 17 – April 10 History Theatre, 30 E. 10th St., St. Paul. ASL, AD: Sun., April 10, 2 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $15 (reg. $32); Phone: 651-2924323; E-mail: boxofc@ historytheatre.com Web: www.historytheatre.com

Disney’s Beauty and the Beast March 18 – April 10 Rochester Civic Theatre, 20 Civic Center Drive SE. ASL: Sun., April 10, 2 p.m. Tix: Adult $23.50, Senior $20.50, student $13.50; Phone: 507-282-8481. Web: www.rochestercivic theatre.org

Oil! and The Jungle April 8-16

Sample Night Live April 6, May 4, June 1

University of Minnesota Department of Theatre at Rarig Center, 330 21st Ave. S, Mpls. AD: Sun., April 10, 2 p.m. ASL: Sat., April 16, 8 p.m. Tix: Reduced to $10 (use code ASLAD; reg. $10-18); Phone: 612-624-2345. Web: http://theatre.umn.

Numerous performing art-

Perform - cont. on p. 15


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

UPCOMING EVENTS Special events

May 7. PACER’s benefit, presented by SuperValu and P&G, also includes silent and live auctions. Tickets begin at $65. A pre-benefit gourmet dinner is available by separate ticket. FFI: 952-838-9000, PACER.org

Health services gala

Kaposia benefit Kaposia, Inc. hosts its 5th annual benefit 5:30 p.m. Sat, March 26th at St. Catherine’s University, St. Paul. This event features local entertainers Jearlyn and Billy Steele of the Steele Family fame. Diana Pierce of KARE 11 TV will emcee. Enjoy beer tasting, a silent auction, a gourmet cooking demonstration and meal followed by entertainment. Cost is $75 per individual or $700 for a table of 10. FFI: www.kaposia.com

Apology celebrations

Food allergy walk

SAM Southwest, Arc Southwest, and HSI, Inc. host two Apology celebrations in Southwestern Minnesota. The events will celebrate the Minnesota State Apology to those who lived and died in state institutions. Southwest area state legislators are invited guests. Enjoy door prizes and a dance. One celebration is 5 p.m. Fri, March 11 at Marshall Senior Citizens Center. The second celebration is 11 a.m. Sat, April 2 at Best Western Hotel and Conference Center in North Mankato. FFI: Wilbur, 1866-502-4082 or LeeAnn, 1-800-427-2895

Register now for the Anaphylaxis and Food Allergy Association of Minnesota (AFAA) walk Sat. March 26 at Mall of America, Raise money for outreach programs and increase food allergy awareness in the community. Same-day registration is at 7 a.m., followed by entertainment, walking at 8 a.m. and conclusion by 9 a.m. FFI: www.minnesotafood allergy.org

Sheryl Crow at PACER benefit Grammy Award winner Sheryl Crow will rock the house during PACER Center’s 29th Annual Benefit at the Minneapolis Convention Center Sat,

Neighborhood HealthSource will hold its 6th Annual Gala Thu, April 7th at the historic Nicollet Island Pavilion. Formerly Fremont Community Clinics, NHS has been serving residents of North and Northeast Minneapolis for more than 40 years. Celebrate affordable community health at a historic Minneapolis venue. Join us for an evening of excellent food and cocktails, live music and comedy, silent and live auctions and much, much more. FFI: Sandra Levine, 612287-2425, www. neighborhoodhealth source.org/gala.html, gala@neighborhood healthsource.org

Workshops, conferences Track your earnings Did you know that a Social Security beneficiary that receives SSDI has to track their earnings differently each month than a beneficiary who receives SSI? Being able to track and report earnings for Social Security purposes is one of the most important skills a person with disabilities can possess. It helps minimize overpayments and it gives the individual more control over their life. The

Work Incentives Connection hosts community meetings for beneficiaries, family members and professionals throughout the state to teach people how to track earnings the same way Social Security does. Attendees will leave with information and a calendar that will help track earnings accurately. FFI: 651632-5113, 1-800-976-6728 or www.mnworkincentives. com, click on “Resources” and then click on “Publications and Meeting Notices”

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. Funding for Adaptive Technology classes is provided by a generous grant from the Hudson Family Foundation. FFI: 612-6306469, www.hclib.org

Obtain community services People who are disabled and under the age of 65 are invited to a free information session, “Waiver Overview for Individuals Under 65, 6-8 p.m. Mon, March 14, Hennepin County Library–Oxboro, 8801 Portland Ave. S., Bloomington. Waivers are designed to allow enrollees easier access to home and communitybased services versus re-

ceiving care in hospitals or nursing facilities. The session is sponsored by Hennepin’s Human Services and Public Health Department. Information to be covered includes the service menu for each waiver program, which programs are used and how to apply. Preregistration required. FFI: 612-596-6631, www.hennepin.us/adsinfo

Youth and families Challenging behaviors A free workshop for parents of children with challenging behaviors or mental illness is 6-8 p.m. Thu, March 17 at Camphor United Methodist Church, 585 Fuller Ave., St. Paul. Learn the role of county crisis teams, de-escalation techniques and how to create effective crisis plans. This workshop, designed for African American families, also provides information about resources in the community. FFI: NAMI Minnesota, 651-645-2948

PACER offers services PACER Center offers useful free and low-cost workshops for families of children with disabilities. Register in advance for workshops. All workshops are at PACER Center, 8161 Normandale Blvd., Bloomington, unless specified. Here is a sampling of upcoming workshops: Creative Housing and Services Options, for parents of teenagers and young adults with disabilities, 7-9 p.m. Wed, March 16. Parents, young adults and providers to share their journeys through the housing process and ex-

Pg 11

plore creative housing options and services. This workshop is the final of a three-part housing workshop series. Children Taking Medications for Behavioral and Mental Health Reasons, for parents of children with disabilities and for professionals. 6:30-9 p.m. Thu, March 17. Learn about medications that are commonly used to treat mental health issues in children, how to talk about medication with children and ways to encourage children to continue to talk medications. FFI: PACER at 952-838-9000 or 800537-2237 (toll free), or visit the PACER website at www.PACER.org

Support groups, meetings Mental illness The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota (NAMI-MN) sponsors free support groups for families who have a relative with a mental illness. A free, one-day education workshop that provides families and individuals with information on mental illnesses, practical coping strategies, and hope for recovery. The workshop will be held 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sat, March 12 at Regions Hospital, 640 Jackson St., St. Paul. Preregister. FFI: Registration is requested. FFI: 651-645-2948, www.namihelps.org/NAMI has 23 family support groups, over 20 support groups for people living with a mental illness, anxiety support groups, and Vet Connection groups for returning soldiers. Led by trained facilitators who also have a family mem-

Events - cont. on p. 13


Pg 12 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Roll With It - cont. from

Radio Talking Book Books Available Through Faribault Books broadcast on the Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network are available through the Minnesota Braille and Talking Book Library in Faribault. Phone is 1-800-722-0550 and hours are 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mon. through Fri. The catalog is also online, and can be accessed by going to the main website, http:// education.state.mn.us, and then clicking on the link. Persons 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 www.mnssb.org/rtb. Call the staff at the Radio for your password to the site. See more information about RTB events on the Facebook site for the Minnesota Radio Talking Book Network. Register for Facebook at www.facebook.com Access Press is one of the publications featured at 9 p.m. Sundays on the program It Makes a Difference.

March Sampling Chautauqua • Tuesday – Saturday 4 a.m. Nudge, Nonfiction by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein, 2009. Our lives are full of choices we make and many of them are bad ones, from personal investments and unhealthy foods to bad decisions about our families and education. But people can be helped toward making good decisions. Read by Scott Brush. 12 broadcasts. Begins March 18.

Past is Prologue • Monday – Friday 9 a.m. Citizens of London, Nonfiction by Lynne Olson, 2010. Three Americans were key to the U.S. wartime alliance with Britain: Edward R. Murrow, Averell Harriman, and John Gilbert Winant. The three formed

p. 1

close ties with Churchill and were drawn into his official and personal circles. Read by Bonnie SmithYackel. 22 broadcasts. Begins March 14.

Bookworm • Monday – Friday 11 a.m. Red Hook Road, Fiction by Ayelet Waldman, 2010. Newlyweds Becca and John are killed on the day of their wedding. The two families are driven apart by their grief. Only a powerful storm can help them to see what really matters most. Read by Jenny O’Brien. 12 broadcasts. Begins March 21.

The Writer’s Voice • Monday – Friday 2 p.m. Marcus of Umbria, Nonfiction by Justine van der Leun, 2010. Tired of her city life, Justine moves to Collelungo, Italy, to live with a gardener in the town of 200. When the romance is lost, she finds love with an English pointer that she rescues. L - Read by Marylyn Burridge. Eight broadcasts. Begins March 28.

PM Report • Monday – Friday 8 p.m. Neoconservatism, Nonfiction by Justine Vaïsse, 2010. Neoconservatism has undergone a transformation that makes a clear identity almost impossible. Are they New York intellectuals reacting against 1960s leftists, Scoop Jackson Democrats, or the Neocons of the 1990s and 2000s? Read by John Demma. 16 broadcasts. Begins March 16.

Night Journey • Monday – Friday 9 p.m. Elegy for April, Fiction by Benjamin Black, 2010. April, a junior doctor at a local hospital in Dublin, is independent and unconventional. When she disappears, her friend Phoebe suspects the worst and enlists the help of her father. L - Read by Pat Kovel-Jarboe. 10 broadcasts. Begins March 21.

Off the Shelf • Monday – Friday 10 p.m. Something Red, Fiction by Jennifer Gilmore, 2010. It is 1979 in the Goldsteins’ home. The age of protest has come and gone and each of the Goldsteins is forced to explore what it means to be a radical. Read by Lynda Kayser. 16 broadcasts. Begins March 14.

Potpourri • Monday – Friday 11 p.m. Zoo Story, Nonfiction by Thomas French, 2010. Humans have a desire to both exalt and control nature. Nowhere is that more evident than in a zoo. Read by Alvin Apple. 10 broadcasts. Begins March 21.

After Midnight • Tuesday – Saturday 1 a.m. The Infinities, Fiction by John Banville, 2010. As Adam Godley lies dying, his family gathers at his bedside. But in addition to the family are a family of mischievous immortals, including Zeus, Pan, and Hermes. As Adam’s days run down, they start to stir up trouble. L - Read by Bob Malos. 11 broadcasts. Begins March 22. Abbreviations: V–violence, L–offensive language, S–sexual situations

Desktop Publishing: Advertisements Brochures Catalogs Flyers Newsletters/papers Project Mgmt Scanning ... & More! Ellen Houghton 952-404-9981 presentationimages@ comcast.net

Roll With It also offers hunting trips. Photo by Jan Larson

about people with disabilities and the need to provide sports and recreation opportunities for all. RWI offers archery, alpine skiing, bowling, gun training and certification, hunting, power soccer and wheelchair basketball. The activities are not only fun for participants, also the volunteers and coaches find RWI to be a rewarding experience. “My favorite part about being one of the basketball coaches is getting to see the improvement that the players make. It is always a terrific feeling seeing how much fun they’re having,” said Even Schlosser, wheelchair basketball coach. Schlosser uses a wheelchair. “I chose to become one of the basketball coaches because it is great meeting new people that are going through the same struggles that I am,” Schlosser said. Wheelchair basketball is not the only fast-paced team sport offered by Roll With It, Power soccer is another. While zipping up and down the court, participants are able to hit the soccer ball around with the bumpers at the front of their power chairs. Although power soccer participation is decreasing, those who do try the sport enjoy racing around in their specially equipped wheelchairs. Some individuals have to turn down their chair speeds because they get so into the game and they end up going too fast. RWI was started in 2003 by a student from the College of St. Benedict, Heidi Schwichtenberg. Schwichtenberg did an internship at the Courage Center in the Twin Cities and saw how many

sports programs Courage Center offers. Schwichtenberg wanted to bring the same satisfaction for individuals with disabilities to the St. Cloud area, and Roll With It was started. RWI has many volunteer opportunities for college students and other interested in helping sports participants have fun. Anyone who wishes to volunteer for Roll With It or get more information can contact Jan Larson at jan@rollwithitmn.org or check the Roll With It website at www.rollwithitmn.org to find out more information. Whether you would be interested in coaching or just volunteering with the different activities, Roll With It provides a chance for volunteers to make a difference in somebody’s life. “We are always in need of more volunteers and there are great ways to get involved,” said Larson. “One way is through on-campus fundraisers.” Anyone wanting to help the organization may also make financial or equipment donations. Used wheelchairs and adaptive sports equipment are always welcomed, as are uniforms, facility time, advertising and donations that help defray travel costs. “The main goal,” Larson said, “is to get individuals with enjoyable active and encourage them to meet other individuals who have similar interests, and RWI does just that. It provides a great opportunity for participants to play and work with a team.” ■ Shannon Koestler is a St. Could State University student and works part-time as Lily Schreifels’ personal care attendant.


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

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Central Corridor construction makes getting around challenging by Jane McClure Planning a trip to the state capitol for Tuesdays at the Capitol or a rally organized by an advocacy group? Or do you travel University Avenue or use the Washington Avenue Bridge to get to and from home, work, shopping or school? Getting around parts of St. Paul and Minneapolis got trickier due to Central Corridor light rail construction, so getting around will take more planning while this massive construction is underway. It will mean months of disruption for area businesses, home owners, motorists and transit riders. “We’re going to all have to co-exist to get around,” said Dan Soler, project engineer for Metropolitan Council. Utility work already underway along University has caused minor traffic tieups in recent weeks. The start of what is referred to as “heavy construction” will bring many more changes. “We’ve been doing a lot of work to get ready for a very big and very impactful 2011 construction season,” Soler said. The intent is to keep University Avenue open at all times for traffic, with one lane of through traffic in each direction. Traffic will be in two lanes on one-half of the street. Traffic will be on the north side during the first phases on construction. Project staff will provide notification prior to shifting traffic lanes. Soler said there will need to be continued coordination between Metropolitan Council, Minnesota Department of

Transportation (MnDOT), St. Paul, Minneapolis and Hennepin and Ramsey counties to help motorists get around. “We don’t wasn’t to send someone on a detour and then have them drive right into someone else’s project.” If you are a Route 16, 21 or 50 bus rider along University, be aware that several regular stops will be eliminated during this construction season. That includes stops at Albert, Pascal, Simpson, which serve the Midway shopping area. Stops that remain in place during construction may be relocated at times to accommodate construction. Stops will be temporarily modified to provide access for riders with disabilities. Also, be aware that bus schedules are changing to allow more time due to constructionrelated delays. If you drive or ride in a private vehicle during construction, look for more changes. At the start of construction, parking changes will take place along University Ave. All on-street parking will be eliminated. Two-hour parking time limits take effect on most side streets. The work will start on the south side of University at Emerald and continue eastward in approximately one-mile sections to just east of Hamline. Two-third of the first stretch of University will be under construction for a time. The next phases of construction will take place in from March into July between Emerald and Hampden, with work starting in mid-March

Events - cont. from

651-578-3364. A family support group meets in St. Paul at 6:30 p.m. 4th Tues, at Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, 285 North Dale St. FFI: Hilary, 651222-4323. Another family support group meets 5:457 p.m. 2nd Tues at Bandana Square, Room 216, 1021 Bandana Bvld. E., St. Paul. FFI: Sonja, 651357-2077, www.namihelps.org

p. 11

ber 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, 651730-8434. Open Door Anxiety and Panic support group meets at 6:30 p.m., first and third Thu, at Gloria Dei Church, 700 Snelling Ave. S. St. Paul. FFI: NAMI, 651-645-2948/ Trained facilitators who are also in recovery lead Connection group, 6:30 p.m. 2nd and 4th Wed at Centennial Methodist Church, 1524 Co. Rd. C-2 W., Roseville. FFI: Will,

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 Wiscon-

between Hampden and Aldine. By June work should be shifted to the north side of University Ave between Emerald and Hampden, with completion in October. Work between Hampden and Aldine is to take place from July into November. Between Aldine and Hamline, the south side of University will be under construction from April into August, with the north side work starting in July and ending in November. The goal is to get three miles of street ready for light rail by late fall. Schedules are tentative due to weather. Traffic control measures, including barricades, signs, temporary traffic signals and temporary access will be installed. Left turn lanes across University will be restricted to 11 signalized intersections. sin. 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), www.ucare.org ■

Each section of street is to be under construction for up to 150 days, according to construction contracts. The street lanes and sidewalks on side have to be restored before work can begin on the other side. The intent is to maintain vehicle and pedestrian access to all properties. Project outreach staff members have spent several months contracting businesses and meeting with owners to discuss access and how it will be provided when construction is going out outside the front door. At least four feet of front sidewalk is to be maintained except when the new sidewalk is installed in front of a property. Sidewalks are to be replaced in 15 days. Properties may have to have temporary sidewalks and ramps. Work in the one-mile sections will shift to the north side of University

only after the new road and sidewalks are built and reopened on the south. The final piece of construction in each segment of the line is that of installing the track, guideway and station platform foundations. While the street is under construction, public and private utilities will be relocated, including storm and sanitary sew-

ers, electrical lines, phone and other communications system lines. Metro Transit began posting signs and distributing information on the changes earlier this year. Changed schedules are online at www.metro transit.org or by calling 612-373-3333. Check Central Corridor work at www.centralcorridor.org ■

Kent’s Accounting Service, LLC Kent Fordyce 612-889-2959 • fordyce6@aol.com Fax: 952-472-1458 6371 Bartlett Blvd, Mound, MN 55364 Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006 & 2005


Pg 14 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Regional News - cont. from

Wheelchair athletes can compete

p. 6

son and participation in a minimum of three meets to qualify for section meets. Section competition will High school athletes who qualify athletes to the state use wheelchair will be rac- meet this June. ing around tracks this There will be two classispring while still others fications: Class 1 for athwill be putting the shot. letes with disabilities of the The Minnesota State lower extremities; Class 2 High School League is for athletes with disabilities adding three track and field that affect the lower and events exclusively for ath- upper extremities. letes who use wheelchairs “These new events will that will be effective this fill a void for a significant upcoming season. “Wheel- number of athletes in ers” is the term that refers wheelchairs,” said Associto the athletes that compete ate Director Jody Redman on the track. Wheelers will who oversees track and be able to compete in 800- field. “This expands the meter and 1600-meter opportunities for athletic events. Shot put will be the competition for all stufield events. The league dents. We expect that our board approved the change member schools will emFebruary 24. brace this expansion of This new division of track and field to serve competition will be avail- more student-athletes.” able to athletes with perThere are some specific manent physical disabilirules and specifications for ties. Competition can bethe wheelchair competigin during the regular sea- tion on the track. For ex-

ample, the wheelchairs may have only three wheels, two in the rear and one in the front. And, although it might seem obvious, the wheelchairs can be maneuvered only with the hands and arms. For the shot put, the athletes have a little more flexibility in the type of chair that can be used, but scooters and “standing chairs” are not allowed. Assistance in holding the chair to limit excessive movement is allowed. All of the competition for wheelchair racers must be separate from competition for athletes with ablebodies while shot-putters in chairs may compete alongside athletes with able-bodies. Team points will not be awarded for participation in wheelchair division events. “Adding these events speaks directly to one of the league’s belief statements,” Redman said. “That is, ‘Participation in school-sponsored activities must be inclusive, not exclusive.’” Minnesota becomes the seventh state to offer wheelchair track and field competition. ■ [Source: Minnesota State High School League]

Clinic closing raises red flags

services for clients. La Familia served more than 800 clients in 2009. “They were one of the The closing of St. Paul’s best organizations for La Familia Guidance Cen- working with folks from ter in February is raising the Latino community, red flags for mental health and referring them on, advocates, who warn that getting them connected it could be just the first with more direct serclinic of several to close. vices,” said Dave Haley, Dwindling grant funds, assistant to the director of tighter public dollars and a Ramsey County Commutough economy are buffet- nity Human Services, ing many agencies. Some which has stepped in to have already merged. steer the clients to new The 15-year-old counproviders. Haley spoke to seling center served hunthe Pioneer Press. dreds of low-income The center’s staff was Latino families, as well as given only three days’ noHmong and East African tice, according to media clients, in their native lan- reports. La Familia coguages. Based on St. founder Jose Santos has Paul’s West Side, La Faindicated that the agency milia clinic served clients couldn’t sustain itself fiaround the region. Its nancially. abrupt closure left families Sue Abderholden, exand social service agencies ecutive director of the Nascrambling to find other tional Alliance on Mental

Teen draw awareness to store access

Illness Minnesota, said changes in how the state supports low-income mental health patients most likely impacted La Familia’s finances. In 2010 Minnesota changed the General Assistance Medical Care (GAMC) program so that patients would have to check in with one of a handful of designated hospitals to access mental health services. The hospital, in turn, then had to refer patients to community mental health clinics or nonprofit counseling centers. That affected reimbursements, making things even tighter for clinics. Cuts to county aids from the state also affect how much counties can provide for mental health services. ■ [Sources: Pioneer Press, Star Tribune]

The latest has her using a wheelchair to get around. “All the aisles and racks and everything, there was just like no space to get through,” Abi A Minnesota teenager hopes her trip to the mall said. The aisle inside the will lead to changes in the American Eagle store proved too narrow for way stores are laid out. Abi Christopherson uses a Abi’s wheelchair. Tracie Christopherson wheelchair. She gave WCCO-TV video to show said an employee noticed their struggle. “We even the difficulty she had had a clerk say, ‘Oh, I navigating an American Eagle store at the Mall of guess we’re not too wheelchair friendly, are we?’ America. Abi and her and kind of giggled,” she mom, Tracie said. She was so upset she Christopherson, said the fired off an email to the store is discriminating. store’s corporate office, “We were trying to detailing her and Abi’s exfind, ‘actually this sweatshirt’ and we could perience. Fifteen minutes later, the Christophersons barely even get back there. We’re, like, bump- got a reply. “I got an automatic reing into things, everysponse email, saying, ‘We thing,” Abi Christocare about what people pherson said. think’,” Tracie said. “It is It was a trip meant to one they send out to evcheer up a girl that has erybody.” A district manbeen through so much. ager contacted her days Abi Christopherson has later with a promise to had 19 brain surgeries.

look into the complaint. Mother and daughter then decided to go back to the store and record their experience via video camera. Their video shows the difficulty they had getting around in the store. “All aisles have to be a minimum of 36 inches. That is what is considered an accessible path of travel for somebody in a wheelchair,” said Margot Imdieke Cross, an accessibility specialist with the Minnesota State Council on Disability. Abi said that all she wants is to be able to browse and not bump into things in her path. For its part American Eagle told WCCO-TV that its stores are designed and built to be in full compliance with all codes including the Americans With Disabilities Act. See the video on wccotv.com ■ [Source: WCCO TV]

Wheelchair thief is sentenced

len vehicle. He had tried to fill a fraudulent prescription at the Target store. Police found the wheelchair after a search. He was also found guilty of fifth-degree drug possession and is serving a 19-month sentence concurrently with the theft charge. He was back in court March 7 for a jury trial concerning a burglary case, court records said. ■ [Source: Star Tribune]

pay $1,930 in restitution to the victim. The case was heard in Washington County District Court. A man who stole a wheelDann, 35, was charged chair from a teenage girl for breaking into the gawith spina bifida will be rage of a home in Hugo locked up for 13 months. on Aug. 11 and driving Chad Michael Dann, St. off with the owner’s Paul, was sentenced in pickup truck. The girl’s February to 19 months in TiLite 2GX Swing Away prison. However, he was wheelchair was in the given credit for the 179 back. days he has already Dann was arrested a served in connection with few days later by the theft in Hugo in 2010 Stillwater police when he In addition to the prison sped off from a Target time, Dann was assessed a store in a truck matching $50 fine and ordered to the description of the sto-

d


March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

Tax help - cont. from

p. 4

and dependent care credit. Also, look at deductions such as the increased standard tax deduction for the blind or visually impaired, medical deductions, the costs

of seeking SSDI benefits and other deductions. ■ Information from Better Business Bureau, Allsup and Accountability Minnesota was used in compiling this article.

Keillor - cont. from

p. 3 typically listening to his radio show. This was also my first time in the Fitzgerald Theater since my downtown, moviegoing days some 35-plus years ago when the Fitz was the World Theater. It is certainly not the theater I remember from my youth. The musty-smelling theater with sticky floors and greasy-grubby chairs is now beautifully restored to its original 1910, splendidly breathtaking, intimate glory. Juxtaposed with the gilded ceiling, crystal chandelier and plush box seats, is the stage backdrop of a street in Lake Wobegon. As the evening and songs progressed, the lights of the home and lamppost gradually flicker on. You can’t help but feel like you are walking down the street, side-by-side with Garrison. It was a comfortable performance in a comfy theater. The evening was only slightly spoiled by an usher who hung out next to me the whole evening, guarding the door, while stretching and bending, kneeling, swaying and hopping. Post-intermission, I actually had to ask her to stop chewing the ice from her glass of pop.

On the corners of Wabasha and Exchange streets, the theater offers an outdoor entryway that is enclosed for inclement weather and waiting lines. There is a drop-off area just east of the main entrance on Exchange. Parking is available onstreet or in various local ramps. The 1,058-seat theater offers two seating areas, either side at the back, for wheelchair users or for those who cannot manage the steep slope down toward the stage. There are eight removable seats in either boxed accessible areas. Maneuvering a wheelchair into the seating area is tricky but doable. For my tickets, I found a great twofer deal for $32 from CrowdCut. If you have not yet heard of the discount ticket clubs on the Internet, check back here next week and I’ll give you my rundown on them. Meantime, I’d love to hear your take on the Fitzgerald Theater, Garrison, or the old World Theater’s popcorn butter–coated seats, and Jujubes-and-syrup-covered floors. ■ Roxanne Furlong can be reached at Roxanne @accesspress.org

Delta - cont. from

that the vouchers we received expire (and with a limited income, sometimes it takes longer than a year to save up for a trip).” The DOT consent order is available on the Internet at www. regulations.gov; docket DOT-OST-2011-0003. ■ This article includes information from the United States Department of Transportation and Access Press staff.

p. 5 “It was clear that Delta was doing as little as possible to make the situation go away,” she said. “What they promised (the full refund) was just a drop in the bucket for them - and yet, I had to fight to get what was promised. I am disappointed with how they handled it. I did finally get a written letter of apology and another explanation by email, but discovered after the fact

Perform - cont. from

Sister Kenny 48th International Art Show by Artists with Disabilities April 14 – May 13 Abbott Northwestern Hos-

p. 1 One focus at the press conference was innovation, as Nathan Bauer of Richfield and Jean Bender of St. Paul discussed how innovations in disability services have made their lives better, Bauer has benefitted from Housing Access Services, which allows him to live in his own apartment. Bender, whose son David, who has significant disabilities, said that more flexibility and control over her son’s services has helped her family and has saved money for the state. “We don’t want more, more, more,” said Bender. “What we want is to be partners in our family members’ care.” A stepped-up presence at the capitol is expected in the days ahead. As Access Press went to press, self-advocates planned a sit-in in Dayton’s office to protest personal care attendant (PCA) cuts that are affecting an unknown number of Minnesotans. More groups were weighing in with designated advocacy days. Dayton initially announced plans that disappointed and angered many, including a 4.5 percent cut to programs that serve people with disabilities and elderly Minnesotans in their homes or communitybased programs. He would also eliminate coverage for about 7,200 Minnesotans on

MinnesotaCare His budget would raise money by dramatically increasing surcharges on nursing facilities, health plans and hospitals. The increases were defended by the governor, saying that health care providers could make up many of those tax payments through higher reimbursement rates from the federal government. But health providers dispute that claim. After the revised state forecast came out February 28, the news was slightly better. The anticipated budget deficit decreased from $6.2 billion to $5.082 billion, due to increased state revenue and a federal tax compromise. Dayton indicated he would revise his budget, and restore some of the planned cuts to long-term care. Nursing homes are expected to be the focus but how the changes would affect community based services remained unclear. The changes to Dayton’s budget in some cases mean that anticipated reductions will be smaller. In other cases, little change is seen. With so many bills and budgets in play, one of the best ways to stay updated is through organizations’ websites and the MNCCD blog. http://mn ccd.wordpress.com/ ■ Information from Mike Gude at the Arc Minnesota was used in this story.

EMPLOYMENT Employment ads are $22-$25 per col. inch. February 28 is the deadline for the March 10 issue. Mail to: Access Press, 1821 University Ave. #104S, St. Paul, MN 55104 FAX 651-644-2136 • Email: access@accesspress.org

EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT PCL Construction Services, Inc. is seeking an Executive Assistant to work in our Burnsville, MN office. Five years experience as an Executive Assistant and a BS/BA degree or Secretarial degree is preferred. Additional requirements & details can be found online at www.pcl.com. Job ID #2142. Applications accepted online. www.pcl.com Job ID #2142 No phone calls or walk-ins please. EOE, AAE, M/F/D/V HSE COORDINATOR PCL Construction Services, Inc. is seeking a Health, Safety and Environment Coordinator to work in the Twin Cities. A Bachelor’s degree in HSE or similar education/experience and OSHA 30 are preferred. Additional requirements & details can be found online at www.pcl.com. Job ID #2130. Applications accepted online. www.pcl.com Job ID #2130 No phone calls or walk-ins please. EOE, AAE, M/F/D/V SUPERVISING ATTORNEY Senior Law Project, Legal Aid Society of Minneapolis. For details go to http://www.mylegalaid.org/jobs DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR Mid Minnesota Legal Assistance/Fund for Legal Aid. For details go to http://www.mylegalaid.org/jobs CONSTRUCTION MANAGEMENT AND ESTIMATING

PCL Construction Services, Inc. is seeking a Field Engineer, Project Manager, Superintendent, and Project Estimator. Additional information for each position and employment requirements can be found online at www.pcl.com Job ID #2158, #2159, #2160, #2161 Applications accepted online only. www.pcl.com No phone calls or walk-ins please. EOE, AAE, M/F/D/V

CLASSIFIEDS

p. 10

edu/utheatredance/ http://theatre.umn.edu/u theatredance/mainstage shows/BrightRoom.php

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Pg 15

pital, second floor, Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute, 800 E. 28th St., Mpls. AD, ASL: Thurs., April 14, 5-8 p.m. Tix: Free, Phone: 612-863-4872, E-mail: sisterkenny@allina.com Web: www.allina.com/ahs/ ski.nsf/page/artshow ■

Reach 11,000 Active, Interested Readers with Access Press Classifieds. $13 up to 12 words, 60¢/word thereafter. Must be prepaid. Mail with check to: Access Press, 1821 University Ave W, #104S, St. Paul, MN 55104 • 651-644-2133 FOR RENT Holmes-Greenway Hous- Convenient St. Louis Park ing: One- and two-bedroom location. Call 952-935-9125 wheelchair-accessible apart- for information. Equal Opments. Section 8 subsidized. portunity Housing. Convenient SE Minneapolis location. Call 612-378-0331 Seward Square Apartfor availability information. ments: We are currently acEqual Opportunity Housing. cepting applications for our waiting list for barrier-free Lewis Park Apartments: housing, in Minneapolis, that Barrier-free housing with is federally subsidized. For wheelchair users in mind. an application, please call Section 8 subsidized. One- 612-338-2680. Equal Opand two-bedroom units. For portunity Housing. more information on availability call 651-488-9923. St. Calvary Center Apts: 7650 Paul, MN. Equal Opportu- Golden Valley Road, Golden Valley, MN. A Section 8 nity Housing. building now accepting apOak Park Village: We are plications for our waiting list. accepting applications for the Call 9 am to 4 pm, Mon – Fri waiting list for one-bedroom 763-546-4988 for an appliwheelchair accessible apart- cation. Equal Opportunity ments. Section 8 subsidized. Housing.


Pg 16 March 10, 2011 Volume 22, Number 3

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March 2011 Issue