Page 1



Reader Survey — Page 7

Inside  Next Innovations — p. 9

Volume 10, Number 8


August 10, 1999


“One of the great measures of a people is its culture.” — Paul Robeson


August 10, 1999

‘HOMECHOICE’ PROGRAMS Home Buying Made Easier For People With Disabilities by Amy Farrar


ADAPT protesters rally at Supreme Court

“Options” For Independence by Jay Johnson


ptions: Interstate Resource Center for Independent Living is a community based, consumer controlled non-profit organization that was established in East Grand Forks, MN in 1986. Options’ mission is to help people with disabilities (of all disabilities and all ages), to live as independently as possible in the community of their choice and to eliminate environmental barriers of attitude, architecture and communication. The mission appears energetic but becomes overwhelming when you find out that Options’ service delivery area encompasses 18,000 square miles of two states and two separate federal regions. Options was one of the first true interstate centers for independent living in the United States. It made no sense, with population concentrations so close to the border, to have two centers. Even though

both states see Options as one center that serves eight counties of northwestern Minnesota and eight counties of northeastern North Dakota, the Federal Government will only recognize Options as two distinct centers. Independent Living services at Options have a very simple foundation, the Independent Living philosophy. Options’ board and staff have developed and adopted philosophical tenets and service principles that are reviewed and modified every year. These are the core value system by which all decisions are made. These include consumer control; equal rights; integration; consumer need-based, individualized services; community-based services; self-determination; least restrictive environment; equal opportunity and equal responsibility. The core services: independent living skills training, infor-

mation and referral, peer counseling, and advocacy are provided by trained staff, a majority of whom possess a disability. People with disabilities helping people with disabilities to live independently is what it is all about. At Options the consumer always comes first. When somebody walks or wheels in the door and needs help, staff first help the individual identify the barriers to independent living and then work with them to help identify acceptable solutions. Staff are then available for support, encouragement, skills training or information as individuals choose and apply possible strategies to break down the barriers to their independence. This does not mean that the staff do it for people, but rather that the staff help people learn how to do it for themselves. The standard medical model of service delivery supports

Options - cont. on p. 6

uying a home can be a long, daunting task for anyone. For an individual with a physical or mental disability, additional obstacles in the form of income level, money for a down payment, and credit history can make acquiring a mortgage even more of a challenge, especially in the midst of the current tight housing market. Arc Minnesota is trying to alleviate the situation through its participation in HomeChoice, a unique lending program designed specifically to assist people with disabilities in purchasing homes.

home ownership, meeting with the bank, and answering any questions that arise once the mortgage has been approved.

HomeChoice began as a national program in 1997, however it was launched in Minnesota during the second half of 1998 when Arc applied to the Federal Mortgage Association (commonly referred to as Fannie Mae) to participate in the HomeChoice demonstration project. Minnesota was selected among 17 states for inclusion in the project, the goal of which is to determine if making the loan process more flexible will increase home ownership among people with disabilities and their families. Once selected, Arc received funds totaling approximately $160,000 from the Saint Paul Companies, Minnesota Housing Finance Agency, Fannie Mae, Firstar Bank, and the state legislature to administer the program.

Dennis Collins is Arc Minnesota’s HomeChoice consultant and head of the Home Choice Coalition, composed of a number of nonprofit agencies and government departments representing many types of disabilities. He said it is important that applicants entering the program have expectations that are compatible with their income level; however he emphasized that if they do not qualify for the program, he can help them search for other mortgage programs that may be more suitable for them. “Our goal is to help people with disabilities become home owners,” he said. “We strive to find whatever fits our clients’ [needs] best.”

The three-year program is underwritten by Fannie Mae and administered locally by Firstar Bank. It provides funding to disabled persons for costs such as down payments and assists home buyers through the entire process of purchasing a home, from the initial application, to attending educational classes on

To qualify for HomeChoice, either the applicant or a member of their household must be physically or mentally disabled as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Borrowers must also attend classroom training on home ownership that involves oneon-one counseling. Participants receive a home buyer’s certificate, whether the purchase is their first home or not.

Collins is the first point of contact for people inquiring about the program and, among other duties, assists with determining an applicant’s eligibility. He said the Home Choice program lowers some of the typical barriers for disabled persons wishing to purchase a home. For example, lending institutions may restrict mortgages based on type and level of income (e.g.,

Social Security, SSI, food stamps, etc.). And benefit programs like Social Security and Medicaid have strict limits on the amount of assets people can have and still remain eligible for these benefits. “In the midst of a tight housing market, it’s hardest for people with the least money,” said Collins. HomeChoice has a variety of methods for coping with these difficulties. HomeChoice’s entry cost assistance programs provide funding for down payments and closing costs, to a maximum of $8,000, depending on the individual program, the applicant’s county, and their particular disability. Home Choice also considers alternative payment histories and accepts “in kind” categories of income, such as transportation passes. Entry cost assistance is available in the form of interest-free loans and grants. Individuals participating in the HomeChoice program work within a support team that consists of two to six members and may be composed of family members, friends, neighbors, social workers, and/or co-workers. The support team must agree to assist participants with home ownership questions and issues. One member is designated as a primary team member. S/he attends meetings with the borrower, from the initial meeting with the bank to the closing. The primary team member also serves as a back-up contact point should something go wrong post-mortgage (e.g., payments are not being received by the lender) and the borrower cannot be reached.

Home - cont. on p. 9



August 10, 1999 me know what you think about the paper. Are there subjects we are not covering or a new column you’d like to see? Your input and story ideas have helped shape ACCESS PRESS into what we are today. During the past year, several of our featured stories were suggested by readers in last year’s survey. We really value your input!

Charlie Smith Editor

As an added incentive to return your survey, we will be giving away tickets to the State Fair, the Renaissance Festival, or - the most valuable - subscriptions to ACCESS PRESS. n page 8 you will find this It’ll be your choice, but send in year’s readers’ survey. your survey early! This is your opportunity to let ****


Human Rights Settlement Makes Yellow Pages Available By Phone


aneen Rosas, Commissioner of the Minnesota Department of Human Rights, recently announced a settlement resolving an administrative proceeding brought by the Department of Human Rights to enable blind and visually impaired persons in Minnesota to obtain the information in the

Yellow Pages.

WEST provides this service between 6:30 a.m. and 10:45 When a sighted person wants p.m. daily, except holidays. information about a business but does not know the busi- “US WEST’s Yellow Pages ness’ name, they can look for it assistance program is a reain the Yellow Pages. Now a sonable accommodation for blind or visually impaired per- blind and visually impaired son can obtain similar informa- persons as required by the tion over the telephone. US Minnesota Human Rights Act,” said Commissioner Rosas. “I urge other companies to follow US WEST’s lead, examine their own practices, and make reasonable accommodations which will enable persons with disabilities to MINNESOTA STATE COUNCIL have the same access to goods ON DISABILITY and services which other persons have.”

Please Visit Us at Our Booth in the Education Building at the State F air — Fair The Great Minnesota GetTogether Get-T SEE Y OU THERE! YOU

121 E. 7th Place • St. Paul, MN 55101 651-296-6785 V/TTY 1-800-945-8913 V/TTY; Fax: 651-296-5935 E-mail:

US WEST’s agreement to provide this free service resolves litigation begun during March of 1998. Last October, US WEST began to provide Yellow Pages assistance on a trial basis for a limited time period. US WEST has now agreed to continue to provide the service until at least March 1, 2000, and to notify the Commissioner of Human Rights in advance if US WEST decides to discontinue the service at any time between March 1, 2000 and December 31, 2001. 

ACCESS PRESS Co-Founder/Publisher (1990-1996) ................................................................... Wm. A. Smith, Jr. Editor/Publisher/Co-Founder ............................................................................. Charles F. Smith Cartoonist ..................................................................................................................... Scott Adams Production .......................................................................... Presentation Images, Ellen Houghton Editorial Assistant .............................................................................................. Donna McNamara 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 180 locations statewide. Approximately 650 copies are mailed directly to political, business, institutional and civic leaders. Subscriptions are available for $15/yr. Editorial submissions and news releases on topics of interest to persons with disabilities, or persons serving those with disabilities, are welcomed. Paid advertising is available at rates ranging from $14 to $18/column inch, depending on size and frequency. Classified ads are $8.00, plus 35 cents/word over 20 words. Advertising and editorial deadlines are the 30th of the month preceding publication; special scheduling available for camera-ready art. Access Press is available on tape. Call MN State Services for the Blind, 651-642-0500 or 800-652-9000. Inquiries should be directed to: ACCESS PRESS • 1821 University Ave. W. • Suite 185N • St. Paul, Minnesota 55104 • (651) 644-2133 • Fax (651) 644-2136

Jay Johnson from the Center for Independence in East Grand Forks has written an article for this issue (see page 1). It highlights a certain brand of advocacy which can be very effective - civil disobedience. We have not seen much of it here in Minnesota. One of the reasons is our “Minnesota nice” nature and the fact that advocates have been very successful by working within the “system.” This is not to say that civil disobedience shouldn’t or doesn’t have a place here. A few years ago, when Governor Carlson was threatening to cut the Personal Care Attendant (PCA) program, I and six other people with disabilities were arrested for staging a sit-in at the Governor’s

office. It is hard to judge what impact we had with our action, but the PCA program was not cut at the end of that legislative session. The key to civil disobedience is choosing when to do it, and that choice needs to be done carefully.

“Don’t worry; be happy.” I believe that the truth lies somewhere in between. Donna’s column will provide us with information on how we may prepare ourselves for the most likely situations that may arise.



This month marks the beginning of a new column by Donna McNamara which will address issues surrounding the potential problems related to the upcoming Year 2000, popularly known as “Y2K.” Her first column appears below. We are hearing conflicting reports from the news media on the severity of the problem, ranging from “the sky is falling” to

Nicole was under the weather just before we went to press, so her column does not appear this month. She has recovered, so look for her to be back in her usual spot in September. John Schatzlein, our Religion and Disability columnist, is on vacation. He, too, will return next month.

The Year 2000 Problem by Donna McNamara


y now, many readers have at least heard of the Year 2000 (Y2K) problem. But confusion remains about what this problem really involves and what the consequences could be. Because of the widespread use of computer technology, it is important to become informed about this problem, whether or not you own or use a computer yourself.

clinic patients. If your last appointment was August 1998 and you were scheduled for annual checkups, the computer would “remember” to include your name on the list it generated for a reminder notice in August 1999. But when the year 2000 comes around, the computer won’t have it so easy. The two zeros could be interpreted as meaning the year 1900, in which case you’d be 99 In the coming months, AC- years overdue for a checkup CESS PRESS will be running a (and probably dead!). series of articles on this topic. In this issue, we will provide Or, as is often the case with background information about computer programs, when a Y2K. In subsequent months computer receives data that it we will discuss individual and is unsure how to interpret, it community preparedness, re- could just shut down. Other port what is known about city problems could also occur, governments’ readiness, and such as the computer “locking provide information on avail- up,” and the data being lost. able resources. Any of these scenarios could result in delays, meaning you The Y2K problem exists be- may not get the timely health cause of a “shortcut” taken by care you need. If we substitute computer programmers many “pharmacy records” for “clinic years ago. To save time and records” in this example, the costs, people programmed into consequences could be much computers only the last two worse for someone who relies digits to indicate a year, for on daily medications. example 99 was used to indicate 1999. This trade-off, not The above is just one example storing the additional 2 digits of how a glitch in database in order to save computer software could cause probspace, worked fine for over 40 lems. Because so many records years. But with the turn of the are now computerized, there century approaching, this de- are many other possibilities for sign “flaw” has become vis- breakdowns in information ible. systems. Think for just a minute about the kinds of information In many computer programs, now computerized: bills; phardates are crucial to maintain- macy records; government ing accurate records. Let’s say data, including benefits; a program was designed to driver’s licenses; bank regenerate reminder notices to cords; reservation systems;

public transit schedules; retail inventories; payroll systems; the list goes on. In addition to this more or less obvious problem with programs that rely on dates to deliver accurate information, there is another, more insidious one. Billions of computers around the world are built with “embedded microchips” that are date-sensitive. The chips were made that way and are used extensively throughout the world. One might expect that if a date function is merely present, but not used, that if it failed, it wouldn’t matter, because it wouldn’t affect what the computer is supposed to do anyway. But computer experts say this is not the case. A compelling example will illustrate this. Evidently, oil tankers, those huge ships that transport oil around the world, are steered with complex computer technology (instead of “oldfashioned” mechanical steering wheels). It seems these computers are equipped with the “embedded chips” mentioned above. It doesn’t take much to realize the potential problems that could be caused by an “unsteerable” oil tanker. (Remember the Exxon Valdez?) In fact, some tankers have already been banned from certain port cities because of this problem. Let’s say all the “unsteerable” ships are identified early and kept home, thus avoiding acci-

Y2K - cont. on p. 10


612-529-5019 • 651-483-9143 MEDICAL ASSISTANCE PROVIDER



s I sit here before my computer, I see the picture of my husband Larry. It was taken on our wedding day (seventeen years ago this September), and is a reminder of all the dreams we had then. Yes, we have realized many of our dreams of buying a home and traveling. We have fortunately been able to do much of what we planned, despite both of us having cerebral palsy. So when Larry retired last August, we looked forward to enjoying our “golden years” together. Yet here it is a year later, and our lives have changed forever, with many of our dreams for retirement dashed. Six weeks after Larry retired, I lost my mother. While I had felt the end of her life was near, it was very hard to let go of her. We had a special bond that I will always keep in my heart. Within four weeks of losing Mom, I underwent my first cataract surgery. I’m thankful that Larry could be with me during both of those stressful times. He certainly has been a wonderful caregiver for me. Then came the day after Thanksgiving, which is when everything changed for us. Larry said he would go downstairs to start breakfast while I finished dressing. A few minutes later when I didn’t hear anything, I called for him and didn’t get a response. I hurried to the top of the steps, where I found Larry slumped over on our chair lift. He couldn’t talk, but I knew he was aware of me rushing past him to call 911. The paramedics were at the house within seven minutes. They brought Larry downstairs, took his vital signs, then put him on a stretcher and into an ambulance. I stayed behind to get dressed and then called Larry’s mom to go with me to the hospital. By the time we arrived at United Hospital, Larry was in the emergency room. We were told that he had collapsed because of a stroke. When we went in to see him, we knew he recognized us, but when he tried to speak, he couldn’t. Instead, tears rolled down his cheeks. His mother and I watched as the medical staff came in and out. All of a sudden they rushed us out of the cubicle and started working on Larry. We didn’t know what was happening, but we knew it was a life-threatening moment. As it turned out Larry’s heart rate had dropped and he had been through a seizure. I’m thankful that the doctors were able to save him.

August 10, 1999


IN BRIEF . . . .

Where Are Those ‘Golden Years?’ by LeAnne Dahl


Minneapolis Parks Events

The Minneapolis Parks offer free events throughout the summer. The following activities take place at the Eloise When his condition stabilized, with skilled nursing care along Butler Wildflower Garden and he was taken to the intensive with physical, occupational Bird Sanctuary in Theodore care unit. At this point, Larry and speech therapy. was drifting in and out of sleep while hospital staff continued Once this decision was made, to run tests and we answered I asked Larry if he would con- Join Callioperd Women’s Chothe many questions asked by sider going to Rose of Sharon rus in its 23 season singing the nurses and technicians. nursing home, where my songs of peace and justice with The first forty-eight hours were mother had been. He nodded excellence and pride. Audithe most critical. There were ‘yes.’ It was a relief for me, some heart problems, but they knowing they had a good nursstraightened out. Larry doesn’t ing staff and therapy departth remember much of anything of ment there. And because I had Headwaters Fund’s 4 annual a relationship with people there Walk for Justice promises to that period of time. who had cared for my mother, be one of Minnesota’s biggest I was determined not to leave it wasn’t difficult to make the collaborations of communityLarry’s bedside, but I knew arrangements. The Adminis- based non-profit groups. The this wouldn’t be good for ei- trator said, “Of course we’ll Walk will be held at Boom Isther of us. With the help of a have a bed waiting for him.” land Park, Minneapolis, Sun, Sept 12. Registration begins at friend, I made arrangements to stay in one of the apartments There’s no doubt about it, Larry 11:30. The Walk starts at 1 pm. across the street from the hos- was a pretty sick man when he pital. Another friend went to entered the nursing home. our house to pick up my Since he still couldn’t swallow, scooter (which we had bought he was being fed through tubes This year Help Yourself’s anonly the month before). The in his nose. But as he grew nual picnic is being held in scooter allowed me the free- stronger and more alert, the conjunction with the Headwadom to move around faster tubes had a tendency to fall ters Fund Walk for Justice without wearing myself out. I out. The doctor decided that fundraiser on Sunday, Septemwas able to stay as long as I he’d do better with a stomach wished with Larry, and then go feeding tube, so off he went to to the apartment to make calls the hospital to have the proceThe 32-member Governor’s dure done. and try to rest. Workforce Development Meanwhile, the specialists and As the weeks passed, Larry Council advises the Governor therapists kept coming in and continued to improve. I spent on workforce development out. As so often happens with every day with him. It was policies, plans strategies restroke patients, Larry couldn’t wonderful to see him start walk- garding Minnesota’s work-

Wirth Park: Amazing Oaks, Saturday, Aug 14, at 1:00 PM; Nature Printing, Saturday, Aug 28 , from 1:00-4:00 PM Program slots: 1-2 PM, 2-3 PM, 3-4 PM. On Saturday, Aug 21, the fol-

lowing activities will be held at the Minnehaha Park Building: Leaf I.D. Candle Making, 1:00 PM; Plant Magic and Medicine, 2:00 PM; Minne-haha Park Tour, 4:00 PM.

Calliope Women’s Chorus Auditions tions for all vocal ranges will be held in mid-Aug. All women welcome. Call 651-649-4732 by Aug. 15 for info. All commun-

ications available in print, braille, and tape. All auditions, rehearsals and concerts in wheelchair-accessible space.

Walk For Justice September 12 The Walk for Justice is a fundraising and publicity event in support of grassroots organizations working to eliminate social, racial, economic and environmental injustice. Many disability groups plan to participate, and you can show your support by collecting pledges

and walking with them. Contact the groups you are involved with to see if they plan to participate, or call JoAnn Cardenas Enos, this year’s Walk coordinator, to get the names of Walk participant groups. JoAnn can be reached at 612-879-5999.

Help Yourself Summer Picnic ber 12, in Boom Island Park in Minneapolis. Help Yourself hopes to raise $4,000 for the “Kid Talk” program and Equipment Loan Fund. The picnic

will be held in the park following the Walk. To help raise funds for Help Yourself, or to find out more about the picnic, call 612-497-2800.

Workforce Council Appointments

speak or swallow. To insure he got proper nourishment, they inserted a feeding tube through his nose, which would later be replaced with a stomach tube. What made it so hard is no one could tell me if those functions would return.

ing with a cane, but his ability to speak and eat came back much more slowly. Then on Christmas Eve Day, I got a magnificent gift—Larry said my name. From then on, I knew the recovery might be slow, but we had a future to plan together. Now it was time to start thinking in terms of adjusting to a new way of life. For us it meant changing our independent living style. None of this could have happened without the support and help of our very wonderful friends. 

force, and coordinates and integrates statewide service delivery of workforce investment policies. In mid-July, the governor’s office announced the appointment of several new

members to the Council, including Wendy Brower of the Disability Institute and Robert Niemiec of the State Rehabilitation Council.

Heel And Wheel Event A Heel and Wheel fundraising Lois Mae of KOOL 108 ra- flyball, agility and frisbee event for Hearing and Service Dogs of Minnesota will take place Sunday, September 12th. Featured celebrities are Belinda Jensen of KARE 11 TV and

dio. The Amazing Jeffo - the world’s only blind magician will perform. $5,000 in prizes will be awarded. Demonstrations with Hearing Dogs, also

It was now December 3 rd, nearly a week since his stroke. Our own doctor, who had been The National Multiple Scleroout of town when Larry was sis Society, MN Chapter, is brought to the hospital, reoffering a free Internet educaturned. He and the physicians tion program for people who who had been treating Larry are newly diagnosed with mulagreed that Larry was stable tiple sclerosis. The program enough to leave the hospital and enter a nursing home. To Be Continued in the next runs every two weeks, beginning Aug 17 and ending Sept There he would be provided issue.

28 and will consist of live Internet broadcasts on current multiple sclerosis information/research topics. Each program begins at 7:30 p.m.

demos will be enjoyed by dogs and humans alike. Registration starts at 12:00 noon and the Walk begins at 1:30 p.m. Call 612-729-5986.

MS Society’s Internet Education can be downloaded from the National MS Web site ( and should be done at least one day before the first program. For more information, contact the To participate, people need MN Chapter at (612) 335-7900 RealPlayer software, which or 1-800-582-5296 (v/tdd).


If you are a consumer or a provider and know health care can and must be done better, we need to hear from you.

Accessible Space, Inc. (ASI) offers subsidized one and two bedroom apartments for individuals with physical disabilities. We have housing in the Twin Cities metropolitan area, St. Cloud, Brainerd, Grand Rapids, Hibbing, Austin, Marshall, Willmar, and Duluth. The apartments are fully wheelchair accessible and each building has a central laundry room, large community room, secured entry and an on-site caretaker. ASI also offers shared personal care services 24 hours a day, at most locations, for adults with a physical disability and/or traumatic brain injury who qualify for Medical Assistance.


For more information call (651) 645-7271 or (800) 466-7722. For services or housing call Leigh, for employment as a personal care attendant call Al or Kellie.

651-641-0887 Accessible Space, Inc.



August 10, 1999

NCD Fellowship Program


he National Council on Disability (NCD) is an independent federal agency charged with advising the President and Congress on public policy issues affecting Americans with disabilities. During the year 2000, NCD will be conducting a number of activities focused on improving civil rights enforcement for children and adults with disabilities. In recent years, the disability civil rights movement has experienced the passing of several individuals who played instrumental roles in advancing the design and implementation of public policy affecting America’s 54 million people with disabilities. To develop new leadership in this area and to enhance NCD’s

policy capacity, NCD is establishing an annual fellowship program in Washington, DC that will provide experience, training, and contacts to qualified individuals with disabilities.

zens with at least a baccalaureate college degree. NCD will establish a selection committee that may include NCD staff, board members, and community representatives. The selection committee will review all completed applications, conduct personal interviews of finalists, and select the fellow(s). When personal interviews are required, NCD will cover reasonable travel expenses. NCD will make affirmative efforts to recruit applicants from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds and rural communities, and encourages such individuals to apply.

One to two fellows will be sponsored per year. Selected fellows will receive benefits (including health insurance), a competitive stipend to cover expenses, and reasonable relocation expenses. Selected fellows will be responsible for locating their own housing in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area for the term of the fellowship. The fellow’s appointment, not to exceed one For more information call Moira year, will begin in January, 2000. Shea at or call 202-272-2004 (voice), or 202 To qualify for the fellowship, 272-2074 (TTY), or see the NCD applicants must be U.S. citi- website: 

Grants For Artists With A Disability


he VSA Arts of Minnesota Artist Recognition Grant Program is in its fourth year. This program, made

possible by the Jerome for a number of years. Foundation, is for Minnesotans with disabilities who Six grants of $750 each will be have been active in the arts awarded through a competitive process that is open to individuals in all art disciplines (visual, performing, written, media, etc.).


The deadline for grant applications is October 15, 1999. Application materials are available by contacting Craig Dunn at 612-332-3888 tty/v, or by e-mailing mn@vsa Please specify whether you need application materials in a format other than standard print (audio tape and PC diskette are the alternative formats offered). If requesting by phone, Deaf callers should use the Minnesota Relay Service outside of normal business hours (MF, 8-5), when the TTY is not in operation.

Common Sense Approach To Medical Assistance by Mark Wilde


he Hennepin County Demonstration Project for People with Disabilities (HCDPPD) planning group is looking for Medical Assistance (MA) consumers and their representatives to help create a better health care delivery management system.

program believes the current MA system could be more efficient by creating short-cuts for certain predictable needs of its recipients. STAR is a program that helps people with disabilities gain access to assistive technology, and Linroth has seen the shortcomings of the current MA HC-DPPD community interns system first hand. have been hosting consumer forums to get the input of For example, when dealing with people with disabilities who someone who has had a stroke, rely on MA every day. Over Linroth thinks it makes comthe past few months, the in- mon sense to assume the inditerns have heard numerous vidual is going to benefit from concerns about the current and certain rehabilitative services. proposed systems and re- However, the way it is now, a ceived many suggestions for person has to go through a change. time consuming prior authorization process. Many of the consumers we’ve talked to raise issues regard- While Linroth thinks it is iming the current authorization portant to not label people by and appeal processes. These their diagnosis, there are times processes are often perceived when a diagnosis can tell a lot as cumbersome and time con- about treatments and services. suming. One story illustrates For example, for consumers this point. A consumer is who have chronic progressive allergic to bees and also has disabilities such as Multiple limited use of her left hand. Sclerosis, there is a significant The emergency bee sting kit need for limited, on-going inthat was authorized by MA terventions. Yet the current required the use of two hands. system makes these people go through the same authorizaBecause this woman was not tion process as everyone else. able to use the authorized bee sting kit, she needed to go As a new system is being through a long process to get planned, consideration must approval for a more appropri- be given to alternative ways to ate kit. It was a frustrating obtain authorizations, which experience for her, and could may eliminate some of these easily have been avoided. counterproductive activities. It’s important to understand, Ronna Linroth of the STAR however, that the changes

being suggested will not add to, or detract from, the current MA benefit set. The HC-DPPD is looking at ways to make the MA system more “needs-based.” Under the proposed system, a Personal Support Plan will be developed for each person enrolled in the project. Using the example of the woman and the bee sting kit, her need for a certain type of kit could have been written into her Personal Support Plan, preventing the unnecessary complications. The HC-DPPD planning team continues to review the role of the Service Coordinator, which may also help alleviate some of the issues surrounding the authorization and appeal processes. A Service Coordinator may act as an advocate for the MA recipient. With knowledge of the system and the best interest of the person in mind, the Service Coordinator could work to prevent some of these problems from occurring, and work to resolve them if they do. To give more feedback about these issues contact Bill Blom or Julie Wegscheid at (612)348-2200 (voice) or (612)-5966758 (TTY).  This column is a paid insertion by the Hennepin County Demonstration Project for People with Disabilities.

Help Make Deaf History

accessible arts experiences for people with all types of disabilities. Founded by a small committee of educators, volunteers and artists in 1986, VSA Arts of Minnesota has he public is invited to “Let grown to be recognized for its your hands make Deaf VSA Arts of Minnesota is a programs and services that history in Minnesota” on non-profit agency whose mis- help to make the arts accesSeptember 4, 1999. From 2-4 sion is to promote quality, sible to people with disabilities pm, American Sign Language/ around the state.  Braille sculptor Helene E.R. Oppenheimer will be at St. Paul’s Western Sculpture Park, just off I-94 near Marion


Home Care Services Available 24 hours per day Specializing in the care of Children • Adults • Elderly We provide Personal Care Assistants • Home Health Aides • Homemakers • Live-in Caregivers • Nursing Our Rehabilitative Services include: Physical/ Occupational/Speech/Respiratory Therapies PCA Provider Organization MA/Waiver/Medicare Certified

612-544-0315 or 1-800-231-0315

Street. People who gather at the park that day will create the first ASL and Braille sculpture in Minnesota. Individuals will be given free materials such as Braille stencils, ASL rubber stamps and ASL pictures to assist them in creating original clay tiles. Sculptor Oppenheimer will be there to coach participants. The clay tiles that are created will then be cast in iron and will become a permanent tile floor at the St. Paul Western Sculpture Park. Prior to their installation, the tiles will be exhibited at the Mayor’s Design Forum on October 14-16. For a map to the park, call the event’s sponsor, Public Art St. Paul at 651-2900921 (voice only). To volunteer for the event, call 651-5787649 tty/v or e-mail: aslinclay 



August 10, 1999


Mental Illness

Sometimes “Nothin’” Can Be A Real Cool Hand by Pete Feigal


ear Hennepin County this terrible disease. Any work NAMI folks and readers that I do is on the shoulders of of Access Press, the people that came before me, members of the mental I’ve been honored to be the health community, families, Hennepin NAMI president consumers and others who for and the Access Press Mental years have “tilted at windmills,” Illness columnist for the last have struggled with almost no year and a half. From our expe- resources against enormous riences with good and bad enemies: the Insurance Combosses, teachers, politicians, panies, the Medical Profession, etc., we have all developed the Courts. And they’ve ideas of what good leadership battled even more terrible foes: is and isn’t. My ideal has despair, compromise, poverty, changed through the years, stigma, shame, isolation. but it comes down to something like this: a leader doesn’t I have to practice what I stay home while the rest work. preach, and say with no shame A leader doesn’t eat while the that I’m again suffering terriothers starve or sleep while the bly with almost crippling deothers stand watch. A leader pression, and that my physical doesn’t command people’s strength has been sapped by loyalty by fear, nor can he pur- my multiple sclerosis. I feel like chase it with money. A leader I’ve been “knocked to the canearns their loyalty by the sweat vas.” We all get tired and feel of his own back and the pains defeated, and lately, in my dehe endures for their sake. That spair, I’ve thought about rewhich is the heaviest or harsh- signing from NAMI, quitting est burden, he lifts up first and this column, ending my speaksets down last. A leader ing and teaching, never doing doesn’t require service of another “Tilting At Windmills” those he leads, but provides it theatrical production. I’ve told to them. He serves them, not myself that what I’ve done has they him. This is the goal I’ve been useless and trivial. I’ve shot for, and rarely ap- also flip-flopped and told myproached, and I fear that I have self that what I’ve done is not served you in the way you enough, that I’ve paid my dues, deserve. that I’ve put in my share. Rationalizations of the juiciest For two years I’ve tried to sort. make my own small, personal dent in the terrible stigma about But if I quit, there is a chance mental illness (MI): by speak- that, no matter what I had tried ing about my own story, by to do up till now, my battle putting a name and a face to could be perceived, especially those terrible words “Depres- by other consumers, as a desion” and “Mental Illness,” by feat. A defeat that would have sharing both the defeats and once again confirmed that victories I’ve experienced in which our “Inner Tyrants” my thirty-year struggle. When most wish us to believe: the MI professionals talk about futility of resistance to this disthe disease, it’s informational ease. Taking a break is OK, and can often open people’s something we all need to do. minds. But when a mom or dad But if we can all keep strugor someone with the affliction gling in the face of almost inshares the suffering of their surmountable obstacles, we own souls, they can poten- can transform our pain into a tially open people’s hearts. victory and bring change and And that’s where I believe the meaning to our suffering. We victory will ultimately come can sow courage into other’s from: opening people’s hearts. hearts, those maybe younger What I’ve tried to do is break and stronger, or wiser and more through their armor by break- patient, as we have also been ing their hearts a little. The inspired. The standard of valor down side is that to break their hearts, I have to break my own, too.

we set may inspire others to add their gifts. My depression crippled me before I was even a teenager, and the first of many hospitalizations came at 15. I’ve always believed that I’ve never had anything to offer the world or this struggle; no power, no money, no authority, and because of the stigma I was burdened with, not even a voice or credibility. I’ve never even graduated from high school. In many ways I was stopped before I ever really got started. But I don’t believe that anymore. You’ve inspired me to try and breach this bastion with the only weapon I have: my own story, my own words, my own voice. Sometimes it seems that we have nothing on our side in this struggle; no media attention, no money or resources, and even with the epidemic status of this disease, few who will join in, or even talk aloud about it. And the ones who do try get worn out, beaten down. We fight a stigma, a mark of shame, that has existed literally since the Dark Ages. But what we do have is more important and powerful than any resources or money. We won’t be stopped, we won’t take “No” for an answer and we simply will not be beaten. What we have is our courage and our determined hearts. Donn Pearce wrote a book that was made into an Oscar-winning, Paul Newman movie, about prisoners on a chaingang in Florida in the years after WWII. In a famous scene, the new prisoner, Lucas Jackson, runs afoul of the biggest and toughest guy in the yard, a con called Dragline. On Saturdays, the guards would let the cons settle disputes by boxing, and so the prisoners made a circle and the fighters strapped on the gloves and went to it. Lucas wasn’t bad, but Dragline was just too big. He kept knocking Lucas down, but he kept getting up. Again and again and again. And again. After awhile, the excite-


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And there’s the rub. It’s hard to talk about these times and events because they feel like death, and pain can’t be turned on and off like a light switch. I’ve been blessed to speak not because I’m a great orator, not because my message is unique, not because I’m special in any way. I’ve been given this honor to speak because I try to share from my heart and because I’m just the same as millions of others out there suffering with

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What’s Next? by Lolly Lijewski and Marj Schneider


fter the “Disability Culture: Inside, Outside And Beyond” conference at the end of April, many people asked for more cultural events with less time between them. In response, the Disability Culture Project planning committee is sending a survey to everyone who attended the conference. We are interested in knowing what people would like to see next. Several options were suggested at the conference and many of them are listed on the survey. The information gathered from surveys will help us plan for the future. If you did not attend the conference, but would like to give input on future cultural events, please call MCIL at 651-646-8342 voice, and 651-603-2001 TTY, to request a survey. If you need the survey sent in an alternative format, be sure to specify which format you prefer. If you have e-mail, please be sure to include your e-mail address so that we may more easily communicate with you. We would like to develop a disability culture list serve. Once the responses are received from the surveys, a follow-up phone survey will be done with a small sample of ment died down and the watchers became uneasy with the unequal contest. One of the cons whispered to Lucas to just stay down, but Lucas just kept getting up and getting knocked down again. Even the guards started to get nervous, and finally Dragline, shaken that Lucas was getting up for the hundredth time said, “Stay down, you’re beat!” And Lucas painfully struggled to his feet again and said slowly, “You’re going to have to kill me.” Dragline knocked him down a few more times and then finally walked away, leav-

respondents to get more de- days to explore some of the tailed information. rich disability literature of the 1990s. We’ll read well known Some of the options mentioned authors such as John Hockenon the survey are: more berry and Nancy Mairs as well performance events, a brown as several other writers who bag discussion group, men- may be less familiar. torships, and a disability studies reading group. This last The group will meet six times option is already being devel- for two hours, from 7:00-9:00 oped by Marj Schneider, who PM. Meetings will be held at will be coordinating it. A de- the Metropolitan Center for scription of the group follows. Independent Living, 1600 University Avenue, St. Paul. The Reading Group Center is on the corner of Literature has always played a Snelling and University (in the role in conveying people’s Spruce Tree building) and is ideas about the meaning of accessible by the #16 and #50 disability. In recent decades bus lines. Parking is available writing on disability increas- in the building’s ramp, and ingly includes the voices of there is some free street parkdisabled individuals them- ing behind the building. selves. These days, more authors are writing about their All of the books the group will experience of disability in bi- read are available at area librarographies and memoirs. Per- ies, or can be found at a reasonhaps you’ve read some of these able price at new and used and would like to read more, bookstores. All are available but how often do you have the on tape. This group is being chance to talk with others coordinated by Marj Schneiabout what you read? der. Contact Marj for further information, a complete readThis September will mark the ing list, and to sign up to particibeginning of the Twin Cities pate in these discussions. This first (as far as we know) disabil- group will be limited to 12 parity book discussion group. ticipants, so sign up now. Marj Beginning on Wednesday, can be reached at: 612-822-0549 September 8, we will meet ev- or  ery three weeks on Wednesing the punch-drunk, staggering Luke alone on his feet, victorious in the circle. Later that night, a black-and-blue Lucas bluffed his way to a poker victory with literally nothing in his hand, not even a pair. Dragline watched this in amazement and then sat down next to the new “top” con and said, “You beat ‘em all with just what you came at me with today: ‘Nothin’!’” And Luke smiled his “Luke” smile and said, “Yeah, well, sometimes ‘Nothin’’ can be a real cool hand.”

Even though we mistakenly think we have “nothin,’” every one of us has a gift to offer, something to bring to the world. Even if it’s “just” the courage never to accept defeat. And each gift, each offering is like a drop of water on stone. It can slowly, steadily change the world. Thank you for the honor of working with and for you. With your courage and inspiration to draw from, I will try to keep standing in that circle, knowing I’m gonna get clobbered. And I’ll try to keep getting up. 

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August 10, 1999

OPTIONS - Cont. from p. 1

Senator Tom Harkin addresses the rally “professionals” being in control of “fixing the person” so they can “fit” into society. The Independent Living model believes that the major problems lie with barriers in the environment, stereotypical attitudes of the general public towards people with disabilities and dependence or control of people with disabilities by a bureaucratic service delivery system. When these two models collide and Options sees people with disabilities systematically being discriminated against, we mobilize consumers, staff, and Options’ Board of Direc-

tors to fight for an acceptable solution. Options will work cooperatively with organizations or individuals to change legislation, develop new programs or eliminate barriers to independence. But if those in control are ignoring the problem or refusing to utilize proposed solutions, then Options will assist those affected to demand change through protests and demonstrations. There are many examples of this in Options’ history. In a recent legislative year, Options rallied over three hundred people with disabilities to con-

verge on the State Capitol in grassroots advocacy. Bismarck, North Dakota to stop a proposed 1.5 million-dollar On May 10th Options Operacut in Medicaid. The rally re- tions Manager Randy Sorensulted in a meeting with the sen and myself flew to WashGovernor, and the $1.5 million ington, D.C. to participate with was restored. In 1995, Options 3,000 other disability advoorganized one of the first pro- cates in the march on the Sutests in the country on the preme Court concerning the Police stand by as protesters march to the Supreme Court Plans to Achieve Self Support Americans with Disabilities (PASS) and Social Security Act (ADA) and the Olmstead People with disabilities in reaching the target for the day. Work Incentives. Options re- brief dealing with least restric- Minnesota and North Daceived national attention when tive environment. We spent kota need to learn the new On Tuesday, May 11th the tarit assisted over 25 level of sophistication get was the United States people with disabilities that ADAPT combines Housing and Urban Developto march in 20 below with the good old ment (HUD) building. When zero temperatures in “chain yourself to the ADAPT shuts down a buildprotest of the flagrant door” techniques. ing, it remains closed to all abuse and non-comThey have strategy people trying to get in or out pliance with policy meetings in the morn- until their demands are met. manuals of the local ing before they leave What POWER!!!!! They know Social Security office. and in the evening in advance who is willing to get This action inspired when they return. No arrested or not and place them other protests across one except the coordi- strategically. ADAPT leaders the country and nators knows the des- Mike Auburger, Bob Kafka, helped lay the groundtination for the next Stephanie and Babs are leadwork for the landmark day’s action. Each co- ers who have strategic planWork Incentives legordinator has a head- ning skills most military generislation now pending set and can communi- als would envy. Imagine leadin Congress (and recate with the other co- ing 800 people with disabilicently passed in Minordinators. There are ties, many in wheelchairs, nesota). In conjunc“point” people to di- through the tunneled maze of tion with organizing direct ADAPTers to the mass transit called the Metro. rect actions, Options target for the day. This Now that is what I call has always shied away 400 protesters line up at the metro station eliminates leaks and independent living skills from fee-for-service the possibility of the training. contracts with state agencies the two days before the march police stopping the 600-800 or developing service pro- learning (through direct action) people with disabilities from In the Disability Rights Movegrams which could draw the about civil disobedience from organization away from ADAPT, a national disability i t ’ s primary mission of rights group (with local chapters in many states) known for organizing effective civil disobedience across the country. Within two hours of our arrival in Washington, we were almost part of the 85 people with disabilities that were arrested, loaded onto accessible buses, and taken to the D.C. jail. Randy Sorenson (I), Options staff, carries the flag


MN State Fair

ment there needs to be a full continuum of people advocating for change. This continuum spans from people who quietly change the system from the inside out to radical, in-yourface civil disobedience. It is important for people in power to know that any time they treat people with disabilities as second class citizens or deny us our legal rights that an “ADAPT-type” action could happen in their office or place of business. This threat is what gives us the power to affect change and to promote the independence that people with disabilities need in order to be an integral part of life. Give the radical side of grassroots advocacy a try, you  might like it!  Jay Johnson is the Executive Director of Options

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August 10, 1999


Reader Survey Free Gifts — for returning your completed survey — Free Gifts

RENAISSANCE FESTIVAL TICKETS • STATE FAIR TICKETS • SUBSCRIPTIONS TO ACCESS PRESS 1999. TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR PRIZES, RETURN YOUR COMPLETED SURVEY TO US BY AUGUST 25, 1999 The drawings for your choice of one of the above prizes will be held on August 25th (the State Fair begins on August 26th). Completed surveys may be mailed or faxed, as long as we receive them by August 25th. Mail completed surveys to: 1821 University Ave. W., Suite 185N, St. Paul, MN 55104. Fax to: (651) 644-2136. ○

If you want to remain anonymous, we still want to hear from Please rate in order of your most favorite (1) to least favorite (15) Tell us what you like most about ACCESS PRESS: you, but we won’t be able to put you in the drawing! column in ACCESS PRESS Name_______________________________________________ __Arts __In Brief __Directory of Organizations __Mental Illness Address_______________________________________ __Disability Culture __National News __Editor’s column __Political Coverage City___________________________State_____Zip_____________ __Feature articles __Religion & Disability What would you like us to change about ACCESS PRESS: __Health care coverage __Social Security Phone_________________________________________ __Hello Nicole __Sports Beat __In-depth articles Do you have a disability? __Yes __No Optional: What is your disability?_______________________________ What other types of articles would you like to see in ACCESS PRESS? If not, do you know someone with a disability? __Yes __No __Investigative reporting __Medical reporting __Organi- What are some things you would like to see in ACCESS PRESS? Is the person you know: __Family member __Co-worker zations/services profiles __Personal Profiles __Specific [For example, additional monthly columnists (specify); __Friend __Other____________ disabilities __Other (please list)_____________________ articles on specific topics; new advertisers, etc.] How did you hear about ACCESS PRESS? __From some one else __At work __From newsstand __ Other____________________________________ How long have you been reading ACCESS PRESS? __________

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Letters To The Editor . . . Dear Editor: I enjoyed reading your article on Remembering with Dignity and ACT. Common Vision is a program that has benefited a number of self-advocates in SW MN as well as their support staff and families.

for Independent Living also serve people with physical disabilities, chronic illness, mental illness and other impairments. They have neither the staff, the time nor the funding to provide the intensive training on self-advocacy for people with developmental disabilities that has been provided in the past through Common Vision. We are hopeful that money to continue this valuable service will be found somewhere.

It was an extreme disappointment to have Governor Ventura veto the funding for ACT programs. One point I would like to clarify from the Governor’s comments. This is not a duplicate service already being pro- Lee Ann Erickson, parent and vided by the Centers for Inde- Arc member, Sherburn, MN pendent Living. The Centers

various disabilities for elementary school age children, and on up. Considering that there are courses on Asian studies, African American studies, Native American studies, and so forth it is glaringly apparent that the enormous population of disabled individuals is beAs a disabled person, I am one ing largely ignored. When will of the thousands of other dis- educators wake up and address abled persons who constantly this gross oversight? educate those that we encounter in our daily lives. It is still Ron Franke clear that the general public is unaware of issues facing the Dear Editor: Pete Feigal’s monthly Mental disabled population. Illness column is a source of Proponents of educational ex- great inspiration to me. As a cellence in Minnesota should matter of fact, I go out of my require education regarding way to seek out your newspaDear Editor, After reading recent articles on the ADA, Linda Wolford’s article on “non-disabled privilege,” and Disability Culture it is apparent that there is a desperate need for broader education of the able-bodied public.

per just because of his column. spect, caring, justice, and huHe is truly a leader in the move- man dignity. ment to educate people about I want to thank Pete for making mental illness. the effort to so eloquently bring He is absolutely right... all the mental illness into the light of mental health organizations everyday communications. He need to work collaboratively is challenging all of us to a to become a force to be reck- higher level of discourse, a oned with. People need to deeper commitment to basic understand the causes and human rights, and simply more effects of mental illness. We compassion and understandneed a compassionate, caring ing of the struggles each hucommunity that recognizes the man being has on his or her depth of courage it takes for a own journey through life. person with mental illness to face each day. We need a Thank you for publishing health system that recognizes Pete’s column each month and the individuality of every per- for the fine paper you produce. son and the importance of every person’s stories, a mental Sincerely, health system founded on re- Sherry Lampman, St. Paul

Accessible Arts Performances Audio Described Performances (AD) 8/14, Sat., 1pm, Ah, Wilderness, Guthrie Theater, Mpls

Am. Sign Language Performances (ASL) 8/13 Fri., 7:30pm, Ah, Wilderness, Guthrie Theater, Mpls.

8/20, Fri., 7:30pm, Ah, Wilder- * 8/14, Sat., 2pm, Lil’ Abner, ness, Guthrie Theater, Mpls. Chaska Community Theatre, Chaska Community Center 8/19, Thus., 7:30pm, Picnic, Jungle Theater, Mpls. 8/20, Fri., 7:30pm, Ah, Wilderness, Guthrie Theater, Mpls. 8/22, Sun., 7pm, Tappin’ in the Twin Cities, O’Shaugh-nessy 8/26, Thurs., 7:30pm, Ah, WilAud., St. Catherine, St. Paul derness, Guthrie Theater, Mpls. 9/5, Sun., 2pm, Sound of Music, Orpheum Theater, Mpls. 9/5, Sun., 2pm, Sound of Mu(call 612 373-5650) sic, Orpheum Theater, Mpls. (call 612 373-5650) 9/5, Sun., 2pm, Biloxi Blues, Theatre in the Round, Mpls * Asterisked performances are eligible for reduced admission prices thru the Access to Theatre project. Contact the theater or VSA Arts of MN (612 332-3888) for info.

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by Marcy Shapiro ecently 34 young adults from the Minneapolis-St. Paul area graduated from the Next Innovations Leadership program. This was the sixth class of graduates from a leadership program which seeks to foster young leaders who are initiators of change and progress and who have a commitment to take action to build a better world. Next Innovations was started in 1994 by Alicia Phillips while she was a senior at Macalester College. While many leadership programs are geared towards upper management and towards people who are in midcareer, Next is a more grassroots approach that focuses on young adults (ages 18-28) who are just beginning careers in the non-profit world. Next participants are a diverse group from multi-cultural backgrounds. Through the program, they build relationships with young adults they might not otherwise have the opportunity to get to know. As recent graduate Amanda Seigel noted: “Next provided me with a warm, supportive community that encouraged my work...I learned practical skills and built relationships with other young adults from diverse communities.” As a diverse group of action-oriented professionals, they reflect the changing demographics of our society: over 60% of program participants come from urban communities of color; many are from lower income backgrounds; all are committed to creating a civil society in which peace, justice and equity prevail. The central theme of the Next Leadership model is alliance building. Participants are encouraged to build alliances with each other and to take this skill into the community to enhance their work for social change. The nine-month program is structured around skill-building retreats and “breakfast clubs.” The “breakfast clubs” are small groups that serve as the foundation for building a support network among Next participants. The “breakfast clubs” meet regularly and Next alumni and facilitators help focus discussions on leadership issues and skills, building

alliances in a diverse world, and building awareness about themselves and the environment in which they work. As another Next graduate, Brent Kurkowski observed: “Next Innovations challenged me to look my fears in the face, to question the origins of my assumptions, and to think critically about how I can truly change the systems society operates within; thus becoming an effective agent of social change.” Next participants learn how to set up environments that allow for all voices to be heard, welcomed and valued in the workplace and in the community. Next is currently recruiting for Class VII. “We have placed a high priority on recuiting young adults with disabilities as well as young adults who work in agencies and organizations that serve people with disabilities. If Next is to model a world of diversity where people build alliances across differences, we need to ensure that we have participants from the disability community,” stated Sunny Kase, Next Recruitment Coordinator. The nine month program includes 3 two-day retreats, eleven breakfast club meetings, two one-day training sessions and one-to-one sessions where participants examine progress towards their individual goals. Some of the leadership skills participants learn about are communication, budgeting and finance, community organizing, public speaking and storytelling, grant-writing, and project management. They also learn how to become a powerful ally; leading a meeting; building a team around their ideas and leadership; developing a personal vision and building strategic goals based on this vision; how to take an effective stand against injustice; and how to support other leaders. Through personal change and skillbuilding, participants become valuable assets to their workplace and their community.

“fine tune” an idea or vision they have for their organization or community. The project helps them put definition and structure to their dreams. Tommy Watson, a Next graduate, said about his project (called Faces of Courage): “Next provided me with the tools and resources to get off the ground. Next also provided me with the allies to bring about change in our community.” Next Innovations receives a broad range of funding from foundations, corporations and individuals. The cost to participants is minimal compared to the actual cost of the program. The goal of Next is to train an outstanding group of leaders who are committed to their communities and are taking on new initiatives. They provide scholarships and do everything possible to make the Next program accessible to individuals who can help build this outstanding group of young leaders. Next considers the non-profit agencies and organizations where the participants work as partners in the leadership program. As a result of their experiences at Next, participants are able to bring fresh approaches to their work, which benefits both the community and their employer. “Young adults, ages 18-28, are invited to apply to participate in the upcoming class of the Next leadership program which begins in September. Anyone who is interested, including young adults and their supervisors at non-profit organizations, can call me at Next Innovations at 612-871-5057 to receive further information and to discuss the program in depth,” said Sunny Kase. “We are looking forward to nurturing, mentoring, and coaching a new group of this next generation of leaders.”  Marcy Shapiro is Programs Director at Next Innovations

At The State Fair The Minnesota State Fair has made a number of accommodations for people with disabilities. They publish an Accessibility Guide, which can be ordered by calling 651-642-2448. Manual wheelchairs and electric scooters are available for rent and an area for recharging wheelchair batteries is located at the Care and Assistance Center. Assistive listening devices are available free in the Visitors Plaza, where you can also inquire about the avail-

ability of ASL interpreters. Special requests for interpreter services should be directed to 651-642-2372 (tty) or 651-6422448 (voice). TTY pay phones are provided at several locations. Limited accessible seating is available for all entertainment events and an Attraction Access Guide is available to assist guests in making choices about which rides are appropriate for them.

the river, but not sure if the facilities suit your needs? River trails, sites and facilities in Minnesota are currently being inventoried by accessibility experts at Wilderness Inquiry. By the end of the year, this information will be available to help visitors size up potential experiences. You will be able to explore this information on the web at Contact: Lyndon Torstenson, 651-2904160, ext. 232 for additional inOn The Mississippi River Looking for a picnic area along formation. 

HOME - Cont. from p. 1 Collins estimated that approximately 200 people are actively participating in Home Choice at this time. In the last 60 days, the program has grown beyond the seven-county metro area to encompass the entire state. Last October, Home Choice helped Jannae and Tom Johnston purchase a town home in Coon Rapids. The Johnstons, who have developmental disabilities, heard about the program through a fellow employee of Jannae’s at Arc of Anoka-Ramsey County. “The program was a Godsend,” said Jannae’s mother and primary HomeChoice team member Jane Charbeneau. “Home ownership is the only insurance handicapped people have against rising rents!”

The Johnston’s townhome

looking for drips under the with disabilities who wish to water heater.” purchase a home to consider exploring the possibilities “We love our home,” said Tom through HomeChoice. Johnston. He said the rooms and closets are spacious and Collins invites anyone who is the town house is located close interested in this or other mortto his place of employment, gage programs to contact him area restaurants, and shopping at Arc MN, at 1-800-582-5256. malls. “HomeChoice is a good Further details can also be idea for anyone!” he said. Tom obtained from Arc’s web site, Charbeneau said her daugh- and Jannae encourage others at http:\\\arcminn.  ter and son-in-law “got lucky” when a couple the Johnstons knew who were seeking a larger home asked them if they’d like to purchase their town home. She said, “Some things just seem meant to be.” The couple attended several home ownership classes through Home Choice prior to purchasing their home. “The courses teach you things you would never really think about [otherwise],” said Charbeneau, “like


Another component of the Next program is the initiation of a project. The project is an opportunity for a participant to

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August 10, 1999

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August 10, 1999

Sports Beat

Y2K - Cont. from p. 2

Minnesotans Compete In National Championships by Craig McClellan and Luke Pedersen


he 1999 National Wheelchair Softball Tournament takes place Thursday through Saturday, August 1921. The city of Brooklyn Park, in conjunction with Courage Center, will host this year’s tournament. It is the first time Brooklyn Park has been host to the tournament. All games will be held at the Brooklyn Park Activity Center, Brooklyn Park.

Game times are tentative, but teams will be playing from morning into evening on Thursday , August 19 and Friday, August 20. The Championship game will be at approximately 11a.m. on Saturday, August 21.

If you’d like to volunteer or have any questions, contact Cherryl Gilmer, Coordinator of Volunteers for Courage Center Sports and Recreation (612The St. Paul Thunder looks to 520-0215) or Linda Mohr, repeat as champions and con- Sports and Recreation (612tinue its stranglehold on the 520-0569). title. The Thunder has been a dynasty, winning seven of the 1999 SEEDINGS 1) St. Paul last eight championships. Thunder 2) St. Paul Saints 3) St. Louis Rolling Rams 4) Two other Minnesota teams RIC Cubs 5) Blakestreet are looking to lay claim to the Bombers 6) Rolling Twins Thunder’s title — the St. Paul 7) Metro Stars 8) Colorado Saints and the Rolling Twins. Rockies 9) Wisconsin Bad“We’re ranked sixth overall, gers 10) Nebraska Barons but we expect to do better than 11) Kansas City Diamond sixth place,” said Rolling Twins 12) Columbus Pioneers 13) player Kurt Greniger. “We’d Chicago Pacemakers 14) Tolike to win it all, but it’ll be ledo Silver Streaks difficult.” ****

The U.S. Electric Wheelchair Hockey Association’s MN Division’s third season is nearly complete. The playoffs will begin Saturday, August 14 with games at 2:30 and 3:45. Championships will be held Saturday, August 21. The Third Place game will be at 2:30 p.m., followed by the Championship. Games are scheduled to be played at Courage Center in Golden Valley. If you have any questions, contact Craig McClellan at the number listed below. Standings Through 9 Games Team Record Total Points Clash 7-2-0 14 Blaze 3-4-2 8 Storm 3-5-1 7 LoneStars 3-5-1 7 Send your comments and sports related stories to Luke Pedersen and Craig McClellan, 215 Broadway St. NE, #103, Minneapolis, MN 55413, or Email: cm17@sky or (612) 362-8406

dents and spills. Could this lead to oil shortages? If so, there could be problems for many industries and utilities, which could lead to problems that would affect all of us. Considering the interdependence of these and other “supply lines,” the “cascading” results of Y2K failures could be broad and severe. What should we make of all this? It sounds like a wide variety of potential problems could occur. But no one can accurately predict what the problems will be, where they’ll happen, or how widespread they’ll be. Most media coverage that I have seen down plays the possible effects of Y2K. At best, they may suggest that Y2K problems will be like a “bad winter storm,” requiring little more preparation than most Minnesotans do every November anyway. And some “experts” insist there will be no problems, in spite of the widespread use of computers in every area of life. So what should reasonable people think? It seems to me we are faced with a situation that requires critical analysis of the information being provided to us, and prudent action to prepare ourselves and

our communities for possible disruptions. Upcoming articles will discuss preparedness, but I want to take a minute now to stress the need for critical analysis of Y2K information. Many interviews and public relations statements include phrases like: “we have tested our systems and they are Y2K compliant”; “our company has spent $xyz millions of dollars to fix this problem - we have 250 people working on it”; “we do not anticipate any major disruptions.” Do any of these statements really say the problem is solved? How do we know whether the amount of money and time being spent is adequate?

Once a particular company has “fixed” their computers, we should turn our attention to all the companies in their “supply chain” that they rely on to actually produce the goods or services they provide to us. This will bring us back to the fact of interdependence. Think of all the “links” in the supply chain that must function properly in order for us to be able to bring fresh food home from the grocery store in January.

Mike O’Connor, a key advisor to St. Paul’s Y2K efforts, uses the “term paper” analogy to express his concern with these “reassuring” statements. He says that if your teenager tells you that their term paper is “almost done,” you probably won’t relax. You’ll try to get a lot more specific information from them about just what is done (and, more importantly, what’s left to do) before you’ll be satisfied that the paper will be done on time. We should expect very specific information about Y2K readiness as well.

Sometimes reading about possible Y2K scenarios is upsetting to people, and they deal with this anxiety by simply ignoring the problem. But the most effective approaches to problem-solving begin with acknowledging problems, no matter how complex they may be. Then, we can begin developing solutions that promote community-wide well-being and safety. These will be the topics of upcoming articles.

This technological interdependence is what makes it difficult to say, with any reasonable assurance, that there will be “no disruptions.” There are simply too many variables.

Mike O’Connor has an interesting website worth visiting: 

Computerized Desktop publishing: Brochures Catalogs Direct Mailings Flyers Newsletters Newspapers Project Mgmt Resumes Scanning ... & more!

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Access To Employment CLERK/FACILITIES Gray Plant Mooty, a law firm in downtown Minneapolis, is seeking a facilities support clerk. Duties include file room support, assisting in office moves, interaction with vendors, stocking printers, and miscellaneous other duties as assigned. Must be able to lift 50 lbs. We offer an attractive work environment, competitive salaries and an outstanding benefits package. Send resume with cover letter to: Human Resources, Gray Plant Mooty, 3400 City Center; 33 S. 6th St., Mpls, MN 55402 or fax to: 612-333-0066. MAIL ROOM CLERK Gray Plant Mooty, a law firm in downtown Minneapolis, is seeking a mailroom clerk to work 7:00-4:30 Mon.; 7:30-4:30 Tu-Fri. Responsibilities include interoffice mail delivery, operation of postage machine; processing overnight mail, as well as providing back-up support for the facilities department. Must be able to lift 30 lbs. We offer an attractive work environment, competitive salaries and an outstanding benefits package. Send resume with cover letter to: Human Resources, Gray Plant Mooty, 3400 City Center; 33 S. 6th St., Mpls., MN 55402 or fax to: 612-333-0066.

EMPLOYMENT ADS ARE $14 PER COL. INCH; AUG 31 IS THE DEADLINE FOR THE SEPT 10 ISSUE. Mail to: ACCESS PRESS • 1821 University Ave. • #185N • St. Paul, MN 55104 Fax 651-644-2136 THERAPISTS & INTERN DONOR INFORMATION SECRETARY SUPERVISOR NEEDED! SPECIALIST - B So. MN Regional Legal SerThe Domestic Abuse Project Courage Center, a nationally vices-Mankato office seeks a seeks therapists for full-time or renowned rehab & resource Secretary. WP 55 wpm; excel. part-time work in DAP’s na- center for people with disabili- comm. skills req’d. Bilingual tionally recognized programs ties, seeks a Donor Info Spec- (Sp. or SE Asian) pref’d. Salary for adolescents, children and B to work in our Development DOE. Resumes to: Ardys men. DAP also seeks an Office. This position is re- Korstad; SMRLS; P. O. Box LICSW or LP to supervise our sponsible for completing the 3304; Mankato, MN 56002Therapy Internship Program. gift acknowledgment process 3304. EO/AAE. for donor contributions & reTEACHER DAP is committed to improv- cording donor info in support August 26, 1999 to ing the effectiveness of our of fundraising strategies, relaJune 9, 2000 services to families of color. In tionship building and donor order to do that, we need to recognition. Req 2-3 yrs genincrease our understanding of eral office experience & know- Alternative high school lookcultures of color, racism and its ledge of computer systems ing for a secondary teacher impact on domestic violence. (Word & Excel preferred). Must (MN licensed or working toWe’d like to add to our team be detail-oriented. Must have wards license) to teach Math/ people with experience ad- excellent interpersonal & com- Science for the 1999/2000 acadressing these issues. munications skills; ability to demic school year. Must have work under pressure during experience working with Our adolescents’ and child- seasonal peak workloads; & multicultural at-risk youth. ren’s program work to counter possess a high degree of integ- Previous experience working gender stereotypes and to pro- rity. Send cover letter & re- in a team environment and/or vide positive role models for sume to: Edgar Johnson, Em- an alternative educational setboth genders. Our team cur- ployment Rep, Courage Cen- ting. Must possess strong inrently needs to add staff able ter, 3915 Golden Valley Rd., terpersonal skills, have a creto model positive male roles for Golden Valley, MN 55422. Fax: ative edge, be able to handle child and adolescent clients. 612-520-0577. EOE. We seek multiple priorities, and have an understanding of learning diversity. styles and individual learning Applicants should have expestrategies. Apply in person: rience in providing structured LNB, 1925 Nicollet, Mpls, counseling and in crisis interMon-Thurs 9-4 p.m. Agency vention. Applicants must be application required. EOE. committed to DAP’s belief that violence is a learned behavior and that it is the perpetrator’s ATTORNEYS POLICE AND FIRE responsibility to end the vioDISPATCHER lence. Legal Aid Society of Minne-

We offer a creative and indeEqual Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer pendent working environment and the opportunity to be inBRIDGE/STRUCTURAL volved in program developENGINEER ment as well as providing services. Project Manager for bridge and parking garage projects. Please send a resume and cover Responsibilities will include letter to: preparing design and conTherapy Director struction plans for bridge and Domestic Abuse Project structural projects and super204 W. Franklin Ave. vising orthers. The position Minneapolis MN 55404 requires a Bachelor or Civil Engineering with an emphasis WORD PROCESSOR / on structural engineering and SECRETARY a P.E. with 7+ years experience. BRIDGE/STRUCTURAL TECHNICIAN 2 -4 years recent experience on bridge and structure projects. AUTOCAD experience required. For the above positions, send resume to: SRF Consulting Group, Inc., Suite 150, One Carlson Parkway North, Minneapols, MN 55447 or to web site www.srfconsulting. com. EOE

Word Processor/Secretary for a major planning & engineering consulting firm. Varied duties: word processing with strong skills in MicroSoft Word 95; reception, filing, data entry, report assembly. Experience or comparable education/skills desirable. Excellent Benefits. Send resume to: SRF Consulting Group, Inc., Suite 150, One Carlson Pkwy. N., Mpls, MN 55447 or to web site EOE

The City of Minnetonka is recruiting for emergency 9-1-1 dispatchers. Public service orientation, excellent interpersonal skills, typing proficiency of 35 wpm, and ability to work rotating shifts required. Data processing equipment and PSAP experience desired. Annual salary: $31,294- $34,771 (1999 adjustment pending), with excellent fringe benefits. Call the JOBLINE at (612) 939-8212 for application. Deadline: August 13, 1999.

apolis seeks: • FT housing atty, start Sept/ Oct. Letter & resume to Galen Robinson, 2929 4th Ave S, #201, Mpls., MN 55408; • 1 FT, 1 PT housing atty, start Sept/Oct. Letter & resume to Susan Carroll, 2507 Fremont Ave N, Mpls, MN 55411.




Office for University Women, The College of St. Catherine University of Minnesota Minneapolis Campus - seeks a Disabilities Specialist. This Performs and supervises of- part-time position (20-32 hrs/ fice support activities, up- week, depending on grades and maintains office candidate’s preferences), will electronic information sys- arrange and provide for reatems, and carries out special sonable accommodations for projects as assigned (e.g., staff- students with disabilities. ing projects and events, preparing print materials, etc.). Responsibilities: Provide information, referral and support to Required: BA/BS degree; ex- prospective and enrolled stuperience with office opera- dents with disabilities; assist tions; excellent verbal and writ- in obtaining disability docuten communication skills; mentation and determining reastrong organizational ability; sonable accommodations. Proability to take initiative and mote student self-advocacy, work independently, to juggle independence and developmany different projects simul- ment; provide on-going contaneously, and to work in a sultation and problem-solving collaborative, team-oriented assistance to faculty and staff style; and proficiency with in provision of appropriate Macintosh computers and service and accommodations; word processing, presentation, provide training on disabilityand data base software. Desir- related topics to promote able, but not essential: knowl- awareness and full access for edge of University programs students with disabilities. for women, and Excel and Filemaker Pro software. For Qualifications: Bachelors demore information call 612- gree in Education, Special 625-2031. Education, Counseling or related field; experience in workThe University of Minnesota ing with people who have is an equal opportunity disabilities, preferably in educator and employer. a post-secondary setting; knowledge of federal and state PARALEGAL laws regarding access for people with disabilities; demSo. MN Regional Legal Seronstrated knowledge of comvices - Mankato office seeks a munity resources for people Paralegal. Bilingual (Sp. or SE with disabilities; experience Asian) pref’d. Salary DOE. training and consulting on disResumes to: Larry Nicol, ability issues; strong comMgr.; SMRLS; P.O. Box 3304; munication and organizational Mankato, MN 56002-3304. skills; willingness to work EO/AAE. collaboratively with other Learning Center team members.


Gray Plant Mooty, a 120+ attorney law firm in downtown Minneapolis, is seeking experienced legal secretaries for our litigation department. Accurate typing speed of 65+ wpm. Apps accepted till pos filled. Microsoft Word experience exSal DOE, exe bens incl employer tremely helpful. We offer an pd family hlth ins. EOE. attractive work environment, competitive salaries and an outstanding benefits package. Send resume with cover letter to: Human Resources, Gray Plant Mooty, 3400 City Center; 33 S. 6th St., Mpls, MN 55402 or fax to: 612- 333-0066. Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer

Hours are 20 - 32 hours/week depending on candidate’s preference. Preference should be submitted with resume. Salary $12,000 - $19,500 depending on qualifications and hours worked. To apply send resume to Human Resources Req. # 99RM79AX, F-17, The College of St. Catherine, 2004 Randolph Ave., St. Paul, MN 55105. Or fax to (651) 6906871, or e-mail to hr@stkate. edu. Deadline is August 12, 1999. The College of St Catherine 2004 Randolph Avenue St Paul, MN 55105 EE0/AA

Ramsey Cty

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August 10, 1999


Reach 10,000 Active, Interested Readers with ACCESS PRESS Classifieds. $8 up to 20 words, 35¢/word thereafter. Mail with check to: ACCESS PRESS, 1821 University Ave W, #185N, St. Paul, MN 55104; (651) 644-2133 FOR SALE

Easy Stand 5000 stander. One year old, used little. Hand pow3 and 4 Wheel Mobility Scoot- ered mobility. $2,000 or best ers, Scooter lifts and ramps. offer. 612-421-0886. New scooters from $1,975.00. Free in-home demonstration. Rascal convertible cart with Sales and services. FastServ joy stick. Burgundy with grey Medical. (320) 654-0434 (St. seat. Like new. Paid $4,200 Cloud) or toll free 1-888-565- asking $3,000 or B/O. Call Pat 0434. Fox, (612) 712-1023. 3 and 4 Wheel Scooter Repair. We repair Amigo, Bruno, Electric Mobility, most brands. New and used scooters for sale. Buy, sell & trade. FastServ Medical. (320) 654-0434 (St. Cloud) or toll free 1-888-5650434.

1997 Ford Econoline conversion van. Hydraulic wheelchair lift. 35,500 miles, excellent condition. Lots of extras, asking $22,000. Call Mike @ 612-906-4000.

Full size adjustable bed with foot/head controls and massage feature. Paid $1,500, asking $750. Call Susan @ 651275-9058. FOR RENT Seward Square Apartments: We are currently accepting applications for our waiting list at Seward Square Apartments in Minneapolis. Seward Square is barrier-free housing and is federally subsidized. For an application, please call (612) 338-2680. Equal Opportunity Housing.

Lewis Park Apartments: Barrier free housing with wheelchair user in mind. Section 8 subsidized. One and two bedroom units. For more information on availability call 651488-9923. St. Paul, MN Equal Opportunity Housing. Holmes-Greenway Housing One and two bedroom apartments designed for physically handicapped persons. Convenient SE Minneapolis location. Call 612-378-0331 for availability information. Equal Opportunity Housing.

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August 1999 issue  

August 1999 issue

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