Speaking out for People with
 Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

VOR's Weekly Newsletter

Past issues of the VOR Weekly Newsletter are available here


October 2, 2020   VOR remembers Feda Almaliti, Homelessness and People with IDD, Fed. Autism Council Goes Dark, FL drops Covid testing, .NY-CT-NJ Class action suit, CA, NY Group Homes in Crisis, Murray Parents Assn. Video 2

September 26, 2020  VOR remembers Ruth Bader Ginsburg, CMS adds $165M in funding for MFP, Living Wage for DSPs?, TX, CT, OR, FL, NJ Murray Parents Assn. Video 1

September 18, 2020   COVID-19 Relief Needed, The movement to close Work Centers and eliminate 14(c) wage certificates, TX, AR, NY, SD

September 11, 2020  COVID Vaccine for people with IDD, TX, SC, MD, ME, Police and the autism, IDD population.

September 4, 2020   Nat'l Law Review on Guardianship & SDM, Ending Census early could hurt IDD population, NJ, OK, CT, GA, AZ, AR, NY

August 28, 2020   COVID-19 may  shut programs for good, State actions to sustain Medicaid LTSS programs, DSPs: More people of color & immigrants lost to COVID, Disability leaders decry Cancel Culture at NY Times, Delays in Autism Dx among African American Kids, KY, CT, MN, OR, MA, NY

August 21, 2020   COVID-19 Seven Months Later, PPE shortages, Racial Disparities in IDD community, "Disabiliity Bias", NJ to pay DSPs more, CA Intentional Community, FL mulls vists without testing

August 14, 2020   "If positive, but asypmtomatic, keep working", Community Spread and new spike in COVID0 Cases, COVID-19 and DSPs, PA: 41 Kids with IDD reported sex assaults at Philly non-profit, Arkansas HDC sees spike in COVID cases, VA, NY, RI, State Medicaid Programs

August 7, 2020   Coronavirus Relief Funding Bill, Stop Canceling Options, Telemedicine, Health Care Workers of Color more likely to get COVID-19, AZ, NY, FL, MA

July 31, 2020   Coronavirus Funding Bill,  Autism not covered in ADA, Medicaid pushe to the brink in CO, IA providers not happy with privatized Managed Care, Arizona inequities.

July 24, 2020   30th Anniv. of ADA, What an increase in FMAP will mean to you, FEMA sends faulty PPE, CT, MA, SC.

July 17, 2020   CMS delays Settings Rule, Coronavirus in AK HDCs & TX SSLCs, FL, MO, OR, Puerto Rico

July 10, 2020   VOR Response to ACLU=/SEIU Petition, CMS FAQ for ppl w disabilities during pandemic, States fail to implement IDEA, Amy Lutz: "Dear NYT Madeline", ME, FL, GA, SC, NY,

July 2, 2020   Hollowed-Out Public Health System Faces More Cuts Amid Virus, Post-COVID State Budgets Cut IDD Funding:  KS, GA, TN, NY, NH, NC; No COVID Test Kits for FL Group Homes; MA, PA, OK, IL, DE

June 26. 2020   Thse w. IDD in group homes more likely to die from COVID; Florida Gov. opens budget to New ICFs & orders increased testing in group homes, NJ Assembly Hearings on COVID in Dev. Ctrs & group homes; Minnesota Disability Service Providers on the brink of collapse from COVID-19; Amy Lutz on "Partial Advocacy", OH "No group homes in our back yard"

June 19, 2020   VOR Board of Directors - New Members and Officers; CDC New COVID Testing Recommendations; Family Caregivers; CT, VA, PA, OR, OK, NY

June 12, 2020   (Mislabeled as June 5) Hospitals allow visitors for patients w IDD; Higher Infection rates for people w IDD; HHS releases $15B COVID Relief funds to Disability Providers; NY, OH, GA, PA, IA, CA

June 5, 2020   Biden Campaign IDD Policy; Need for COVID Tracking, MA - IDD COVID Rates Higher than Gen. Pop.; ME - Group Homes Have Higher Infection Rates, MO Need More DSPs; CA

May 29, 2020   Study: People w. IDD more likely to die from COVID-19, Coronavirus threatens autiistic people in group homes, Texas to expand testing to all ICFs - not group homes, Ohio to re-open June 8,

May 22, 2020   VOR Submits Testimony, Language to Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor HHS on MFP, IDD Hospital Admissions Form; D.C., Illinois, NY. NJ, ME, DSP Heroes

May 15, 2020   COVID-19: Information resources, Lack of tracking of cases of Coronavirus; Lfe with an Autistic Child, PA, AZ, NY, NJ, MA,

May 8, 2020   COVID-19: High toll on people w. IDD, Hospital No-Visotors Policies Endanger people w. IDD, Private Providers Struggle to Stay Afloat; NJ, SC, MA

May 1, 2020   Ohio - Settlement of Ball v. Kasich Class Action Suit, New Jersey - COVID Saliva Tests for State ICFs, Hospital Visits for People with I/DD, Iowa - Further Staff Changes at Glenwood

April 24, 2020   Why some people get sicker with COVID-19, Higher Death Rates from COVID-19 for People with IDD, CT, NY, FL, CA, CARES Act Funding

April 17, 2020   Aging Parents Haven't Finalized Plans for Disabled Children, New York - People with Disabilities in Group Homes Contracting Coronavirus at Five Times the City Rate, D.C, NJ, VS, CT, TX, FL, CO

April 10, 2020   Providers, "We need more PPE & Testing, States Depend on Medicaid in COVID Fight, NEw York - Homes for the Disabled See A Surge of Covid-19, IL, CT, NJ, CA, MA, MI, Medical Ethics

April 3, 2020   Stimulus Plan Falls Short For People With Disabilities, Disability No Reason To Deny COVID-19 Care, Telehealth, New York Group Homes & COVID-19 Crisis, Texas - Denton Center, CT, AZ, OK, MA

March 27, 2020   People With IDD Denied Lifesaving Care \as Coronavirus Spreads, Members of Congress Seek Protections for People w IDD, Allocating Ventilators, Autism among 8-year olds measures 1 in 54, TX - Covid at Denton SSLC, CO Outbreaks

March 20, 2020   Coronavirus Updates, TeleHealth, Special Ed at home, SC, NE

March 13, 2020   Coronavirus Updates, In Memoriam: Bill Sherman, Autism Parents at risk for PTSD, MN, NJ, WV, OH, GA

March 6, 2020   Hassan Bill to Help Recruit More Professionals to Care for Disabled, FDA Bans Shcok Devices, AR , GA MN, NJ, NY

February 28, 2020  Screening for Autism, Evaluating Persons with I/DD, Bill to Expand Respite Care, OR. NJ, NY, WV, IA

February 21, 2020  CMS Preadmission Rules Change, CDC: I/DD more Prevalent in Rural Areas, Opinion: Trump Support for Mentally Ill, New York After Willowbrook, ME, PA, NC, MD, CA

February 14, 2020  Trump, Sanders Platforms for DD Services, PA Gov. Vetoes Bill to Prevent Closing Polk & White Haven, AZ, NC ,OR, NJ, TN, CA

February 7, 2020  National Waitlists for Waiver Services Growing, Prevalence of I/DD in Children Rising, PA Families File Lawsuit, NY, CO, VA, TX, Medicaid Cuts

January 31, 2020   Medicaid Block Grants, Bills to provide for DSPs during Hospitalization, Imprisonment of persons with I/DD, PA, AK, NY, ME, CA, Ireland

January 24, 2020 Special Edition - Pennsylvania

January 24, 2020   Genes linked to Autism, Work Centers & 14(c), Opinion - Amy Lutz, IL, ME, OH, AZ, FL, IA, LA, NY

January 17, 2020   Chemicals may cause I/DD, 1/4 of Children w Autism undiagnosed, Changes to Social Security, Seclusion, and Disability Hiring. PA, MA "Nicky's Law" passed, AZ, NJ, RI

January 10, 2020   Saliva Test For Autism, Congress Increass Funding for Special Ed, 5 month extension for MFP, CMS crackdown on Medicaid Payments, FL, IA, MA, TX

January 3, 2020   Projections for Disabilities in 2030, Autism Symptoms Vary Greatly Among Identical Twins, Illinois Waitlists, NC - ‘What Happens When We Die?', WI, IA, MO, Australia

December 27, 2019   Florida Dental Program Draws Concerns for People with Disabilities, New Mexico, Georgia

December 20, 2019   Ohio - Judge rejects DRO Settlement, PA Bill for moratorium on closure of Polk & White Haven passes House, Maine Waitlists, GA, NC, W.VA, WA

December 13, 2019   Managed Long-Term Services & Supports Falling Short for Adults w I/DD, Shortage Of Autism Therapists, Fact Sheet on Subminimum Wages for People with Disabilities, NY, MN, OH, VA, TN, PA

November 29, 2019   Update on Money Follows the Person, Ob-Gyn services fall short for women w.I/DD, MO, KA, MA, OH

November 22, 2019   Olmstead & Choice; NY Audits on Abuse & Neglect; Illinois Isolating Students w I/DD & Autism; Medicaid changes cut care in MN, WA & NC; PA Moratorium passes Senate; Behavioral Interventions decrease need for drugs.

November 15, 2019   VOR & Together For Choice in D.C., NJ Group Homes v. ICFs, NJ DSP's, Iowa Work opportunities disappear, LA Lawsuit, NC, NY

November 8, 2019   First Responders, Disability Housing, MI, ME, MA, FL, TN

November 1, 2019   Acetominephen in pregnancy leads to Autism? Down Syndrome & Aging with Dementia, ME Man's Death shows crack in Safety Net, FL, CA NY, TX Dentist

October 25, 2019   PA Hearings, Shortcomings In Autism Screening, MI, TN, CA, MO, PA, Ruth Bader Ginsburg

October 18, 2019   Improving Data on People with I/DD, Special Ed Chief Johnny Collette quits, Increase in foreign-born caregivers, PA Sen. Call for Probe of DHS Decision to Close State Centers, VT, WI, MA

October 11, 2019   Editorial: Institutions are Bad? Abuse & Neglect update, Gaps In Medicaid Waivers, AR Judge Holmes

October 4, 2019   Adults with I/DD 'Invisible' in National Data, Autism Insurance in 50 states, Down Syndrome research funding down, PA Closure Moratorium Bill, NY $6M Settlement at "Bronx Zoo", FL, MI, MO, CA

September 27, 2019   CDC sees spike in DD, Erasure of Severe Autism, PA Closures,. TN Block Grants, MO waitlist, SC vacancies, AK, AR. WI

September 20, 2019   PA Closures. Autism CARES bill, VT overhauls DD services, NE, NJ, NY. GA

September 13, 2019   Direct Support Professionals, Disability Advocates Sue to Stop Charge Rule, PA Protests, SC PSA, WA, NM, NY. IL

September 6, 2019   Medicaid Managed Care, MA, AR, Living in "The Community", Dental Students Train for Special Needs Patients

August 30, 2019   Georgia-Deaths & Lack of Housing Continue, Autism Perspecitives, National Background Checks, TX. CA, Sister Rosemary

August 23, 2019   Public Charge Rule affects families of people with I/DD, PA Closures, GA, TX, CA, FL, MA, Ohio DSPs

August 16, 2019  Pennsylvania Governor to close two state ICFs, ACL failed to monitor its programs, Abuse and neglect in WA & OR, problems in NY, MA, NE

August 9, 2019  Managed Care, Missouri's 50% DSP turnover rate, AZ, OR, MA

August 2, 2019  DOJ failure to enact Autism Wandering Laws, Puerto Rico loses funding from ACL, Utah's Medically Fragile, Ilinois' 911 Notification Law, NY Justice Center Fail, Abuse cases in Indiana and Missouri

July 26, 2019  Sue Jennings speaks at IACC meeting, House passes Autism CARES Act, Senators Slam Abuse in Nursing Homes, NY, VA, D.C.

July 19, 2019  House votes to end 14c wage certificates, EPA won't ban Chlorpyrifos (Pesticide Tied to Children’s Health Problems), SC, MD, ME, MA

July 12, 2019   Medicaid changing reporting requirements, Schools unprepared for student IEP's, NY, TN, AZ residents forced to leave Hacienda

July 5, 2019   VOR's New YouTube Page, Washington, D.C.  Texas, CA, AZ, IA, KY, Alaska cuts dental benefits

June 28, 2019   Olmstead, Ireland, CA, KY, TX-Lubbock SSLC 50th Anniversary, Critique of the Disability Integration Act

June 21, 2019   20th Anniversary of Olmstead, MFP, Overuse of restraint & seclusion, CA, WV, AZ, PA, OH managed care

June 14, 2019   VOR Conference Report! I/DD training for MD's meets resistance, NCD anti-guardianship for most people with I/DD, NY Times - Abuse in Bronx IRA, MO Parents want to record IEP meetings

June 7, 2019    Autism insurance after 21, PA, VA, AR, DE, CA

May 31, 2019   Labor Dept. Seeks Input on 14(c), Disability Integration Act, OH, TX, NC, MA, NJ

May 24, 2109   Autism w. I/DD neglected in studies, WA man awarded $8M in abuse settlement, NJ-Bellwether license revoked, NC closure in PeeDee, Texas' 10-year wait list, MI, MA.

May 17, 2019   Gaps in autism employment, Hearings on Transition Age Gaps, Safety Net Hospitals, OR, AR, CA, MA, MI

May 10, 2019   HEADs UP Act, Autism, Managed Care Denying Services?, TN, NM, IL, Jean Vanier passes.

May 3, 2019   Pennsylvania Legislature Hearing on Opening Doors in ICFs, Medicaid changes, OH, AK, TN, MA

April 26, 2019   CMS: States need better Background Checks, CA - Abuse unchecked, WA, AZ, TX

April 19, 2019    Medicaid distribution unfair to people w I/DD, CDC numbers on Autism rising, Safety Net Hospitals (Disproportionate Share Hospitals - DSH) in danger, LA, NM, TENN, FL, ILL.

April 12, 2019April 12, 2019     Anti-ICF in Iowa & Utah, PA group home death, Texas hining DSPs, Ohio DSP shortage, Minnesota, Tennessee, Nevada

Apr 5, 2019   Medicaid Wait Lists; US Senate Investigation Of Group Home Provider; GA asks DOJ to end oversight; NC Wait List; FL Medicaid Cuts;

Mar 29, 2019   Special Olympics Funding; The New R-Word; Jobs Bill would exclude many with I/DD, Austism; NJ - Escaped Group Home Residents; KY; CA; NY;

Mar 22, 2019   Severe Autism Overlooked; Proposed Cuts to State Medicaid Budgets in NY, VA, KY & AK; Iowa Evacuates in Flood; TN; MD

Mar 15, 2019   Fed budget proposes severe cuts to Medicaid & Disability programs; NJ; WA; ID; TN

Mar 8, 2019   Getting rid of the R-Word, Expanding ABLE, Aging with I/DD, NJ, VA, AZ, Bill Watch

Mar 1, 2019   VOR Conference Info, Capped Medicaid Risks, When Safety Net Fails, Dentists must treat people w. IDD, MI, TX, RI, NY

Feb 22, 2019   Crisis: Kids w. Autism Grow Up, Equine Therapy, AZ, MA, W. VA, WA, DE

Feb 15, 2019   Lack of ABA Therapy, CT - Southbury Training School, COFAR Legislative Agenda, DSP Crisis, ME - Impact of conversion from work centers to integrated employment

Feb 8, 2019    Work Center closures, Bills to Watch in 116th Congress, AZ updates on Hacienda, VA, OR, CA

Feb 1, 2019    VOR's Letter to 116th Congress, Remembering Mary McTernan VOR's past President, AZ followup, VA, ND

Jan 25, 2019   Disability Integration Act reintroduced, Govt. Shutdown affects services for IDD community, AZ Hacienda DSP arrested, CA, NJ

Jan 18, 2019    Nat'l Council on Severe Autism, Medicaid Block Grants, Girls on the Spectrum, Sheltered Workshops

Jan 11, 2019    UN Convention, ANCOR campaign against ICF, AZ Hacienda Facility: IDD Woman in Coma gives birth, KY ASD Student dragged, NY DSP's

Jan 4, 2019    116th Congress Sworn in, CA Sonoma Ctr. Closes, NJ Missing man w IDD found dead, WA Man w. IDD left in ER

Dec 28, 2019    Money Follows the Person, Fundraisining Appeal

Dec 21, 2018    Money Follows the Person, Shock Device Ban, AZ Coolidge Ctr., OK, CT, NY

Dec. 14, 2018   Ball v. Kasich update, Stop MFP Action Alert, NY Justice Center, CA Failing, MD, AR, WA, OR, TX

Dec. 7, 2018   George H W Bush Remembered, NY fails the mentally ill, MA - Judge Tauro passes, IA, TX, TN

Nov. 30, 2018   New Congress - new concerns, 1 in 40 births have autism, SC Mom Charged, TN Families devastated

Nov. 23, 2018   VA In-home care for people displaced from ICFs?, MI fails on Special Ed., IL, IA, MA, CT

Nov. 16, 2018   Increase ABA Therapy,. Test for Autism, 500,000 w Autism enter workforce?, DSP wages, AR Holiday Train, MA, SC, KY.

Nov. 9, 2018   Editorial: The 'R' Word & the 'I' Word, Medicaid cutting Transport Funding, NY-Non-fatal Strangulations, DSP's, Special Ed, Music Therapy

Nov. 2, 2018   Brothers with I/DD killed in Pittsburgh Synagogue shooting, Notes on Misericordia/Together for Choice Conference, NY Sex offenders in Group Homes, MA Rotenberg Ctr. and Abuse

Oct. 26, 2018   Housing for Sr's with I/DD Children, Reaching Minorities, WI Noncompliance OIG Report, IA, NJ, MD, MT lawsuit settlement

Oct. 20, 2018   Amy Lutz' DSP's are our Friends, CMS hires Mary Mayhew, TX, KY, KS

Oct.12, 2018  DSP Crisis, Aging with Down Syndrome, NJ-Kominos Law, IL, FL TN

Oct. 4, 2018   NY State Putting Sex Offenders in Group Homes, MO, AR, Special Ed

Sept. 28, 2018   CMS, I/DD & Immigration, GA's Separate & Unequal Special Ed, NJ, AR, OH

Sept. 21, 2018  Ohio Families file countersuit, Puerto Rico, NH, IA, OK, MA, Australia

Sept. 14, 2018   H.R. 6786, Forensic I/DD Population, Iowa, WA, ME, TX, SD, Military Families

September 7, 2018  Action Alert on MFP, Delaware, Maine, Kentucky, W. Virginia, Autism Blood Test

Aug 31, 2018  Report on IDD among childrenunder 5 in 195 countries 1990-2016, TX, FL, Iowa, Montana, PA

August 24, 2018  Indiana Disability Task Force, Arkansas, W. Virginia, Illinois, Texas, New Jersey

August 17, 2018 Treatment Incentives, Diplomats' families, PA Hamburg Ctr. Closed, Montana, Maryland, TX Water Park

August 10, 2018 Press contacts needed, NJ Group Home Provider, Texas, Iowa, New York 

August 3, 2018  Reminder- The Importance of Medicaid, Federal Disability Policy Office, EVV Delayed, NJ, OH, Abuse in LA 

July 28, 2018  ACL Controversy, Delaware DD Council Misconduct, Behavioral Health, Direct Support Professionals

July 20, 2018  Illinois Auditor General report on DHS Oversight, ACL's Mary Lazare's comments cause stir, OH, SC, MI, CA

July 13, 2018  Congregate Care Facilities reports: MT, TX, CA, PA, NY.  DOE sued over delay of Special Ed Rule. ME, MA, NJ

July 6, 2018  AR 4th of July, Sesame Place Autism Certified, DOE delays IDEA Equity Compliance, Ohio DSP Turnover Rate

June 29, 2018  Feds to Make Group Homes Safer, Preventing Sexual Abuse, CA Tragedy, NJ Budget, MA Shock Therapy

June 22, 2018   Autism Blood Test, PA Hamburg Ctr., MT Budget Cuts, Sheltered Workshops (MA, IN), DSP Crisis (NJ, OH)

June 15, 2018  News from VOR's 2018 Conference, CMSLTSS Expenditures, Low Medicaid Rates, NE, OH, MN

June 8, 2018 Texas (Preventable Tragedy), Autism Seizures, HI (ARC $7M Theft), NY, OH, MA, GA (Marijuana)

June 1, 2018  MO man died in 'Fight Club' buried in concrete, VA, OH, CA, OK, NJ, In Memorium Virginia Carraway

May 25, 2018  WY new buildings at WLRC, RI restores IDD funding. MD DSP rate increase, MN, DE McNesby Act, MA.

May 18, 2018   Device Predicts Autism Aggression, Electronic Visit Verification, HR 5658, Ohio-Abuser Registry, DE, MA

May 11, 2018  Crisis in Louisiana, Govt urged to improve I/DD system, Med Care for Autisitic Adults, NJ, OK, CT, DEL

May 4, 2018   CBD Research, Autism Testing, Alaska ARC overbilled $2.4 Million, DSP Crisis in Ohio, WI employment rights

April 27, 2018   Iowa's Managed Care Problems, Special Ed Funding Problems, Autism on the Rise, GA, CT, MA, TX, MO

April 20, 2018   Amy Lutz' Letter to HHS, Curbing DR Iowa, FL Abuse & Neglect, VA-Save CVTC, NJ, CA

April 13, 2018   NJ - $1.4M Settlement, Budget Problems in AZ, CA, LA, AZ, CA, CT, MA Sealed Investigation

Apr 6, 2018    HR620, OH, GA, MA, NM, Sheltered Workshops, Intentional Communities

Mar 30, 2018   HR4547,  PA (Hamburg Closing), CT, CA, RI, Dental Care 

Mar 23, 2018   Money Follows the Person, Guardianship & SDM, AK, MN, VA, TX, Dental, Barber

Mar 16, 2018   CA (Sonoma PHA), Medical Research, Dental, NJ, ME, NJ  

Mar 9, 2018   VOR-House Judiciary Hearings, HHS Strategic Plan, VA, CT (Op-Ed), MA, TX, SC, AHCA

Mar 2, 2018   Autism Coordinator, IDEA Delayed, IL, NC, ME, MN Sheltered Workshops 

Feb 23, 2018  IL, Money Follows the Person, MIlitary Behav. Therapy, ME, AR, CA, GA, KY, PA, OR

Feb 16, 2018  ADA, Fed Report on DSP's, HI, OH (Safety), CT (Safe Relationships, NY (DSP's)

Feb 9, 2018    Opinion: Lee Wachtel, VA, NJ, OH, FL, MI, NM, WA, Gerber's Down Syndrome Baby

Feb 2, 2018  Medicaid Transportation at risk, HCBS Expenditures Down, TX, ME, IN, DE, D. Vitkus

Jan 26, 2018  RAISE Act, HCBS Report, I/DD Preschool Suspensions, VA, NC, ID, NY, UT, Dental Svcs

Jan 19, 2018  Joint Statement by ACL, HHS warns of Group Home Dangers, Abuse & Neglect, Utah Class Action Lawsuit, TX, CO, OR, OK, MA, Opinion: 2014 Final Rule a Barrier To Appropriate Care

Jan 12, 2018  I/DD & Sexual Assault, Tax Law & ABLE Accounts, TX, SC, TX, ME, NJ, MA, KA, NE

Jan 5, 2018  CT - Autistic Man Abandoned to ER;  PA, NJ, Canada's Shelltered Workshops

Dec 26, 2017 CT - Autistic Man Abandoned to Emergency Room for 5 Months;  CO, NJ, WI

Dec 22, 2017   

Dec 15, 2017  

Dec 8, 2017  

Dec 1, 2017  

Nov 24, 2017  

Nov 17, 2017  

Nov 10, 2017  

Nov 3, 2017  

Oct 27, 2017

Oct 20, 2017  

Oct 13, 2017  

Oct 6, 2017    

Sep 29, 2017     

Sep 22, 2017    

Sep 15, 2017    

Sep 8, 2017    

Sep 1, 2017