People with developmental disabilities need vaccine priority!

California is continuing to get vaccines distributed, based on a special set of priority “phases.” It started with “Phase 1A,” which included health care workers and first responders.

But people with developmental disabilities weren’t part of that group. Even though they are often at extra risk because of their disability (or disabilities), the state still hasn’t moved our community up the list.

YOU can help change this! We need to let Governor Newsom know that people with disabilities should be put in the very next group, “Phase 1B.” When you do:

  1. Introduce yourself! Be sure to say if you have a disability, are a family member, or work in the community.
  2. Explain that people with disabilities are at extra risk due to COVID-19, and need to be prioritized in Phase 1B.
  3. Thank them for considering our community.

A sample letter is also provided, which you can copy and paste into your email. But personalizing your message is always better!

To contact Governor Newsom, use the official online contact form. Choose “COVID-19” as your subject in the drop-down box on that page.

ARCA and the regional centers are working with community partners to help get our community prioritized for vaccinations. Yesterday, we co-sponsored a town hall webinar with Disability Voices United, the State Council on Developmental Disabilities, and Disability Rights California.

Did you miss it? The town hall is archived on Facebook for you to watch!

[This information was taken from ARCA. Click here to view the original message.]

Voting Information and Resources, the election is just around the corner!

Are you registered to vote for the upcoming election?  The deadline to register to vote online in California is this Monday, October 19th!  Click here to register today!

If you missed our Voter Registration and Information Workshop with Wesley Witherspoon, you can now view the recording by clicking here.

If you or someone you support has not yet registered to vote, the African Communities Public Health Coalition is offering free assistance as well as the opportunity to win a gift card through their raffle. Please click here for more information.

Already registered to vote? It’s time to make a plan! Visit this link to make your plan today:

Do you want to learn about the issues impacting the disability community? Disability Vote, a non-partisan coalition of organizations supporting and advocating for people with disabilities have put together a comprehensive website encompassing all of the issues affecting people with disabilities. If you visit their webpage you will find voting resources, webinar recordings and information about the specific issues on the November ballot. Don’t forget to make a plan that will allow you to vote safely during the COVID-19 pandemic!



The Department of Developmental Services (DDS) has released the Proposed Rate Models!  It is imperative that you review this proposed rate structure as it has serious implications  to how providers do business and what reimbursement rate will be assigned.

The WRC Rate Model can be viewed here. Our community has until April 5, 2019 to provide comments.  We need your input!

WRC will host 2 sessions on Tuesday, March 26th to gather information to send to DDS and the Legislature.  Sessions will be held from 9:30am-11:30am and 12:30pm -2:30pm in our Danneker Boardroom at WRC.   A third session will be held at Empowertech located at 9100 S Sepulveda Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90045, on March 27th from 5:00pm-7:00pm.  Please plan to attend at least one but you are welcome to all.

You should additionally provide your input by completing this survey.  Please answer the questions that are relevant to the services you provide.  You are able to skip to questions in the survey that apply to your organization. ALL feedback is valuable and needed.

All comments and input must be received by Monday, April 1st to be submitted by WRC to DDS.

Please get the word out to every service provider that you know.  This is your last chance to provide input regarding this new rate structure.

Attention Service Providers!! Make Your Voice Heard About Rates: Surveys Available Now

Post Date: January 03, 2019

From the Los Angeles and San Diego Coalitions of Service Providers

To the Executive Leadership of all organizations providing services funded through regional centers,

As you all know, we are rapidly approaching the critical moment in Sacramento when the Department of Developmental Services will deliver to the Legislature its study on our current rates system as well as its proposals to bring sustainability to our system through increases in rates of reimbursements paid to providers.

We are working hard to prepare for this moment by meeting ahead of time with members of the Legislature and key Legislative staff.  We must make sure that the Legislature understands how long overdue rate reform is in California.  We must make sure the Legislature knows how much our system has been strained over the past two decades as a result of frozen rates and the imposition of arbitrary Statewide median rates for critically needed services.

We need everyone’s help to tell this story with the urgency necessary to justify the significant new funding that we expect the report to call for when it is delivered in March. 

We are asking you to participate by responding to the two very brief online surveys whose links are included in this notice.

The first is the Provider Impact Survey initially distributed last March. We would like to get a much broader response to fully represent our State.  If you did not take this survey last March, please take the few minutes necessary to do so now. This can be completed by the CEO or her/his designee.

Here is that link:

The Second Survey was created by the Arc/UCP to report on the status of our Direct Service Provider (DSP) workforce in California.  For this survey – please distribute this survey to your DSP workforce and ask for their participation in advocating for higher wages for our highly valued DSP workforce by filling out the survey.

Here is that link:

Online Survey (English)

Online Survey (Español)

WE NEED YOUR IMMEDIATE ACTION.  We would like to have as many responses as possible to these two surveys by January 7, 2019.  Please try for this date – but if you can’t get it done by then – please respond as soon thereafter as possible.

Thank you!

For any questions or comments please contact Steve Miller:

Sept. 25- National Voter Registration Day!

National Voter Registration Day is on September 25!

Thousands of organizations, companies, celebrities, and everyday Americans across the country are celebrating National Voter Registration Day (NVRD) by registering new voters:

We want to make sure every American has the opportunity to vote this year. It’s important for all of us to help voters get ready to head to the polls to weigh in on the issues that matter most to them. There are exciting events happening all over the country on Tuesday, but what if you can’t make it out in person? Here are a few steps you can take to help:

• If people you know have questions about voter registration or the voting process, point them toward

• Encourage your social networks, email contacts, friends, and family to register to vote or update their registration if they’ve moved, changed their name, or changed their political affiliation since the last election.

• Check out #NationalVoterRegistrationDay for great shareable content and graphics across social media.


WRC Voting Rights Resource Document 9 2018– includes links!

Voting Rights
Election Day Hotline
Voice – 1.888.569.7955
TTY – 1.800.719.5798
If you need to call through relay, you can contact the California Relay Service by dialing 711.
For assistance in languages other than English and Spanish, you may be put on hold while we connect with interpreters.
Download Election Day Hotline Flyer (Docx)

Voting Videos and Resources

DRC Public Service Announcement Voting Videos

DRC works so people with disabilities can vote privately and independently. We train poll workers and people with disabilities about voting rights. We make sure poll places and voting machines are accessible.

DRC’s Voting Rights Unit advocates ensuring that voting is fully accessible for people with disabilities by educating government agencies about best practices and by educating voters with disabilities about their rights including options that allow them to vote privately and independently. DRC’s Voting Rights Unit provides outreach in the disability community with voting rights and civic participation trainings; advocates with government agencies to improve the voter registration process for people with disabilities; collaborates with election officials to improve accessibility of the voting process; runs an election day hotline to assist voters with election related complaints; tests accessible voting equipment; creates helpful publications for both voters with disabilities and election officials; trains poll workers on making voting accessible; and participates on disability-focused committees in numerous counties.

Are You Having Difficulty Voting Because of a Disability?
CALL: 1-888-569-7955

REV UP: Register, Educate, Vote, Use your Power
The REV UP Campaign aims to increase the political participation of the disability community while also engaging candidates and the media on disability issues. REV UP stands for Register! Educate! Vote! Use your Power!
Full political participation for Americans with disabilities is a top priority. AAPD works with state and national coalitions on effective, non-partisan campaigns to eliminate barriers to voting, promote accessibility of voting technology and polling places; educate voters about issues and candidates; promote turnout of voters with disabilities across the country; engage candidates and the media on disability issues, and protect eligible voters’ right to participate in elections.
Join the REV UP Campaign Email List
If you are unable to access the voter registration form through the link above click here.
If you are a resident of a US territory you can register to vote at
Voter Registration Deadlines from
2018 REV UP Campaign Resources
 Issues Guide
The Issues Guide provides a comprehensive, yet concise overview of the issues, legislation, and regulations that have a significant impact on the disability community. It is meant to serve as a tool for voters, advocates, candidates, and the media to be better informed on the issues that matter to people with disabilities.
National Disability Voter Registration Week Toolkit
The NDVRW Toolkit includes: a guide on how to organize voter registration events, ideas on other ways to participate in NDVRW, sample social media posts and graphics, and other resources. If you are planning voter registration events or other activities, please keep the REV UP Campaign updated on your efforts. While NDVRW 2018 has already passed (July 16-20, 2018), this Toolkit includes useful resources for holding voter registration events.
National Disability Voter Registration Week Social Media Toolkit
Sample social media posts and graphics to promote National Disability Voter Registration Week. While NDVRW 2018 has already passed (July 16-20, 2018), this Toolkit includes other relevant sample posts.
Candidate Questionnaire Template
This Candidate Questionnaire Template includes a variety of questions addressing topics that are important to the disability community. If you issue a candidate questionnaire for a state or local race, please keep the REV UP Campaign updated on your efforts.
Candidate Forum Guide
This Candidate Forum Guide links to existing candidate forum guides, highlights considerations specific to forums organized by the disability community, and outlines how to engage with other candidate forums. If you organize a candidate forum for a state or local race, please keep the REV UP Campaign updated on your efforts.
Election Accessibility Toolkit
This Election Accessibility Toolkit is a tool to assist disability advocacy organizations and individual advocates when working with voters and election officials. It also includes information on troubleshooting problems encountered on Election Day, reporting barriers, and additional resources.
Report Regarding the Accessibility of 2016 Election Polling Places
This white paper on the accessibility of 2016 election polling places includes analyses which show that people with disabilities face particular challenges in voting and voter registration. These challenges explain in large part the gap between voting by people with and without disabilities. The paper concludes with recommendations to the Federal Government and to States to improve accessibility in subsequent elections.
All 2018 REV UP Campaign Resources
Use this form to access all of the 2018 REV UP Campaign Resources.
List of REV UP Partners
Establish or Join the REV UP Disability Voting Coalition in your State
The purpose of REV UP State Disability Voting Coalitions is to demonstrate that the power of the disability vote has the potential to ensure that all candidates and elected officials address issues that are important to people with disabilities by increasing the political participation of people with disabilities. We have Coalitions established and developing in 21 states and are working to expand to more! We are looking for leaders who can pull together and organize advocates in their state to work together around voter registration and engagement activities and help establish a strong, diverse Coalition. Contact us if you are interested in getting involved.
Voter Information and Resources
The list below is a resource to help you register to vote, learn about the issues, and organize the disability vote. The REV UP Campaign aims to increase the political participation of the disability community while also engaging candidates and the media on disability issues. REV UP stands for Register! Educate! Vote! Use your Power!
As a voter with a disability, you have the right to:
-Vote privately and independently
-Have an accessible polling place with voting machines for voters with disabilities
-Wheelchair-accessible voting booths
-Entrances and doorways that are at least 32 inches wide
-Handrails on all stairs

-Voting equipment that is accessible to voters who are blind or who have low vision
-Bring your service animal with you into your polling place
-Seek assistance from workers at the polling place who have been trained to use the accessible voting machine
-Bring someone to help you vote (including a friend, family member, caregiver, assisted living provider, or almost anyone else, but not your employer or union representative).

Resources and tools for voter registration.
Voter Registration Deadlines – offers a table detailing the voter registration deadlines in each state.
Rock The Vote – Get registered, get informed, and get involved. Rock The Vote offers voter registration resources, election FAQs, and opportunities to help build the political power of young people in the United States.
Long Distance Voter – Website where you can request an absentee ballot as well as view the deadline to register in each state.
TurboVote – An application that makes voting easy. Sign up to keep track of your elections, local and national. You can also get registered, update your voter registration, or request an absentee ballot.

Verify your Registration Status – Not sure if you’ve registered to vote? HeadCount offers an online tool to check your voter registration status and find your polling place.
Resources and tools for voter education.
-10 Tips for Voters with Disabilities – The US Election Assistance Commission created this tip sheet to help voters with disabilities vote privately and independently.
-Election Laws – Electionary provides an online guide to state election laws in the US.
-SignVote – SignVote is a Deaf and Hard of Hearing community-based Voter GOTV mobilization effort.
-Rooted In Rights – Watch a video and read through an informative page on how to register, where to learn about the candidates and issues, and how to find other resources. Check it out!
-#CripTheVote – Find blogs on Voting, Disabled Youth, & #CripTheVote and Disability Advocacy and Twitter: Why Use it?. You can also join the conversation online with #CripTheVote.
-One Vote Now – Partner project of NACDD and DREDF to enhance the voting bloc of people with disabilities. Visit their site for information on voting, registration, and polling place accessibility.
-Barrier to Voting for Older Americans – Senators Bob Casey and Amy Klobuchar released a report on Barriers to Voting for Older Americans: How States are Making it Harder for Seniors to Vote and What can be Done to Make it Easier.
-Tools to Rate Website Accessibility – The Pew Charitable Trusts wrote an article about various web accessibility tools to help ensure that voters with disabilities can access your content.
-Voting Methods and Equipment By State – The types of voting equipment used in the United States vary significantly from state to state. Ballotpedia offers this state-by-state guide.
-Election Assistance Commission – The national clearinghouse of information on election administration, from voting system testing and certification to data on how Americans voted in recent federal elections. Click here to learn more about voting accessibility.
-A poll worker’s guide to assisting voters with disabilities – A resource for poll workers produced by Disability Rights Tennessee.
-Top 3 best fact checking sites – icitizen shared a blog about the top 3 best fact checking sites to help stay on top of the news and determine the truth.
-Guide for Political Campaign Staff – The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) created “Including People with Disabilities in Your Political Campaign: A Guide for Campaign Staff” to assist political campaigns with understanding the access needs, potential barriers, and interests of the disability community.
Resources and tools for casting a ballot and access to the polls.
-Voter Hub – The Voter Participation Center’s Voter Hub shares state-by-state information on voter registration, early voting, voter ID, automatic voter registration, vote-by-mail, and other details around the upcoming election.
-Election Protection – Visit or call 1-866-OUR-VOTE (1-866-687-8683) if you have any issues or concerns related to Election Day.
Call 888-Ve-Y-Vota (888-839-8682) for Bilingual English and Spanish assistance
Call 888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683) for assistance in English, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Bengali, Urdu, Hindi, or Tagalog
Call #YallaVote 844-418-1682 – Bilingual: English and Arabic
-State Protection & Advocacy Agencies – NCIL has compiled a directory of state protection and advocacy voter assistance hotlines.
-Voter Support Service – AAPD is proud to partner with The Arc of the United States on their Voter Support Service for people with disabilities. The site helps voters report and resolve voting barriers in real time.
-Voter Protection App for Latino Voters – LatinoJustice PRLDEF has launched a new smartphone voter protection app to help citizens report voting rights violations while voting in the 2016 elections. The app is in both English and Spanish and can be downloaded on iTunes and Google Play.
-Carpool Vote – A national platform connecting volunteer drivers with anybody needing a ride to cast their vote. The platform is accessible to voters with disabilities.
-Early Voting Calendar – Many states allow early voting, which takes place in person before Election Day. offers a table detailing the early voting dates for states that offer it.
-Google Voting – Get polling place and ballot information quickly and easily from Google by searching “who’s on my ballot“ or “where to vote“
-SMS Tool – The Voting Information Project supports a SMS Tool that provides voters with election information via text message. By texting “VOTE” or “VOTO” to GOVOTE (468-683), voters can find polling places, contact information for local election officials, and registration URLs. The app is available in multiple languages.
-Voter ID Requirements – VoteRiders released a wallet-sized Voter ID Info Card (in English and Spanish) for all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Each card provides a breakdown of the voter ID requirements in that specific state. VoteRiders also provides voter ID assistance, including via pro bono lawyers, to citizens in every state. They also host a Voter ID Hotline: 1-844-338-8743.
-Spread The Vote – Spread The Vote provides direct assistance to help voters obtain the proper identification to vote in their state. They are currently active in Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia.
-Know Your Right To Vote – The Arc has compiled a resource on knowing your voting rights as a person with a disability.
-Make Sure Your Voice is Heard at the Polls – AAPD and Easterseals collaborated to produce this Three-Step Checklist on the rights of voters with disabilities as well as a Voter Resource Card.
-Vote. It’s Your Right. – A guide to the voting rights of people with mental health disabilities. Produced by the Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law, Autistic Self Advocacy Network, National Disability Rights Network, and Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP (plain-language version).
-Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law – Information on guardianship and voting. Learn more!
-Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) – Information and resources on guardianship and voting, a Voter Education Toolkit, and GoVoter.
-Thousands Lose Right to Vote Under ‘Incompetence’ Laws – This article from Pew Charitable Trusts explores states that eliminate the right to vote for people with disabilities under Guardianship.
-ADA Checklist for Polling Places – This 25-page document is an updated technical assistance publication on polling place accessibility for voters with disabilities.
-Get Out The Vote (GOTV) Manual – The Voting Rights Subcommittee of the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) has released a GOTV Manual for the 2016 election.
-Secure Our Vote – Secure Our Vote is a coalition of organizations and concerned citizens focused on making sure elections are secure from hacking and computer error.
Use your Power
Resources and tools for amplifying the power of the disability vote.
-Nonprofit VOTE – Offers a Voter Engagement Resource Library containing fact sheets, checklists, toolkits, and other resources on nonpartisan voter engagement as well as Seven Tips on Getting Out the Vote and their newly updated online guide for 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations.
-Volunteer Opportunities – National Voter Corps helps individuals identify voter rights organizations in their state for volunteer opportunities.
-Engaging New Voters – This report from Nonprofit Vote evaluates the potential of nonprofit service providers and community-based organizations to increase voting among their younger clients and constituents, while also assessing best practices for doing so.
-Activate Social Media – The REV UP Campaign has compiled some sample social media posts that you can pair with REV UP logos and graphics.
-The Election Toolkit – The Center for Technology and Civil Life (CTCL) created a website that holds a collection of free (or cheap) tools that are built for you to use to increase civic engagement — turnout, voter registration — and to smooth operations in polling places.
-The First Step: A Basic Guide to Civic Engagement – Disability Rights Texas produced this civic engagement guide to help citizens understand how they can get involved in their community.
-They Work For Us: A Self-Advocate’s Guide to Getting Through to your Elected Officials – an advocacy toolkit from the Autistic Self Advocacy Network available in plain text and easy read versions.
-How to Set up a Meeting with Your Member of Congress – Families USA provides a step-by-step guide that outlines how to have a successful meeting with Members of Congress.
-GOTV Phone Banking Guide – The National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) has prepared a guide for conducting get-out-the-vote (GOTV) phone calls.
-United Way – The United Way offers a Voter Engagement Toolkit with information on how to remain nonpartisan while engaging voters.
-2016 Voter Experience Survey – Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) compiled a final report based on their survey of 761 voters with intellectual and developmental disabilities in 40 states about their experiences voting.
-Open Records Laws – The National Association of Counties has a State By State Report on Open Records Laws that provides information on the process of requesting public information in every state.
-Political Campaigns and Charities – The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a guide to help nonprofit organizations determine how to legally participate in voter education and engagement activities. Watch the webinar or read the PDF Course.