IHSS Appeals — Make a Huge Difference

This urgent appeal toward a grassroots network comes from a group in L.A. It could be utilized around the state and replicated specifically in each county.

As you probably know, there are thousands of In-Home Supportive Services consumers who are threatened with losing their in-home services onPhotograph of paper reading "Help!" November 1. The Personal Assistance Services Council is organizing an Appeal Assistance Volunteer Corps to work with IHSS consumers who want help to file an appeal.

I am contacting you because you may know people who would be interested in participating in this Volunteer Corps. I know that you are already very busy and, hopefully, you can suggest 1 or 2 people who would be interested in doing this. After you send me their names, I will call them to talk about the program and see if they are interested. If you would rather call them, feel free to forward the attached description for their information. For people who want to participate, we are scheduling a 3-hour training session by October 16th.

As the attached description outlines, we are looking for IHSS consumers, advocates, parents, and/or retirees. We will provide training, materials, and on-going assistance as they work with the consumers who call in for help. Generally speaking, the work with the consumers can be done on the phone.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. With the state sending the notice of action to consumers by October 19th, we need to act fast. I hope to hear from you by the end of this week, October 9th.

This is a very important undertaking and I thank you for your help. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Janet

Janet Heinritz-Canterbury, M.S.W
Board Treasurer, Personal Assistance Services Council for IHSS
4434 9th Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90043
(323) 294-4565

4730 Woodman Avenue, Suite 405, Sherman Oaks, California 91423
Tel: (818) 206-7000 Fax: (818) 206-8000 Toll Free: (877) 565-4477 TTY: (818) 206-7015


What is the IHSS Appeal Assistance Volunteer Corps?
Recent legislation has drastically changed the In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) program. One of the changes will result in the loss of some or all services for certain IHSS consumers.

These IHSS consumers have the right to appeal changes in their services. The IHSS Appeal Assistance Volunteer Corps will help these consumers file and go through the appeal process. This Volunteer Corps includes individuals familiar with IHSS and, ideally, with the IHSS hearing process from the Personal Assistance Services Council (PASC), United Cerebral Palsy, CALIF, Ability First, SEIU-ULTCW, AARP, and many other organizations and networks.

The Volunteer Corps members will be trained in the specifics of IHSS and how to file and prepare for an appeal. The PASC will provide training, informational materials, and forms to keep track of consumers who Corps members assist between now and the actual hearing date which may be several months from now. The PASC will also talk with Volunteer Corps members periodically about their cases and provide assistance if necessary.

How does the Volunteer Corps work?
The State Department of Social Services will send a notice of action to these consumers by October 19, 2009. The PASC is also sending a letter saying we can help with their appeal if the consumers call us at our 800 number. We expect that consumers will begin to call for help after they receive the Notice of Action or when they receive the PASC letter.

When the consumers call, the PASC will refer them to a Volunteer Corps member who can help them with their appeal. The Volunteer Corps member will have intake and follow-up forms and will have informational materials to answer questions that come up as they work with the consumer. Generally speaking this assistance will take place over the phone. Volunteer Corps members will also go out to senior centers and community centers to make presentations and provide one-on-one assistance to consumers who attend these presentations.

Who are the Volunteer Corps members and what will they do?
* They are IHSS consumers, seniors, parents, advocates, retirees, and/or are part of a network
* They are organized, keep good records, and pay attention to detail
* They are advocates and people who know about IHSS or social services
* They receive training, including role plays, on procedures and outcomes of the hearing process
* They do lengthy phone conversations and keep records on potentially complicated situations

How can I or my organization participate?
If you are or know an IHSS consumer who has been through the appeals process, or know an advocate, activist, parent and a person who is willing to volunteer for this program, please contact, Janet Heinritz-Canterbury, (323) 294-4565 or email Janet at: weaver1245@aol.com

People with disabilities need help now, please call as soon as possible!

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