Comment on Disability Rights Nebraska's Proposed Strategic Plan for FY 2018-2022
Please Respond with Comments by midnight May 7, 2017. Thank you!
Introduction: Why the plan is shorter and How we chose our focus
During FY 2016, in anticipation of our strategic planning effort in FY 2017, Disability Rights Nebraska conducted a Model Coherency Analysis. The analysis asked the following questions: Who are the people served? (Identity); What are people getting? (Content); How are they getting it? (Processes); and What are the possible assumptions that are held by the providers about each component? After the components of the model were defined, an analysis between the components was done to determine how well they fit together to create a coherent model. The following question was asked: Are the right people working with the right people to deliver the right content in the right way?
In December, 2016 Disability Rights Nebraska established a Strategic Planning Workgroup to develop the draft proposed FY 2018-2022 Disability Rights Nebraska Strategic Plan. The Workgroup consisted of 5 representatives from the Board of Directors, 1 representative from the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Advisory Council, and 5 staff members. From late January to the end of March 2017 the Strategic Planning Workgroup met on four occasions to develop the draft of the FY 2018-2022 Strategic Plan for Disability Rights Nebraska. The workgroup reviewed the current Vision, Purpose and Mission statements for Disability Rights Nebraska. As a result of this review we have eliminated the Purpose statement and revised the Vision and Mission Statements to guide to our work and provide the foundation for our FY 2018-2022 Strategic Plan.
In addition to the model coherency analysis, part of the strategic planning process involved identifying state organizations and agencies that had recently completed needs assessments or strategic plans. Although only a limited number of these documents were available, we were able to review them for information that could be relevant to our strategic plan. For example, we found that there was some overlap with Disability Rights Nebraska’s proposed priorities and strategies, e.g., peer support, trauma-informed care, self-advocacy, educating individuals and families about services and systems, increasing employment opportunities based on an individual’s choice, supported housing, community inclusion, inclusive educational settings, and re-entry planning, mental health screening and mental health treatment within corrections.
In mid-March the Draft Proposed FY 2018-2022 Strategic Plan was sent to the Disability Rights Nebraska Board of Directors, the Protection and Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness Advisory Council, the Developmental Disabilities Stakeholders Group, the Protection and Advocacy for Individual Rights, Traumatic Brain Injury, Assistive Technology, Beneficiaries of Social Security and Voting Access Stakeholders Group, the Citizen Advocacy Stakeholders Group, and the Mental Illness Stakeholders Group for review and comment. The Workgroup reviewed all comments received and make modifications to the Draft Proposed Strategic Plan based on the comments received. The Draft Proposed Strategic Plan was reviewed by the Executive Committee and submitted to the Board of Directors for approval as the Proposed Strategic Plan in mid-April, 2017.
What is your part in this?
The Proposed Strategic Plan consists of four sections: Who are the People Disability Rights Nebraska Serves (Identity and Needs); What is Disability Rights Nebraska; What is Our Vision and Mission; and Proposed FY 2018-2022 Priorities, Images of the Future, Goals and Strategies. Please take a moment to review each section and record your comments on the lines below each section. You will have the opportunity to comment on the Priority, the Image of the Future, and the Goals and Strategies connected with that Priority. There are only three Priorities and five Goals. Also, we would like to hear any suggestions for Goal-specific objectives and activities that you might have. Your input will be incorporated into our annual operational planning process. We ask that you submit your comments by midnight on May 7, 2017. Thank you for your participation!
1A. Who are the People Disability Rights Nebraska Serves?
Most of the people with disabilities we represent have been judged by society as having less value than others because their disability is viewed in a negative way which leads to stigma, prejudice, and discrimination in their daily lives. One result of being devalued is that people are not offered the typical opportunities and choices afforded to socially valued citizens, and are often thrust into deep poverty with seemingly no way out. Their days are often spent segregated and isolated from the community in congregate residential facilities, day programs, or sheltered workshops. People who are devalued are often forgotten, have few meaningful personal relationships and are essentially alone in the world. Because they are forgotten, they are at greater risk of rejection, isolation, abandonment, neglect, or abuse; sometimes bringing them near death.
Your answer
1B. What are Their Needs?
Most of the vulnerable people with disabilities we represent need protection from harm, abuse, and neglect, as well as to have their rights vigorously defended. The legal and human rights of devalued people with disabilities, as well as their inherent dignity and worth, need to be recognized, promoted, and defended; otherwise society will miss the many gifts, talents, competencies and valued life experiences of people with disabilities. People with disabilities need access to opportunities to grow, learn, pursue gifts, gain competencies and have a variety of relationships including close, enduring relationships where they are missed when not there. Being authentically included in community life requires that people find and become rooted in valued roles in all spheres of life including home and family, work, education, personal relationships, social, recreational, and spiritual. This means that people’s life stories need to be lifted up, brought forward, and surrounded by positive images that convey messages of value and respect. If the promise of inclusion in community life is to be real for the people we represent, then they need opportunities and supports to make their own decisions about their lives, have a quality education, have real jobs with a decent income and benefits, have excellent and accessible healthcare, live in their own homes, and become engaged in civic matters.
Your answer
2. What is Disability Rights Nebraska?
Disability Rights Nebraska is the federally authorized protection and advocacy system for people with disabilities in the State of Nebraska and administers seven federally funded protection and advocacy programs, making us a truly cross-disability advocacy organization. We are independent of any public or private organization that provides treatment or services to people with disabilities and have the authority to pursue legal, administrative and other appropriate remedies and approaches to protect and advocate for their legal and human rights. Since our founding in 1978 we have used a multi-component approach in our advocacy work that includes legal advocacy (representation and assistance), systems advocacy (litigation and public policy), relationship-based advocacy (Citizen Advocacy) and self-advocacy. Disability Rights Nebraska recognizes the hard life experiences that people have endured and understands the urgency with which the effects of these experiences need to be addressed. To do so we work along-side people who have disabilities to advocate for their rights and to provide opportunities for them to shed the negative role stereotypes of client, charity case, burden, etc. often associated with their lives. Our strong commitment to the inclusion and engagement of people with disabilities in the work we do is reflected in the composition of our board of directors. Our board is made up of a super-majority of people with disabilities and family members, as well as others who interested in protecting and advocating for the rights of people with disabilities.
Your answer
3. What Is Our Vision And Mission?
VISION: Nebraskans with disabilities, especially those who are most vulnerable, will be free from harm and able to exercise the same rights, opportunities and choices available to all citizens in order to live fully integrated and culturally valued lives.
Your answer
MISSION STATEMENT: Disability Rights Nebraska uses a combination of legal advocacy, public policy advocacy, Citizen Advocacy, self-advocacy and advocacy education to protect vulnerable people with disabilities, especially those who learn, live or work in isolated, segregated or congregated settings.
Your answer
4. Proposed FY 2018-2022 Priorities, Images of the Future, Goals and Strategies
Please comment on the Priority, the Image of the Future, and the Goals and Strategies connected with that Priority. If you have suggestions for activities (objectives) under that Priority, please include those. Your input will be incorporated into the annual planning process. There are three Priorities and five Goals in the plan.
PRIORITY 1. Freedom from Harm
Your answer
Image of the Future for Priority 1: People with disabilities have human and legal rights that protect their health, safety, personal integrity and self-determination. We will protect and advocate for vulnerable people with disabilities, especially those living in segregated, isolated and congregated facilities, to ensure they are free from death, abuse, neglect, and violations of their rights.
Your answer
Goal 1 for Priority 1: Identify where people with disabilities who are most in danger of harm live, work, or learn.
Your answer
Strategies for Goal 1: Facility/Program Monitoring • Targeted Outreach • Collaborative Partnerships • Targeted Media Relations • Public Education and Awareness • Capacity Building/Resource Development
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Do you have any suggestions for specific objectives or activities for this goal?
Your answer
Goal 2 for Priority 1: Investigate and respond to allegations of abuse, neglect or exploitation using a range of remedies to ensure that the most vulnerable people with disabilities are free from harm.
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Strategies for Goal 2: Investigations • Direct Legal Representation • Limited Advocacy • Information and Referral • Self-Advocacy Support • Targeted Media Relations • Public Education and Awareness • Public Policy Advocacy • Capacity Building/Resource Development
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Do you have any suggestions for specific objectives or activities for this goal?
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Goal 3 for Priority 1: Support and sustain a network of local, independent Citizen Advocacy programs.
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Strategies for Goal 3: Program Funding • Training & Technical Assistance • Funding Safeguards • Contract Management • Capacity Building/Resource Development
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Do you have any suggestions for specific objectives or activities for this goal?
Your answer
PRIORITY 2: Most Inclusive Settings
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Image of the Future for Priority 2: People with disabilities need access to authentic opportunities in order to be fully included in communities of their choice. We will promote the community inclusion of people with disabilities by advocating for 1) non-segregated, non-isolated, person-centered services and supports, 2) opportunities for people to have culturally valued social roles, and 3) meaningful choices based on a person’s interests, desires and wishes.
Your answer
Goal 1 for Priority 2: Advocate for people with disabilities to learn, live and work in the most inclusive settings.
Your answer
Strategies for Goal 1: Educate Self Advocates, Parents, Allies, Professionals and Providers • Public Policy Advocacy • Targeted Media Relations • Public Education and Awareness • Collaborative Partnerships • Investigations • Direct Legal Representation (Including systemic litigation) • Limited Advocacy • Information and Referral • Self-Advocacy Support • Capacity Building/Grant Writing
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Do you have any suggestions for specific objectives or activities for this goal?
Your answer
PRIORITY 3: Engaging People With Disabilities In Advocacy
Your answer
Image of the Future for Priority 3: People who experience disabilities are the experts when it comes to their lives. We believe in the philosophy of “nothing about us without us” and will stand with people who have disabilities to achieve their hopes, dreams, and things not yet imagined.
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Goal 1 for Priority 3: Provide people with disabilities opportunities to learn how to be effective advocates and support them in advocating on things that impact their lives.
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Strategies for Goal 1 Priority 3: Self-Advocacy Education • Leadership Education • Systems Advocacy Education • Public Policy Advocacy • Collaborative Partnerships • Media Relations/Public Awareness • Capacity Building/Resource Development
Your answer
Do you have any suggestions for specific objectives or activities for this goal?
Your answer
Do you have any additional comments about the Proposed Strategic Plan you would like us to be aware of?
Your answer
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