At SDHP, one of our goals is to educate housing and social service providers about Fair Housing, so that disability discrimination becomes a thing of the past. Jeff Fields, Region 10 RHC, recently provided a training for Nursing Home Transition Coordinators covering the Southeast region of the state (See picture). Nursing Home Transition (NHT) is an innovative state program that helps individuals move out of Nursing Homes and into community settings with support. The NHT Coordinators learned about the protected rights of people with disabilities in housing and how to advocate for those rights through reasonable accommodation and modification requests. They also learned about special topics related to service/assistance animals and hoarding. By providing this education to service professionals that serve hundreds of consumers with disabilities who are moving into housing each year, the RHC program is doing its part to celebrate the spirit of the ADA and the FHA in ending discrimination against people with disabilities.
As a cross disability agency, SDHP wants to recognize and celebrate the importance of the ADA.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law in 1990. The ADA is a civil rights law that prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in all areas of public life, including jobs, schools, transportation, and all public and private places that are open to the general public. The purpose of the law is to make sure that people with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone else. The ADA is divided into five titles (or sections) that relate to different areas of public life.
In 1994 SDHP began as a project to increase housing options for people with disabilities in Pennsylvania. Four years later we realized to move our mission forward we needed to become a 501c3 non-profit and grow our activities.
There have been improvements to the systems that support people with disabilities to live independently in the twenty years since SDHP began, but there is still much work to be done. Overwhelmingly, people with disabilities have their housing choices limited by the lack of accessible, affordable housing and insufficient access to the information needed to make informed choices. SDHP has always worked to ensure people with disabilities have the tools needed to make informed decisions about where and with who they want to live. “My Home, My Choice” was the name of an early SDHP publication. While no longer in print, the theme of “My Home, My Choice” is still very relevant today. At SDHP, we believe everyone has the right to have choice and control about where they live. That belief continues to drive SDHP’s efforts every day. Please explore our website to find out how.
The ADA Legacy Tour is rolling across the country raising awareness and building excitement toward ADA25 – the 25th anniversary of the ADA in 2015!
The past 115 years of the disability rights movement is explored in this unique mobile museum in a modified tractor trailer. There are sections that explain ADAPT (Americans Disabled for Attendant Programs Today) and the transportation struggles, the deaf culture movement, Ed Roberts and Judy Heuman’s journey. Information on the ADA, African Americans with disabilities, and Deinstitutionalization are also presented.
RHC outreach to local landlords increases housing options in rural North Central PA
Developing the trust of landlords is an important way RHC’s increase housing options for many low income people with disabilities. The RHCs have a unique opportunity to dispel many of the misconceptions that landlords may have about renting to older adults and people with disabilities, thereby reducing the landlord’s anxiety around home modifications, reasonable accommodations, and housing choice vouchers.
RHC’s Establish NHT Collaborative Partner Meetings for Nursing Home Transition Coordinators
In 2010, former Region 9 RHC, Arlette Wright, began hosting a collaborative meeting for the NHT coordinators in her region as a way to share ideas and provide training and program updates for them. This was the beginning of a now far-reaching RHC initiative to bring NHT Coordinators and community partners together on a regular basis to further the common goal of removing barriers to successful transitions.