Illinois Taskforce on Employment and Economic Opportunities for People with Disabilities (EEOPD)
Meeting Agenda - June 7, 2018
10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
100 South Grand Ave East
Executive Video Conference Room, 3rd Floor
401 South Clinton
Executive Video Conference Room, 7th Floor
Telephone Option: Conference Line: 515-604-9341,,571034
Phone: Vickie Simpson, Lisa Jones, Benro Ogunyipe, Dale Morrissey, Phil Milsk, Barry Taylor, Kelly Cunningham
Springfield: Mark Sherbeyn, Paul Morell, Lee Ann Reinert
Chicago: Rory Conran, Doug Morton, Kathleen Gerhold, Sarah, Margie Harkness, Teresa Garate, Maria Doughty, Hannah Oakley, Tania Morawiec
- Welcome & Approval of March Meeting Minutes (5 minutes)
Maria brought meeting to order at 10:03 AM. March minutes did not get sent out. Paul Morell asked for both meetings' minutes to be sent out so that he may brief his new interim director.
- Taskforce Membership & SB1453 New Requirements (50 minutes)
Teresa Garate and Maria Doughty thanked Phil Milsk for his efforts on this bill. Milsk thanked Sarah for her help in pushing SB1453 through the legislature. Milsk shared the process of pushing the bill through both houses and various committees. Senators Mussman and Moffman were critical in moving this bill through. All agencies were very supportive and seemingly on-board. CMS especially seemed interested. With the passage of SB1453, the taskforce will be taking on more responsibility by doing away with the IACC and putting that work under the purview of the Taskforce.
Now that the bill is heading to the Governor's desk, the taskforce wants to reach out to his policy person to advocate for its signage. Garate also asked for Emily Bastedo to advocate on its behalf since it entails the appointment of multiple education players to the taskforce. Milsk will reach out to Ngozi Okorafor in the Governor's office. Garate and the taskforce discussed strategies to inform community members and stakeholders about the end/absorption of the IACC. Taskforce discussed how to motivate the Governor and maybe have him hold a press conference promoting the end of IACC and highlighting its role in improving government efficiency.
Lisa Jones mentioned bill 3222 (Murphy) that passed, which adds membership to IWIP including 2 representatives from community-based organizations that serve individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Milsk brought up the new budget bill which included $.50/hour DSP wage increase and dental insurance reinstatement for Medicaid. Sarah added that no legislation passed for specific DSP wage increase.
Sarah referenced SB201 (Biss)/HB1592 (Maw) concerning minimum wage exceptions. However, Sarah doubted it would be brought up during veto session.
HB4420, which extended the life of the taskforce examining criminal justice as it pertains to persons with disabilities, since the report has not yet been developed. Garate brought up the importance of persons with mental health, including autism, sitting on this taskforce. Tania Morawiec asked Lee Ann Reinert if anyone from DMH was nominally on the taskforce. No one was, but all agreed it's important to have that perspective on the taskforce.
- Workgroup Reports (50 minutes)
Maria Doughty met with the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce. DisabilityWorks, dormant now, once matched persons with disabilities to providers. Taskforce could submit information to be included in Chamber of Commerce's monthly newsletter. Doughty is last remaining Employer workgroup member, and needed to increase membership. Lisa Jones, who managed DisabilityWorks and IL WorkNet, said she will coordinate with CCC to spread the word about DisabilityWorks. Jones also offered to set up a workgroup on how to improve/edit DisabilityWorks site. Business Hub on IL WorkNet. Doughty would love to rehab DisabilityWorks to engage private employers while simultaneously launching a marketing campaign around that to raise awareness. CCC will host annual Opportunity Event on October 19th. Barry Taylor suggested getting a table at the event. Doughty would also like to host a panel.
- Workforce Development
Doug Morton and Barry Taylor shared details about their meeting with the State Use Committee within CMS to discuss BEP exception of sheltered workshops, to which over 90% of funds are still funneled. SUC disagreed and believed that removing the exception would hurt persons with disabilities. Taylor, Morton, and Morawiec were glad that at least opinions were shared and both sides are now aware of the other's stance. Tania asked for SUC to inquire more in depth around these contracts/facilities and get clearer on their numbers, i.e. exact numbers of people being paid sub-minimum wage, etc. Doughty curious about how Taskforce can hold CMS/SUC accountable. Taylor said not to expect movement from CMS without Governor's Office. Doughty suggested asking Governor to charge CMS with accountability on their numbers.
Dale Morrissey emphasized the importance of a transition plan from sheltered workshops to integrated employment for persons with disabilities. Morawiec noted the ongoing work with Employment First.
Morrell suggested the vendor gets BEP contract, but if they paid sub-minimum wage, they would be barred from using 14C. Garate said we must emphasize Employment First. Sarah cautioned that providers might not bid on these contracts, which would be a net loss for persons with disabilities.
Morawiec brought up the newly-formed state-level Disabled Hiring Initiative Committee. Doughty asked for a follow-up with more information to understand how this Committee could work with the Taskforce.
Equip for Equality found 2 persons with disabilities who were denied accommodation through Rutan hiring process, and it's currently going through the courts. Taylor will share this opinion as well as all other documents discussed with the taskforce.
Milsk shared updates earlier throughout the meeting.
- Environmental Scan of Statewide Education Initiatives & Partners (20 minutes)
Morawiec recommended putting together a living document of all statewide initiatives doing similar work as the Taskforce to avoid duplicative work and stay up to date on work occurring around the state. Garate asked the Taskforce to keep members informed when they learn of new partners or work being done.
- Wrap-Up and Next Steps (10 minutes)
Next meeting on 9/12.
- Public Comment
Kathleen Gerhold shared the work of her organization JVS. Doughty and Garate invited her organization to present at a future taskforce meeting as well as share any recommendations for appointments. Meeting was adjourned at 12:07 pm.