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The past two weeks have been a flurry of activity at The Arc of Illinois! Read on to learn more about what we have been doing to advocate for people with IDD and their families.

Update on the CILA Rate Calculator Pause

Last week, the Division of Developmental Disabilities hosted a meeting of the Ligas Rates Oversight Committee, including Guidehouse, to present on the updated CILA rate calculator.  You may recall that this past spring, after concerns regarding systemic impact of the updated CILA rate calculator (a loss of nearly 3.8 million Direct Support Professional hours), the Division paused implementation. The Division announced today that they will again pause implementation of the new calculator until 12/31/2023.

Individual and Family Forums

Last week, I had the opportunity to hear from folks at Pathway Services Unlimited, Inc., one of our organizational affiliates, about issues and concerns impacting people with IDD and their families.

I hope to see you at one in the future!


Image description: Five smiling people in front of a colorful Pathway Services Unlimited, Inc. wall mural.

Public Policy Survey

Calling all advocates! Last week, we launched our annual Public Policy Survey. The survey is available until October 31, 2023 in Spanish and English. We will use the survey results and information from the Individual and Family Forums to guide our public policy priorities for next year. Please share your opinions on a variety of topics and make your voice heard. 

Speak Up and Speak Out Summit

The Speak Up and Speak Out Summit was held last week, October 5th & 6th. Thank you to the Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities for funding this one-of-a-kind event for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. We had over 600 attendees participating virtually and in-person in Springfield, IL. Thank you to all the attendees, speakers, moderators, and volunteers for a successful SUSO 2023. A special thank you to Senator Duckworth for sharing a welcome video to get us started! We had a ton of fun, learned a lot, and had a chance to connect with our peers during the two-day summit. We hope to see you next year!


Image description: Amie Lulinski, left, and state Senator Paul Faraci (D-52) stand in front of a staircase smiling.

We would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to Sen. Paul Faraci (D-52), Rep. Michelle Mussman (D-56), Rep. Suzanne Ness (D-66), and Rep. Lindsey LaPointe (D-19) for their presence at last week’s Speak Up Speak Out Summit. Their participation was invaluable, and it was such an honor to have had them join us!

On September 29, 2023, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced its plan to review the 14(c) program, which allows some employers to pay disabled workers less than minimum wage, typically in a segregated workplace. This review should be the beginning of the process that results in the complete elimination of the 14(c) program. DOL plans to prioritize competitive, integrated employment for workers with disabilities.






At the October meeting of the Going Home Coalition, Equip for Equality attorneys Stacey Aschemann and Laura Miller, will continue our conversation about their recent report on Choate Developmental Center and current updates on the Ligas Consent Decree.

The meeting is scheduled for October 17th at 2:00 pm. Please contact carole@thearcofil.org to be added to the invite list for October or future meetings.

Self-advocate and Going Home Coalition participant, Da Wen Mei, did a fantastic job co-presenting with Carole Rosen at Pui Tak Center and virtually with the HBSS Workgroup. Da Wen spoke about his experience registering to vote, and how to become an election judge at this REV UP presentation.





Image description: Six smiling people in back of a long table and one smiling person in front of a desk.


Image description: Greg Walkington, State Representative Gong-Gershowitz, and Carole Rosen stand smiling between an Illinois state flag and the American flag.


On September 28th, Greg Walkington, Director of The Family Transition Project and Carole Rosen, Going Home Coalition Manager, met with State Representative Jennifer Gong-Gershowitz (D-17) to discuss the importance of robust support and investment in community systems to sustain a full life in the community for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Other regional voting presentations have occurred across the state. Recently, Carole Rosen and Greg Walkington were at Murray Developmental Center to talk with residents about voting and The Arc of Illinois’s Family Transition Project.

Would you like to meet with your legislators and need support to get your meeting set up?

Please reach out to Carole at carole@thearcofil.org.


Be a Part of Something Larger.

As an Individual or Family Member, discover all the benefits, training opportunities, and networking with other families, members and professionals.

As a Chapter or Organization Sponsor, partner with us to receive many benefits, training, and support of our mission through ongoing advocacy efforts. 


Your Donation Matters.

Whether you choose to donate monthly or one time, your donation helps The Arc bring together advocates, connect people and families, train and educate, and provide resources and support. 

14th Annual DisABILITY Resource Expo: October 28, 2023
We will be returning as an exhibitor and sponsor at the DISABILITY Resource Expo! The Expo will be held at the Market Place Mall and will be run from 11:00am to 4:00pm on October 28th.






Registration for the IDD & Mental Health Conference is NOW OPEN!

November 15, 2023

This virtual conference focuses on the intersection of intellectual and developmental disabilities and mental health. 


The Arc of Illinois Virtual Events

  • Transition Resources through Shirley Ryan Ability Lab | October 18, 2023 | 12:00 - 1:00 pm | Register
  • Seminario Web en Espanol | La Tutela y Las Otras Opciones | October 23, 2023 | 5:30 - 6:30 pm | Register
  • Seminario Web en Espanol | Enfoque en los Hermanos de Personas con Discapacidades del Desarrollo | November 13, 2023 | 5:30 - 6:30 pm | Register
  • Work Incentives Planning & Assistance (WIPA) program and More | November 14, 2023 | 12:00 - 1:00 pm | Register
  • Adapting The Holidays to Your Child with IDD | December 12, 2023 | 12:00 - 1:00 pm | Register

Ray Graham Association (RGA) is pleased to present a learning opportunity for families, educators and 
others in the community

This year, Ray Graham is resuming in person, and all are free of charge. Although geared towards families, they are also great learning opportunities for educators and other professionals. This year, the remaining dates are October 19 and November 16. 

Click here for the flyer.

We have also applied to DHS for CE approval (2 per session) for:

  • Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker
  • Licensed Nursing Home Administrator
  • Licensed Occupational Therapist & Occupational Therapy Assistant
  • Licensed Physical Therapist & Physical Therapy Assistant
  • Licensed Professional Counselor
  • Licensed Social Worker
  • QIDP


Alliance and The Arc of Illinois Fall 2023 Regional Training 

“Self-Advocacy, Rights, and YOU!”

Self-Advocates, allies/professionals, and family members are invited to join the Illinois Self-Advocacy Alliance (The Alliance) and The Arc of Illinois for a day of learning and advocacy. Trainings are free and will begin promptly at 10am and end at 2pm; lunch is included.

Click here for flyer.


The Illinois Autism Task Force (IATF) Transition sub-committee is seeking 
parents/guardians’ feedback on their understanding of the high school (Secondary) transition process. The survey is designed for parents/guardians of children with autism (all ages-young adults) who have an IEP.

The Autism Transition Subcommittee is conducting this survey to assess parent/family knowledge when it comes to understanding services available for the autism population leading up to and during their high school transition years. By gaining understanding of this, the IATF as well as autism-based service entities and schools can target their messaging and parent education to better guide parents, students, and families with the 
goal of improving student success after high school.

The survey will be available beginning September 1, 2023, ending December 1, 2023: The IATF: Transition Sub-Committee Survey 2023

If you are a parent/guardian of a child with Autism, please follow the above link and complete the survey. The survey should take 15 minutes and your responses are completely anonymous. We genuinely appreciate your participation and hope our results will help us in our work to prepare families and improve services in Illinois as students transition from school to adulthood.


University of Illinois Adults with Autism and Health Services Research Study

This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) under the Autism Intervention Research Network on Physical Health (AIR‐P) grant, UT2MC39440. 

University of Illinois is currently recruiting adults with autism between the ages of 18-65 to participate in a research study. By participating in this study, adults with autism can help us understand their experiences in accessing health services, as well as support the adaptation of an app that could support or improve access to health services for adults with autism.

Participants will be asked to complete a short demographic questionnaire and participate in three interviews over Zoom or phone. The interview format, date, and time will take place whenever is convenient for the participant. The questionnaire should take 5 minutes and each interview will take between 30-60 minutes. In appreciation for your time, you will receive up to $75 for participating in this study.

Click here for the flyer. If you or someone you know would be interested in participating in this study, please email at mebest2@illinois.edu or phone at (312) 627-9536


Are you, or do you know, a Spanish-speaking
family member of a person who uses AAC?/¿Usted es o conoce a un familiar hispanohablante de alguien que usa la CAA?

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago are conducting a study
to learn about the experiences and perspectives of Spanish-speaking family
members of people who use augmentative-alternative communication (AAC).
Participants will be asked to complete a questionnaire and a remote interview. Family participants will receive a $75 Visa gift card upon completion of both. Please contact Ellyn McNamara, (312) 343-6348 or emcnam3@uic.edu to participate in the research.

Investigadores de la Universidad de Illinois en Chicago están realizando un
estudio para conocer las experiencias y perspectivas de los familiares
hispanohablantes de personas que utilizan la comunicación aumentativa y
alternativa (CAA). Se les pedirá a los participantes completar un cuestionario y una entrevista remota. Los participantes familiares recibirán una tarjeta de regalo Visa de $75 al finalizar ambos. Para participar en esta investigación, por favor póngase en contacto con Ellyn McNamara al
(312) 343-6348 o emcnam3@uic.edu.

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