PCPA: Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

Governor Proclaims Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day

Governor Tom Corbett has issued a proclamation making May 9 Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day in Pennsylvania. In his proclamation the governor notes that “addressing the complex mental health needs of children, youth and families today is fundamental to the future of Pennsylvania.” Governor Corbett goes on to “urge our commonwealth’s citizens to become aware of the importance of effective and coordinated services for children and youth, to learn about the impact of trauma on child health and well-being, and to unite in an effort to increase awareness about the importance of comprehensive programs for children and youth with mental health needs and their families.”

PCPA joins the governor and neighbors across Pennsylvania in celebrating Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day and commends mental health professionals and workers who strive daily to meet the complex needs of children, youth, and families.

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Copyright 2012 – Pennsylvania Community Providers Association
2101 N Front St, Bldg 3, Ste 200, Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone: 717-364-3280 – Fax: 717-364-3287

www.paproviders.org

PCPA Info: Voter ID Required

In the recent primary election, voters were asked for identification (ID), but not required to produce it. Voter ID will be required in the November election. In an effort to mitigate onerous requirements for those who do not currently have suitable ID, the Secretary of the Commonwealth announced a process intended to make it easier for those who have had an expired driver’s license or non-driver license photo ID to obtain a valid ID that will authorize them to vote. Information from the PENNDOT database will be used to verify identification and the card will be issued. Individuals may contact PENNDOT at 800-932-4600 to verify that information for licenses that expired before 1990 is still in the database. An application form is required for the non-driver license photo ID. Individuals are required to sign an affirmation that they have no other acceptable form of photo ID for voting purposes to receive the non-driver license photo ID at no charge.

Photo IDs from Pennsylvania care facilities including long-term care facilities, assisted living residences, or personal care homes are valid, as long as they include the name of the facility, the name and photo of the voter, and an expiration date. Accredited Pennsylvania public or private college and university photo IDs with expiration dates can also be used. If the card does not have an expiration date, a date sticker can be used.

Starting with the November election, all photo IDs must be current and contain an expiration date, unless otherwise noted. Acceptable IDs include:

  • Photo IDs issued by the US government or the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania;
  • Pennsylvania driver’s license or non-driver’s license photo ID (IDs are valid for voting purposes 12 months past expiration date);
  • Valid US passport;
  • US military ID – active duty and retired military (dependents’ ID must contain an expiration date);
  • Employee photo ID issued by federal, Pennsylvania state, or a Pennsylvania county or municipal government;
  • Photo ID cards from an accredited public or private Pennsylvania college or university; or
  • Photo ID cards issued by a Pennsylvania care facility, including long-term care facilities, assisted living residences, or personal care homes.

If a voter does not have a photo ID at the polls in November, he or she may use a provisional ballot and will have six days to provide a photo ID to the county election office in person, by mail, e-mail, or fax. More information is available at www.VotesPA.com, or 877-VOTESPA (877-868-3772). Voter ID acts in Pennsylvania and other states are being contested. Despite efforts to make it easier to obtain IDs, voter ID requirements will disenfranchise many.

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Copyright 2012 – Pennsylvania Community Providers Association
2101 N Front St, Bldg 3, Ste 200, Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone: 717-364-3280 – Fax: 717-364-3287
www.paproviders.org

 

PCPA Spring Rally Schedule

There are a wide range of opportunities in May and June to come to Harrisburg and make it clear to the administration and General Assembly that large numbers of Pennsylvanians care deeply about maintaining access to community services. Stakeholders are keenly aware that in order to avoid the devastation of Pennsylvania’s community services, it is crucially important that members take action! In addition to PCPA Capitol Day on June 5, members are encouraged to consider attending other rallies.
PCPA Capitol Day – June 5
PCPA has partnered with the Mental Health Association of Southeastern Pennsylvania and other concerned associations and advocacy groups in a joint effort to come together on June 5 and fight for a budget that is realistic and offers the support required by Pennsylvanians receiving behavioral health, intellectual disability, and autism services. Please watch for an announcement that PCPA’s online Capitol Day web site is open! The online Capitol Day web site will feature everything needed to register, order Capitol Day t-shirts, make appointments with legislators, and get information and talking points. The legislative press conference/rally will begin promptly at 12:00 p.m. This event features legislators and other speakers to rally the crowd and share support for community services.
PARF Legislative Rally – May 8
The Pennsylvania Association of Rehabilitation Facilities (PARF) is holding a legislative rally May 8 at 10:00 a.m. in the Main Capitol Rotunda in partnership with PCPA, The ARC of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Waiting List Campaign, and Vision for Equality to call for adequate funding for community programs for people with intellectual disabilities. The rally will call on legislators to stop proposed funding reductions for individuals with intellectual disabilities and provide crucial support for the emergency waiting list. PCPA will participate in the PARF event and urges those members unable to attend Capitol Day on June 5 to participate on May 8.

In addition to the PCPA and PARF rallies, the following rallies have been scheduled and provide an opportunity to further support the advocacy community.

  • PA Brain Injury Coalition 2012 Legislative Day on May 2. The rally will take place at 10:00 a.m. in the Main Capitol Rotunda.
  • “Keep Your Promise” Rally on May 2. The rally will take place at 12:00 p.m. in the Main Capitol Rotunda and is sponsored by Visions for Equality. It is focused on the ID Waiting List.
  • Save PA’s Bridge to Stability & Self-Sufficiency Rally and Lobby Day on May 7.
  • The rally begins at 11:00 a.m. in the Main Capitol Rotunda and is sponsored by PA Cares for All. It is focused on General Assistance budget cuts.

More information is available on the respective web sites of sponsoring organizations. Further questions may be addressed to Anne Leisure at anne@paproviders.org.

_____________________________________________________________________
Copyright 2012 – Pennsylvania Community Providers Association
2101 N Front St, Bldg 3, Ste 200, Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone: 717-364-3280 – Fax: 717-364-3287
www.paproviders.org

 

PCPA Legislative Alert: Visit Legislators and Advocate for Community Services!

Governor Corbett will present his proposed 2012/13 state budget on February 7 and it is anticipated that the Department of Public Welfare budget may be cut. The budget will not be finalized until much later, usually by the end of June. There is significant opportunity to impact the final budget numbers by strong and effective advocacy in the districts. In the current economic climate it is more crucial than ever that community providers reach out to local legislators to educate them regarding the importance of maintaining the community safety net for constituents in need of mental health, intellectual disability, or substance use disorder services.

It is imperative that members contact legislators in their district offices to urge them to support funding mental health, intellectual disability, and substance use disorder services at a level that enables community agencies to continue to provide quality services. Visits are most effective if framed by:

  • educating legislators about your agency and the important role it plays in his or her district as both an employer and as a resource for constituents in need of services;
  • advocating for the key role of community services as a more effective and less costly modality for the provision of mental health, intellectual disability, and substance use disorder services; and
  • most importantly, how possible budget cuts impact your agency and, consequently, their constituents.

For supporting material, please review the talking points document referred to below.

Important information to highlight concerning your role as an employer includes the following.

  • The number of consumers/persons your organization serves annually.
  • The number of individuals employed by your organization. Remember that you are an employer – besides salaries, consider other rising costs (for example, increasing health care costs) at your organization. Be specific.
  • Remember that you are a business and purchaser of services – think about the amount spent on utilities (including vehicles, gasoline, phones, computers, furniture, food, postage, supplies, training, etc.). Make it clear to your legislator that your organization is vital to your community’s economy.

When contacting legislators the following materials should be shared:

It is important to note that PCPA members agree with the necessity of a balanced state budget, but not on the backs of individuals served. If services to Pennsylvanians in need of mental health, intellectual disability, autism, or addiction care are to remain accessible and effective, funding must be preserved and Pennsylvania’s safety net must be protected.  To avoid the implementation of cuts to community services, it is crucially important that members take action.

Questions and comments may be directed to George Kimes (george@paproviders.org) or Anne Leisure (anne@paproviders.org).