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Please enjoy OARC’s quarterly newsletter, which includes an update on IACC activities, recent events, news, and publications.

IACC Update

  IACC Logo empty space IACC Nominations Update
The appointments by the Secretary of HHS of new public members of the IACC are still pending. Once the new committee is formed, meetings and activities of the IACC will resume. For the latest updates on the IACC and federal agency activities related to autism, please see the IACC website at
News & Blogs
  The White House empty space Lifespan Respite Care Reauthorization Act of 2020 Signed into Law
In December 2020, President Donald Trump signed the Lifespan Respite Care Reauthorization Act of 2020 (H.R. 8906) into law. This legislation reauthorizes the Lifespan Respite Care Program through fiscal year (FY) 2024. This program supports the health and well-being of family caregivers and will authorize $10 million annually to establish or enhance respite resources.
  Housing and Urban Development Logo empty space HUD Awards $54.7 Million in Grants to Expand Development of New Rental Housing for Extremely Low-Income Persons with Disabilities
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded over $54.7 million to 15 organizations to expand the supply of affordable rental housing for extremely low-income persons with disabilities. The award will provide funding to develop new rental housing through HUD’s Section 811 Supportive Housing for Persons with Disabilities program and to subsidize rents.
  Collage of six people empty space CMS Releases Toolkit to Accelerate State Efforts to Rebalance Long-term Care Systems and Enhance Home and Community-Based Services for Eligible Medicaid Beneficiaries
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) created a new toolkit to support states’ efforts to expand and enhance home and community-based services and to move long-term services and supports from institutional to community-based systems. A more detailed overview of the toolkit can be found here and the full toolkit can be found here.
  Administration for Community Living Logo empty space ACL Awards New Grant to Strengthen Healthcare Workforce and Address Health Disparities of People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
The Administration for Community Living (ACL) awarded $1.75 million to Rush University to address the need for content on the health care needs of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) in health professional training programs. Rush University and its partners will develop new educational materials and practice opportunities through the Partnering to Transform Health Outcomes with Persons with Intellectual Disabilities and Developmental Disabilities (PATH-PWIDD) program.
  Administration for Community Living Logo empty space ACL Awards Alternatives to Guardianship Youth Resource Center
The ACL awarded approximately $1.5 million to the University of Massachusetts Boston to implement a national Alternatives to Guardianship Youth Resource Center. Alternatives to Guardianship is a new initiative that will divert high school students with I/DD away from guardianship to supported decision making.
Autism Meetings & Events
  Webinar Slide Cover for Using Innovative and Alternative Approaches for De-Escalating Individuals in Crisis Situations, which includes webinar name and headshots of Berkley Carnine and Chelsea Swift empty space Webinar: Using Innovative and Alternative Approaches for De-Escalating Individuals in Crisis Situations
January 19, 2021
The Administration for Community Living (ACL) hosted a webinar on strategies to de-escalate crisis situations involving people with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD). The webinar covered alternatives to police involvement, client-centered communications, scene safety, de-escalation strategies, rapport building, and the role of self in crisis intervention.
  The National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems Logo with collage of people to the right empty space Webinar: What It Takes to Facilitate Person-Centered Planning
January 6, 2021
The National Center on Advancing Person-Centered Practices and Systems (NCAPPS) at ACL hosted a webinar on creating a person-centered plan. The webinar highlights necessary skills for staff that facilitate the planning process. Additional meeting details can be found here.
Publications & Reports
  National Autism Indicators Report Cover empty space National Autism Indicators Report: Health and Health Care
The A.J. Drexel Autism Institute released the sixth report in their National Autism Indicators Report series. This report provides a broad overview of what health and healthcare looks like for people on the autism spectrum across the lifespan. It describes various health concerns and complex needs as well as racial and ethnic disparities.
  Mother helping son with homework empty space Distance Learning: Challenges Providing Services to K-12 English Learners and Students with Disabilities during COVID-19
The U.S. Government Accountability Office released a report on the impact of distance learning on English learners and students receiving special education services during the COVID-19 pandemic. A variety of factors made the delivery of services complicated, such as students' wide variety of needs, services specified in their individual education programs, and the capacity of parents or caregivers to assist the delivery of education and services.
Solicitations and Grants
  Health and Human Services Logo empty space OCR Seeks Information on Addressing Disability Discrimination in Health Care and Child Welfare Contexts
The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a request for information (RFI) for occurrences of disability discrimination in health care and child welfare. OCR is reviewing current nondiscrimination regulations and is considering revising the regulations to address concerns that have arisen in recent years. Click the RFI link to learn more and to see how to submit comments.
  Department of Justice Logo empty space The Kevin and Avonte Program: Reducing Injury and Death of Missing Individuals with Dementia and Developmental Disabilities
The Bureau of Justice Assistance in the Department of Justice is seeking applications for funding to reduce the number of deaths and injuries of people with dementia or intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) who wander away from safe environments. This program provides funding to law enforcement and public safety agencies. Applications are due by March 3, 2021.