Advocate

There have been several significant legislative actions made recently that threaten the services provided by Achieve Services, Inc. and similar programs. We have been actively reaching out to legislators and decision makers within the Minnesota Department of Human Services to ensure that our case is made.

You can help us by contacting your representatives and telling them that the participants at Achieve Services, Inc. are worthy of the best service possible and a one-size-fits-all approach is not appropriate for all individuals.

Disability Waiver Rate System

In 2013, the legislature passed the Disability Waiver Rate System, which restructures the how rates are set for disability services. This major shift in funding creates winners and losers with programs like Achieve Services on the losing end and at risk of losing 24-31% of our annual funding or approximately $1.1-$1.5 million.

The 7% Cut

In late February, 2018 the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) received notification from the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) of a problem with Minnesota’s rate setting policy for Minnesotans receiving home and community-based services (HCBS). This problem has resulted in a 7% cut to reimbursement rates for services received by several thousand Minnesotans with disabilities. As of July 1st, 2018, all individuals who are receiving services that are funded by the waiver, and whose rates were not banded sustained a 7% cut. If the legislature does not act to fix this problem in 2019, all services funded through the waiver will receive a 7% cut at the end of 2019.

View the Best Life Alliance website for more details.

How Can You Help?

1) Join MNFAC and the Best Life Alliance. This is the best way to stay up to date about legislative agendas and calls to action.

2) Contact your legislator. Visit the Minnesota District Search and enter your address and zip code to find out which representatives serve your district.

3) Contact the Department of Human Services. This agency is responsible for many of the policies that affect programs for people with disabilities. You can contact them by visiting their official website or sending an e-mail to DSD.PublicComments@state.mn.us.

4) Post on social media. The more people you can get involved, the more likely we are to affect real change. Share one of our blog posts (see below) or post a message of support on our Facebook page.

What Can You Say?

KEY MESSAGES

  • Help Address our Workforce Crisis by Adding a Competitive Workforce Factor to the DWRS rate formula!
  • Without question, the quality of services provided is driven by our ability to attract and retain the very best employees.  The DWRS, particularly in the wake of the 7% cut, does not allow us to pay livable wages.  As a result, staff turnover rates exceed 40%!  Please add a competitive workforce factor to the rate formula!
  • Do not time-limit the opportunity to engage in center-based work!
  • The fact is, some participants cannot, or choose not to, engage in competitive community-based employment.  Historically many higher-needs participants have chosen to do center-based work in a safe, supported environment.  This is their only opportunity to earn a paycheck, and gain the self-worth that goes with it.  Do not take this opportunity way from those who choose center-based employment!!
  • Help the hardest-hit programs transition to their lower rates!
  • The DWRS rates are hitting some programs particularly hard.  Achieve, for example, will lose over 20% of it’s revenue.  Please support the transition grant program (SF 1221/HF 1099) and avoid the displacement of hundreds of people currently being served.

 

If you have a story of how Achieve Services has benefited you or someone you love, those are the best types of stories to share. Here are some other great blog posts that you can share with legislators and friends:

Helpful Materials:

Helpful Links:

How Do You Learn More?

Contact us today to set up a tour or answer any questions that you might have.