Archive for February, 2011

Statement of Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security, on the President’s Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Request

Sunday, February 20th, 2011

For over seventy-five years, Social Security has provided hundreds of millions of Americans with an economic safety net. As the baby boomers retire and reach their disability-prone years, Social Security’s workloads continue to grow. In addition, the economic downturn has greatly increased the demand for our services. Despite this dramatic growth in our work, through increased employee productivity, new initiatives, and improved funding we have reversed a trend of declining service and an increasing backlog in our disability workloads.

The President’s budget request of $12.522 billion for Social Security’s administrative expenses will allow us to maintain staffing in our front-line components, fund ongoing activities, and cover our inflationary increases. It will allow us to reduce our hearings and initial disability claims backlogs, and to continue to reverse the decline in our program integrity work. Program integrity work not only pays for itself, but also produces considerable savings to the taxpayers.

Full funding by Congress of the President’s budget request is critical. This budget request is the minimum the agency needs to continue to reduce key backlogs and to increase deficit-reducing program integrity work. It will allow us to build on the considerable progress we have achieved, progress that is vital to the millions of people who depend on our services and to the American taxpayer.

For more information about the President’s 2012 budget request for Social Security, visit

Medicaid Waivers Workshop

Friday, February 11th, 2011

A Virginia Medicaid Waivers Workshop is scheduled for February 17, 2011 from 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. and will be held in the Holly Room at the Trailview Building. 906 Trailview Boulevard, Leesburg, Virginia, 20175.

This workshop will cover the 7 Virginia Medicaid Waivers – the application process and service implementation. Time will be allotted for questions. The goal is to provide information that is understandable to use in accessing Medicaid Waiver services.

Eligibility & Services

• Overview of Virginia Medicaid Waivers
• Eligibility – criteria and process
• How to decide which waiver you need
• Using the appeal process
• Wait list process
• Advocacy to address the wait lists
• Case management/support coordination
• Service planning
• Services in your home
• Employment services

The workshop is free and presented by ENDependence Center of Northern Virginia (ECNV, Inc.).

Pre-registration is requested at least 4 working days prior to the workshop. Later registration will be accepted if space is available and should be made by phone.

Email your name and phone number along with a request for disability accommodations to . You can also speak with Hannah Manila at Voice: (703) 525-3268, TTY: (703) 525-3553

Disability accommodations will be provided. Please make your request when you pre-register.

Free Seminars for School-to-Community Transition

Friday, February 11th, 2011

This winter, The Arc of Northern Virginia will hold a series of free seminars for school-to-community transition for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their parents.
This series will consist of three full-day seminars on Saturdays, one monthly evening round-table as a follow-up, and the ability to schedule one-on-one consultations with The Arc of Northern Virginia staff.

The Saturday seminars will have two separate tracks, one for parents and one for youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities and recent graduates, between the ages of 14-26.

The seminars will cover subjects such as:
• government entities
• social security and Medicaid waivers
• adult education
• vocation opportunities
• recreational options
• financial concerns and long-term planning

In addition to The Arc of Northern Virginia staff, presenters will include a variety of other community-based organizations providing services and assistance to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in Northern Virginia. At the end of the sessions, all participants will have completed a family mission plan to guide them through the challenging transition years.

Participants will need to attend all three meetings. Parents/guardians and young adults will breakout to attend different workshops in separate areas. Care attendants are strongly encouraged.

Who Should Attend? Parents & transitioning youth between the ages of 14-26. (*Parents can be family members, aide supports, guardians, and/or adult siblings or other relatives).

Dates & Time: Three Saturdays: February 19, March 12, April 9, 8:30 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Location: Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School, 7134 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22043

Contact Elaine Eisenbaum, Director of Advocacy and Operations, Tel:(703) 532-3214 Ext. 102, Email:

Space is limited. Participants must apply for this free program.

White House Monthly Disability Call

Friday, February 11th, 2011

In order to help keep the public more informed, the White House is hosting monthly calls to update us on various disability issues as well as to introduce us to persons who work on disability issues in the federal government.

This month’s topic will be on the President’s budget as it relates to people with disabilities. This call is off the record and not for press purposes.

This call will be Tuesday, February 15 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern.
Conference Call Information:
Dial in for listeners: United States: (800) 288-8974
Title: White House Disability Call (use instead of code)
Date of Call: February 15, 2011
Start Time: 1:00 p.m. Eastern
For live captioning, at time of call, log onto:

If you would like to be added to the White House Disability Group email distribution list, please email and provide your name, email address, city, state, and organization, if applicable.

Sheri has concentrated her law practice to the areas of Social Security Disability Law MORE...

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