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Disability NEWS – January 2, 2019

Banner of the Disability NEWS

Above is the Disability Program NEWS Banner.

January 2, 2019

In This Issue…

  • PSU creates first four-year inclusive college and employment program in Oregon for students with ID
  • Social Security Administration announces cost of living increase for 2019 benefits
  • Register now for “How to Apply for City of Portland Jobs” workshop on January 8th
  • Take Incight/JobsNow feedback survey with a chance to win a $100 VISA Gift Card
  • NAMI Multnomah offering three free classes in January for vets, families and peers
  • Hearing Loss Association of America-Portland Chapter changes meeting day & time for 2019
  • Join FACT Oregon for a day of learning and networking in Gresham on January 12th
  • NWDSA conducting Kindergarten Transition: Get Ready For the Big Day on January 19
  • Visit Disability Program Facebook page for more news, event postings

PSU creates first four-year inclusive college and employment program in Oregon for students with ID

Too often, after high school graduation, students with intellectual disability (ID) were unable to attend college and even engage in work for gainful integrated employment. Following national and Oregon legislation that removed barriers and established funding to develop inclusive education for students with ID, Portland State University (PSU) has created the first four-year inclusive college and employment program for individuals with intellectual disabilities in Oregon. 

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded funds to 44 universities nationwide, including Portland State University to lead the way in the creation of inclusive college and career experiences for students with ID. Research indicates that graduates of these inclusive college/employment certificate programs are achieving gainful integrated employment and higher wages.

The mission of PSU’s Career & Community Studies (CCS) is to offer a fully inclusive college experience for students with intellectual disabilities with the expectation that matriculated students will have access and opportunity to the same services, programs and courses as other PSU students. Each student’s college experience will be individually designed to support inclusive academic and career experiences leading to meaningful, integrated employment and self determination. At the completion of this four-year college experience, successful students earn the pre-baccalaureate certificate of Career and Community Studies (CCS).

This project is known as “Think College Inclusion Oregon” which is the grant that supports this work. PSU’s project is part of a larger national effort described at The Think College website will provide further information about the program, including a map to see what is happening in each state.

Social Security Administration announces cost of living increase for 2019 benefits

The Social Security Administration has announced that Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits for more than 67 million Americans will increase 2.8 percent in 2019. The 2.8 percent cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) will begin with benefits payable to more than 62 million Social Security beneficiaries in January 2019. Increased payments to more than 8 million SSI beneficiaries began on December 31, 2018.

Usually there is an increase in the Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefit amount people receive each month, starting the following January. By law, federal benefits increase when the cost of living rises, as measured by the Department of Labor’s Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W).

The CPI-W rises when prices increase for the things the average consumer buys. This means that when prices for goods and services people purchase become more expensive, on average, the COLA increases monthly benefit levels and helps recipients keep up with the changing cost of living.

The SSA also announced, for the first time in the agency’s history, that beneficiaries of Social Security will be able to view their COLA notice online through my Social Security account at

Disability Rights Oregon is offering information about the COLA increase with links to fact sheets, how to get more Social Security news, and more on its website.

Register now for “How to Apply for City of Portland Jobs” workshop on January 8th

The City’s Bureau of Human Resources is conducting a course entitled “How to Apply for City of Portland Jobs” on Tuesday, January 8. The class is for the public and all city employees who are interested in gaining a better understanding of the City’s job application process.

Course participants will gain an understanding of the City’s online application and evaluation processes. Participants will also learn about how to apply by creating an account, finding job opportunities, reviewing job announcements, and submitting the job application.

For more information and to register, contact Loan Tran by emailing Anyone needing an ADA accommodation to participate in City-sponsored training, should contact the Bureau of Human Resources no less than five (5) days prior to the date of the event by contacting 503-823-6846 or TTY 503-823-6868; or emailing BHR Training and Workforce Development with ADA Accommodation Request noted in the subject line.

Take Incight/JobsNow feedback survey with a chance to win a $100 VISA Gift Card

Incight/JobsNow is conducting a feedback survey regarding its 2018 activities and those who participate will be entered into a drawing to win a $100 VISA Gift Card. Incight strives to improve its events and feedback makes that possible.

To take the survey and be entered into the drawing, use the following weblink. Also, if you would like to be entered into the drawing, please be sure to include your email address and phone number for Incight to contact the winner. The odds of winning depend on the number of entries. The selection will be made on January 31, 2019. Only one entry per person is permitted.

Stay tuned with JobsNow for its 2019 Job Fair Schedule by visiting its website. Ten job fairs are scheduled in the Northwest, however registration is not yet open. To receive updates from Incight, sign up on the Incight website.

NAMI Multnomah offering three free classes to start in January for vets, families and peers

The National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) Multnomah Affiliate is providing three educational opportunities starting in early 2019 to help educate people in the Portland metro area about mental health issues. The classes are aimed for family members and loved ones, individuals with mental health conditions, and for veterans.

All classes are free, but require pre-registration. Call 503-228-5692 to register or for more information. Classes meet one time per week for two to three hours. Here is a list of the classes being provided with links for further information, class flyer downloads, and how to pre-register.

NAMI Family-to-Family is a free, 12-session educational program for family, significant others and friends of people living with mental illness. Two classes being held during January. The evening class is Thursdays, 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Emanuel Legacy Hospital in North Portland, beginning January 3rd. A morning class will be Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. to noon. at Portland Providence in Northeast Portland, beginning January 5th.

NAMI Peer-to-Peer is a unique, experiential learning program for people with serious mental illness who are interested in establishing and maintaining their wellness and recovery. It consists of eight two-hour sessions over eight weeks and is taught by a team of trained program leaders and a volunteer support person who are all personally experienced at living well with mental illness. Classes are Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to noon at Portland Providence in Northeast Portland, January 12th through March 2nd.

NAMI Homefront is designed to address the unique needs of family, caregivers and friends of those who have served or are currently serving our country. The program is taught by trained family members of service members/veterans living with mental health conditions. It is based on the NAMI Family-to-Family program. NAMI Homefront meets Tuesdays, 6:30 p.m.- 9:00 p.m. at the Portland VA from February 12th to March 19th.

NAMI Multnomah is the Portland metro affiliate and one of 1,100 nationwide affiliates of NAMI, the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization. NAMI’s mission is to improve the quality of life for individuals and families living with mental illness through supporteducation, and advocacyNAMI Multnomah helps educate people in the Portland metro area about mental health issues. It holds regular educational events, weekly support groups, and quarterly classes to help individuals and families better understand how to live with mental illness, begin the process of recovery, and sustain wellness. 

Hearing Loss Association of America-Portland changes meeting day & time for 2019

Hearing Loss Association of America-Portland’s 2019 meetings are being moved to Saturday mornings. As of January, the monthly meetings will be 10 a.m. on a Saturday. The first meeting will be the second Saturday, January 12th, and beginning on the third Saturday, February 16 to May 18. After a summer break, the meetings will resume from September 21 to December 21.

The group will continue to meet at Legacy Good Samaritan, in the second floor conference room in Building 2, where it has held most of its recent meetings. The building address is 1040 Northwest 22nd at Marshall Street. Also, HLAA-Portland will not have a December meeting this month.

The January 12, 2019 meeting will be an open forum for members to share the important hearing loss topics where they need support and resources.

The HLAA Portland chapter is dedicated to providing a supportive atmosphere to meet other hard of hearing people and learn about issues related to hearing loss. According to the National Center for Health Statistics 48 million (20 percent) Americans have some degree of hearing loss. It is the third most prevalent chronic health condition in older adults, after arthritis and heart disease, making it an issue of national concern. Find out more about the Portland chapter and resources for persons with hearing loss on its website, including how to receive its monthly newsletter.

Join FACT Oregon for a day of learning and networking in Gresham on January 12th

FACT Oregon is holding its Gresham Regional Conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, January 12, at 330 Powell Boulevard in Gresham. The conference is free for parents or family members of a child with a disability and Gresham Barlow School District Staff. It promises to be a day of learning and networking.

The conference features topics for families with children ages 0 to 21, such as: 

  • Transition to Kindergarten
  • Special Education and the IEP - Behavior Supports
  • Transition to Adulthood
  • Assistive Technology
  • Financial Planning
  • Person-centered Planning 

Participants may enjoy trainings, connecting with local resources, and learning critical information. Lunch, refreshments, and language information will be provided. The conference information on FACT Oregon’s events calendar offers further information, downloadable flyers, and a link to register.

NWDSA conducting “Kindergarten Transition: Get Ready For the Big Day” in January

To help families of young children with developmental disabilities get ready for their child’s entry into kintergarten, Northwest Down Syndrome Association (NWDSA) is offering “Kindergarten Transition: Get Ready For the Big Day” on Saturday, January 19. From 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., dive into tools, tips, rights, and partnerships for a great start to kindergarten. The free training, in both English and Spanish, is at the MESD Auditorium, 11611 Northeast Ainsworth Circle.

Moving from early childhood to the school years is exciting and can be confusing without tools and mentors to help navigate the transition. Bring your parental expertise and dreams to join with coordinators and guest speakers who want to help you along this exciting adventure.

Lunch is provided and RSVP is required. Visit the training’s website to learn more and register. If you require interpretation other than Spanish (other languages, ASL, etc.), please register at least two weeks in advance of the workshop.

NWDSA  has been a parent-driven family support network since 1997. NWDSA’s mission is to create and nurture a loving and inclusive community celebrating every person with a disability including Down syndrome. NWDSA/All Born (In) will accomplish this mission by empowering and supporting families and individuals who have been touched by developmental disability. Together with its cross-disability sister project, All Born (In), founded in 2006, they will work to increase education, promote public understanding and acceptance, work toward full inclusion, and defend the civil rights of individuals with Down syndrome.

Visit Disability Program Facebook page for more news, event postings

The Office of Community & Civic Life Disability Program Facebook page features daily postings of news, videos, events and issues of interest to people with disabilities.

The Disability NEWS is created and distributed twice monthly on the first and third Wednesdays by the City of Portland’s Disability Program in the Office of Community & Civic Life The NEWS, including back issues, is also available in the program’s website for viewing at this link.

To update your contact information, if you wish to submit information for the newsletter or if you know someone who would like to receive the newsletter, please email Events submitted will also be noted on the Disability Program Facebook page and featured on ONI Events calendar's list of Disability Events.

Please note: This information is available for downloading in an e-publication format for reading on a tablet, smart phone, digital reader or computer.