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Disability NEWS -- 2/15/2013


FEBRUARY 15, 2013

  • BPS schedules workshops to discuss Portland’s Comprehensive Plan
  • Upcoming Portland Commission on Disability meetings in February and March
  • Portland  Hearing Loss Association monthly meeting set for February 19
  • Free tax assistance available through VITA and TCE programs
  • Health Share of Oregon’s CAC to meet March 1 and hear staff updates
  • Federal benefits recipients must use electronic payment system by March 1
  • County holds forum on new initiatives for healthcare and early childhood programs
  • PHAME’s New Community Arts Open House is free on March 14
  • Free training is February 28 in positive parenting for challenging behaviors
  • GO! Project coordinating Adopt-A-Legislator Advocacy Teams for 2013
  • Incight’s “Tapping Fresh Talent” Career Expo will be April 11 at Expo Center
  • Visit the City’s and PCOD’s Facebook pages for current postings and news

BPS schedules workshops
to discuss Portland’s Comp Plan

The Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) is scheduling Comprehensive Plan workshops beginning in February for the community to provide feedback on its Working Draft Part 1. The City’s Comprehensive Plan is being updated with a focus on equity to help manage expected population and employment growth. It will also coordinate major public investments in parks, roads, housing, sewers, business districts and more over the next 20 years in Portland.

BPS staff and more than 160 community members have developed the Working Draft Part 1 and want to hear from the community. The draft plan and information about the seven workshops, the first being held on February 19, is available at this web page on the BPS website.

The new Comprehensive Plan will set guidelines for community involvement and influence the direction of private development and public facilities — all to ensure that Portland is a more prosperous, healthy, educated, equitable and resilient city. While the Portland Plan set goals and policies for economic development, housing, education, transportation and watershed health, the new Comprehensive Plan will help implement them through more specific city policies to help in making better on-the-ground decisions in the City's neighborhoods.


Portland Commission on Disability
Meetings in February and March

PCoD Public Outreach and Awareness Subcommittee

Thursday, February 21, 4 to 6 p.m.

Broadway Conference Room, Office of Equity & Human Rights

Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 500

PCoD Employment Subcommittee

Meeting rescheduled from February
Friday, March 1, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Office of Equity & Human Rights

Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 500

PCoD Executive Board Meeting

Wednesday, March 6, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Office of Equity & Human Rights

Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 500

PCoD Livability and Wellness Subcommittee

Friday, March 8, 1 to 3 pm

Broadway Room, Office of Equity & Human Rights
Commonwealth Building, 421 SW 6th Ave, Suite 500

PCoD Accessibility in the Built Environment Subcommittee

Monday, March 11, 10 am to 1 pm

1900 Building, 1900 SW Fourth Ave, Room 4A

PLEASE NOTE: All Portland Commission on Disability
meetings and events are open to the public.

Portland  Hearing Loss Association
monthly meeting set for February 19

The Hearing Loss Association is extending an invitation attend their monthly meeting on February 19 at 7  pm to discuss topics of interest to the hearing loss community in Portland. The meeting is at 1040 NW 22nd Avenue in Legacy Good Samaritan Hospital's North-South 1st Floor Conference Room (Room 164). The meetings are on the third Tuesday of every month, September through May.

This month’s discussion will focus on working with the providers of basic hearing assistance devices. How to best communicate with audiologists and other providers of hearing aids, cochlear implants, BAHAs, etc., will help users get the most benefit from their investment in these various devices.

The monthly meetings are accessible by the use of an amplification-loop assistive system that is accessed by a telecoil inside a hearing aid or cochlear implant and with real-time captioning.


Free tax assistance available
through IRS's VITA and TCE programs

The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) programs are offering help for people to prepare their federal tax return. People who make $51,000 or less may be assisted by IRS-certified volunteers in the VITA Program. The VITA volunteers will provide information about tax credits which people may qualify for and prepare a basic tax return with electronic filing. The TCE Program assists persons 60 years of age or older, who qualify, with free tax help from IRS-certified volunteers who specialize in issues that pertain to seniors.

There are thousands of locations across the United States for these services. Check this IRS web page for more information and where to receive this tax assistance.


Health Share of Oregon’s CAC to meet
March 1 and updates on initiatives

Health Share of Oregon’s Community Advisory Council will hear updates on initiatives and studies from the coordinated care organization’s staff at their March 1 public meeting, to be held at the Clackamas County Public Services Building. The meeting begins at noon in Rooms 329 A and B, 2051 Kaen Road in Oregon City.

Reasonable accommodations will be provided as needed for persons with disabilities. Those needing accommodations should contact Jacob Figas, Community Engagement Program Coordinator, at or (503) 416-4969 at least 48 hours before the meeting.

Serving Clackamas, Multnomah and Washington Counties, Health Share of Oregon is a unique community-wide partnership created to ensure quality, cost-effective care for Oregon Health Plan members. The largest of the state’s new Coordinated Care Organizations, Health Share provides an integrated community delivery system with the objective of achieving better care, better health and lower costs for the Medicaid population and for the region.


Federal recipients must use
electronic payment system by March 1

Anyone receiving their federal benefits by paper check, must switch to electronic payments by March 1, 2013. The federal benefits affected are Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Veterans Affairs, Railroad Retirement Board, Office of Personnel Management and Department of Labor (Black Lung).

The electronic benefits will be delivered in either of two options: Direct Deposit or Prepaid Debit Card. Benefit recipients are being encourages to not wait until time runs out. Go Direct has posted more information to avoid any delays next month on its website to learn about this change. Anyone with questions may also call the Go Direct Helpline at 800-333-1795.


County holds forum on new healthcare
and early childhood initiatives

On Wednesday, March 6, the Multnomah County Citizen Involvement Committee and County Chair Jeff Cogen will co-sponsor a forum about upcoming changes in the county's early childhood programs and healthcare system. The meeting is from 6 to 8 pm in the Multnomah Building Boardroom at 501 SE Hawthorne. To request accommodations, contact the Office of Citizen Involvement at 503-988-3450 or

The forum will first provide an overview of proposed state changes to early childhood programs and Multnomah County's role in this process. The county's current programs may be significantly affected by Governor John Kitzhaber’s 2013 legislative priority to create a state-wide early childhood system that provides greater emphasis on kindergarten preparation and school success.

The second half of the forum will focus on the county's new healthcare system, including descriptions of the benefits provided and eligibility requirements. An overview of Multnomah County’s new Coordinated Care Organization that provides care for low-income county residents will be presented. Additionally, information will be given about the new state-sponsored marketplace for working individuals and families to shop for health insurance plans and access financial assistance to help pay for coverage.


PHAME’s New Community Arts
Open House is free on March 14

PHAME Academy's second “Get PHAME-ous!,” will be Thursday, March 14, from 7 to 9 pm, at the PHAME Headquarters, 1535 NE 17th Avenue. The FREE community arts open house event will feature open classes, live performance, art shows, art-making opportunities, talk-backs and snacks. Get PHAME-ous! will showcase the full range of fine and performing arts that PHAME’s adult artists and performers with developmental disabilities study and practice at PHAME Academy.

“At PHAME, we believe everyone has the right to be an artist. And this exciting new ‘Get PHAME-ous!’ community arts open house series is all about creativity, and community, and making connections,” says PHAME Executive Director Stephen Marc Beaudoin. “For a few hours during ‘Get PHAME-ous!’ you will get to step inside PHAME’s doors and connect with our classes and teachers, our inspiration and work, and especially our students – the heart of what we do."

All events in the “Get PHAME-ous!” series are free and open to the public. For more information on “Get PHAME-ous!” call 503-764-9718 or visit PHAME’s website. Spanish language materials available at the events, and braille materials are available with advance notice.


Free training for positive parenting
for challenging behaviors this month

Family and Community Together (FACT) announces a Positive Parenting for Challenging Behaviors training for Thursday, February 28, from 4:30 to 7:30 pm. This training will be at the Gresham Library, 385 NW Miller Avenue, to provide participants with information about behavior, communication and effective, simple proactive strategies to help decrease challenging behavior and increase independence.

A light dinner will provided. Register today using a quick and easy online registration form. Anyone having questions or needing assistance filling out the registration form, is requested to email or call 1-888-988-3228.

The presentation is being provided by Oregon Technical Assistance Corporation’s Community Supports and Crisis Project in collaboration with Family and Community Together. The target audience consists of parents, family members, foster parents, in-home support providers and county service providers.


GO! Project provides Adopt-A-Legislator
Advocacy Teams for 2013 session

The Oregon DD Coalition and its GO! Project (Grassroots Oregon) is coordinating statewide advocacy efforts to inform legislators of issues impacting individuals with developmental disabilities and their families. The 2013 legislative session is underway and the GO Project is encouraging people to join an Advocacy Team and adopt a legislator.

Members of each team will receive new Print and GO! advocacy materials and ongoing support from the GO Project. Photos and activity updates will be shared through Facebook, email and the DD Coalition website. Adopt your legislator today by visiting the DD Coalition website for more information.


Incight’s “Tapping Fresh Talent”
Career Expo will be April 11th

The 2013 Tapping Fresh Talent Career Expo will be on April 11 from 10 am to 2 pm in the Oregon Convention Center's large exhibit hall. Incight and Oregon Vocational Rehabilitation Services are hosting the sixth Tapping Fresh Talent event to link employers with the skills and talents of Oregonians with disabilities and to grow inclusion with businesses needing those talents.

The career inclusion expo is the place for businessse to expand their diversity, interact with the fastest growing minority, improve their retention, recruit job seekers with disabilities, find interns and more. Workshops are scheduled for job seekers in self empowerment to help reduce limiting beliefs which inhibit success, networking to make a difference for employment and starting one's own business. More information for business and attendees is at the Tapping Fresh Talent website.


Visit Disability Program Facebook
page for news, event postings

The Office of Neighborhood Involvement Disability Program Facebook page features daily postings of news, videos, events and issues of interest to people with disabilities.  Visit the program’s Facebook page to read these postings and other information posted daily on disability issues, news and concerns.


Get more news/information at the Commission’s website

You can access more information on resources, events and the Portland Commission on Disability at the program’s website:

he Commission has begun development of its own website, which is found at There are links for meeting calendars, the Commission’s Facebook page, commissioner profiles and other information. The site is adding more content now that the Commission has moved to the Office of Equity & Human Rights. Please visit and follow its development.

To update your contact information, if you know someone who would like to receive the newsletter or if you wish to submit information for the newsletter, please contact Patrick Philpott, Program Specialist for the Portland Commission on Disability, at 503-823-4432 by phone or email

Please note: This information may also provided in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF formats. Please use the contact information above to make your request for an alternative format.

The Disability NEWS is distributed by the Portland Commission on Disability and the City of Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement’s Disability Program.