The recent update to the regulations, which I am attaching and which are found in 45 CFR Part 1329, provide definitions for some of the core services, but not all. In addition, the definitions are not all-encompassing. In other words, they don’t actually give examples for the many ways the services are provided. In the case of peer support, for example, “peers” – people with disabilities – are involved in every aspect of the operation of a center, and peer support is a key philosophy, not only a service. When the core service of peer support is provided, then, it is provided in several different ways. It may occur incidentally by virtue of being surrounded by peers when one is accessing the center. It can be provided in a formal matching process, where volunteer peers are connected with consumers for the purpose of peer support. Sometimes a center will provide group peer experiences, such as a PTSD support group. Many of the systems advocacy efforts involve a group of consumers speaking for themselves, and this group is both advocacy and peer support.
With that in mind, here are the required core services, with definitions if they appear in the regs:
Advocacy means pleading an individual’s cause or speaking or writing in support of an individual. To the extent permitted by State law or the rules of the agency before which an individual is appearing, a non-lawyer may engage in advocacy on behalf of another individual. Advocacy may—
(1) Involve representing an individual—
(i) Before private entities or organizations, government agencies (whether State, local, or Federal), or in a court of law (whether State or Federal); or
(ii) In negotiations or mediation, in formal or informal administrative proceedings before government agencies (whether State, local, or Federal), or in legal proceedings in a court of law; and
(2) Be on behalf of—
(i) A single individual, in which case it is individual advocacy;
(ii) A group or class of individuals, in which case it is systems advocacy; or
(iii) Oneself, in which case it is self advocacy.
Peer Counseling including cross-disability peer counseling:
Peer relationships mean relationships involving mutual support and assistance among individuals with significant disabilities who are actively pursuing IL goals.
Peer role models mean individuals with significant disabilities whose achievements can serve as a positive example for other individuals with significant disabilities.
Transition: the newest to the Independent Living Core Services, which includes services that—
- Facilitate the transition of individuals with significant disabilities from nursing homes and other institutions to home and community-based residences, with the requisite supports and services;
- Provide assistance to individuals with significant disabilities who are at risk of entering institutions so that the individuals may remain in the community; and
- Facilitate the transition of youth who are individuals with significant disabilities, who were eligible for individualized education programs under section 614(d) of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (20 U.S.C. 1414(d)), and who have completed their secondary education or otherwise left school, to postsecondary life.
Youth with a significant disability means an individual with a significant disability who–(2) Is not older than 24 years of age.
- (1) Is not younger than 14 years of age; and
Information and referral services (not defined)
Independent living skills training (not defined)
In addition to these required core services, there are also a number of services that centers are allowed to provide. In the prior regs these included: Housing/shelter, rehabilitation technology, mobility training, services/training for individuals with cognitive or sensory disabilities, personal assistance services, identification of housing, recreation, transportation or other support services, information programs re: rehabilitation or independent living services, education and training for participating in community, supported living, transportation, physical rehabilitation, therapeutic treatment, assistive technology, social/recreation, youth services, preventative services, community awareness and other services that enhance independent living.
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