Monday, February 11, 2008

Ohio Committee Seeks Comments

The Futures Committee of the Ohio Department of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities (ODMRDD) will be holding a public hearing in Columbus this Thursday, February 14, to discuss the services provided for the agency's clients and to develop a long-term plan.

ASAN Southwest Ohio encourages autistic self-advocates in Ohio to attend the hearing or to submit comments by e-mail.

2008 Public Hearing Scheduled -

The Public Hearing is scheduled for February 14 from 9:00 am - 12:00 pm at the Riffe Center, 77 S. High St. The Futures Committee will meet from 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm after the testimony.
Futures SubCommittee Recommendations are in and there are 33 Suggestions for System Improvements.

The Subcommittees have made a set of recommendations that address the legislative mandate and offer strategic opportunities to improve the services, access and quality for individuals and families. They also set the strategy for addressing issues of financial sustainability and system improvements for the future.

The Futures Committee is interested in testimony related to the Recommendations submitted to by the Subcommittees and in the how well those recommendations meet the Legislative Mandate of the Committee.

The Subcommittee members worked very hard to organize a great deal of input into defined and measurable recommendations. The full committee will next move forward in assessing the key issues and priorities to be acted upon as the foundation for ODMRDD’s direction over the next three years.

Public testimony will be limited to 3-5 minutes, but written comments of any length can be submitted in person or through the MRDD Futures Website via an email. We encourage everyone who wishes to testify to notify the Department via e-mail so that we can accommodate as many as possible during the scheduled time. People who pre-register will have priority to testify before those who do not.

Written testimony can also be mailed: ODMRDD, ATTN: Lisa Walsh, 1810 Sullivant Ave., Columbus, OH 43223-1239.

Remember – the accessible entrance to the Riffe Center is on the State St. side of the building.

The Committee is chaired by ODMRDD Director John Martin. The Committee’s 22 members represent a variety of organizations interested in Ohio’s MRDD system, and includes an individual with MRDD, a family member, and others in the MRDD arena. Through the Committee, the ODMRDD will develop an overall long-range strategic plan for continuous improvement of the MRDD system. The Committee will focus on finding practical solutions in four specific areas:

1) accessing services and supports;

2) financing MRDD services and supports;

3) delivering quality services; and,

4) serving populations with specialized needs.

The Committee’s recommendations will address how to achieve improvements in the systems serving individuals with MRDD and their families, while balancing available resources in relation to the needs of individuals, families, and communities.


By March 30, 2008, the MRDD Futures Committee will produce a written report for Governor Strickland and the General Assembly. The report will include the results of the study, stakeholder involvement, and the Committee’s recommendations. Following submission of the report, the MRDD Futures Committee will cease to exist.

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