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    Ombudsman for Individuals with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities and Their Families
    Annual Report for 2019 - Submitted July 8, 2020

    Paul S. Aronsohn

    Click here for full PDF


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    The NJ Department of Children & Families has been working on guidelines to resume respite services for over 6 months!

    Time has now run out for families

    Read more here



    This Friday Popup Teen Movement Class at St. Joseph's Regional Medical Center
    Please join us for a teen movement class (ages 11-18) this Friday, October 16th at 3:30pm.

    Únase a nosotros para una clase de movimiento para adolescentes (de 11 a 18 años) este viernes 16 de octubre a las 3:30 pm. Contact Carmen Valentin valentinc@sjhmc.org for more info.

    The New Jersey Developmental Disability Advocacy Network  (DDAN), Person-Centered/Self-Directed Services Committee is seeking your input and feedback on the New Jersey Comprehensive Assessment Tool (NJCAT).

    The NJCAT is the standardized assessment tool used by the New Jersey Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) to determine eligibility for services and identify an individual’s level of need for support in three main areas: self-care, behavior health, and medical.

    Take the survey in English here.

    Responde la encuesta en español aquí.

    NJDDD Communications Updates

    • The deadline to register to vote in the November General Election is Tuesday, October 13. Visit the 2020 New Jersey Vote Information Portal for information about how to register, to register online, or to find out whether you are already registered.
    • The Census deadline is extended through October 31. If you haven’t already, please visit NJ Census 2020 to complete your census.
    • The NJ Department of Human Services has numerous COVID-related resources available to assist residents and their families:

     Finally, the Division’s next bi-weekly COVID-19 Update webinar is Thursday, October 15, from 10:30 – 11:30 am. If you did not already register, you can register here for the October COVID-19 Update Webinars. (Registering once will register you for all webinars in October.)

    DRNJ - voting resource

    Information Alert from The Arc of NJ

    Great News About the Final FY21 Budget for People with I/DD & Their Families! I am happy to report that the revised Fiscal Year 2021 Budget signed by Governor Murphy yesterday includes $40 million to increase wages for Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) while also avoiding any cuts to services and supports for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Read more here.

    Important information from The ARC of New Jersey

    It has come to our attention that there is a new concern for individuals with I/DD who have had SSI, were employed, and were laid off during the coronavirus pandemic.  These individuals received $600/week due to the CARES Act, in addition to other unemployment income. Many of these individuals were receiving more than $3,200/month, and this high amount of unearned income for SSI beneficiaries has led to this problem.

    If this information applies to an individual with I/DD, this is what you need to know:



    New Jersey's Personal Preference Program (PPP) is helpful for individuals with I/DD

    The Personal Preference Program (PPP) is an alternative to having a home health agency employee coming into the home. With the PPP, the individual or family chooses the person who will provide the ADL assistance, and that person could be the individual's mother or father, sibling, other relative or a friend. For the details about NJ's Personal Preference Program -- including the specific enrollment and operational procedures to be followed -- please see the helpful, 9-page, PPP Fact Sheet developed by the New Jersey Department of Human Services and the Division of Medical Assistance and Health Services (DMAHS). 

    Read more here.


    The Department of Human Services’ Division of Developmental Disabilities is pleased to release updated Residential Visitation Guidance that now permits indoor visitation, when certain conditions are met, with family and friends of individuals who reside in provider managed settings such as group homes. The Division’s Residential Screening Policy has also been updated to reflect this adjustment. 

    Visitation will require an attestation from the residential provider, guardian consent, and each visitor to sign a visitor agreement ahead of their visit. These forms can be found below and are also available here: NJ Department of Human Services COVID-19 Information.

     Further adjustments to policy will be made as more is learned about the virus. Please distribute this important information to your networks.


    We are excited to announce the opening of our application process for Independence Way in Florham Park, New Jersey.

    Independence Way will be home to 102 adults with developmental disabilities. Living options include 26 one-bedroom apartments and 36 two-bedroom apartments. All applicants must meet affordability requirements.

    Click here for more information or to apply.

    Questions? Contact us at housing@bergenunitedway.org or 201-291-0619.

     NJ Human Services to Deliver Special Food Assistance Benefits to Children Starting Next Week

    Read more here


A Message from the Director

  • Linda Welcome to the BCSS CAPE Resource Center.  We serve the special needs community by providing access to information, resources, services, educational opportunities and referrals.  Learn about the many features, services and benefits that the Center brings to the special need’s community.  

    We are all experiencing numerous challenges and emotions these days and having a loved one with a disability can present additional issues and concerns.  Please feel free to reach out to me for a friendly ear and/or for information/resources to help you and your family.

    Our Fall Zoom Webinars on topics such as guardianship, understanding governmental benefits, safety in the community, etc. are underway.  Our Virtual Parent/Caregiver Support Workshops facilitated by Doreen Moran have resumed and based on the participation, are a wonderful success.

    As we continue to plan our future workshops, if you have any suggestions about topics, please let me know.
    To join our email list for more information about our future workshops, please sign-up HERE - https://lp.constantcontact.com/su/V9b5SEg/parentssignup

    Hope to see you (virtually) soon!! Of course, feel free to contact me at the BCSS CAPE Resource Center if you have any questions/concerns, etc.  WE ARE OPEN.   201-343-6000 x 4076 or by email at linwie@bergen.org.

    Stay safe and be well!
    All the best,
    Linda Signature





BCSS CAPE Resource Center

  • The BCSS CAPE Resource Center serves as a...

    A hub for educators, community members and individuals living and working in and around Bergen County to locate services and resources for those with developmental and other disabilities;

    We offer...

    Resource Coordination/Information

    • Resource coordination includes intake as well as referral to the system of services and educational resources in Bergen County and the surrounding communities.
    • Educational materials, such as fact sheets, journal articles, publications, directories, etc., on topics related to people with disabilities;

    Educational Workshops (Areas of interest include…)

    • Transition Planning
    • Parenting Skills
    • Guardianship/Estate Planning/Special Needs Trusts
    • Housing Options
    • Monthly Parent Support Groups
      • Monthly Aspen Dads Groups
      • Monthly Parent Support Group for parents/caregivers with youth 14 yrs. and older

    Linda Wieseneck, Director, is available to answer questions and to provide consultation and support regarding special services and community resource options.  Follow up ensures quality of services.

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