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July 17, 2018

Ensure the Right to Fair and Impartial Judges

President Trump has issued an Executive Order allowing Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) to be selected by political appointees.  Currently, ALJs go through a competitive examination and selection process open to all applicants.  This process ensures that ALJs are qualified and experienced and safegards against potential partisan interference when making decisions.  President Trump's Executive Order means that the only requirement for a person to become an ALJ is that they are licensed to practice law.  Over 85 percent of ALJs in the federal government work at the Social Security Administration and many others work in Health and Human Services (which decides Medicare cases).  ALJs often determine whether individuals are entitled to benefits after they have been denied Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income benefits.  When ALJs are politically appointed or potentially inexperienced, it is possible that cases will be decided based on the preferences of a political party rather than the rule of law.

Find more information from Justice in Aging here and read a letter from the American Association for Justice here.

Contact your members of Congress and urge them to stop the Trump Administration's efforts and ensure people's right to fair and impartial decisions!

Contact Congress by:

  1.  Identifying your two Senators and your Congressperson.  If you don’t know who they are, go to: https://www.govtrack.us/congress/members, then use the drop down menu where it says, "Or select a state to list all senators and representatives from that state." As soon as you select your state, your members of Congress will pop up.
  2. Calling the Capitol switchboard at (202) 224‐3121.  Follow the prompts.

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NORC End of Grant Year Wrap-Up

July 2017 – June 2018 was the first year of a three-year grant provided by the Administration for Community Living/Administration on Aging (ACL/AoA) to the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (CV) to house the National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC). As we finish the first year, we would like to thank all the State Ombudsmen and program representatives that have helped provide information, resources, and input to NORC. Below are highlights of resources and activities completed by NORC over the past year.  Find more information here.

  1. Responded to 418 requests for Technical Assistance (TA).  Top TA requests from Ombudsman programs were complaint handling, LTCOP training and funding.
  2. Hosted 5 webinars.  See recordings here.
  3. Conducted 19 presentations as part of the NORC training bureau and for national conferences.
  4. Launched the On-Demand Training Center.
  5. Created several new resources and updated many existing resources. See which resources here.

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New Agenda and Session Details Available for Consumer Voice Conference

A newly updated agenda and list of session descriptions and presenters are now available for the 2018 Consumer Voice Annual Conference.  Check out the preliminary agenda to plan your stay in the DC area.  See all session descriptions here and check out these agenda highlights:

  • The Empowered Caregiver: Lessons from a Twenty Year Career as a Nursing Home Neglect Attorney
  • Advocating for Well-Being Using NonPharmacological Approaches
  • Death of 105 Elders Due to Resident-to-Resident Incidents: A Pilot Study

Plus, don't miss our post-conference intensives, held Wednesday, October 24:

  1. Understanding and Addressing Bullying and Other Antagonistic Behaviors among Older Adults
  2. Bringing Hand in Hand to Life – A Competency Based Resource for Dementia and Abuse Training
  3. Nursing Home Evictions to Inappropriate Settings: Finding Answers

Other notable events include our annual Resident Luncheon and numerous networking events.

Register before July 31st to get the early bird rate!

  • Book your hotel room now at a very competitive rate.
  • Save more by applying for a group discount.
  • Interested in sponsoring or exhibiting at the conference? Find more information here.

Other questions? Check out our FAQ page or email info@theconsumervoice.org.

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New Inventory on Older Veteran Behavioral Resources Available from VA

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has created the Older Veteran Behavioral Health Resource Inventory.  This resource aims to address the unique needs of veterans by providing an overview of resources for health and social service professionals interested in enhancing their outreach and support for older veterans who have or are at risk of behavioral health conditions.  The inventory is available through the VA Community Provider Toolkit.

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Spotlight on Resources

The Consumer Voice and the National Ombudsman Resource Center (NORC) have a multitude of resources available online covering a wide range of long-term care topics.  Visit the Consumer Voice website and the NORC website to explore all the available resources.  Take a look at this week's highlighted resource:

Volunteer Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program Representative Intake Toolkit

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In this Issue

Ensure the Right to Fair and Impartial Judges

NORC End of Grant Year Wrap-Up

New Agenda and Session Details Available for Consumer Voice Conference

New Inventory on Older Veteran Behavioral Resources Available from VA

Spotlight on Resources

REMINDER: Join the Resident's Voice Challenge

Long-term care consumers are encouraged to pick up their pens, dust off their typewriters or use a computer to display their writing or artistic skills by submitting essays, poems, artwork, drawings, or videos related to the theme for Residents' Rights Month "Speak Up: Know Your Rights and How to Use Them."

Find guidelines, prompt questions and examples of entries here.

Entries are due September 1st.

Plus, start planning for Residents' Rights Month in October now!  Check out our updated activity calendar.

Calendar of Events

September 5-7: National Center for Victims of Crime 2018 National Training Institute

October: Residents' Rights Month, Speak Up: Know Your Rights and How to Use Them

October 22-24: Consumer Voice Annual Conference, Alexandria, Virginia

Join the conversation and follow us on social media!

Last Week's Most Popular Post:

Tuesday, July 10:
"It was the first time in Louise Bentley's 88 years that she had been moved to demonstrate."

Last Week's Most Popular Tweet:

Friday, July 13:

National Center on Law and Elder Rights has a new website.

Long-Term Care Resources & News

Read past issues of The Voice here.

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About The Voice

The Voice is a weekly e-newsletter, published by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care. If you do not wish to continue receiving this publication, please unsubscribe below. Your contributions and comments are welcome and should be sent to info@theconsumervoice.org. Copyright © 2018.

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Consumer Voice is the leading national voice representing consumers in issues related to long-term care, helping to ensure that consumers are empowered to advocate for themselves. We are a primary source of information and tools for consumers, families, caregivers, advocates and ombudsmen to help ensure quality care for the individual. Consumer Voice's mission is to represent consumers at the national level for quality long-term care, services and supports.

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