2023 April Newsletter

April is Autism Awareness Month

Dear friends and families of CIDA

April is Autism Awareness Month. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, one in 36 American children are diagnosed with autism. Autism is no longer a low incident disability and many children and families are affected by it. Autism Awareness Month is an opportunity for all of us to show our support and spread awareness about autism. Your understanding, acceptance and compassion will give hope not only to people with autism but also to the entirety of the disability community.

Young Seh Bae, Ph.D.
Executive Director

Education & Policy News

Congress Considers Eliminating Waiting Lists for Disability Services.

Congress is evaluating a proposal to remove waiting lists for disability services and guarantee access to community-based support for individuals with developmental disabilities. The Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Access Act intends to make home and community-based services a compulsory Medicaid benefit. Currently, Medicaid covers institutional care, but people with disabilities often face long waiting periods for community-based assistance. The HCBS Access Act aims to gradually eliminate waiting lists through increased funding, state grants for service expansion, and caregiver workforce strengthening. President Joe Biden has called on Congress to approve a $150 billion investment over the next decade for these services. Additionally, Dingell and Casey introduced the “Better Care Better Jobs Act”, which would increase federal Medicaid matching funds for qualifying states. [View Original Article]

Tens of thousands of N.Y. young children with developmental delays are not getting critical services.

In recent years, tens of thousands of young children in New York State with developmental delays or disabilities have struggled to access vital early intervention services, a problem exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. A state audit showed that between 2018 and 2022, over 1 in 5 referred children either did not receive an evaluation or had pending results. Furthermore, many children faced delays beyond legally required timeframes, and over half did not obtain all entitled services, such as speech or physical therapy. The audit identified a provider shortage as a major contributor to these delays and service failures. Approximately 2,000 professionals have exited the state program since 2019 for higher-paying positions, and low wages complicate recruitment efforts. The pandemic also hindered parents’ ability to formally consent to services, as much of the program transitioned online. [View Original Article]

Nation’s Disability Services At Breaking Point, Report Finds.

A recent report by United Cerebral Palsy and the American Network of Community Options and Resources cautions that the disability services system is at a critical juncture. Programs are shutting down, providers struggle to meet federal requirements, and individuals with developmental disabilities are being denied services. By the end of 2021, over 481,000 people with developmental disabilities were on waiting lists for home and community-based services. Only 36 states now participate in Money Follows the Person, a Medicaid program that facilitates the transition from institutions to community living, down from 44 states in 2016. The core issue is the difficulty providers face in finding direct support professionals to assist individuals with developmental disabilities in community living. The average pay for these roles is $13.36 per hour. Disability advocates urge Congress to invest in Medicaid home and community-based services and the DSP workforce. [View Original Article]

What’s Up at CIDA

CoSpire Pop-up Thrift Shop

Make spring cleaning feel better! Donate items that you no longer use to CIDA’s Annual Thrift Shop. All contributions provided will assist our CoSpire program. By donating items you are creating work opportunities for our job development training interns, while any purchases go towards funding this program.

This year we’ll be accepting; Kitchen items, board games, stationery, household items, and items that you no longer use but could still be useful to us. We also greatly appreciate new or like new donations. Unfortunately.

Donation drop-offs will take place at CIDA Community Center, 36-28 Bell Blvd Bayside, NY 11361 from 9 AM to 3 PM on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from April 4th through April 13th

Thank you for supporting our thrift shop and helping us serve the community.

CIDA Centers’ New Afternoon Classes!

Starting this May, CIDA will be offering new afternoon classes opening to the public starting off with a week of free classes. Come check out our free sessions April 3rd – 6th. Our Art, Cooking, and Digital Design classes will be open to individuals from the ages of 9-16. Classes range from Monday to Thursday during 4 – 5:30 PM. Each class will be led by experienced instructors who will help build a foundation for each topic. Register now to save your seat. Purchase is available as a monthly bundle for $215 or individually for $65.

Registration & further information is available at cidacenter.com

Exclusive Fundraising Wine & Dine

CIDA is hosting our first private fundraising Wine & Dine on May 5th, 6:30 PM. This special event is unlike any of our other offerings and exclusive to the limited availability of parties of 10 or fewer, for $200 per person.

Featuring a lavish 4-course meal, You’ll have the rare opportunity to sit kitchen side and enjoy the experience of learning the history, technique, and process of your meal directly from your chef, as he prepares it for you. Our intimate community center environment creates a quaint and calming atmosphere, unlike any ordinary restaurant. Your expert chef Mr. Denis Williams has been cooking for 43 years and enjoys Neo-American cuisine and specializes in sharing his passion and knowledge in meaningful ways.

Wine is allowed on a bring-your-own-bottle basis, Limited to 1 bottle per 2 persons. Hard alcohol is restricted and not allowed on the premises of the CIDA Community Center.

Employers night

CIDA will be hosting our first Employers Night on Monday, March 27th from 5:30 – 7 PM.
Kicking off our monthly capacity building and networking event, CIDA staff will be presenting business lessons relating to marketing, employee retention, and hiring individuals with disabilities open to local bayside businesses. Join us to learn strategies to incorporate into your business or meet your next client!

Light refreshments will be served.

CIDA Highlights

Autism Awareness Day @ CIDA Community Center

Thank you so much for joining us at our Autism Awareness Day event at the community center. We are grateful for your presence and support as we celebrate Autism Acceptance Month. Your participation made the day truly special, and we hope you left feeling informed and inspired. We appreciate your efforts in helping us spread awareness and acceptance for those with autism and their families. Once again, thank you for making our event a success. We couldn’t have done it without you.

NYC Emergency Management Symposium

CIDA had the privilege of attending the 2023 NYC Emergency Management (NYCEM) Symposium, which placed a strong emphasis on empowering communities to support their neighbors before and after emergencies, with a particular focus on those with disabilities and access or functional needs. As participants in the NYCEM Strengthening Communities Program, we’re currently in the process of setting up emergency resources for community members who require special support. It’s been a fantastic opportunity to share our community’s voice, and we’re immensely grateful for the valuable insights and connections gained during the symposium, which have helped us to further strengthen our emergency preparedness.