13 June 2003

PLN LIST is an email bulletin begun in 2001 for exchanging news and views about strategies of building and maintaining personal support networks for people with disabilities, and associated issues. PLN LIST came into being at the time Planned Lifetime Networks was incorporated in the Waterloo-Wellington region of southern Ontario. Members of the List are now distributed in communities across Canada, with some in other countries too.

PLN LIST is a free service maintained by Elizabeth & Gerald Bloomfield and hosted by the University of Guelph with technical support by Peter McCaskell. We welcome items of news and comment which should be sent to They will be grouped in batches for posting from time to time. Frequency depends on the volume of material submited and the urgency of announcing meetings or recommending advocacy.

Click for our archive of past PLN bulletins

a. If you wish to join or leave PLN LIST, please send a request including your first name and last name and your email address, to with "PLN" in the subject area.

b. When you have ideas and announcements to share with others, please send a message to  with "PLN" in the subject area.




June 14, 2003, in Brampton
“Connections 2003”
Attend this fourth annual resource fair for young adults with disabilities to find out about equipment, education, employment,
housing and services. To find out more, contact Jon Greenaway at

Send a fax in the week preceding Father's Day on June 15.
SSAH is an individualized form of funding that has been a popular and effective way of providing some flexible help to families who support their children and adults with special needs. At last count, the Ontario Ministry of Community, Family, and Children's  Services spent 6 per cent of its $1 billion budget to provide 18,500 families with an average $3,570/year.

  • But there are more than 1,000 families on the waiting list
  • Last year more than $2 million (that has been allocated to SSAH) was diverted to other purposes. 
  • Many families who support adults at home don't know they could get SSAH dollars
  • Families who live with autism spectrum disorders should apply for increased funding
The SSAH Coalition invites you to urge the Ministry to increase SSAH $$$$ and thus the ability of families to cope and improve their children's and adults' quality of life. Even if your family is doing all right, please speak up for the families, children and adults who are not getting enough help yet. 
Fax campaign featured in Toronto Star column 
Click to reach PDF files about SSAH and the campaign to send a huge number of Father's Day Faxes to the Minister.
Message from the Special Services at Home Coalition
SSAH: First Choice News
Father's Day Fax to the Minister advocating more SSAH funds
please download, print, complete and fax in the week preceding Father's Day on June 15.
Information about this campaign is also posted on FamilyNet 

Special Appeal: Special Services at Home Families in Northwestern Ontario need your support!
On April 1, 2003, the Ministry of Community, Family & Children’s Services, Sudbury office, assumed the responsibility
for processing invoices and reimbursing families for support workers’ wages. The transition has not been smooth and has created a number of challenges for families: 
·        The Ministry eliminated the capability to fax invoices. Families now have to mail their invoices, which results in
   significant delays for receipt of payments, especially for those residing in the district communities.
·        The Ministry was not prepared to oversee this responsibility, and as a direct result, families are bearing the financial impact to maintain their workers. Families have obligations to their workers, yet the payment schedule, set up by the    Ministry, is not being adhered to. 
·        Families have to wait a minimum of 10 days for reimbursement after the Sudbury office receives the invoices. This is creating financial hardships, families are at risk of losing valuable workers, and no strategy has been conveyed to address families’ concerns.

The Ministry of Community, Family & Children’s Services took back the responsibility of processing invoices to make the system more accountable.  Now it’s our turn to make the Ministry accountable to all the families utilizing the Special Services at Home Program in Ontario. Collectively we can effect a change! Let Nicole Cyrenne know that you’re assisting in our lobbying efforts to tell the Ministry that their current practices are unacceptable and something must be done in support of families! Nicole Cyrenne, Thunder Bay, ON:

June 16, 2003: all day, Toronto
Invitation to a press conference at Queen's Park, Toronto
Issues are individualized funding, SSAH, citizenship, choices, options, adequate
funding, our involvement as key stakeholders
Organized by the Peel Family Network, this event and the issues are relevant for all people with special needs in Ontario. Read on for the  background and agenda 
Please let Stan Woronko know if you can attend for all or part of Monday.
Stan Woronko for Peel Family Network. Phone (905) 629-2562 or


See details of more events on OAARSN Bulletin Board and Calendar
Please send submissions for this news bulletin or for the OAARSN Calendar and Bulletin Board in plain text format by email to with "announcement" at the beginning of the subject line.
Please provide details of the following as BRIEFLY as possible: 
 Name of Event 
 Main Speakers and Topics of Event 
 Date of Event 
 City and Location of Event 
 Contact information to learn more about event 
 Please Do Not Send Files Or Brochure Attachments 


This is a great time to become a TASH member
If you join now as an International TASH Member or an International/Chapter member,  you get a free copy of our acclaimed book, "Foundations for Freedom: International Perspectives on Self-Determination and Individualized Funding" one of the definitive publications on this topic. By joining TASH now you'll receive regular publications -- "TASH Connections" and "Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities" (formerly JASH) as well as being eligible for member discounts on registration for the TASH Annual Conference in Chicago, Dec. 11-13th. Super early bird rates for the conference are available now until June 30th at:
By joining now you'll also have the opportunity to register at member rates for the series of Telephone Conferences featuring top speakers on issues related to Quality Education in the General Education Classroom for Students with Significant Disabilities -- the series started on June 11th and is a knock-out. Complete descriptions of each session with speaker information, as well as dates, times, and registration information can be found on the TASH web
site at
Becoming a member is easy -- you can sign up online at:
or call here and renew easily by phone: 410-828-8274, ext. "0" (east coast business hours).
Nancy R. Weiss
Executive Director
29 W. Susquehanna Ave., Suite 210
Baltimore, MD 21204
410-828-8274, ext. 101



PLN Bulletin is now posted on the OAARSN website, so that past issues are indexed and accessible through Internet searches. While OAARSN is devoted to adult autism issues, some parts of the website are of more general interest to folks concerned about inclusion, self-determination and a good life for all who live with disabilities.

See the OAARSN Bulletin Board:
1. General News of Disabilities and Inclusion: 
Ontario News of Disabilities and Inclusion
News of Disabilities and Inclusion in the Rest of Canada
International News of Disabilities and Inclusion

2. Announcements of Events


4. Perspectives on Abilities and Inclusion (documents of personal experience)

5. our archive of past PLN bulletins
(including announcements of events already posted)