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.

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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.

19 October 2004

Look up  link to list of earlier bulletins for announcements and news that may be still current.

If you are concerned with Autism Spectrum Disorders, please note the wealth of news, announcements and other links in the Autism News Bulletins that are archived on the OAARSN website. Click for the list of OAARSN bulletins that are also concerned with general issues of disability and inclusion.



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
 URL Link for more information/registration 

 Please Do Not Send Files Or Brochure Attachments

Wednesday, October 20, 2-3pm Pacific Time
World Talk Radio presents: Treating Autism Ethically
World Talk Radio is an internet radio talk show committed to lively,
bold discussions about the ethical concerns of our time, personal and professional
Your Host: Kathleen Brooks, Ph.D.
My Guest: Chantal Sicile-Kira
A frequent speaker to professional and parent organizations on autism spectrum
disorders, advocacy and parent strategies for empowerment, she is the author
Our Topic: Treating Autism Ethically
You're invited to call us toll-free at 888-514-2100.

Thursday, October 21, 7:30-9:30pm, in Kitchener
Disability and Income Tax
Planned Lifetime Networks Fall 2004 Workshop Series
Planning for Good Lives Now!
St Andrews Presbyterian Church, 54 Queen North, at corner of Weber
Formore details phone 519-746-1188 or email

Saturday, October 23, 9 am - 4:30 pm, in St. Marys Friendship Centre
Home Sweet Home
One day workshop for people with disabilities, families and service providers to hear about unique and different ways people have created a home for themselves. The first step is having a vision. While this is not a workshop about how to secure funding for individual support needs, it will open minds to what is possible in terms of how people can live.  Click for flyer, map and registration form

October 24, 2004, 9am-4pm, in Toronto
Dr Ross Greene, author of The Explosive Child, presents a full day course focusing on children and adolescents who exhibit noncompliance, defiance, oppositional behavior, poor frustration tolerance, intense temper outbursts, verbal or physical aggression, anxiety or marked inflexibility. He will describe a new, effective, practical, and research-based approach that has proven to decrease adversarial teacher-student & parent-child interactions, reduce hostility at school & home, and improve the child’s and adolescent’s capacities for frustration tolerance, flexibility, problem-solving, self-regulation and communication. See full details

Thursday, October 28, 7:30-9:30pm, in Kitchener
Creating Useful Records
Planned Lifetime Networks Fall 2004 Workshop Series
Planning for Good Lives Now!
St Andrews Presbyterian Church, 54 Queen North, at corner of Weber
Formore details phone 519-746-1188 or email

Thursday, October 28 & Friday, October 29, 2004, in London
Adults with Down Syndrome: Moving into the Future
presented by Regional Support Associates
Best Western Lamplighter Inn, London
Click for more information and to register

October 29 and November 26, in London

Suicide Recognition and Response
Workshops by J. Arthur Sheil

November 4, 7-9pm
November 5, 8:30am-3:30pm
Coaching to Inclusion
Guest Speaker - Dr. Thomas Armstrong
Best Western Lamplighter Inn, London, ON
Details for Thursday, Nov 4 program and Friday, Nov 5 program

Monday, November 1, 7-9 pm, in Guelph
Vision and Strategic Plan for a Farm Community &
Regional Centre for Autism Spectrum Disorder Expertise
A workshop offered by Guelph Services for the Autistic and Waterloo-Wellington Autism Services and facilitated by Bruce Kappel. Free, but registration by October 25 necessary as space is limited. Click for flyer

Link to background information about this idea

Email GSA or leave message at phone 519-823-9232.

November 18, 2004, 7-9pm, in Toronto

How to Complain Effectively
presented by Ombudsman Ontario. 
This interactive session will include:
  • learning skills to complain more effectively,
  • how Ombudsman Ontario can help solve problems with provincial services & learning how to make changes so others are treated fairly
When: Thursday November 18th 2004, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.
Where: Bloorview MacMillan Children's Centre
  (MacMillan site @ 150 Kilgour Road)
Parking: regular parking rates apply at meters (there is heavy construction in area)
Cost: parents $5.00 and professionals $10.00
Childcare: NOT available
How to register: by phone (Pamela Kearns @ 416-425-6220, ext. 3310) or
e-mail (

November 17-20, at Reno Hilton

2004 Annual TASH Conference,

The TASH Conference is the largest and most progressive international conference, known for pioneering strategies and blazing trails towards inclusive lives for people with disabilities and their families. You will not want to miss this invigorating conference, which brings together the best hearts and minds in the disability movement, and is jam-packed with over 300 topic specific breakout sessions, exhibits, roundtable discussions, poster sessions and much more.

Visit the conference website
for updates and complete information.

November 24-26, 2004, in Ottawa
National Summit on Inclusive Education
Hosted by Canadian Association for Community Living
Crowne Plaza Hotel, Ottawa, ON
Conference brochure
Information schedule
To register Click Here

Thursday, December 2, 2004, 9am-4:30pm, in Toronto
An Exploration of Some Higher Order Issues of
Restraint as a Human Service Technique

Location:  Room SHE560, 5th Floor, Sally Horsfall Eaton Building,
Ryerson University
Recently, the press, some advocacy groups, and professional organizations have been raising questions concerning the use of restraints in human services.  This workshop provides a forum for concerned individuals, especially service workers, to explore some of these troubling moral questions raised by the use of restraints in human services, especially within the context of the vulnerability of people who receive services.  This is not a how-to-workshop, but rather an opportunity for reflection and learning. Click for information and to register



Carers' Card-- a good idea!
A new scheme to ease the concerns of families who care for people with a disability at home has been launched by Mencap in the UK. The carers' card described as 'a little piece of cardboard, for a lot of peace of mind' will carry details of two people who have agreed to be a contact should the carer become ill or have an accident. This will make sure the right information gets to the right people if a carer is temporarily out of action.
The carers' card was launched in Surrey by Mencap's president, Lord Rix, earlier this month. If it proves successful, the card will then be promoted nationwide. Six out of ten people with a severe learning disability are cared for at home by family carers.

Regional Support Associates announces Video Conferencing for Southwest Region of Ontario
"The Ministry of Community and Social Services and Ministry of Children's Services selected RSA and its partners to implement the Video Teleconference Pilot Project for the Southwest Region. This state of the art equipment will create the opportunity to make all the clinical staff of RSA and other community partners accessible to all corners of the region. RSA has built a model of service which offers its clinical services to the individual in their home community."



Ontario Coalition for Long Term Care Reform
Consisting of over 30 seniors’ advocacy, disability rights, and service provider organizations, as well as individual and systemic advocates, policy analysts, academics, and lawyers, the Coalition believes "in the worth and dignity of every person, irrespective of age, health status, or disability. Our vision is the creation of a long term care system that encourages the empowerment of individuals and families, through choices, involvement, and the promotion of interdependence and self-determination. We envision a greatly strengthened and expanded not-for-profit community services sector, individualized funding, and the building of both formal and informal supports to ensure that individuals remain in their own homes, neighborhoods, and communities throughout their lifetimes.

Mission of the Ontario Coalition for Long Term Care Reform is to promote public policy that strengthens all individuals’ abilities to remain full and contributing citizens throughout their lifetimes, while valuing their worth as individuals.  Our intent is to pursue advocacy strategies that will lead to a long term care system that is increasingly based on principles of not-for-profit services delivery and that stresses interventions that defer, or avoid entirely, the need for institutionalization of any kind."

The Coalition is actively advocating with the Ontario Government to realize this vision. Contact the Coalition for more information and sample advocacy letters.
Ontario Coalition for Long Term Care Reform
P.O Box 11013
97 Guildwood Parkway
Toronto, ON.
M1E 5G5
Fax: 416 261-0264



PLAN Institute - Online Course Survey 

We know communities become more hospitable, caring and resilient as a result of the contributions of people with disabilities and their families. We also know disability can equal loneliness and isolation without the opportunity for meaningful contribution.

Plan Institute is interested in developing a series of online courses related to the key concepts, underlying values and theory related to social networks and organizational transformation.

Please take a moment to complete the online survey, accessible by clicking on the following link:

Complete as many or as few questions as you like.  Your input is most appreciated.

Nancy Ford, Program Coordinator
PLAN Institute for Citizenship and Disability


Friday, April 29, 2005 in Guelph (at Ignatius Centre/Orchard Park)

Guelph Services for the Autistic and OAARSN are taking the lead in convening a gathering of Ontario people who want and need to be creative in supporting good lives with and for adults who are vulnerable because of disability. Our experience with folks who live with Autism Spectrum Disorders makes us aware of very complex challenges. We think these are shared in varying combinations by adults with other exceptionalities. We particularly want to encourage self-advocates, families and friends to take part.

  • Our concern is practical--how to plan and implement the elements of a good life for each person and that we can learn from each other's effective strategies and success stories.
  • Our approach is comprehensive and holistic. We hope to put our minds and imaginations around various strategies, to show the connections among them, and to help persons and families think about and choose combinations that may work for them.
  • We plan a process of collaboration in discussion and sharing resources--during the conference and also beforehand and afterwards, using the OAARSN website and other media.
  • We intend to apply for a Trillium project grant that would help, among other purposes:
    • to enable needy persons and families to attend
    • to record highlights of keynote, workshops and poster presentations, editing them into electronic and video resources to share with people and groups who cannot attend
We welcome the following forms of collaboration with other groups:
1. Ideas of good strategies and models that should be included and represented and of needs that could be addressed by this conference. Questions and comments....

2. Display materials illustrating creative strategies and success stories developed by your group or known to you, for the poster presentations and shorter sessions in the afternoon.
These are some examples we know ourselves, but we want to include more:
-ways of "deep listening" to vulnerable persons who do not speak
-helping self-advocates to direct their own supports
-creating and maintaining circles of support to supplement and succeed living parents
-circles of support for vulnerable persons who have no family
-creative options to have a home of one's own
-independence technologies
-recruiting volunteers to be informal friends
-ways to screen, train and appreciate excellent volunteers
-bridging gaps between adults with special needs and their neighbourhoods and communities
-supporting adults who want to continue learning, formally and informally
-enabling people to develop micro-enterprises
-lifesharing communities in households or larger units
-planning good lives now, to be effective through future transitions when parents can no longer support vulnerable adults
-how brokerage works
-what aroha/microboards can do

3. Someone to be the liaison person for your organization or support group, who will pass on news and updates to your members.

4. Letters of support for our Trillium Foundation application--referring to the good features of the event and process in relation to each organization's focus and sense of need. We would like to receive such letters by September 30, please.

5. If we cannot raise enough funds from Trillium, we welcome ideas of other sources of funds.

We look forward to hearing from you and very much hope that you can take part in some way.

Elizabeth & Gerald Bloomfield Click for planning updates and conference program

(Information at this link will be updated regularly, so please bookmark it).



{return to the OAARSN Bulletin Board}