To the Incompass community:
I hope you’re as pleased as I am to read this latest edition of Incompass Insights! The fact is that our agency continues to grow and innovate, as we just welcomed The Arc of Opportunity as the newest Incompass affiliate within the New England Human Services Collaborative. But one of the things I’m most proud of is – and always will be – our Care Champions! Just look at the number of people we’ve been able to promote to more senior positions internally just in these past few months, along with the recognition they’re receiving, and I think you’ll agree we have a special culture at Incompass!
There is one story that I want to call your attention to this month, and that is Incompass’ participation in the annual Northeast Human Services Legislative Breakfast. The event theme this year was “The Weight of Waiting” focusing on the people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are (still) waiting to receive critical services and supports they need to thrive and the burden that wait has placed on their families, caregivers, and loved ones. While recruitment and retention efforts are having more effect the pace remains slow due to insufficient rates of reimbursement, high inflationary costs and the limited availability of staff and other resources. As the public health emergency due to the pandemic is now coming to a close, the challenge may be even greater to address longstanding unmet needs.
It is essential now that we take stock of the progress we have made and identify the areas where we need to focus our future efforts. At Incompass Human Services and across the New England Human Services Collaborative, we are committed to providing the highest quality of care and support to those we serve, but we cannot do it alone. We need your help through advocacy to ensure that our programs and services are fully funded, staffed, and equipped to meet the needs of all the people we serve.
The pandemic magnified the longstanding challenges facing the human services field, by accelerating the issues associated with recruitment for our workforce. Without systemic reforms this problem will only worsen with time as there are a record number of people who will be turning 22 and entering the system over the next few years. While we were enthused by Governor Healey’s initial budget proposal in February, it is imperative that we act now to address this issue and invest in the future of our field.
Therefore, I am calling on all of you to join us in advocating for the fiscal investment needed to hire the necessary staff to get our programs – and others across the Commonwealth – back to full capacity. We must work together to ensure that the voices of those we serve, and their families are heard and that they receive the care and support they need and deserve.
If you click here, you can instantly send an email to your legislators in support of the bills aimed at increasing capacity in these critical programs and ensuring everyone gets the support they deserve. As an affiliate chapter of The Arc of Massachusetts, Incompass encourages you to join us in our advocacy campaign!
In closing I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude to all the elected and appointed officials who joined us at the “Weight of Waiting” legislative breakfast event. Your support is appreciated and valued and means more than you know. Let’s all continue to shine a light on the critical issues facing individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and their families across the Commonwealth.