Weekly Focus - July 15, 2016

An update and information report for doctors who provide consultative exams for OOD’s Division of Disability Determination
Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities

Kevin L. Miller, Executive Director

July 15, 2016

The mission of the Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities Agency is to ensure individuals with disabilities achieve quality employment, independence and disability determination outcomes.

What's Inside:

OOD and Map It Making an Impact

Destinee Dunn Map It
Destinee Dunn, Dawn Ellison, Destinee's mother, and Jodi Skrovan, DPS audiologist (Photos: Jill Drury, Dayton Public Schools)


This fiscal year, OOD coordinated a unique transition program with the eight Community Centers for the Deaf (CCDs). Twelve mentors from the CCDs were trained on Map It, an on-line transition curriculum developed specifically for deaf and hard of hearing youth. With support from OOD and PepNet, the federally-funded organization that developed Map It, these mentors connected with 74 deaf and hard of hearing youth in 20 schools around the state. Over a three month period, mentors worked with students to help them develop answers to the following questions:  Who Am I? What Do I Want? How Do I Get There? At the end of the program, nearly 90% of the students were confident enough in their vocational direction to create a video, explaining what they have learned about themselves and their plan for their careers.


This is the first statewide coordinated effort to increase the self-direction of deaf and hard of hearing high school students in Ohio, and it has caught the attention of school districts, parents, and community partners. One of the students, Destinee Dunn, was featured on the Dayton Public Schools website. Her mentor, Maura Hartmann with Family Services Association in Dayton, worked with the school’s educational audiologist, Jodi Skrovan, to meet Destinee at her school weekly to work on her career goals. As you will see in this article, Destinee has developed the confidence, and a plan, to set herself up for success. Thank you to Maura and Jodi for their hard work with this student, and good luck to Destinee on her future endeavors.


To learn more about Map It visit the website: http://www.pepnet.org/training/mapit.


Business Resource Groups (BRG) Bring a Multitude of Benefits

If you read Weekly Focus regularly, you’ll recall the recent celebration of Ohio Business Leadership Network (OHBLN) reaching 100 members (June 17 issue). Helping businesses create a culture of diversity and inclusion is just one of the benefits to members.


On June 21, OHBLN provided a webinar titled: Business Resource Groups: Advancing Disability Inclusion; Benefitting the Business. Maggie Roffee, US Business Leadership Network (USBLN) senior corporate relations manager, talked about how the USBLN and 27 corporate members established a subcommittee to outline the primary issues and needs to cultivate disability Business Resource Groups (BRG), including:

  • Creating  a culture where people with disabilities are comfortable self-identifying;
  • Eliminating fears that disclosure will be used against them;
  • Developing awareness of the benefits of disclosure;
  • Engaging senior leaders or family members in the disclosure process;
  • Compiling best disability BRG practices;
  • Leveraging BRG’s to increase the company’s marketplace share; and
  • Cultivating leaders and increasing the number of employees with disabilities actively involved.

Next, Sarah Elek and Karis Spence gave an overview of Huntington National Bank’s Adaptability Business Resource Group started in 2014. This group was responsible for establishing a Reasonable Accommodations Policy that appeared in the Huntington employee handbook, as well as actively working with managers to recruit candidates with disabilities. It’s no coincidence that over the last eight months, six OOD consumers have been hired by Huntington.


Procter & Gamble’s Mike Gartner discussed P&G’s three key global focus areas: Employment & Recruiting, Employee Engagement & Support, and Market Place & Partnerships. Among their success has been “Project Reach,” which has created 24 paid internships in Cincinnati and Turkey for high school students with disabilities; internships that help them gain meaningful employment skills and experiences.


As OOD’s Business Engagement Team meets with new employers throughout the state, we offer information on best practices such as these surrounding Business Resource Groups. We hope this will provide encouragement for businesses to undertake similar initiatives leading to increased career opportunities for people with disabilities now and into the future.


Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities Seek Award Nominations

The Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities (GCPD) annually recognizes businesses, groups and individuals who have significantly contributed to employment opportunities and community involvement for people with disabilities. It is anticipated that their example will inspire others in both the public and private sectors to realize ability rather than disability as the most important factor in employment and community inclusion.


GCPD would like to hear from you about the leaders in your community. Please take a moment to review the awards on their website (http://gcpd.ohio.gov/Awards) and nominate a community leader, organization or business for the appropriate recognition. This year the awards will be presented in October at The Ohio Statehouse.



  • Advocacy Award
  • Best Practices Award
  • Ohio Employer of the Year Award
  • Maureen Fitzgerald Leadership Award
  • Karla M Lortz Scholarship
  • Accessible Parking Enforcement Award
  • Accessible Medical Services 



Did you know? Changing Terms for People with Intellectual Disability in Ohio Law

Gov Kasich Signs HB 158
Rep. Dever watches as Governor Kasich signs HB 158 on Wednesday


Governor Kasich signed House Bill 158, sponsored by Representative Jonathan Dever (R-Madeira), on Wednesday at the St. Joseph Home in Cincinnati. The bill strikes the term "mental retardation" from the Ohio Revised Code and replaces such references with the term "intellectual disability." The measure also specifies that an intellectual disability is a form of developmental disability.


Representative Dever spoke about the impact of the legislation at the bill signing on Wednesday: “Words do matter. The removal of the ‘R-word’ will help treat our state’s most vulnerable individuals with the dignity and respect they deserve. I was proud to stand by Governor Kasich and members of the disability community today as he signed this important piece of legislation.”


OOD by the Numbers

Vocational Rehabilitation

                                                               Current                     FFY2016


Individuals in Job Ready Status:            3,252                    5,189

(For county level information

& map visit our website)


Individuals Employed:                             1,941                    5,142

(Employed, not yet

successfully closed)


Successful Closures:                                                             5,236

(Employed for over 90 days,

case closed successfully)


Disability Determination

(FFY2016 as of 07/08/2016 – Week 41)


Applications Received:                                                            154,866


Determinations:                                                                        156,506


Productivity Per Work Year (PPWY)                                       372

(Total number of cases processed divided

by the number of work years funded)

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