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2021 Policy Summit

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2021 Policy Summit

September 14 Policy Summit Update: Registration is now open for the virtual Policy Summit! Browse sessions and register today!

After pressing pause to adapt what we had hoped to be an in-person event to a virtual format, ANCOR is thrilled to invite you to participate in our newly reimagined event, taking place on the afternoons of Tuesday, October 12 and Wednesday, October 13. 

Registration for the virtual 2021 Policy Summit is accessible at significantly discounted rates, and ANCOR members save even more! Your registration unlocks access to a total of seven sessions, including six taking place on October 12-13 and an additional post-Summit bonus session (date and time TBD) that would otherwise require a paid registration but is included in the cost of registration for all Summit participants. Sessions will take place between 1 pm and 4:30 pm EDT on the two days of the Summit, and sessions will be recorded and made available for viewing on-demand after the conclusion of the Summit.

If Not Now, When? Developing Solutions for a Workforce in Crisis

Long before COVID-19 changed our world, community-based providers of disability services were experiencing significant shortages of direct support professionals. In turn, providers have grappled with dual crises for the past 18 months, navigating through an array of recruitment and retention challenges on one hand while being forced to attend to the immediate demands of the pandemic on the other, such as obtaining PPE, being recognized as essential workers, and securing funding for hazard pay and other extraordinary costs. All along the way, community providers did what they always do: make impossible choices in the face of unprecedented demands to overcome seeming unthinkable obstacles so the people they support can continue living fully inclusive lives. But if the pandemic offers any silver lining, it is the reminder that providers—and the public policy environment in which we operate—can adapt and be nimble in the face of crisis.

With this lesson in mind, the 2021 ANCOR Policy Summit raises an important question: if not now, when? If the struggles of a once-in-a-century public health emergency didn't demonstrate the urgency of investing in our services, when will we acknowledge the harsh realities in which providers are forced to operate? What better time is there than now to develop solutions for a workforce in crisis?

To grapple with these questions, we are eager for you to join us for two afternoons of virtual programming laser-focused on our workforce crisis at this pivotal moment. On October 12-13, we will explore the most recent data on the I/DD workforce, engage in robust discussions about policy proposals from all corners of the federal government, and advocate on behalf of solutions that truly begin to tackle the direct support workforce crisis once and for all. Now more than ever, we need to come together.

 

Special Thank You to Our Summit Sponsor

 Sandata

2021 ANCOR Policy Summit Schedule

Schedule and session information are subject to change. All times are Eastern Daylight Time.

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 12

Opening Plenary: Our Moment is Now
Tuesday, October 12 | 1-2 pm EDT

Community-based providers have been experiencing significant shortages of direct support professionals long before the COVID-19 pandemic. In the face of changing landscapes, workforce crises and a global pandemic, providers have forged on to provide critical supports and services. The time has come to acknowledge the sacrifices and barriers faced by providers, direct support professionals, and the families we serve. If not now, when?

ANCOR leaders will open the 2021 Policy Summit with reflections on the imperatives of coming together as a community to chart a course for a multi-pronged workforce strategy. Drawing on the troubling results from ANCOR's brand-new survey data on the state of the direct support workforce crisis, presenters will articulate why the workforce crisis is a major barrier to full inclusion of people with I/DD in communities, and why the crisis must be a priority in policy discussions about I/DD services. 

Speakers:

  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR
  • Barbara Merrill, ANCOR

 

ANCOR’s Legislative Priorities: Updates from Congressional Allies
Tuesday, October 12 | 2:15-3:15 pm EDT

Medicaid and community-based services have garnered unprecedented attention on Capitol Hill, including in the form of emergency relief in response to the public health emergency. This has created space at the table for community services stakeholders to work directly and transparently with congressional allies to highlight the decades-long impact of the direct support workforce crisis and instability of access to services. This roundtable discussion will bring together professional staff from key congressional offices to share bipartisan and bicameral perspectives on how Congress is addressing the direct care workforce crisis and increasing access to home- and community-based services.

Speakers:

  • Elizabeth Dervan, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
  • Seth Gold, U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy & Commerce
  • Stuart Portman, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
  • Rick Van Buren, U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy & Commerce
  • Elise Aguilar, ANCOR (co-moderator)
  • Al Guida, Guide Consulting (co-moderator)

 

Solutions to a Workforce in Crisis: Perspectives from our Colleagues
Tuesday, October 12 | 3:30-4:30 pm EDT

The unprecedented investment by the Biden administration in home- and community-based services and the Better Care Better Jobs Act came to fruition with the support of leaders from disability, aging and caregiver/labor groups. The work of grassroots advocacy and ANCOR members drove focused discussion and highlighted the direct support workforce crisis before and throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. This roundtable discussion will bring together key collaborators to discuss how this moment in history came to be and how our collective advocacy is making a significant positive impact on the future of services.

Speakers:

  • Ai-Jen Poo, National Domestic Workers Alliance
  • Bill Dombi, National Association for Home Care & Hospice
  • Connie Garner, Easterseals
  • Ruth Katz, LeadingAge
  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR (moderator)

 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 13

From Data to Solutions: Implications of the 2020 DSP Workforce Survey
Wednesday, October 13 | 1-2 pm EDT

It is essential that we understand the perspective of our critical workforce as we strive to find better solutions for recruitment and retention. In this session, participants will learn about the findings from a 2020 survey conducted by the National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals and the Institute on Community Integration at the University of Minnesota. Participants will also learn about a recent paper published by the Human Services Research Institute that highlights best practices for improving recruitment and retention of DSPs. Bringing together data and best practices will offer participants concrete insights they can implement in their organizations.

Speakers:

  • Valerie Bradley, Human Services Research Institute
  • Amy Hewitt, Institute on Community Integration, University of Minnesota

 

ANCOR’s Administrative Priorities: Updates from the Executive Branch 
Wednesday, October 13 | 2:15-3:15 pm EDT

With the declaration of a public health emergency and access to increased federal funding, state agencies were able to utilize new procedural tools and application processes to expand, strengthen and enhance Medicaid services. CMS guidance provided states with a broad range of interpretive support to leverage these mechanisms to stabilize and provide support to individuals with disabilities accessing I/DD services. As a companion to Tuesday’s discussion with congressional allies, this session will bring together experts to discuss the Biden administration’s efforts to address the direct support workforce crisis and the impact of the crisis on people with disabilities.

Speakers:

  • Matt Salo, National Association of Medicaid Directors
  • Jessica Schubel, White House Domestic Policy Council
  • Mary Sowers, National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services
  • Daniel Tsai, Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

 

Heeding the Call to Action
Wednesday, October 13 | 3:30-4:30 pm EDT

Our Policy Summit would not be complete without recognition of Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) as the inaugural recipient of ANCOR's Congressional Legacy Award. Senator Casey's insight and leadership in the development of the Better Care Better Jobs Act gives hope to providers, direct care workers and American families to secure meaningful access to home- and community-based services with a sustainable workforce. In this session, we share our deepest gratitude and appreciation for Senator Casey and his congressional guidance on issues of grave importance to individuals with disabilities and the broader community of stakeholders we serve. Then, we will close out the 2021 Policy Summit with a call to action to inspire all participants to seize this crucial moment in our community's history.

Speakers:

  • Shannon McCracken, ANCOR
  • Barbara Merrill, ANCOR

 

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 14

The Power of Unconscious Bias & How to Mitigate It (w/ Dr. Monica Almond)
12-3 pm EDT | Register Today

Everyone carries mindbugs—what scientists refer to as “ingrained habits of thought that lead to errors in how we perceive, remember, reason, and make decisions.” These errors in judgment are pervasive in our unconscious mind, which controls the vast majority of our decision-making processes. This session will engage participants in exploring individual and cultural biases they may hold through context setting and mind activation. Participants will leave with specific strategies for reducing the impact of unconscious bias in their decision-making.

The Leadership Forum is offered annually at no cost to participants in the ANCOR Foundation's Leadership Academy and for a nominal registration fee for a limited number of interested participants. Summit registrants are encouraged to participate, but separate registration is required. Register today.

 

DATE & TIME FORTHCOMING

Exclusive Post-Summit Bonus Session: The Impact of Federal Minimum Wage Hikes on DSP Wages & Provider Operations
This session will take place within a couple weeks of the conclusion of the Policy Summit. Although this session will require participants to pay to register, Policy Summit registrants will have access to this session for free. Further details will be provided via email.

With Congress expected to take action to raise the federal minimum wage later in 2021 or in 2022, ANCOR engaged Burns & Associates, a division of Health Management Associates (HMA-Burns), to study the potential impact on provider organizations, and state and federal spending. To provide policymakers with information about the costs that providers will incur if the federal minimum wage increases, the report developed state-by-state estimates that illustrate the level of funding needed for providers to be able to meet the financial demands of a higher minimum wage. Participants in this session will learn about the impact of a federal minimum wage increase and the cost to states and providers to implement the increase.

Speakers:

  • Donna Martin, ANCOR
  • Stephen Pawlowski, HMA-Burns

What's Included?

Registration for the virtual 2021 Policy Summit is accessible at significantly discounted rates compared to the in-person event, and ANCOR members save even more!

By registering for the Summit, your registration unlocks access to a total of seven sessions, including six taking place on October 12-13 and an additional post-Summit bonus session (date and time TBD) that would otherwise require a paid registration but is included in the cost of registration for all Summit participants. Sessions will take place between 1 pm and 4:30 pm EDT on the two days of the Summit, and sessions will be recorded and made available for viewing on-demand after the conclusion of the Summit. For more information about the sessions and speakers, visit the "Sessions" tab of this webpage. 

Registration Fees

ANCOR Members: $199

Non-members: $299**

**Not a member but interested in joining the ANCOR community? Contact Jerri McCandless by email.

Register Yourself | Register Others

 

Questions?

We’re here to help! Reach out by email or call 703.535.7850.