Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Why the Controversy Over County Dropping Center for Disability Rights?

Monroe County engages certain agencies, including the Center for Disability Rights, to provide specified services for people with disabilities.

Following complaints from people depending on services from CDR, the County investigates.   It finds lapses in care provided by CDR.

Consequently, the County declines to renew CDR's contract to provide those services.   The County then lets all of the CDR clients choose to get the same services from any of five other agencies that administer the program.

And why is any of this controversial?


Anonymous said...

Especially as CDR is just acting essentially as a payroll vendor in this program. They track hours worked and are responsible for training and issue paychecks. Nothing else. And they charge the county a premium for doing so. Somewhere around $16 an hour. They in turn pay the aides $8 an hour and make sure they never work more than 30 hours a week, therefore ensuring they never pay benny's. They have a $14 M dollar contract. If they keep even 20% of that - no wonder why Bruce Darling is protesting. This could seriously impact his $250,000 plus salary! Not to mention Chris Hidebrandt's six figure salary.

Anonymous said...

To Philbrick,

You're described as a "community organizer" - for *what* community? You sure seem to trust the word of the County when it's doing its best to savage an organization that's effective in terms of both service delivery and advocacy. And yet the recipients of those services - including several who have self-identified as being ones in the county report - say the county report is inaccurate.

Why would it be controversial? How many nursing homes have multiple long-standing violations of safety issues - have any of them been forced to move clients, let alone in ten days?

We're already hearing that the non-English speaking attendants are being discouraged by the other agencies offered. Similarly, a PA with over a decade of experience was told she'd have to take 4-dollar-an-hour cut in pay if she worked through the agency she contacted. (CDR does give raises for experienced aides)

So - to the other Anonymous - starting aides make a low wage, but if they stay with the work and they get paid more. And just how could CDR limit their hours? If a consumer is allocated 100 hours per week, they will need a couple of full-time aides - and plenty do work between 30 and 40 hours per week.

Don't take my word on the aide issue, though. I accidentally came across a blog written by one of the CDR PAs. I don't know who she is, but she has a different take on CDR - based on experience:

Anonymous said...

Sorry, but the way these disabled residents were treated borderlines on abuse. CDR is more of a protest organization anyway and clearly shouldn't be in the service end. Now you have their top guy Bruce Darling attacking a county employee. I don't have sympathy for a guy making over $200k a year who lives in a million dollar home on the lake looking to keep making big bucks. Maybe he should have focused more on how his people were treating these residents if he didn't want to lose this multimillion dollar contract. Its disgusting what these people did!

Anonymous said...

Dear Anomymous,

The people who get attendant services aren't "resident" - that's a term that applies to nursing homes, group homes, etc. These are people living in their *own* homes and get called - accurately - consumers. You seem a little confused about just what we're talking about.

You seem more than willing to ignore what the consumers themselves are saying about the complaints. These consumers have *always* had a choice of other service providers - they get the opportunity to choose a different one regularly (not sure if it's once or twice a year). They don't. Most consumers under CDPAS choose CDR. And they stay with CDR.

As for Darling's salary - every time I see it mentioned, it seems to go up again. As far as I know, the only real knowledge outside of the CDR board and HR about that is from the 2008 990 the newspaper mentioned.

I think you - and others - just keep making up whatever salary seems right at the time. Darling *does* have a high salary. That's also something relatively recent. He's been at this for about 25 years - and earned a lot less than that for most of it, or so I would guess.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:02 - do I really need to do the math for you? OK - here goes, a client gets 100 hours a week service. How do we cover? Let's see, 100 divided 30 equals 3.33. Now, that's a tough one, I never was good at fractions, but here's a guess - You hire 4 attendants! If the four attendants work 25 hours a week, that equals what - let me get my calculator here, umm, carry the 2 and that makes....100! Now, less than 32 hours a week equals part time, benefits! Wow, funny how that math thing works. Luckily I wasn't in the city school district when I grew up and can do higher level math.

Aides may be having a hard time getting work at the other agencies. Background checks and drug tests can be a bitch. Especially if you have hepatitis. Never a problem at CDR though.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 3:00 - perhaps if you sought out all the sub not for profits under the CDR umbrella, took a gander at their 990's and took out your handy dandy calculator, you might find the figure mentioned. But the fact he muddies his salary around multiple agencies is no indication whatsoever that he is a schemer, or above stepping on the throats of less savvy consumers or clients, or whip them up in a foaming fury without giving them anything like facts. No, not Brucey. He cares about the little guy - see the name of his agency?