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Get to the Core of It: Best Practices in the Four Core Services - A Five Part Series

Part 2: Systems Advocacy

Presented by Chris Hilderbrant, Center for Disability Rights (CDR) in Rochester, New York, on May 2, 2012

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About the Training

Taking place in five parts, the Get to the Core of It series presents best practices and innovative approaches to the four core services: Information & Referral, Systems Advocacy, Individual Advocacy, Independent Living Skills Training, and Peer Support. Each presentation is brand new, incorporating the best material of the original presentations with fresh content developed from new experiences and feedback from our original audiences.

In the second part of the series, Chris Hilderbrant from the Center for Disability Rights (CDR) in Rochester, New York outlines his Center's outstanding approach to systems advocacy. This presentation is a helpful reminder that, YES!, Centers can and must advocate for the rights and access of people with disabilities! Chris presents CDR's use of the pitchfork approach to advocacy and how you can use it in your community. This includes advocating at all levels of government, how to get media coverage, and tips on protests and direct action. In addition, you'll learn how to help consumers become effective systems change advocates and how, as a Center, you can measure and document your success.

The four additional trainings in the series are:

Part 1: Information & Referral presented by Darrel Christenson & Roger Howard on April 24, 2012

Part 3: Individual Advocacy presented by Marsha Sweet on May 9, 2012

Part 4: IL Skills Training presented by Tim Sheehan on July 18, 2012

Part 5: Peer Support presented by Amina Donna Kruck and April Reed on September 4, 2012

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will have knowledge and resources which will enable them to:

  • Explain the philosophy and role of systems advocacy as a core service that builds community and changes people's lives.
  • Describe the five elements of an effective systems advocacy model that, when used together, serve as effective catalysts for change.
  • Describe how social media can be used as a highly effective advocacy tool for communication.
  • Explain strategies for measuring success of a CIL's systems advocacy efforts.

Target Audience

Executive directors, advocates, and other staff members of Centers for Independent Living who are involved in systems advocacy.

About the Presenter

Chris Hilderbrant is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) at the Center for Disability Rights, managing all of the day-to-day operations of offices in Rochester, Corning, Geneva and Albany. The creation of this new position is in direct response to CDR's rapid growth and promising future. Since 2003, Hilderbrant served as Director of Advocacy. As a person with a disability due to a spinal cord injury at the age of 14, he has used his personal experience over the past two decades to guide the organization's advocacy efforts on behalf all people with disabilities, which is representative of CDR's peer model of advocacy and services. He has led non-violent, direct action efforts for the rights of people with disabilities throughout New York State and the country, including being arrested for committing civil disobedience. One of the most significant accomplishments during his tenure in advocacy has been the enactment of legislation to develop the Nursing Facility Transition and Diversion Waiver in order to ensure that New Yorkers with disabilities, regardless of age or type of disabilities, can access services needed for life in the most integrated setting.

Transcript and Resources:

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Presented by CIL-NET, a program of the IL NET national training and technical assistance project for Centers for Independent Living (CIL-NET) and Statewide Independent Living Councils (SILC-NET). The IL NET is operated by ILRU, Independent Living Research Utilization, in partnership with the National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) and the Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL).

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Last Modified: November 15, 2012