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Access Press - Minnesota's Disability Community Newspaper

Posts Tagged ‘Tim Benjamin’

Editor’s Desk – October 2018

We have a lot to talk about this month. People all over are working on getting the workforce shortage under control. It's becoming more and more evident that in almost every field, the low unemployment rate is creating a huge shortage of available workers, and pushing wages up. Last year, I wrote about seeing a ...

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Editor’s Column – May 2018

With spring’s new growth comes the end of the legislative session, and as usual very little has been done at the Minnesota capitol. In recent years, it is always a waiting game; each side is waiting to see who will fold first. Who’s going to cut taxes and who will get blamed for no tax ...

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Editor’s Column – October 2017

November 3 is the Charlie Smith awards banquet. The award winners every year are awesome trailblazers in the community, and remind us how much talent and leadership there is in organizations large and small, public and private and completely independent. I’m excited this year that our honoree is young, full of energy and, as you’ll  ...

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Editor’s Column – April 2017

Minnesota’s House of Representatives and Senate released their target budgets on March 27. The proposed numbers are devastating to both the Department of Health and Human Services (DHS) and Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS), and to other state agencies. In the fourth year of budget surpluses that are larger than expected, it was very discouraging to ...

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Editor’s Column – January 2017

We have celebrated the beginning of the New Year. I am glad we have 2016 behind us, but I'm also apprehensive of the upcoming political changes. The year was not a choice one for me personally; I lost several very close childhood friends, and most importantly, my father, whom I have tried and will continue ...

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Editor’s Column – October 2016

Dear Governor Dayton, I hope your hip surgeries were successful. I haven’t heard much more about it or your rehabilitation in the news, so I am assuming it all went well without any resulting restrictions on your movement. I also hope you aren’t living with a lot of residual pain. On top of all that, you live daily with the stress ...

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Editor’s Column – September 2016

As I started writing this month’s editorial, I knew I wanted to avoid starting out with my continuing concerns about the critical shortage of direct support staff (DSP) personal care attendants (PCAs) in the disability community. I’ll get to that, but lucky for me and you, we have happy news to focus on first: the Charlie Smith award banquet coming up on ...

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Editor’s Column – August 2016

After focusing pretty hard for the last few months on home-based care and PCA reimbursement rates, it’s probably no surprise that I have a couple related events to talk about this month. One of them is the Direct Care/Workforce Summit held by the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) on July 26, the same day ...

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Editor’s Column – July 2016

This month I have two things to talk about. One is not surprising: a livable wage for personal care attendants. The other is related and timely: the celebration of the ADA’s anniversary. America’s Independence Day has just passed. I value my country’s democratic freedoms, and the Fourth of July always provides a good reminder not to take them for granted. But the ...

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Editor’s Column – March 2016

What a winter. It’s March and there’s barely any snow on the ground. I don’t think I’ve had to wear my heavy winter coat (or—for those of you who know me, my heavy winter poncho) more than once or twice this season. Traditionally, though, March is the snowiest month so keep your fingers crossed whichever way you want this to go. ...

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Editor’s Column – December 2015

We finally got some snow on the ground with just a few days left in 2015—and then it melted in our 40-degree week. We can only hope that the rest of the winter is as mild as it’s been. Good news from Commissioner Myron Frans of the Minnesota Management and Budget Department on the state’s financial forecast. The available balance ...

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Editor’s Column – November 2015

Over the last couple years we’ve had some very influential locals leave Minnesota to contribute to the disability community in a bigger way. The most recent is Roberta “Bobbi” Cordano, vice president of programs for the  Amherst H. Wilder Foundation in St. Paul, who has been selected to be Gallaudet University’s eleventh president. Gallaudet University was established in 1856 as a grammar school ...

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Editor’s Column – October 2015

As an end note to my last column,  I would like to make a few clarifications. The correct terminology is the Olmstead Subcabinet as appointed by Governor Dayton rather than a subcommittee. The Olmstead Subcabinet is chaired by Commissioner Mary Tingerthal, Minnesota Housing Finance Agency and includes a total of eight state departments and two ex-officio ...

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Editor’s Column – September 2015

As I write this, we’re still enjoying the last days of summer, but warm weather is just about over. While the kids are back in school, they’re also still romping on the playground in t-shirts and shorts. Many of them are probably looking forward to cold and winter sports. But those of us using wheelchairs are not as eager for the ...

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Editor’s Column – June 2015

We are having what always seems to me as the normal pushing-out of a Minnesota spring: lots of rainy and humid weather interrupted by a day or two of sunny, warm summer. We have several items to be thankful for out of this year’s legislative session. There will be a five percent increase on income eligibility standards for Medical Assistance for older ...

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Editor’s Column – January 2015

Editor’s Column – January 2015 At the New Year, it’s good to look backwards and forwards. Access Press had a successful 2014, publishing 12 issues that were jam-packed with good information on upcoming events, people and places around the country, as well as progress reports on local public policy developments and a few success stories. We are fortunate to have a talented and loyal staff and a ...

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Editor’s Column – December 2014

At Access Press, as the year closes, we’re looking ahead to the January opening of the new legislative session. But December is also “awards month” at the Access Press news desk, and we’re pleased to give you highlights of recent awards events in the community. Several disability support organizations close the year by bestowing honors on ...

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Editor’s Column – November 2014

This month we hosted the 12th annual Charlie Smith Award banquet and were joined by a couple hundred folks in the community for a wonderful evening. Thanks to all of you who came out to celebrate Christine Marble and Wendy DeVore from Career Ventures, Inc. for their hard work at helping people with vision and ...

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Editor’s Column – August 2014

Summer is more than half over, which means it’s time to look ahead to the Great Minnesota Get-Together, the State Fair. But before we start thinking about fall, let’s keep enjoying this beautiful summer we’ve had lately. All that June rain was followed by a mild and sometimes cool July. I’m not complaining. The State Fair has ...

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Editor’s Column – July 2014

I’m enjoying the summer, in between rainstorms. This past month has been the wettest in years throughout the state, and the Mississippi River was past flood stage in downtown St. Paul. There are discussions about calling a special session for flood relief for many rural Minnesota communities. Let’s all hope that crops aren’t choked out ...

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State funding not proper source for research

The article appearing with this one encourages readers to support Senate File 111, which asks the Minnesota Legislature to annual fund spinal cord and traumatic brain injury research. We disagree. We strongly support funding for spinal cord and traumatic brain injury research. That’s especially true considering that in 2013 the United States spent approximately $9 billion ...

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Editor’s Column – April 2014

Can it be that spring is really here? Only a few days ago I was wondering if this winter would ever end. Who knows? Maybe another snowstorm will leave me stuck at home once again. But I hope by mentioning that, I’ve not jinxed it. Like all Minnesotans this year, I’m truly ready for spring! We ...

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Editor’s Column – November 2013

It has been an unbelievably exciting month. I was lucky enough to take some time to travel to a family wedding in New Jersey. It was great to spend time with family members who I don’t get to see very often. It was almost as exciting to spend time researching my Connecticut ancestors of 100+ ...

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Editor’s Column – October 2013

Here it is October already, and finally we’re getting some rain and fall temperatures. Like it or not, the rain is what we need and the cool temps are why we call it Minnesota. September was a beauty of a month, though—no one could complain about that mild weather. It was perfect. We’ve got a lot ...

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Editor’s Column – September 2013

In a summer of unusually mild weather, it kind of figured that the end of August would bring a week of record-breaking heat just in time for the State Fair. Attendance hit some record-breaking lows because of the heat. Then the last Sunday of the State Fair was a beautiful day and because of the ...

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