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Wet Dogs, Listening to DSPs, Connecting the Dots

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Wet Dogs, Listening to DSPs, Connecting the Dots

by: 
Barbara Merrill, Esq.

Greetings! This is my second crack at this new format — I appreciated the positive feedback I got from the inaugural column. Seems there are a number of cat fans out there amongst our membership, or people are getting enough inspirational leadership articles in their inboxes these days that a few short bits are welcome.

So here we go again.

I’m just back from vacation in Maine, where I spent most of my time throwing tennis balls and sticks in the water for our retriever to do his thing. Hudson celebrated his third birthday on the 4th of July with great fanfare, but just a few days later became so sickened by Lyme Disease we thought we were losing him. The good news is that 3 days of antibiotics returned him to his full 85 pound puppy self — once again refusing to let us do anything at the water’s edge except throw sticks for him or try to avoid being on the receiving end of sand airborne by his relentless digging.

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Have you had a chance to keep up with our weekly newsletters, or monitor the ANCOR Forum? This month’s robust conversation about minimum DSP credentials brought forth impassioned opinions from lots of our members. Is there really just one right answer? The ANCOR board and staff paid great attention to this topic, and it prompted a discussion this week at the board’s summer board retreat meeting. This conversation is a recurring one, and focuses on what ANCOR’s role is, and what should be a state-by-state determination as opposed to a federal rule. Is this the type of issue that you care deeply about? Email Doris Parfaite-Claude to join ANCOR’s Government Relations Committee so you can have a seat at the table for these complicated but important policy determinations.

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Speaking of DSPs, are you a member of NADSP’s FaceBook Group? I am, and the conversations are rich — amazing actually — but also occasionally painful. There’s much to learn from it. For example, last year as DSP Recognition Week approached there was a conversation about what different employers do, and don’t do, to celebrate their workforce. The comments from DSPs whose supervisors and agencies do not observe the week were super sad to read. It’s a powerful reminder that what happens locally doesn’t necessarily stay local anymore. Another example of why you may want to stay abreast of their discussions was the very recent conversation about wages DSPs were making across the country.

As many of you are likely aware, we have to monitor ANCOR’s discussion forums to prevent any potential antitrust violations (i.e. NO sharing of agency specific wage information is permitted), but, because NADSP is not an association for employers, they may not have to worry to the extent we do. On a different note, yesterday a DSP asked what to do when a supervisor seemed uninterested in dealing with bed bugs and roaches. Huge ouch. On the overwhelmingly positive side, people use the group to get creative ideas for community integration tips, job coaching, training, and good old fashioned inspirational success stories.

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Perhaps you noted the sudden departure of Department of Labor Secretary Acosta? We reported on it — it is germane to our representation of providers before the agency. His sudden departure may delay the finalization of the pending Overtime Rule. Our Government Relations staff is intentionally connecting the dots for you — which is more important than ever in this hyper-charged political environment. ANCOR is and must always remain scrupulously nonpartisan.

I’ll almost close with this today: I’ll buy anyone a drink who guesses who I’ll be impersonating at this year’s GAMECHANGERS ANCOR Public Policy Summit this October 15th & 16th. You’ll get a second drink if you figure who Esmé Grewal, our VP of Government Relations, is coming as! Click the logo to see the agenda and register to lock in your lowest rate (early bird pricing ends August 31!):

Stay cool, avoid my dog at the beach, and keep in touch ☺. Oh, and Guy Noir says hello and hopes he dominates the headline next month.