[nfbmi-talk] rehab counselors

joe harcz Comcast joeharcz at comcast.net
Fri Apr 15 02:08:00 UTC 2011

Hi Fred, Cheryl, and All,

I cannot say how much I generally agree with you, Fred in basic "first 
principles". I cannot say how much as well as how I aggree or approve of 
Cheryls' basic inquiries as well. In addition I agree with the comments of 
Larry too. None are incorrect. In fact all loolk at this thing as the 
holistic thing it is supposed to be if you all catch my drift here.

Regardless, Cheryl the problem is not with the individual counselor and I'm 
sorry if I in any manner led to that perception. Of course, there are good 
and bad ind indifferent counselors in any field and to be sure, after years 
there are known burnouts too. But, that issue to the side most counselors, 
including those in MCB are goodly and dedicated sorts. I have no issue with 
that per se.

What my point is and has always been since I appeared upon the seen back in 
Michigan as consumer, advocate and nominal professional is that the buck 
stops at the top. And here in Michigan we don't even do the Rehab Act basics 
(and there would be no MCB without the rehab Act BTW) and the Administration 
has created a climate for more than a decade where it is a sort of us 
against them and visa versa which is bad management and illegal and 
insidious and, frankly prettty much nuts.

No, there areplenty of good frontline service providers and those who aspire 
to be so like yourself. I have no problems with yu or your aspirations or 
with those in this feild. The problem here starts and ends with the 
administration of MCB which fosters once again a "them against us and visa 
versa and anti-consumer environment tthat is so heavy, so dangerous, so 
documented and so obvious that it is like a cancer upon both the public 
trust, and the staff and the evever revolving staff mislead about 
objectives, purpose, mission and then even esxestitentialism, or being able 
to maintain the job itself if he/she doesn't kow tow to Patrick D. Cannon or 
his minions. And that is wrong, corrupted practice, and...well illegal, 
repreprohensible, unethical and ludicrous. Those are just a few adjectives 
and frankly, I went through them without swearing like a sailor or worse and 
I'm giving myself a big pat on the back for doing that for it was hard, very 
ahard to do so indeed.

Anywya, you Cheryl are not the problem and I praise you for caring. I'll 
give you and anyone in this state some advise though. Get the heck out of 
Michigan so long as this adiministrative team is in place including the 
Director. Nothing will ever be resolved in this state regardless as to 
philosophy and what not while a purely and totally incompentent Director 
without any knoledge formal or otherwise is at the helm of MCB

Get your degree and get out of Michigan is my best advise so long sas this 
corrupt regime is in place. And I mean this advise not out of malice and not 
out of disrespect for you or your profession. Nor do I mean it for those 
customers who are and have been in need from the get go. I mean this Cheryl 
from the bottom of my heart. This system is bad news, not your doing and not 
the doing of goodly professionals, and especially frontline professionals. 
But, it is a lanced boil nonetheless and things are messy and going to get 
really much more messy. so, I've got to say on a personal basis protect 
yourself, take cover, and get the heck out of Michigan and save your soul 
and your posterior. Sorry to put things so susinctly especially as you are 
of goodwill but this place under Cannon and all and givin the eeconomic 
conditions is a true basket case of the likes I've never seen before.

I'm not asking you to leave for our the blind's sake, but for your own as 
Cannon and others have ensured there  is no future for we the blind or VI 
here in Michigan.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Fred wurtzel" <f.wurtzel at comcast.net>
To: "'NFB of Michigan Internet Mailing List'" <nfbmi-talk at nfbnet.org>
Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2011 1:06 PM
Subject: Re: [nfbmi-talk] rehab counselors

> Hi cheryl,
> Thank you for this post.  It is exactly what we all need to learn and 
> think
> about when we are working with MCB, whether our role is advocate or 
> client.
> regarding your question about the relationship, I see it that it is the
> primary responsibility of the counselor to do the things you refer to, 
> since
> they are trained professionals, while the client, oftentimes, bring along 
> a
> lot of baggage which will impact on their ability to benefit from the
> counseling relationship and related services.  The professionalism is a
> tricky thing.  I have an ambiguous view, in that I expect the counselor to
> be professional enough to have the kind of tool box of counseling 
> approaches
> that you describe and simultaneously have an appropriately personal and
> caring attitude toward the clients.
> For instance, in the NFB style training centers it is customary for staff 
> to
> eat lunch with clients, have them over to their homes for barbecues or 
> other
> activities and so on.  Each staff person does these things within their 
> own
> comfort zone.  The point is that role modeling and relating with clients 
> as
> equals and with respect is part of the rehabilitation process when it is
> common for blind people to be treated in a paternalistic and condescending
> way by friends, family and others.  The idea of first-class citizenship is
> fundamental to my approach to rehabilitation.  My beliefs and attitudes 
> are
> heavily informed by the NFB and especially the writings of Dr. jernigan.
> "Blindness: handicap or Characteristic" ) here is the link
> http://www.nfb.org/Images/nfb/Publications/convent/blndnesh.htm) is one of
> the most important documents I have ever read on this topic and, to me, is
> fundamental to a healthy understanding of blindness and how it affects
> humans.
> I sure hope you are able to hold on to your values as expressed in this
> post.  Further, I hope we, together, can work to inculcate these ideals
> within MCB as an agency and each individual staff person within MCB.
> I love this list when it gets down to brass tacks as your post has done so
> eloquently.  Thank you.
> warm Regards,
> Fred
> -----Original Message-----
> From: nfbmi-talk-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:nfbmi-talk-bounces at nfbnet.org]
> On Behalf Of Cheryl Wade
> Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2011 10:30 AM
> To: NFB of Michigan Internet Mailing List
> Subject: Re: [nfbmi-talk] rehab counselors
> Hello again,
> I must correct something I said in my earlier post. There is, as 
> counselors
> see it, no such thing as a "bad client." If a client becomes angry or
> refuses to go along with the program -- whatever that means -- it is the
> counselor's signal that the current method isn't the right one. It is up 
> to
> the counselor to talk to the client about issues such as this and to 
> change
> the approach.
> What I meant was, is there a possibility that clients as well as 
> counselors
> can do things that have a negative impact on the client/counselor
> relationship? Or, are there clients who could change something they do and
> make the experience more successful? Do you think counselors could do the
> same thing? (I'm sure they can.)
> We talked in class about why a counselor doesn't necessarily need to have 
> a
> disability, or a certain disability, to work with clients. If the 
> counselor
> is doing a good job, he/she will learn as much as possible about the
> disability, check out assistive technology and work alongside the client 
> to
> make certain the technology isn't cumbersome, too complicated, requires
> frequent repairs, etc. The counselor also asks the client about his/her
> disability in detail, including cultural implications. I do believe, for
> example, that people who are blind or visually impaired have cultural
> aspects that unite us.
> Cheryl Wade
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Cheryl Wade" <wadecher at msu.edu>
> To: "NFB of Michigan Internet Mailing List" <nfbmi-talk at nfbnet.org>
> Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2011 8:42 AM
> Subject: Re: [nfbmi-talk] rehab counselors
>> Hello, all.
>> I have read a bit on these posts about rehab counselors. I don't read 
>> many
>> of the posts but I gather there's a good deal of discontent about these
>> folks. As a rehab counselor trainee -- seeking a master's right now --  
>> I'm
>> very interested in what you think about counselors. I do, however, want 
>> to
>> pose some questions. I do this not to stick up for counselors, but to say
>> that rehabilitation is a two-way street. Please don't poke me in the eye
>> too hard over this.
>> First, rehab counselors have many duties and, because of case loads and
>> funding cuts, those duties are likely to spike. Not only do counselors
>> need to help people find jobs, but they need to take detailed case notes,
>> fill out reams of paperwork, travel to various places to meet with
>> clients, evaluate clients in various ways so the counselor knows their
>> career interests and aptitudes, and ensure our profession's ethics are
>> maintained scrupulously. If we also are job developers, there are many
>> business and other relationships (which means lots of meetings) to attend
>> to.
>> Here are some questions I wish we could discuss:
>> * What makes a good counselor -- or a bad one, for that matter -- and 
>> what
>> makes a good or a bad client?
>> * How much help should a counselor provide, and what should the client
>> contribute?
>> * Does the presence of a counselor put a client in jeopardy when the
>> counselor talks to a possible employer? The counselor, ethically, must
>> mention that he/she is, indeed, a rehabilitation counselor. That signals
>> to the employer that the client is a person with a disability. Now, the
>> employer is waiting to see what kind of disabled person will show up. How
>> does this impact the client's right to disclose that information when he/
>> she chooses?
>> * Should a client take a job simply to take a job, or should he/she 
>> refuse
>> a job? Under what circumstances?
>> * How does the level of computer access help or hinder persons who are
>> blind when they seek jobs?
>> * What are ways in which counselors and clients can learn about their
>> communities so they know where to look for job opportunities?
>> * How many hours a week should a person who is unemployed spend looking
>> for work?
>> * Is it appropriate to seek help from other agencies besides MCB? Why or
>> why not?
>> Now that I've short-circuited my brain and a few others', have a great
>> day.
>> Cheryl Wade
>> Michigan State University
>> ----- Original Message ----- 
>> From: "joe harcz Comcast" <joeharcz at comcast.net>
>> To: <nfbmi-talk at nfbnet.org>
>> Sent: Monday, April 11, 2011 2:35 PM
>> Subject: [nfbmi-talk] at last mpas sues someone
>>> Group says Detroit Public School officials hindering assault probe
>>> Mark Hicks / The Detroit News
>>> The Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service is suing Detroit Public
>>> Schools, claiming the district hindered the nonprofit's investigation of
>>> a special
>>> education student's alleged sexual assault last year.
>>> According to the suit filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court, the victim's
>>> legal guardian filed a complaint with the group in March 2010 alleging
>>> the student,
>>> who has a disability, was assaulted by another student at an unnamed DPS
>>> school.
>>> The guardian "had reported numerous previous incidents of assault and
>>> bullying" before the incident, the suit said.
>>> Text DETNEWS to 64636 to get breaking news alerts on your phone.
>>> When MPAS requested documents related to the alleged assault over the
>>> next year, DPS officials did not produce them, attorney Chris Davis said
>>> in the suit.
>>> MPAS is charged with the responsibility under federal and state law to
>>> investigate allegations of abuse and neglect against people with
>>> disabilities
>>> The group is calling for a judge to force the release of the records as
>>> required by law as well as pay attorney fees.
>>> Steve Wasko, a spokesman for DPS, said the district hadn't seen the
>>> lawsuit and he couldn't comment on the allegations.
>>> "DPS has consistently assisted (MPAS) and will continue to do so in
>>> accordance with the law," he said, adding: "The district just recently
>>> passed a new
>>> bullying policy and we are focusing on educating student and staff in
>>> regard to bullying and harassment."
> http://www.detnews.com/article/20110405/METRO/104050434/1361/Group-says-Detr
> oit-Public-School-officials-hindering-assault-probe
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