Auxiliary Aids Plan
MUJER, Inc. shall comply with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, 29 U.S.C. 794, as implemented by 45 C.F.R. Part 84 (hereinafter referred to as Section 504) and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, 42 U.S.C. 12131, as implemented by 28 C.F.R. Part 35 (hereinafter referred to as ADA).
This plan is available in alternative formats at the request of staff and participants. This plan will be disseminated to persons and agencies working with people living with a disability and Limited English Proficient and will be posted on MUJER’s website.
Single Point of Contact
The Single Point of Contact, Caroline Yeardley, will ensure effective communication with Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing customers or companions in accordance with Section 504 and the ADA. The Single Point of Contact shall ensure that employees are aware of the requirements, roles, responsibilities, and contact points associated with compliance with Section 504 and the ADA.
Provision of Auxiliary Aids and Services
MUJER, Inc will at all times recognize that the customer or companion’s preference is the primary consideration in determining what auxiliary aids or services to provide. If communication through a specific auxiliary aid or service is deemed to be ineffective, staff will ask the customer or companion to determine a more effective auxiliary aid or service for communication. Documentation shall be made in the customer’s file regarding the attempt to improve the effectiveness of auxiliary aids and services.
If a participant or companion is Deaf or hard of hearing, The Center’s staff shall obtain auxiliary aids according to the communication assessment and requested for services. All ASL interpreters’ certifications shall be verified.
Staff that is unfamiliar with the auxiliary aid or service requested shall contact their Single Point of Contact (SPOC), 504/ADA Coordinator (Civil Rights Officer) or their Supervisor, for assistance in locating appropriate resources to ensure effective communication with clients, customers and companions.
Provision of Interpreters in a Timely Manner
MUJER, Inc staff shall provide interpreters for customers and companions who are Deaf or hard-of-hearing in a timely manner in accordance to the following standards:
- Non-Scheduled Interpreter Requests: For any emergency situation that is not a scheduled appointment, staff shall make an interpreter available as soon as possible, but in no case later than two (2) hours from the time the customer or companion or staff requests an interpreter, whichever is earlier. If the situation is not an emergency, staff shall offer to schedule an appointment (and provide an interpreter where necessary for effective communication) as convenient to the customer or companion, but at least by the next business day
2. Scheduled Interpreter Requests: For scheduled events, staff shall make a qualified interpreter available at the time of the scheduled appointment. If an interpreter fails to appear for the scheduled appointment, staff shall take whatever additional actions are necessary to make a qualified interpreter available to the customer or companion who is deaf or hard-of-hearing as soon as possible, but in no case later than two (2) hours after the scheduled appointment
Provision of Interpreters in a Timely Manner.
Staff shall provide interpreters for customers and companions who are deaf or hard of hearing in a timely manner in accordance to the following standards:
a. If it is a scheduled appointment, you must have a certified interpreter at the time of the scheduled appointment. If the interpreter fails to appear, staff shall take whatever additional actions are necessary to make a certified interpreter available to the customer or companion as soon as possible, but in no case later than two (2) hours after the scheduled appointment, or as convenient to the customer or companion.
b. If it is a non-scheduled appointment or non-emergency situation, you must provide a certified interpreter within two hours of the request, or at least by the next business day. In emergency situations an interpreter shall be made available as soon as possible, but in no case later than two (2) hours from the time the customer or companion requests an interpreter, whichever is
Non-Scheduled Interpreter Requests. If the situation is not an emergency, staff shall offer to schedule an appointment (and provide an interpreter where necessary for effective communication) as convenient to the customer or companion, but at least by the next business day.
a. Scheduled Interpreter Requests. For scheduled events, staff shall make a certified interpreter available at the time of the scheduled appointment. If an interpreter fails to appear for the scheduled appointment, staff shall take whatever additional actions are necessary to make a certified interpreter available to the customer or companion who is deaf or hard of hearing as soon as possible, but in no case later than two (2) hours after the scheduled appointment
Auxiliary Aids Documentation
MUJER staff will conduct an assessment, prior to services, to determine the customer or companion’s preferred method of communication. Staff shall consult with the customer to determine his or her preferred communication method, and if applicable, with assigned caseworkers, counselors, parents, family members, guardians or other representative. Staff shall accomplish this by first completing the Customer Companion Communication Assessment Form (Appendix (B) and the Request for or Waiver of Free Communication Assistance Form (Appendix C).
MUJER, Inc shall document the customer or companion’s preferred method of communication and any requested auxiliary aids and services provided in the customer’s program file.Documents and forms evidencing when and how The Center provided auxiliary aids and services to customers or companions shall be retained within the customer’s corresponding file for seven years. Forms include but are not limited:
- Customer or Companion Request for Free Communication Assistance or Waiver
- Customer or Companion Feedback form
- Auxiliary Aid Service Record Monthly Summary Report
This documentation will continue to be kept for record keeping with the SPOC.
Effectiveness of Communication
In the event that communication is not effective or if the nature of the communication changes significantly after the initial communication assessment, Department or provider staff shall re-assess which appropriate auxiliary aids and services are necessary for effective communication. This shall be accomplished where possible in consultation with the person seeking the auxiliary aids or services.
Denied Auxiliary Requests
a. If MUJER or provider staff determines after conducting the communications assessment that the communication situation is not Aid Essential and does not warrant provision of the auxiliary aid or service requested by the customer or companion, Department or provider staff shall advise the person of the denial of the requested service and shall document the date and time of the denial, the name and title of the staff member who made the determination, and the basis for the determination. Department or provider staff shall provide the customer (and companion, if applicable) with a copy of the denial.
b. Staff shall record the denial of the requested auxiliary aid or service on the Customer or Companion Communication Assessment and Auxiliary Aid/Service Record (form CF 761, Appendix B).3 Staff shall also record the denial of requested service in the customer’s case file or medical chart. Notwithstanding the denial, Department or provider staff shall nonetheless ensure effective communication with the Customer or Companion by providing an alternate aid or service which must be documented on the above form and in the customer’s file.
Denial determinations can only be made by the Executive Director or designee or the Contracted Client Services Provider Administrator (or designee).
NOTE: Staff who are unfamiliar with the auxiliary aid or service requested shall contact their Single
Point of Contact (SPOC), 504/ADA Coordinator (Civil Rights Officer) or their Supervisor, for assistance in locating appropriate resources to ensure effective communication with clients,
A copy of the MUJER’s Department’s Statewide Auxiliary Aids and Service Plan will be posted on the MUJER’s web site. Copies in alternative format will be provided upon request. A copy of each Regional and Mental Health Treatment Facility’s Auxiliary Aids and Service Plan will be maintained by the Office of Civil Rights, at Headquarters, and will be posted on each Region and each Mental Health Treatment Facility’s web site. Copies in alternative format will be provided upon request. Copies are distributed upon request to individuals or organizations serving persons with disabilities or who are Limited English Proficient.
If customers or companions are referred to other agencies, the provider must ensure that the receiving agency is notified of the customer or companion’s preferred method of communication and any auxiliary aid or service needs. In order to accommodate this, MUJER will ensure that the referral is desired by the participant and that he or she signs a Release of Information Form.
Customer Feedback Form
The provider shall distribute Customer/Companion Feedback Forms to customers or companions that are Deaf or hard of hearing and provide assistance in completing the forms if requested by the customer or companion. The original Customer/Companion Feedback Form shall be mailed to DCF, Office of Civil Rights, 1317 Winewood Boulevard, Building 1, Room 110, Tallahassee, FL 32399-0700 by the participant or if requested, by The Center. A copy of the Customer Feedback Form shall not be kept in the file.
Records relating to the auxiliary aids and services provided shall be retained by MUJER and the original document retained in the client or customer’s file or records.
All final requests for accommodations, along with relevant documentation, will be forwarded to the designated 504/ADA Coordinator
MUJER’s non-discrimination Policy, Limited English Proficient and Interpreter Services for the deaf or hard of hearing posters will be displayed in buildings’ main entrances, lobby areas, waiting areas, and on bulletin boards.
The name, telephone number, and TDD number for the 504/ADA Coordinator or Civil Rights Officer will be listed on the poster for the deaf or hard of hearing to ensure accessible services to customers and companions.
Descriptive information on the availability of auxiliary aids and services to persons requiring assistive listening devices or aids will be included in announcements related to meetings, employment or job opportunities, seminars, workshops and conferences, as well as to services offered by the Department and its Contracted Client Services Providers.
Ensuring Language Access for the Provision of Services Provided.
It is important to understand how individuals who are Limited English Proficient (LEP) interact with the Department and its Contracted Client Services Providers. Examples may include, but not limited to:
a. Program applicants and participants
b. Hotline or information calls
c. Outreach programs
d. Public meetings and hearings
e. Public access to the Department’s website
f. Written materials or complaints sent
g. Brochures intended for public distribution
h. Provide notices to LEP persons letting them know that language access services are available and that they are free of charge. This notice should be provided in a language that the LEP person will understand. This will include:
a) Posting signs in intake areas and other entry points. When language assistance is needed to ensure meaningful access to information and services it is important to provide notice in the appropriate language in intake areas or initial points of contact so that LEP person can learn how to access those language services. The signs should be translated in the most common language encountered.
b) Stating in outreach documents that language services are available from the agency.
c)Announcements could be in brochures, booklets, and in outreach and recruitment information.
d) Utilize a telephone voice mail menu. The menu could be in the most common languages encountered. It should provide information about available language assistance services and how to get them.
The Single-Point-of-Contact will ensure that conspicuous Notices which provide information about the availability of appropriate auxiliary aids and services at no-cost to the deaf or hard-of-hearing customers or companions are posted near where people enter or are admitted within the center locations. The SPOC’s name and contact information should be on the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Poster as well at the name and contact information for the ADA 504 Coordinator.
The approved Notices can be downloaded through the Internet at: http://www.dcf.state.fl.us
The Center shall submit HHS Reports monthly, no later than the 5th day of each month, to the FCADV Contract Manager.
MUJER, Incshall ensure accessibility to meetings, conferences and seminars to persons with disabilities, limited English proficiency, and Deaf or hard of hearing by placing the following statement on all event notices and advertisements prior to the event:
MUJER, Inc will provide accommodations, including American Sign Language interpreters, assistive listening devices, alternative formats of printed materials and real-time captioning upon request for persons who are deaf, hard of hearing or are living with disabilities. To ensure accommodations, please make your request within 7 days prior to the event to Caroline Yeardley, LCSWat Carolyn@mujerfla.org
Training is essential to the on-going success of providing auxiliary aids and services to persons with disabilities or those who are Limited English Proficient.
New employee orientation will include training on CFOP 60-10, Chapters 1, 3 and 4, Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, CFOP 60-16, Methods of Administration, and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. This will be accomplished within 60 days of commencing employment for staff providing direct client services.
All staff will receive training annually on how to provide assistance to persons with disabilities and who are Limited English Proficient. This training is mandatory and will be tracked in the Human Resources Training/Tracking System (HRTS). Training will include: 2013 Statewide Auxiliary Aids and Services Plan Page 10
(1) Procedures for serving customers and companions who are deaf, hard of hearing, low vision, blind, and person who have mobility limitations.
(2) Procedures for serving clients who are Limited English Proficient.
(3) Awareness of deaf or hard of hearing; speech limitations; low vision and blindness; reading limitations and dyslexia; and mobility limitations.
(4) Available communication options.
(5) How to provide reasonable accommodations for customers and potential customers, i.e., how to access or purchase auxiliary aids, interpreter services and physical modifications.
(6) Requirements for making meetings, conferences and services accessible.
(7) Awareness of the Auxiliary Aids and Service Plan, including how to access the Plan
For Persons who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing.
(1) The communication options for persons who are deaf or hard of hearing may include but not limited to the CART, Florida Relay Service, TDDs (Telecommunication Devices for the Deaf), FAX (Telephone Facsimile Transmittal), phone amplifiers, qualified or certified sign language interpreters, flash cards, lip-reading, written notes, supplementary hearing devices, charts, signs or a combination of these, as appropriate. 2013 Statewide Auxiliary Aids and Services Plan Page 17
(2) If an interpreter is needed, staff shall contact a certified interpreter from their listing of interpreter services. Staff shall obtain verification of the interpreter’s certification as defined in section 9.i.
(3) The Department or its Contracted Client Services Provider’s official (or designee) with budget approval over the unit or facility, has the responsibility for approving the request and obtaining the appropriate auxiliary aid and service.
Florida Relay – 7-1-1
Through the Florida Relay Service, people who use specialized telephone equipment can communicate with people who use standard telephone equipment. To call Florida Relay, dial 7-1-1, or use the appropriate toll free numbers below:
1-877-955-8707 (French Creole)
Video Remote Interpreting
Through a video remote interpreter people can use an interpreter via technology to communicate with a participant in stead of an in person interpreter. This is a good resource for emergency situations with limited time to get an in person interpreter as well as if there are few local community resources for certified interpreters. Below is the phone number for the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf which will provide contact information for certified video remote interpreting.
Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf: (703) 838-0030 (Video Remote Interpreters)
CART-Captioning Real Time and Providers
Captioning (Real Time). This is the simultaneous conversion of spoken words to text, through computer-assisted transcription or court reporting, and displaying that text on a video screen. This communication service is beneficial to individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing that do not use sign language or for whom assistive listening devices and systems are ineffective.
Brandi Kent, RPR, CBC, CRR, CCP
Tanya Ward English, CRR-CCP-CBC firstname.lastname@example.org
Florida Realtime Reporting
Marianne E. Sayers, RPR, CRR
Fort Myers Court Reporting
2231 First Street
Fort Myers, FL 33901
941-334-1411 941-334-1476 fax
Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf: (703) 838-0030
Florida Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf
Certified Sign Language Interpreters:
For Limited English Speaking Survivors:
Please use the following service:
Optimal Phone Interpreters (OPI)
Know the language that is needed
Be prepared to brief the interpreter about the nature of the call before he/she speaks to your Limited English Speaker
If you have non English Speaker on the phone call OPI and connect a 3 way call
For outbound calls, provide the operator with a dial out number and she will make a 3 way conference call
How to Make a Call to OPI:
Dial 1-877-344-9674 you will be asked
- What language you need
- Where you are calling from and respond: FCADV
- What is your first and last name
- What is the code number for your agency—650
During the Call:
- Speak in short phrases or sentences
- Avoid slang, jargon, and technical terms
- Check for understanding from you Limited English Speaker throughout the call. If needed, rephrase the questions or statements until understood
- When speaking to the interpreter, do not give and/or ask too much information at one time.
- Ask questions in the first person
Ending the Call:
Be sure the Limited English Speaker and Optimal Interpreter know that the call is ending.
If you believe you were wrongfully denied access to services or discriminated against:
1. Inform the person who denied access to services that you believe they wrongfully denied you services and why you believe that is the case.
2. Ask to speak to a manager, immediately.
3. You may submit your complaint/grievance in writing or verbally. Direct your concern to the Advocate Services Manager or Director of Victims Services. Include the following information:
a. What service were you denied?
b. What were you told was the reason you were denied service?
c. What person denied you services?
d. What was the date you were denied service?
In addition to the above actions, discrimination complaints may also be filed externally with the state and federal government.
Assistant Staff Director for Civil Rights
1317 Winewood Boulevard
Building 1, Room 110
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0700
Florida Commission on Human Relations
2009 Apalachee Parkway, Suite 100
Tallahassee, FL 32301-4857
US Department of Health & Human Services
Office for Civil Rights
Atlanta Federal Center, Suite 3B70
61 Forsyth Street, SW
Atlanta, GA 30303-8909