State Agencies Providing Services to Individuals with an FASDNJ DDD IT2020-08-10T18:27:36+00:00
State Agencies Providing Services to Individuals with an FASD
State Agencies Providing Services to Individuals with an FASD
Individuals with FASD, living in New Jersey, may receive services and assistance from a number of different departments and agencies within state government. Seeking information and assistance for a family member with an FASD can be very confusing. Following is a list of these agencies and a general overview of the services provided by each. Becoming familiar with these agencies and how they differ, with regard to services, can be very helpful for families.
On June 28, 2012, Governor Christie signed P.L. 2012, c. 16, into law. The provisions of that law took effect immediately and transferred responsibility for providing services for persons with developmental disabilities under age 21 from the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) within the Department of Human Services (DHS) to the Division of Children’s System of Care (CSOC) within the Department of Children and Families (DCF).The focus of the Department of Children and Families (DCF), New Jersey’s state child welfare agency, is on strengthening families and achieving safety, well-being and permanency for all New Jersey’s children. Within the Department, the Children’s System of Care offers a wide range of services for children up to age 21 with behavioral health, substance use, or developmental disability needs. This includes community-based services, intensive in-home, out-of-home residential treatment services, and family support services.
The Department of Community Affairs (DCA) provides administrative guidance, financial support and technical assistance to local governments, community development organizations, businesses and individuals to improve the quality of life in New Jersey. DCA offers a wide range of programs and services that respond to issues of public concern, including fire and building safety, housing production, community planning and development, and local government management and finance. The New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency (HMFA) is an affiliate agency of DCA, and is the largest affordable rental housing, purchase housing, and permanent supportive housing financing agency in the state. People with FASD or other developmental disabilities may qualify for assistance with housing issues through the HMFA or the Department of Community Affairs.
The Department of Education (DOE) is New Jersey’s primary educational oversight body, and is committed to setting standards that ensure all children receive the highest quality education. DOE works with local school systems to provide supports and services to all school aged children and youth. Within DOE, the Office of Special Education Policies and Procedures and the Office of Special Education Professional Development oversee the systems that provide educational supports and services to students with disabilities, including students with FASD.
The mission of the Department of Health (DOH) is to improve health through leadership and innovation. DOH works to prevent disease, promote and protect well-being at all life stages, and encourage informed choices that enrich quality of life for individuals and communities. In addition, DOH provides special needs assistance to children with FASD and other special health needs through the Early Intervention System and Title V programs, including Special Child Health Services Case Management Units(SCHS CMU). DOH’s New Jersey Birth Defects Registry directly connects families with these case management units. Funded in part through the county Boards of Social Services, there is a SCHS CMU in each county, staffed by nurses and social workers who can provide information and guidance regarding your child’s medical/dental, developmental, rehabilitative, educational and socioeconomic needs, development of an individual service plan and periodic monitoring, referrals to related services; e.g., Social Security Income (SSI), Medicaid, transition, Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund, family support, Child Evaluation Centers, and Early Intervention Services.
The Department of Human Services (DHS) serves about 1.5 million New Jersey citizens in need of assistance (about one in six). DHS serves individuals and families with low incomes; people with mental illnesses, developmental disabilities, or late-onset disabilities; people who are blind or visually impaired, deaf or hard of hearing, or deaf-blind; parents needing child care services, child support and/or healthcare for their children; and families facing catastrophic medical expenses for their children.
The Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD) funds a variety of services and supports for eligible individuals with developmental disabilities in New Jersey. These supports and services are provided by more than 250 agencies in communities throughout the state, or in residential settings that are administered by DDD. Since its inception, DDD has changed and grown significantly. Today, nearly 25,000 adults are eligible to receive services funded through DDD.
The Division of Disability Services (DDS) is designated as New Jersey’s single point of entry for people seeking disability related information. DDS provides information and referral services and administers programs designed to promote maximum independence and community participation for individuals with disabilities. Through the use of active information outreach, and program advocacy, DDS works to support and foster the coordination of services among government and community agencies. Certified Information and Referral Specialists are available by phone to confidentially discuss issues, provide information, assist with problem solving, and refer to agencies or services as appropriate. Annually, DDS publishes New Jersey Resources, a comprehensive directory listing services available for individuals with disabilities throughout the state. The Division of Disability Services can be reached at 888-285-3036.
Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DLWD)
The Department of Labor and Workforce Development (DLWD) is committed to helping persons with barriers to employment to become a skilled and productive workforce competing successfully in the marketplace. Under the DLWD, the mission of the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS) is to enable eligible individuals with disabilities to achieve employment outcomes consistent with their strengths, priorities, needs, abilities, and capabilities. DVRS provides a wide range of vocational rehabilitation services to people with disabilities in order to assist eligible individuals in obtaining and maintaining employment. DVRS Field Services staff provide job seekers with those services and tools necessary to raise occupational skill levels to increase the employment, retention, and earnings of participants and improve the quality of the workforce.