Department of Family Services - Older Adults

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Monday - Friday 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

TTY 711

12011 Government Center Parkway, Suite 708
Fairfax, VA 22035

Trina Mayhan-Webb,
Division Director

Fairfax Area Commission on Aging Meeting Minutes - November 2019


Wednesday, November 20, 2019, 1-3 p.m.
City of Fairfax, City Hall Annex
10455 Armstrong Street
Fairfax, VA 22030


Commissioners Present
Carolyn Sutterfield (Chair), Mike Perel (Vice Chair), Tom Bash, Cathy Cole, Joseph Heastie, Kay Larmer (telephone), Diane Watson, Sharron Dreyer, Martha Cooper

Commissioners Absent
Cathy Muha (excused), Phyllis Palombi (excused), Kathy Hoyt (excused)

Staff Present
Linda Hernandez-Giblin, Nana Boateng

Others Present
Lesley Abashian, City of Fairfax; Kristin Roman, ServiceSource; Patricia Rohrer, Fairfax County Health Department/Long Term Care Coordinating Council; Allegra  Joffe, PRS CareRing; Kayleigh Walker and Hannah Huagtalla, WHDC; Kate Chutuape, Virginia Hospital Center; Sharon Canner, Reston for a Lifetime; Ed Lowry, Shepherd's Center of Oakton-Vienna; Karen Hannigan, Fairfax Area Agency on Aging; Matt Barkley, Fairfax County Disability Rights and Resources; Mary Jane Dye, Fairfax County Department of Family Services/Adult and Aging Division

Call to Order; Introductions; Additions to Agenda; Approval of the Agenda; Approval of the Minutes
COA Chair Carolyn Sutterfield called the meeting to order at 1 p.m. Carolyn asked the COA and members of the public to introduce themselves.

Mike requested that a speaker proposal be added to "New Business."

Cathy Cole motioned that the agenda be approved. Sharron seconded. Diane motioned that the October meeting minutes be approved. Sharron seconded.

Public Comment
No public comment.

Presentation: Aging, Disability & Caregiver Resources Intake – Karen Hannigan, Supervisor, Fairfax Area Agency on Aging
The Aging Disability and Caregiver Resources (ADCR) must-answer, telephone resource line has been operating for 15 years, with steady growth in the number of callers each year. Some callers know exactly what services they need, while others do not. Social services specialists must help the caller identify needs, and then connect the caller to supportive services. Karen wants to create an atmosphere in which the caller feels welcome to call again. Staff also welcome walk-ins and the Police and Fire Department have a direct line to ADCR. The biggest change this last year has focused on Medicaid issues with the Commonwealth Coordinated Care Plus (CCC+) waiver. Staff host conference calls to help sort out the complex coordination issues. Housing needs continue to be ongoing.

Karen advocates moving from "Safe Space" language to "Harm Reduction" to allow workers to be more open to possibilities for their clients. Karen also discussed regulations related to Medicaid for legal permanent residents in Virginia. Only eight states, including Virginia, have a work requirement which is proof of eligible work for 10 years, in addition to the five year wait. Karen requested that the COA consider advocating for Virginia's Medicaid work requirement to be removed.

Mike asked how people learn about her program. The ADCR telephone and website information is distributed through Fairfax Area Agency on Aging grip cards and in the Golden Gazette.

Mike asked about the opportunities to use video conference calls in her work. Although Karen likes this idea because 80% of communication is non-verbal, her concern with this technology is the technical support required. Additionally, she sees this as a minimal benefit for her program, as most calls are consultations that are then referred to other programs. The Adult and Aging Division Director does have interest in online senior centers.

Karen highlighted the Home Health Registry that is unique to the Fairfax Area Agency on Aging. Staff interview home health aide companies and provide a background check before listing them in the resource. This list is available to callers.

Carolyn would like to have a focus group with the ADCR team as the COA develops the SHAPE the Future of Aging Plan. Mike asked about the possibility of collecting data on how people learn about the ADCR line.

Director's Report
Matt Barkley, Director of the Disability Rights and Resources (DRR) Program, presented on the work of his team, which focuses on civil rights and the Americans with Disabilities Act compliance. DRR helps residents and groups understand their rights with the goal to keep people with disabilities integrated and active in their communities. Residents most often call about employment, transportation and housing-related issues. DRR also advocates for access. The Fairfax Area Disability Services Board most recently conducted a needs assessment survey to inform their work. Matt stated that the Building For All Committee (BFAC) works to educate people about the benefits of universal design with a recent effort to educate realtors about how universal design works well for everyone, not just older adults and people with disabilities.

Linda Hernandez-Giblin, 50+Multicultural and Community Planner, spoke about a September panel for the Fairfax Area Agency on Aging staff in which community leaders described their experiences working with diverse older adults.

New Business
Mike described his legislative home sharing proposal that the Fairfax County Federation of Citizens Associations will advocate for in the coming year. The proposal advocates for matching college students who need housing with older adults who have space in their homes. Nesterly and Silver Nest both have online platforms for home sharing. Sharron mentioned One University housing program, and Carolyn mentioned Capstone housing in the City of Fairfax. Carolyn also stated that OneFairfax is figuring prominently in Human Services Council planning for 2020, and the COA expects to consult with the OneFairfax office on proposed initiatives.

Old Business
Tom reported that, as a member of the Disabilities Services Board, he has been meeting with the newly elected supervisors to inform them of his concern that very few of the Strategic Plan initiatives address the needs of people with disabilities. He has met with six supervisors. The COA didn't propose or endorse these meetings. Diane encouraged participation in the community input sessions for the strategic plan to ensure older adult advocacy.

The newly elected members of the Board of Supervisors (BOS) will be extremely busy as they begin their terms. Commissioners serving in the districts of newly elected BOS members may want to introduce themselves and offer to continue serving on the COA, but commissioners should be sensitive about the BOS schedules. Joe recommended the COA develop a set of speaking points to share with the newly elected supervisors later in their terms. The COA will work with the BOS on the SHAPE the Future of Aging Plan in the spring.

Carolyn reported that she, Mike, Trina and Jacquie met with the new Department of Family Services Director, Michael Becketts, to describe the COA work.

Carolyn stated that the Community Services Board (CSB) will share with residents a free interactive app that provides access to mental health and self-help resources (tips, relaxation exercises). The name of the app is MyStrength, and the access code is CSB Community. The CSB reports that census information is used to plan around behavioral health. Carolyn encouraged everyone to be advocates for census participation.

Carolyn stated that the Human Services Council has funds to pilot programs around entrepreneurships/innovation projects, OneFairfax awareness, food insecurity and job training.

Carolyn and Michelle Gregory presented the 50+ Community Action Plan Final Summary Report and 50+ Community Survey summary information at the Neighborhood and Community Services Management Team December meeting.

New Business
November is National Caregiving Month.

Mike proposed a speaker from the Consumer Technology Association Foundation whose mission is to "link seniors and people with disabilities with technologies that enhance their lives."

Mike discussed an idea for a forum on advancing technology with older adults. He would like to form a committee to pursue the idea. Cathy Cole will participate on the committee and recommends the Village and Homeowners Associations as potential participants.

The Long Term Care Coordinating Council will meet on January 8. The topic will be the Census and Older Adults.

The 50+Community Ambassadors program will meet on December 2, and Caregiving will be the featured topic.

The Human Services Needs Assessment is available online: This assessment was conducted to identify key needs and challenges facing residents.

Tom provided information on trends with scams affecting older adults.

Mike provided an update on his online petition to the Park Authority to get more pickle ball courts. Over 300 people signed the petition, and Mike has been invited to participate in the Park Authority focus groups.

Diane motioned that the meeting be adjourned. Sharron seconded. The meeting was adjourned at 3:03 p.m.

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