Gov: Hospital capacity still a major concern


Statewide Positivity Rate – 5.8%
Statewide Positivity Rate, Excluding Focus Zones – 5.5%
Positivity Rate Within Focus Zones – 6.8%
Current Hospitalizations – 6,661 (+330)
Patients Currently in ICU – 1,126 (+31)
Patients Currently Intubated – 614 (+1)
Deaths – 139
Total NY Pandemic Deaths – 28,850



Statewide Positivity Rate – 5.8%
Statewide Positivity Rate, Excluding Focus Zones – 5.5%
Positivity Rate Within Focus Zones – 6.8%
Current Hospitalizations – 6,661 (+330)
Patients Currently in ICU – 1,126 (+31)
Patients Currently Intubated – 614 (+1)
Deaths – 139
Total NY Pandemic Deaths – 28,850



Capital Region – 6.9%
Central New York – 6.5%
Finger Lakes – 8.3%
Long Island – 6.5%
Mid-Hudson – 6.2%
Mohawk Valley – 8.5%
New York City – 4.3%
North Country – 5.2%
Southern Tier – 2.4%
Western New York – 6.4%

HOSPITAL CAPACITY: Governor Cuomo stressed that managing hospital capacity is still a major concern for New York. A hospital must alert New York State if it is within 21 days from 85% capacity to give the State three weeks to assess the situation. No hospital in the State has given a capacity notice as of today.

HOLIDAY SPREAD: With the holidays approaching, infection rates are likely to increase. The Governor urged celebrating safely over the coming weeks. He stressed that it has been a long year and the safer New Yorkers act, the greater the chances are that the State will avoid a shutdown.

UNITED KINGDOM COVID-19 VARIANT: The COVID-19 variant that has emerged from the United Kingdom (U.K.) is a serious issue. Prime Minister Boris Johnson had to shut down the country only one week after claiming it would not be necessary. The U.K. variant is reportedly 70 times more transmittable than the common strand. Governor Cuomo urged the Federal Government to follow his lead and mandate testing of those who enter the U.S. from the United Kingdom. Dr. Fauci recently said he doesn’t believe that a travel ban is necessary, but the country should require testing before travelers enter. Dr. Fauci also believes the U.K. variant could be in the country now, but there is currently no evidence it is present here.

· The State has now engaged hospital systems to begin testing for the variant immediately, with the Department of Health working with those hospitals with higher lab capacity. Currently, the State has performed 4,000 tests and has found no evidence that the variant is here. In response to a question from a reporter, Governor Cuomo noted that testing for the variant on top of testing for COVID-19 will not slow the State down or cause a delay in results.

VACCINE: As of today, 50,000 doses of the vaccine have been administered. The State has received 630,000 doses, and expects an additional 300,000 doses next week. In two weeks, the State expects residents and staff at 618 nursing homes to be vaccinated. The Governor once again stressed that vaccine distribution is not political; it is run by hospital systems. Governor Cuomo has asked healthcare workers administering vaccines to continue to work over the holidays.

BUFFALO BILLS: The Governor indicated that the State is working with the Buffalo Bills to allow fans to safely enter the stadium. Protocols that other teams around the nation have implemented are currently being researched. The Department of Health is looking at an experimental model to work with data and testing to make viewing the game in-person as safe as possible. The Governor noted how much the State has invested in renovations to the stadium.

CP continues to make ‘Connections’ with NYC Ballet

We are very excited to announce that, once again, artists from the world-renowned New York City Ballet have partnered with CP State to conduct a dance workshop designed specifically for people with disabilities.

As part of “Connections”, the 2020 CP of NYS Virtual Conference, we will present this virtual workshop on October 28, from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm. We encourage you to share this information with anyone in your organization, including families, who may be interested in this exciting opportunity.

A New York City Ballet (NYCB) dancer and pianist will conduct a dance movement workshop based on a ballet from the Company’s vast repertoire.

You won’t want to miss this session!

If you’ve been lucky enough to see or participate in our CP of NYS/NYCB workshops in the past, you know what a good time this is!

Below is the link for this workshop.  You can share this with your staff and families, and they will be able to access this event from any safe and suitable site with a reliable internet connection.

 Topic: 10-28-20 NYC Ballet Workshop

Time: 10:30am to 12:00pm

Meeting ID: 933 9180 7182

Passcode: 063374

 To Join by Video:

One tap mobile:  +13017158592,,93391807182#     or     +16468769923,,93391807182#

To Join by Telephone:

        +1 301 715 8592

        +1 312 626 6799

        +1 646 876 9923

        +1 253 215 8782

        +1 346 248 7799

        +1 669 900 6833

Meeting ID: 933 9180 7182

To participate in other CP of NYS Virtual Conference sessions, please contact your agency’s Conference Liaison.  Your Conference Liaison will receive the links to the other sessions by the end of the week.

If you have any questions, please contact me at, or by calling 518-436-0178.


Voting information for persons with developmental disabilities

Election Day 2020 is November 3. Deadlines to request an absentee ballot or an accessible absentee ballot are coming even sooner. There is so much on the line this year, and voting is absolutely critical to ensure that Medicaid and programs like CDPA continue to exist and are available to everyone who needs it. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to help shape the future of healthcare access and vital long-term care services.


Make sure you are registered to vote, find your polling place, and check out the dates for important deadlines below, as well as information on how you can make sure your vote counts.

Make a plan to vote.

  • Absentee ballot request deadline – October 27
    • Absentee ballots must be requested on or before October 27, 2020.
    • Ballots sent by mail must be postmarked on or before November 3, 2020.
    • Ballots must be returned in person by 9 PM on November 3, 2020.
    • Request an absentee ballot here.
  • Accessible Absentee ballot request deadline – October 27
    • The form to request an accessible absentee ballot must be submitted on or before October 27, 2020.
    • Completed accessible ballots must be postmarked on or before November 3, 2020.
    • Completed accessible ballots must be returned in person by 9 PM on November 3, 2020.
    • Request an accessible ballot here.
  • Early voting – October 24 to November 1
    • Find the times and days for early voting in your county here.

Want to do more? Check out these online tools and resources from our partners at the New York Association on Independent Living to help organize and educate voters with disabilities.
The following information is provided by OPWDD:

The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (also known as “The Motor Voter Act”) made it easier for all Americans, regardless of ability, to exercise their fundamental right to vote. The Motor Voter Act requires all offices of State-funded programs that are primarily engaged in providing services to persons with disabilities to provide all program applicants with voter registration forms and to assist in their completion and submission.

OPWDD is committed to ensuring that voting rights are upheld for the people we serve, and that every person is given the opportunity to register to vote. Every effort should be made to discuss with individuals their right to vote and to encourage and assist with any interest in doing so.

This year’s general election will be held: Tuesday, November 3, 2020.

In NYS, the deadline to register to vote is: Friday, October 9th, 2020, and it can be done online, in person or by mail.

Additionally, if registered to vote, mail-in ballots can be requested by Tuesday, October 27, 2020. Several early voting days will be available, beginning October 24th.

A safe way to vote must be discussed with every individual seeking to exercise this right.

Mental Hygiene Law 33.01 provides for equal provision of civil rights to persons with developmental disabilities and specifically includes the right to register for and to vote in elections “if in all other respects qualified and eligible.” New York State Election Law sets forth the qualifications for eligible voter participation. Section 5-106 prohibits those who have been convicted of a felony and those who “have been adjudged incompetent by order of a court of competent judicial authority” from voting. Interpretation, implementation and monitoring of eligibility criteria is left to the Local Boards of Elections and questions regarding specific individuals’ eligibility and registration statuses should be directed to the Local Boards of Election.

Counsel’s Office Bureau of Service Delivery may be contacted at (518) 474-7700 with additional questions.


President & CEO Susan Constantino and Executive Director Mike Alvaro will close out this year’s virtual conference with messages of appreciation for our Affiliates and their staff.

And, of course, there will be giveaways! 

Prizes will be raffled off throughout the closing session. All you need to do is attend a previous session to have your name automatically entered in the drawing! 

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The telemedicine project awarded to Cerebral Palsy of NYS, and funded by DOH’s Transformation Grant, successfully rolled out in early 2020. 

The COVID-19 crisis posed challenges to its implementation, but ultimately StationMD’s telemedicine program has provided a crucial access point to health care for individuals with IDD with successful results. Moreover, a silver lining to COVID-19 crisis has been a relaxation of telemedicine at a state and federal level, opening up further opportunities to address needs of this population.

This session will explore the advances, opportunities and positive outcomes of telehealth for individuals with I/DD.


Dr. Matthew Kaufman, Station MD

Meghan Calichman, MPA, Station MD

Download the presentation.

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Diversity and inclusion in the workplace has never been more important!

Professionals in the staff-development field will discuss the impact of defining culture at your agency; diversity and inclusion as part of employee training initiatives; and incorporating more stakeholders and programs in advancing these initiatives.


 Elaine Angelo, Performance Consultant, ProKnowledge

Delphia Howse, D. Howze Solutions

Maureen O’Brien, President & CEO, NYSID

Raeshell Harris, Assistant Director of Human Resources, CP of Long Island

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CP of NYS Virtual Conference – Thank You!

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This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.

This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.

This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.

This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.

This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.

This session is eligible for Continuing Education Units. Click here for more information.


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These are trying times, but disability advocates have always had to overcome adversity!

During this time of year, everyone begins to think about their goals for the next year with renewed hope and excitement.  However, as we approach the end of 2020, it’s important to take time to consider those individuals that made significant contributions to the field of intellectual and developmental disability within the U.S. over the past 20 years.

This session will look at the National Historic Recognition Project, which is an effort by a dozen national and regional organizations to recognize the key individuals who have contributed to the transformation of the I/DD field.  Our speaker will highlight the improvements made as the field moved toward personalized supports, the role of individuals with I/DD as advocates, and the value of the contributions of direct support professionals!

The past 20 years have seen a significant shift toward individualized and inclusive supports, an increase in employment options, and a greater emphasis on small, community-integrated residential settings.  The advent of managed care, changes in funding, and mergers have strongly influenced organizational approaches to the service they provide.  As individuals in long-term leadership roles are retiring and the next generation of leaders enter these positions, it’s important to remember the contributions of their predecessors.  Our intent is to create a web‐based archive for the 2000‐2020 period.  We feel this effort is critical for the field and should establish a collection that future generations can utilize to build a strong understanding of what happened and who played a significant role.  The history in our field will be told through the lives of people supported, their families, and the professionals who have come before us and those who will follow.


 Susan Constantino, President & CEO, CP State

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This session is for everyone!

The COVID-19 pandemic we’re all living through is scary and life-changing. It’s one of those things we’ll tell our grandchildren about—on par with the way life changed during world wars or the Great Depression. However, it’s bigger than the previous social shifts, not only because of its tragic outcomes, but also because it’s affecting so many of us at once and changing every aspect of life from the most significant (work, income, health) to the mundane (the availability of basic products).

To say that workers in our noble field are heroes is true yet may even be an understatement for what colleagues see in each other. Leaders today have been described as advocates, champions, listeners, and warriors. While disability providers have always faced adversity, something this big creates the opportunity for new thinking. A panel of CP Executive Directors will discuss the various obstacles and achievements from the year 2020. The group will share lessons about resilience and response; lessons about community; and lessons in finding happiness again as we look towards the future.


Leisa Alger, Executive Director, Able2

Mary Boatfield, President & CEO, CP Rochester/Happiness House

Robert McGuire, Executive Director, Cerebral Palsy of Long Island

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