Family Care and IRIS Program Ombudsman at Disability Rights Wisconsin in Madison, WI – shared by Jobs That Help as a third party
Salary: $45,000-$50,000 ($21.63-$24.03/hour) DOE
What is DRW?
Disability Rights Wisconsin is a nonprofit law firm providing representation and services to enhance the lives of people with disabilities in Wisconsin. Our vision is that all persons with disabilities and their families shall be empowered to exercise and enjoy the full extent of their rights and to pursue the greatest possible quality of life. Our attorneys and advocates challenge systems and society to achieve positive changes in the lives of people with disabilities and their families.
DRW arose out of a disability civil rights movement demanding that the abuse of people with disabilities end and that people with disabilities be included in life, school, workplaces, and communities. Our core values include Diversity, Dignity, Independence, Accessibility, Inclusion, Human Rights, and Liberation.
One of our core values is diversity. A diversity-based approach to disability rights recognizes the intersectional nature of oppression experienced by people with disabilities from underprivileged and underserved communities. We strive to create a welcoming and inclusive environment at DRW. We work to specifically address disability-related injustices at the intersections of disability and race, disability and gender, disability and gender-based violence, and more.
The Family Care and IRIS Ombudsman Program (FCIOP) provides a variety of assistance to Family Care, Partnership, and IRIS enrollees statewide. The Ombudsman works independently under the supervision of the Family Care and IRIS Program Manager and Supervising Attorney(s). The Ombudsman collects case information, investigates complaints, and provides information, guidance, self-advocacy support, consultation, and referrals. The Ombudsman works collaboratively and via negotiation and mediation with managed care organizations (MCOs), IRIS agencies, Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs), IM Consortia, home health/transportation, community-based residential placement/day program providers, and other related agencies to resolve enrollee problems, and to provide assistance and/or direct representation with complaints, grievances, appeals and state fair hearings. Ombudsmen also provide outreach and training on FCIOP and rights and issues of adults in long term care programs.
- Investigate complaints of problems experienced by Family Care, Partnership and IRIS enrollees or those trying to enroll; obtain necessary releases of information to investigate and collect information in order to determine ways to provide assistance and options available to resolve their concern. Inform the person requesting assistance of how DRW will respond to the request verbally and in writing.
- Provide information, guidance, self-advocacy support, consultation and referrals to Family Care, Partnership and IRIS enrollees and potential enrollees who call for assistance (including explaining to enrollees their rights and responsibilities. Advise on choices (advantages, risks, responsibilities) related to services and programs that may address individual needs.
- Work collaboratively with managed care organizations (MCOs), Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs), IRIS agencies (ICAs and FEAs), Income Maintenance Consortia, provider agencies and state officials to resolve problems experienced by FCIOP clients.
- Employ use of conflict coaching, dispute resolution communication, facilitation, mediation, and negotiation strategies to enable parties to effectively share information, listen to different perspectives and jointly consider various options for mutually acceptable outcomes focusing on a goal of resolution without proceeding to formal appeal at the state fair hearing level.
- Assist clients in preparing for self-representation in informal and formal appeals. This technical assistance may include helping them understand and effectively articulate written and verbal arguments and assisting them in obtaining and using supporting documentation and education on the appeal process and procedures.
- Develop and provide person-specific strategies, skills, and tools to empower clients to maintain and develop self-advocacy.
- Provide direct representation to Family Care, Partnership, and IRIS enrollees, including assistance with complaints and grievances. Perform legal research and develop legal arguments as a part of representation and with review by Supervising Attorney. Prepare documentation for appeals and fair hearings; accompany and/or represent Family Care, Partnership, and IRIS enrollees in forums where appeals and fair hearings are heard. Prepare factual evidence and legal briefs. Support FCIOP attorneys in preparing appeals.
- Learn and develop mastery of Family Care, Partnership and IRIS policy and procedures. This may include relevant federal waivers, state statutes, administrative code, Medicaid Income Maintenance manuals and internal operating policies of MCOS, FEAs and ICAs. Utilize this knowledge to be able to conduct effective research for client’s issue(s).
- Complete required intake and case recording forms and maintain accurate records of client interactions and case progress.
- Provide outreach and training to a variety of groups on various Family Care, Partnership, and IRIS topics.
- Regional and periodic statewide travel required.
- Four years in paid or unpaid work in providing advocacy to vulnerable people may be considered in lieu of a formal advanced degree or Bachelor’s degree in an area related to the provision of advocacy services to people with disabilities.
- Direct paid or unpaid experience with people with disabilities.
- Individual case-handling, including investigation, negotiation, and mediation skills and case file maintenance. Ability to prioritize and multitask to manage time effectively and manage multiple cases simultaneously.
- Paid or unpaid experience providing advocacy on applicant’s own behalf or someone else’s behalf.
- Excellent listening, verbal and professional written communication skills. Ability to communicate effectively to clients and internal and external entities.
- Demonstrated commitment to social justice issues.
- Proficiency in computer skills, including email, word processing and use of the internet.
- Ability to work independently, professionally and as part of a team.
- Ability to travel regionally and statewide.
- Knowledge of Family Care, Partnership, IRIS and Medicaid or other similar state programs providing long term health care.
- Direct contact with persons from culturally diverse backgrounds.
- Experience providing outreach, training and/or technical assistance.
- General knowledge or ability to learn of resources that may be a concurrent or underlying issue to client’s long-term care eligibility. These may include community resources (housing, health care, transportation) medical terminology, powers of attorney and other expertise
Disability Rights Wisconsin offers the following benefits for full time employment: health, vision, dental, and life insurance; short- and long-term disability; 401(k) retirement savings plan, and flex spending. Paid time off includes 8 paid holidays, 4 floating holidays, personal and sick time off, volunteer and voting time off. Benefits available on a pro-rated basis for part-time employment (minimum of 20 hours per week).
During the COVID-19 pandemic, DRW staff are working from their homes. A date to begin working in our office locations will be announced in the near future.