Entries by Christofer Pierson, Director of Member Communications

Jason DaSilva and the Impossible Choice

Jason DaSilva, a talented artist and documentary filmmaker, is an ICS member with multiple sclerosis that has advanced to the point where he needs 24 hours of personal assistance. With these crucial supports in place, Jason is able to continue making the personal documentaries, such as 2014’s “When I Walk,” that have won him praise […]

Text or Email Your Transportation Request

Tired of being on hold waiting in the queue for a representative to book your trip? ICS Transportation Service heard you! If you have access to email on your computer or phone, you can now order your transportation via email or text. Here’s what you have to do: Please email your transportation requests to msccenter@icsny.org. […]

ICS Member Kenny Vargas: He’s Number 1

In July 1999, Kenny Vargas, a native of the Dominican Republic who lives in the Bronx, had a serious accident that rendered him quadriplegic at level C-3 on his spine at age 23. Suddenly, the physically active construction worker and some-time auto mechanic found himself sitting in a nursing home, waiting for his residence to […]

ICS Rainbow Connection’s Evelyn Castillo at Gay Pride

One of the founders and leaders of ICS’s LGBTQ support group Rainbow Connection gave a rousing speech in front of the legendary Stonewall Inn to mark the start of Pride Weekend in New York City on Friday, June 22. Evelyn Castillo was part of a roster of speakers invited to show off the diversity of […]

T.K. Small vs Electronic Visit Verification (EVV)

The Congress members who wrote the 21st Century CURES Act lauded it as a plan to increase efficiencies in national healthcare spending, resulting in savings that they claimed could be poured into research for actual cures for diseases. A small, not well-known part of the CURES Act requires states to set up a plan for adopting Electronic […]

New Rules for Appeals and Fair Hearing Rights Effective May 1

What is changing on May 1, 2018? New federal Medicaid managed care rules take effect in New York State. These rules change the way Medicaid managed care plans make decisions about health care services and Plan Appeals. These rules change how you can ask the State for a Fair Hearing about plan decisions.  Starting May […]

Independence Radio: Rosemary Salopek: Depression and Disability

What is behavioral health and how does it differ from mental health? Are people with disabilities more prone to depression than others are? What effect does depression have on the physical health of people with disabilities? These are just a few of the questions Independence Radio host Stephanie Wallace explores with ICS Director of Behavioral […]

Fire Safety Weekend: Learn Fire Safety at ICS Bronx

In recent months, several deadly, large fires have rattled the Bronx. In late December, the biggest fire in all of New York City in three decades killed 13 residents, including several small children, and left dozens homeless in the borough’s Belmont section. Of course, such fires can happen anywhere and at any time. But the […]

Three ICS Icons Inducted in Disability Rights Hall of Fame

The NYS Independent Living Council (NYSILC) has inducted three giants of ICS and disability rights history among the first honorees of the newly created New York State Disability Rights Hall of Fame. Marilyn E. Saviola, ICS Senior Vice President of Advocacy and the Health Access Project, will be honored along with posthumous awards for Anna […]

Healthy Holiday Season Feasting: Eating Well for the Holidays   

In the millennia before supermarkets and refrigerators, the autumn harvest provided a nutritional bounty that enabled people to fill up and grow fat in anticipation of months of cold, lean times before the spring. But now that our stores are full of foods—even fresh fruits and vegetables from the tropics and Southern Hemisphere—all winter long, […]

Neighborhood Care: Close to Where You Live

At ICS, we believe that a key element of knowing our members better is understanding their neighborhoods—knowing what providers, community-based supports and other resources are nearby and accessible. Our knowing a member’s neighborhood can make a huge difference. For example, if a member relies on medication for a chronic condition and her care manager notices […]

Member Profile: Bernard Linder

ICS member Bernard Linder of Sheepshead Bay was born in 1918, just about 14 years after the official opening of the New York City subway system. The son of Lithuanian immigrants, Bernard says, “I was born near the intersection of two trolley lines at Fifty-ninth and Tenth in Manhattan. Our apartment was within the sound […]

When Disaster Strikes: ICS Plans for Emergencies

Before the devastating appearance of Hurricanes Irma and Harvey this past month, 2014’s “Frankenstorm” Sandy was the second costliest disaster (after 2005’s Hurricane Katrina) in U.S. history. It was certainly the worst disaster in modern New York City history. The 2014 storm caused 14-foot water surges that flooded downtown Manhattan and the shores of Brooklyn, […]

ICS Members on Activism

It has been almost one year since the Civics League for Disability Rights was born. On the eve of last year’s general election, ICS members and others interested in discussing issues important to the disability community gathered at ICS’s Brooklyn office for their first monthly meeting to share and learn about how to be effective […]

Independence Radio: Nettie Harper: Living with Dementia

In the latest episode of ICS Independence Radio, host Stephanie Wallace talks with Nettie Harper, director of ICS’s Dementia Program, about how to live with dementia, whether you are a person diagnosed with the condition or are that person’s caregiver or aide. You can listen to the episode here. For most people, dementia is a […]

ICS Rehab Engineer Bob Paradiso: Creative Assistive Tech

People with disabilities benefit from creative, inexpensive solutions to everyday needs. ICS Rehab Engineer Bob Paradiso is a wizard with electronics. He can make hard-to-open refrigerator doors pop open with the push of a button, shades and medical beds go up and down with simple voice commands, and wheelchairs stop and start with the movement […]

ICS Members Testify at NY State Assembly Hearing on Home Care

When ICS members learned that the New York State Assembly would be holding hearings on the home care workforce on February 22 in downtown Manhattan, well over 40 were moved to make their presence felt and their feelings known about this issue of vital importance to their lives.  The large numbers of people with disabilities […]

Independence Radio: Marilyn Saviola and the Fight for Independence

“It never felt right that I shouldn’t be able to live in the community,” Marilyn Saviola, Senior VP for Advocacy and the Women’s Health Access Project, tells host Stephanie Wallace in a new episode of Independence Radio. “If I wanted to have a life, if I wanted to do things, I would have to fight […]