Independence At A Busy Traffic Intersection
Imagine a team of persons, one of whom is the Life Skills Coach. They are spending the day in the community. I was there learning about life skills coaching in an urban environment.
I had been forewarned that Bill, a community member, had challenging behaviors and there could be episodes during the day. Bill was also non-verbal, but high functioning.
At the beginning was crossing an intersection—four lanes both ways, traffic signals and heavy traffic. I admit I was on edge.
I hung back a bit trying to stay out of Bill's line of sight, but was hard to do as he was obviously reacting to this "new guy" on the team. Half way across the intersection, Bill turned at me, shaking his finger at me and uttering guttural sounds that told me nothing. I was told Bill was having a behavioral episode.
I ran back hiding behind a bush. Bill settled and continued to the other side of the intersection as I moved out to cross as well. Again, non-verbal scolding from Bill, but louder this time. I hurried to the other side and Bill quieted. I could make no sense of it.
During lunch, I asked to see his Individual Plan. Leafing through the pages, I came upon objectives set for Bill. One of them concerned crossing intersections between the white lines. And it hit me like a ton of bricks. I had been outside the white lines. Bill was trying to tell me, "Get between the white lines."
I went over to where Bill was sitting alone. I said to him, "You were trying to get me inside the white lines." His face lit up and at last I understood his two outbursts. He was right and I was wrong. I thanked him, probably an infrequent experience for Bill. And I apologized for being so slow to understand what he was saying.
Were the two episodes truly challenging behavior episodes?
Later, back in the program office, I asked, "Does Bill ever get to cross an intersection alone and independently?" Horror showed on the faces with statements stating they had to stay within the Individual Plan provided by the referring agency."
Now I asked whether or not advocacy with the referring agency might expand his goals, OR creating greater independence and choice for Bill. I assured them that insurance was providing the General and Professional liability if Bill's Plan could be upgraded.
How often are persons with disabilities blocked by insurance or by the fears of the support agency? Breaking down hindrances is an occasion for Hulse/QM® to partner with the supporting agency and create opportunities for increased quality of life for an organization's customer.
Examples such as the above are just a few that demonstrate the Mission, Vision and Values of Hulse/QM®.
Independence with Choices
Any consideration of risky programs and services begins always with a critical question: Will the program or service enhance the quality of life for persons with disabilities? If it does, then the program or service must find a way to be provided. Managing the risks of providing such products or services is a critical part of the process. Hulse/QM® is dedicated and passionate about finding ways to meet such needs and providing insurance for them.
An example of such dedication is the following list of activities that have been made available and more affordable by Hulse/QM®:
- Water skiing
- Down hill skiing
- High ropes courses
- Allowing a group home resident to have her dog living with her
- And more