CFAC Members from Across NC Raise Awareness in Raleigh at Legislative Advocacy Day
In early March, several members of Vaya Health’s Consumer and Family Advisory Committee (CFAC) joined representatives from the state CFAC for a legislative advocacy event in Raleigh. The CFAC is a self-governing, independent group that ensures that people receiving services have a voice in system oversight, planning, and decision-making.
Committee members consisting of individuals who receive mental health, intellectual and developmental disability, substance use disorder, and traumatic brain injury services, as well as their relatives or guardians, gathered at the N.C. General Assembly to meet with lawmakers and raise awareness about issues affecting their communities, including:
- Supporting efforts to increase rates for direct support professionals.
- Maintaining inclusion of and support for local Consumer and Family Advisory Committees (CFACs) and protecting and strengthening the consumer’s voice.
- Reducing the number of individuals on the Registry of Unmet Needs.
- Preserving member choice and clearly identify alternative services when implementing Competitive Integrated Employment policies.
A CFAC member from Vaya’s region three group said, “I provided a brief account of my son’s experience to give a human face to the impact of mental health on all of us.” The CFAC committee met with a number of General Assembly members, including Reps. Steve Ross and Sarah Crawford and Sens. Graig Meyer and Mary Wills Bode.
The discussions focused on a range of topics, such as expanding Medicaid, enhancing compensation for direct care workers and peer support specialists, and foster care.
The Advocacy Day resulted in continued discussions with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and has sparked critical conversations with local officials, Department of Social Services Directors, as well as other advocates at the local level. This collaboration highlights mutual support over a proposed statewide health plan for those involved in the child welfare system.