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The Toolkits section consists of multiple components to assist APS programs across policy and practice on a single topic. Tip sheets, presentation templates, sample policies and more are designed to be resources that investigators and administrators may use to enhance their programs practice and policy. 

APS Investigator Toolkit for COVID-19

APS investigators/caseworkers face unprecedented barriers in completing their work during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many states are restricting face-to-face visits, which significantly impairs the ability of staff to complete a thorough investigation whether in a client’s private home or in an extended care facility. This toolkit provides information on safely completing a face-to-face visit, when needed, and resources for your clients during the pandemic.

Components of this toolkit will be released incrementally and publicized as they are available. Additional components will be provided at a later date.

APS TARC Resources

Adult Protective Services & COVID-19 - The APS TARC's web page dedicated to COVID-19 resources and program response.

Tips for Facility Investigations - This document includes tips for in-person visits to extended care facilities, for use by APS programs with jurisdiction over such environments.

Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Infection Control and the COVID-19 Pandemic - A document addressing commonly asked questions about infection control and COVID-19.

Pandemic Resources for APS - April 30, 2020 APS Blog post on general pandemic resources. 

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact us.

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Collaboration and Communication Toolkit: Clients with Disabilities & their Advocacy Organizations

APS investigations, assessments, and service referral/coordination may present communication challenges when the client has one or more disabilities, including intellectual disabilities. The National Voluntary Consensus Guidelines for
State Adult Protective Services Systems
recommend that APS systems establish standardized practices to collect and analyze information when determining whether or not maltreatment has occurred. It is recommended that “…the worker has been trained and is competent to investigate the particular set of circumstances described in the report (e.g., he/she has received training on working with nonverbal clients, with clients with intellectual disabilities, with clients with mental health issues, with residents of institutions, or with minority populations).”

This toolkit is a resource both to administrators and front-line staff. The toolkit includes the following which will be of interest to staff working directly with clients:

• training on communications and coordination of work with organizations serving people with disabilities, 
• resources list, 
• people first language, and
• smart technology tips. 

APS program administrators will be interested in the following:

• policies and procedures template for work on behalf of and with other entities for people with disabilities including confidentiality,
• sample memorandum of understanding/interagency agreement,
• federal/state disabilities resources list, and
• shared resources on these topics from other states. 

Trainers are encouraged to modify these resources with state specific information. APS programs are encouraged to add program logos to customize the templates to fit their needs. The APS TARC requests that any adapted materials be credited to us. Please include the following disclaimer on all materials - "The National Adult Maltreatment Reporting System (NAMRS) and the Adult Protective Services Technical Resource Center (APS TARC) are a project of the U.S. Administration for Community Living, Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services, administered by the WRMA, Inc. Contractor’s findings, conclusions, and points of view do not necessarily represent U.S. Administration for Community Living, Administration on Aging, Department of Health and Human Services official policy."

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact us.

APS TARC Resources

Communications with Clients with Disabilities Slides - These slides can be used for training others in the communication of clients with disabilities. 

Sample Policies and Procedures - A sample policy and procedure document addressing collaboration on behalf of clients with disabilities that can be tailored to your organization's needs.

Sample Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) - This sample MOU can be used to delineate the roles of those investigating maltreatment of adults with disabilities. 

Communication Assistance Mobile Apps - A list of iPhone and Android apps suggested for communicating with people with disabilities.

Overview of ACLs Protection and Advocacy Systems (recorded webinar and slides) - In this webinar, ACL's Jennifer Johnson and Ophelia McLain provided an overview of the P&As designed to advocate for persons with disabilities. 

Additional Resources

Building Partnerships for the Protection of Persons with Disabilities Initiative (BPI) - Replication Guide
Adult Advocacy Centers - Prosecutor’s Guide for Crimes Involving Victims with Disabilities

Massachusetts (MA) Disabled Persons Protection Commission (DPPC) - three resource examples for this toolkit.

  1. The memorandum of agreement between the DDPC and Triangle, Inc. (IMPACT Ability program of Triangle, Inc.) with support of the MA Department of Public Health. The agreement address their work, the Healthy Relationship education programs, in two Boston schools. Roles and responsibilities, and decision making and communication are a part of the agreement.
  2. The memorandum of agreement in support of the implementation of a grant project by the DPPC to enhance access to services for adults with disabilities who are survivors of sexual assault.  Participating agencies were DPPC, MA Rape Crisis Centers, and Victim Rights Law Center.
  3. The memorandum for the reporting and investigatory responsibilities of law enforcement personnel and persons and agencies providing services to a person with a disability. The partner agencies are DPPC, Office of the Hampden District Attorney, Massachusetts State Police, Department of Developmental Services, Department of Mental Health, and Massachusetts Rehabilitation Commission.
To obtain copies of these examples with names redacted, contact the APS TARC.

Personal Safety Toolkit

APS casework can create personal safety risk for staff conducting investigations, assessments, and home visits. The safety of personnel can have a noticeable impact on the ability of APS programs to provide services to the adults who need them most. Commitment to worker safety includes maintaining a safe work environment with a focus on prevention, mental health training, and emergency preparedness planning.
The purpose of this toolkit is to provide a resource to administrators and front-line staff to increase the safety of APS staff. It includes helpful information such as a presentation slide template for basic training, smart technology tips, and policies and procedures. APS programs are encouraged to add program logos, emergency contact numbers, etc., to customize the templates to fit their needs. The APS TARC requests that any adapted materials be credited to us.    
If you have questions or need additional information, please contact us.

APS TARC Resources

Personal Safety Webinar - APS TARC webinar that provides strategies for staff to reduce risk when they encounter potentially threatening situations that involve upset, emotionally charged, or angry clients or others. Handouts for this webinar are also available. Handouts: Slides | Handout 1 | Handout 2 | Handout 3 | Handout 4

Safety Training Presentation Slides - These slides can be used for training staff on personal safety.

Sample Policies and Procedures - A sample policy and procedure document that can be tailored to your organization's needs.

Self Defense on the Job Is Like Defensive Driving - APS Blog post on personal safety for APS workers.

Personal Safety Mobile Apps - A list of iPhone and Android personal safety apps.

Additional Resources

Georgia Department of Human Services, Division of Aging Services - Adult Protective Services Field Safety Guide

Idaho Commision on Aging - Adult Protective Services Foundational Training, Safety Overview Training

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