Monday, May 21, 2012

Department of Energy: Web-based Project Preserves Plant’s Uranium Enrichment Legacy

DOE Office of Environmental Management

EM News Flash | May 21

Virtual Museum Captures Ohio Plant History

Web-based Project Preserves Plant’s Uranium Enrichment Legacy

PIKETON, Ohio – Do you wonder what the interior of a uranium enrichment plant looks like without ever stepping foot in the facility?
   Now, the public can view photos, watch interviews with current and former workers who share historical accounts and browse old newsletters on the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant from as far back as the early 1950s with the touch of a computer keyboard or screen.
   DOE launched the website,, this year. Already, it has generated more than 36,000 page views and 3,000 people from 22 countries have visited the website.
   DOE established the website to preserve the rich history of its southern Ohio plant built between 1952 and 1956 to support the nation’s nuclear weapons program. The website is maintained by DOE contractor Fluor-B&W Portsmouth LLC.
   “The plant played an important role in supporting our nation’s defense through the Cold War as well as the development of nuclear energy,” said Dr. Vince Adams, DOE Site Director. “I am proud of its history and the virtual museum allows everyone to step inside and learn more about this engineering and scientific marvel.”

Virtual Museum
An online museum on the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant went live earlier this year.

   The facility was the last of three gaseous diffusion plants built in the United States by DOE’s predecessor agency, the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC). The Portsmouth plant ended production of enriched uranium in May 2001, and preparations to decontaminate and decommission (D&D) the facility are under way. The other two plants were built in Oak Ridge, Tenn. and Paducah, Ky. The Oak Ridge facility is currently being dismantled and Paducah’s is still operational.
   A special feature on the website is a 26-minute documentary, “The Portsmouth Story,” produced by AEC. The feature contains footage of the plant being built on the 3,777-acre federal property.
   At the time of the Ohio plant's construction, the facility's three uranium enrichment process buildings were among the largest in the world, encompassing more than 10 million square feet on 90 acres. Altogether, those three buildings are comparable in size to three Yankee Stadiums and a football field. More than 100,000 tons of structural steel were used to construct the Ohio buildings, and the facility used more than 2,000 megawatts of electricity daily during full operation. That was enough power to service New York City at that time.
   The plant’s initial mission was to produce highly enriched uranium for nuclear-weapons-grade material at the height of the Cold War. In the 1960s, its mission shifted to production of lower enriched uranium for U.S. Naval nuclear submarine reactors and commercial nuclear power plants.
   After enriched uranium production ended at the plant, it was placed in a cold standby mode for potential restart. However, in 2005, DOE transitioned the plant into cold shutdown to deactivate equipment and prepare for eventual dismantlement. In 2010, DOE awarded a $2.1 billion contract to Fluor-B&W to conduct the D&D activities.
   Workers under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act have demolished some small support facilities at the site. Fluor-B&W is preparing to demolish several additional support buildings, including the plant’s primary administration building, former cafeteria and medical facility, all built in the early 1950s.
   “Some of the buildings are starting to disappear from the landscape,” Adams said. “This website will preserve much of the history and be an educational source for many years into the future.”
   In addition to the newsletters, videos, exterior and interior building images and photos of workers, the virtual museum includes a general plant history and other documentation.
   Photos, videotaped interviews and other information related to the more than 130 buildings that comprise the plant will be added to the website on an ongoing basis.

Whole Community: Communities taking control

Using the Toxic Release Inventory to Build Power in Communities

2012 May 17

By Erin Heaney

When Congress created the Toxics Release Inventory (TRI), they intended for communities to have access to information about what was happening at the facilities in their neighborhoods. But until very recently, in the neighborhood we live in, many folks didn’t know the database existed and others didn’t have access to computers or know how to use them.

My organization, the Clean Air Coalition, was founded by residents in Tonawanda, NY who suspected that their pervasive health problems were linked to the industrial plants in their neighborhoods. There are 53 industrial facilities in Tonawanda, which is the highest concentration of air-regulated facilities in the state.

We have built power by developing grassroots leaders who run campaigns that advance environmental justice in Western New York. For example, in March we trained our membership on how to use the TRI.

We spent the first half of the training learning about history of TRI and about how it was through communities standing up and saying that they needed more information about the environmental conditions in their communities that led to the creation of the TRI. Our members learned who reports to TRI, as well as when and how the data is verified. Afterward, we headed over to the computer lab to learn how to use the EPA TRI tool Our members dug into the data for their neighborhoods and learned which companies were polluting, what they were emitting and what the health effects of those emissions were.

Their reactions were powerful. One member said, “I’m sick to my stomach;” another said, “This makes me angry and makes me want to do something about it.” Folks left the training ready to recruit more of their neighbors to push for emissions reductions from companies and policymakers.

    The training took place during the Coalition’s campaign to ensure the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (NYS DEC) air monitors remained up and running. The training educated members about what was in their back yards and motivated them to advocate for air monitoring in the community. In the end, our work paid off and the campaign successfully resulted in a commitment from the NYS DEC to keep the monitors up and running for another two years.                                                                                                   

At our office we have a saying: “Knowledge isn’t power. Power is power.” While access to information alone doesn’t make change, providing people with information about what’s happening in their neighborhoods is an essential piece of building power in environmental justice communities.

About the author: Erin Heaney is the Executive Director of the Clean Air Coalition of Western New York, a grassroots organization that develops community leadership to win campaigns that advance public health and environmental justice. She has trained hundreds of grassroots leaders and won campaigns that have resulted in significant emissions reductions from some of the region’s largest polluters.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Whole Community: Voting Rights of Ex-Offenders

Ex-offenders find a reason to reclaim the vote
By Mary C. Curtis

Should American citizens who have been convicted of crimes and served their time have their right to vote restored?
From left: 2 Chainz, Kanye West, Rosci and Terrence J in New York City in April. Rapper 2 Chainz has his voting rights after a conviction on drug possession when he was 15. (Craig Barritt - GETTY IMAGES)

The question is a political issue, part of a voting-rights debate that is being fought in the states and among political candidates. To ex-felons, it can be a personal challenge, as well: Will their votes matter, and why should they care?

The rapper 2 Chainz, made the case for the vote at a pre-show stop at the Urban League of Central Carolinas in Charlotte on Saturday. He told his story for 40 young people, a few with criminal records. The 35-year-old Atlanta-based performer said he was first arrested at age 15 for cocaine possession. When it came to voting, he thought he was “counted out” and didn’t know he was eligible until he picked up a brochure at a registration drive at an Atlanta mall. Along with 10 friends, he recruited from his recording studio, “I walked around with a sticker the whole day” they voted.
“I felt rejuvenated,” he said. “I felt like a citizen again.”
To supporters, restoring voting rights to former felons is a logical and positive step, a way to give them a stake in the world outside prison walls. That was the point of the weekend workshop organized by the Washington-based Hip-Hop Caucus and its “Respect My Vote” campaign, a nonpartisan mobilization and education effort focused particularly on young voters.  
Denying former felons the vote, “ultimately denies rights to a class of people based on previous actions,” according to William Harding, a Charlotte attorney, who also spoke at the even. “Once a person has paid his debt to society, it’s important that he is integrated back into society,” he told me. The ex-inmates are more involved, Harding said, and their recidivism rate is lower.
He explained that in North Carolina, anyone who completes all parts of a sentence for a felony conviction, including probation and parole, can register to restore the voting right that was lost, though it is a crime to register before the sentence is completed. Those convicted of a misdemeanor do not lose their right to vote.
The law puts North Carolina somewhere between Maine and Vermont, where felons never lose their voting rights, and states such as Kentucky and Virginia, which require the governor to approve an application. (In Virginia, GOP Gov. Bob McDonnell has stepped up the pace to restore rights.) In some states, only the most serious crimes are punished with permanent disenfranchisement.
Because the courts have determined voting is a fundamental rather than constitutional right, Harding said, it’s left up to the states, and he thinks that’s wrong. “It’s not as though they’re somehow going to taint the process,” he said. “Ultimately, the laws affect them, too.”
The issue can be used to label an opponent soft on crime, as Republican Rick Santorum found out in the primaries when a Mitt Romney Super PAC ad attacked – and in Santorum’s view, distorted -- his position advocating voting rights for ex-felons who completed their obligations. At a debate before the South Carolina primary, Santorum challenged Romney and pointed out the former Massachusetts governor’s once similar stance. Romney answered that he governed a largely Democratic electorate then, and stated his current view that “people who committed violent crimes should not be able to vote, even upon coming out of office."
It’s an issue with a racial dimension, as African American men are disproportionately affected. In her 2010 book “The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness,” Michelle Alexander places current policy – including a  disparity in prosecution and sentencing rates, particularly for drug-related offenses -- within a history of America’s disenfranchisement of African American voters. The University of Michigan Law School and the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law released an analysis this week that counted more than 2,000 people in the United States who were falsely convicted of serious crimes and then exonerated in the past 23 years. The universities used their archive to study the details of 873 of those exonerations. Nine out of 10 in that group were men, and half were African American.
On Saturday, Brandi Williams, the Hip Hop Caucus Charlotte coordinator, recited statistics from the nonprofit Sentencing Project that showed lower N.C. registration and voting rates among those with felony convictions. It’s “not good for democracy,” she said.
In a close 2012 presidential election, when every vote in swing states such as North Carolina promises to be crucial, both parties are concerned about the issue. In Florida, Republican Gov. Rick Scott and other state officials last year rolled back the 2007 rule change by then-GOP Gov. Charlie Crist that made it easier for many ex-felons to regain the right to vote. Now even nonviolent offenders have to wait five years before applying for the chance to have their rights restored. "It clearly has the effect of suppressing the vote as we go into a presidential election cycle," Howard Simon, executive director of the Florida chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, told The Washington Post then.
Participants at the Charlotte event could fill out registration forms and a “Respect My Vote” pledge, which included space to list the issues they care about. Patrick Graham, executive director of the Urban League of Central Carolinas, said the event was not to advocate for any candidate or position, but to emphasize the message “to never let your past determine your future.” He made the Urban League’s computer lab and resources available for anyone to research candidates and issues.
Graham said some with past felony convictions are too willing to give away their voting rights. “They don’t look on them as a priority.” He told the workshop participants, “It’s so important you follow through with this.”
At first, 23-year-old Dimitros Jordan said he was turned off by politics. “Nothing is really going to change,” he said, preferring to “put it in God’s hands.” After attending a question-and-answer session in which some pointed out that it was civic action that led to charges for George Zimmerman after he shot Florida teen Trayvon Martin, Jordan changed his mind. He served five months as a teenager for armed robbery, he said, but now works in construction and coaches children in summer camp. Jordan said he is determined to stay out of trouble – and to vote. “I’m going to tell my friends,” he said.
Patrick Chambers, 26, of Charlotte, has never voted. “I didn’t think I could” after a felony conviction, he said. He intends to vote for the first time in November. “People in the neighborhood are quick to accuse the government, ‘They don’t do this, they don’t do that,’” he said. “It’s really our fault if we don’t vote.”
Mary C. Curtis, an award-winning multimedia journalist in Charlotte, N.C., is a contributor to The Root, Fox News Charlotte, NPR, Creative Loafing and Nieman Watchdog blog. She has worked at The New York Times, Charlotte Observer and as national correspondent for Politics Daily. Follow her on Twitter: @mcurtisnc3

Security Alert: Credit and Debit card

Make it a habit yearly obtain a replacement credit or debit card especially if you use them for purchases on the internet or other uses.

Banking and Finance Sector

8. May 18, H Security – (National) Global Payments breach reportedly worse than expected. The security breach at credit card processing company Global Payments extends back further than was previously believed, H Security reported May 18.

According to BankInfoSecurity, the incident is now thought to go back as far as January 2011 — it was originally believed to have taken place between January 21 and February 25, 2012, but was later dated to early June 2011. While initial reports of the breach suggested more than 10 million accounts were compromised, Global Payments later said fewer than 1.5 million card numbers were taken.


DHS\FEMA. Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Requirement

Grant Programs Directorate Information Bulletin  No 385      April 4, 2012

MEMORANDUM FOR: All State Administrative Agency Heads
                                        All State Administrative Agency Points of Contact
                                        All Urban Areas Security Initiative Points of Contact
                                        All State Homeland Security Directors
                                        All State Emergency Management Agency Directors
FROM: Timothy W. Manning
Deputy Administrator
Protection and National Preparedness

SUBJECT: Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Requirement

This Information Bulletin (IB) is applicable to grantees receiving Homeland Security Grant Program (HSGP) and Emergency Management Performance Grants (EMPG) awards.

As enumerated in the funding opportunity announcements and application kits, each grantee receiving funding assistance from the above grants must conduct a Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment (THIRA) in order remain eligible for grant funds. HSGP and EMPG grantees will be required to develop a THIRA and provide a copy to their Regional Federal Preparedness Coordinator no later than December 31, 2012. The THIRA must be updated and reviewed by DHS for consistency and content annually.

Comprehensive Preparedness Guide (CPG) 201: Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Guide and an accompanying CPG 201 Supplement 1: Toolkit with resources and information, data sources, and table templates are attached for your convenience, and are also posted at Grantees are strongly encouraged to work jointly with their counterparts in other levels of government, and across the whole community in order to ensure a complete THIRA. Technical assistance and a report template will be made available to assist grantees in meeting this requirement.

Questions regarding this Information Bulletin may be directed to your assigned FEMA Program Analyst or the Centralized Scheduling and Information Desk at or 1-800-368-6498.

                CPG 201: Threat and Hazard Identification and Risk Assessment Guide
                CPG 201 Supplement 1: Toolkit
                 Use of THIRA for Preparedness Grants

Haiti: Former military should concentrate of other infrastructures of nation

Former soldiers and allies detained in Haiti

Port-au-Prince | Mon May 21, 2012 8:19am IST

Port-au-Prince (Reuters) - Haitian authorities on Sunday announced the arrest of 59 uniformed former soldiers and several alleged supporters who staged a series of protests on Friday and Saturday calling for the return of the nation's disbanded army.

The soldiers and their allies were charged with forming a rogue army and repeatedly violating government orders to remove their uniforms and lay down their weapons, officials said.

In 1995, President Jean-Bertrand Aristide dismantled the Haitian army, which had staged numerous coups and committed human rights abuses.

"They were parading outside the presidential palace in olive green military uniform and some were carrying weapons," Michaelange Gedeon, police director for the West department, told Reuters.

Among those arrested were two Americans, identified as William Petrie and Steven Shaw, accused of providing training and logistics, authorities said.

Five vehicles and a number of weapons were confiscated, officials said.

In recent weeks, groups of former soldiers who were part of the dismantled Haitian army occupied government buildings and former military headquarters in several parts of the country. They were joined by scores of youths in their 20s and early 30s eager for jobs.

They were often seen armed and in military uniforms in the streets and sometimes directing traffic, fueling concerns of instability in a nation still struggling to recover from a catastrophic 2010 earthquake.
Haitian President Michel Martelly supports the idea of reconstituting the army and commissioned a study seeking recommendations.

Martelly has said Haitians would prefer to have their country protected by its own army rather than United Nations troops, who have acted as peacekeepers in the impoverished Caribbean nation on and off since 1994.

U.N. officials have expressed concern that restoring the army could undermine international efforts to train and equip a new civilian police force, a key goal of the U.N. mission in Haiti. Critics also point to the former army's appalling human rights record, including a bloody coup in 1991.

Haitian Deputy Minister for Public Safety Reginald Delva said several specialized units of the police, supported by UN peacekeepers, were involved in the weekend raids.

"The government wants to launch a clear message to the ex-military and their allies. This practice of taking over government buildings and taking to the streets armed and in military uniforms is over," Delva told Reuters.

"The instructions were clear and the police did a great job in making sure no one was killed during the raids."

Haitian authorities said a camp, settled by ex-soldiers in the northern town of Cap-Haitien, was also evacuated. In several places the ex-soldiers and allies fled as the police arrived. Eight women were also arrested during the raids, which were conducted without any major casualties. A U.N. soldier was injured by rock-throwing protesters.

(Additional reporting and editing by David Adams; Editing by Stacey Joyce)

Funding Opportunities: Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Agency for Healthcare Research Quality

Partnerships for Sustainable Research and Dissemination of Evidence-based Medicine (R24)

Frequently Asked Questions

The following set of questions and answers features responses from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) to questions from the public submitted about the Agency's Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for Partnerships for Sustainable Research and Dissemination of Evidence-based Medicine (R24).

These frequently asked questions were updated on May 18, 2012.

The following questions are derived from individual questions submitted to about the Request for Applications (RFA) HS-12-005: Partnerships for Sustainable Research and Dissemination of Evidence-based Medicine (R24) and are shared here for all potential applicants. We encourage applicants to review all replies and to monitor this site for newly added questions and answers.

A. Eligibility/Who Can Apply

Question A1: What organizations are eligible to apply?
Answer A1: Eligible Institutions: You may submit an application(s) if your institution/organization has any of the following characteristics, as described in the RFA:
  • Public or non-profit private institution, such as a university, college, or a faith-based or community-based organization.
  • Units of local or State government.
  • Eligible agencies of the Federal government.
  • Indian/Native American Tribal Government (Federally Recognized).
  • Indian/Native American Tribal Government (other than Federally Recognized).
  • Indian/Native American Tribally Designated Organizations.
AHRQ's authorizing legislation does not allow for-profit organizations to be eligible to lead applications under this research mechanism. For-profit organizations may participate in projects as members of consortia or as subcontractors only. Because the purpose of this program is to improve healthcare in the United States, foreign institutions may participate in projects as members of consortia or as subcontractors only. Applications submitted by for-profit organizations or foreign institutions will not be reviewed. Organizations described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that engage in lobbying are not eligible.
Applications from health care provider organizations that directly provide services to the targeted population, such as integrated health care delivery systems or primary care Practice-Based Research Networks, interested in dissemination and implementation research in partnership with appropriate community stakeholders and members of the target population are also encouraged.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) grants policy requires that the grant recipient perform a substantive role in the conduct of the planned project or program activity and not merely serve as a conduit of funds to another party or parties. If consortium/contractual activities represent a significant portion of the overall project, the applicant must justify why the applicant organization, rather than the party(s) performing this portion of the overall project, should be the grantee and what substantive role the applicant organization will play. Justification can be provided in the Specific Aims or Research Strategy section of the PHS398 Research Plan Component sections of the SF424 (R&R) application. There is no budget allocation guideline for determining substantial involvement; determination of substantial involvement is based on a review of the primary project activities for which grant support is provided and the organization(s) that will be performing those activities.

Question A2: Can multiple Principal Investigators (PIs) within an institution submit separate applications with different fields of study?
Answer A2: Eligible institutions (as described in Section III.1.A of the RFA) may submit more than one application to RFA-HS-12-005, provided each application is scientifically distinct. However, AHRQ will not accept similar grant applications with essentially the same research focus from the same applicant organization.

Question A3: Are for-profit organizations eligible to apply for this FOA?
Answer A3: AHRQ's authorizing legislation does not allow for-profit organizations to be eligible to lead applications under this research mechanism. Thus, for the purpose of this FOA, AHRQ will make grants only to non-profit organizations. For-profit organizations may participate in projects as members of consortia or as subcontractors only. Because the purpose of this program is to improve health care in the United States, foreign institutions may participate in projects as members of consortia or as subcontractors only. Applications submitted by for-profit organizations or foreign institutions will not be reviewed. Organizations described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code that engage in lobbying are not eligible.
HHS grants policy requires that the grant recipient perform a substantive role in the conduct of the planned project or program activity and not merely serve as a conduit of funds to another party or parties. If consortium/contractual activities represent a significant portion of the overall project, the applicant must justify why the applicant organization, rather than the party(s) performing this portion of the overall project, should be the grantee and what substantive role the applicant organization will play. Justification can be provided in the Specific Aims or Research Strategy section of the PHS398 Research Plan Component sections of the SF424 (R&R) application. There is no budget allocation guideline for determining substantial involvement; determination of substantial involvement is based on a review of the primary project activities for which grant support is provided and the organization(s) that will be performing those activities.

B. Investigator Qualifications, Titles, and Other Designations

Question B1: What qualifies a senior investigator to be a PI? Is it years of experience, academic rank, number of publications, or prior research grant experience, such as grant leadership?
Answer B1: There are no specific guidelines of what qualifies a senior investigator to be a PI; this determination is made upon review by the Special Emphasis Panel. Applicants should make the best case for their abilities within the application. The RFA clearly describes what the PI must be able to provide in terms of leading these initiatives.

Individuals with the skills, knowledge, and resources necessary to carry out the proposed research are invited to work with their institution/organization to develop an application for support. Individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups as well as individuals with disabilities are always encouraged to apply for AHRQ support.

The Project Director/PI must commit substantial time to the oversight of project and activities (at a minimum 15% annually).

Question B2: Can the investigator who is designated to act and make decisions in the absence of the PI be named a co-PI?
Answer B2: No. AHRQ does not recognize multiple PIs, so the term "co-PI" should not be used. For space considerations and/or convenience, an applicant may designate some other shorthand or abbreviation to refer to the designated co-investigator; applicants should make sure this and any other abbreviations are explicit and clear.

C. Determining Suitability of the Theme, Projects, or Research Ideas for Submission

Question C1: How can applicants determine if their planned approach is a good fit for this RFA?
Answer C1: Applicants should read the RFA closely, including its review criteria; this is the best available guidance to potential applicants about the responsiveness of their planned research. Applicants should be aware that the determination of suitability and responsiveness of applications is the task of the Special Emphasis Panel, not AHRQ.

Question C2: Can applicants discuss the scientific and research aspects of their proposals with AHRQ?
Answer C2: AHRQ appreciates all expressions of interest from prospective applicants. Applicants should read the RFA closely, including its review criteria; this is the best available guidance to potential applicants about the responsiveness of their planned research.
If applicants have specific questions after reviewing the RFA, they can E-mail these questions to For reasons of equity and consistency, AHRQ scientific staff responds in writing to all inquiries. Wherever it is possible and appropriate, AHRQ will clarify common areas of uncertainty in a written and generalized format that is applicable for dissemination to other potential applicants, such as frequently asked questions.
Telephone counseling on potential study ideas is discouraged in order to be equitable and avoid potential misdirection of applicants. Applicants should be aware that the determination of suitability and responsiveness of applications is the task of the Special Emphasis Panel, not AHRQ.

Question C3: What sources and translation of evidence-based health information are appropriate in response to this RFA?
Answer C3: Applicants must apply or develop one or more new or innovative customizations or mechanisms of delivery to the content of evidence-based information and/or tools in order to enhance their use and value in decisionmaking by key audiences, including patients/consumers, clinicians, and policymakers. Comparative effectiveness information/tools must be chosen from trusted sources, including, but not limited to: AHRQ, Institute of Medicine (IOM), Cochrane Collaborative, and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. Adaptations must preserve the fidelity of the original product(s) contents, and the application must describe methods of adaptation.

A wide range of mechanisms, media, and communication channels may be considered, including, but not limited to:
  • Paper-based products, such as brochures, narratives, or case studies that are adapted in design, format, or language to colloquial usage or cultural sensitivities.
  • Electronic or technology-based dissemination channels or tools, such as Internet, television, radio, cell phone, social networking sites, listservs, health avatars, and others.
  • Adaptation to electronic health records, personal health records, electronic medical records, or clinical decision support aids attached to these systems.
  • Personal interactions occurring through one-on-one interactions (such as academic detailing, kitchen table meetings) or group discussions (such as focus groups, social or health care professional meetings, town hall meetings), or routine settings such as work, school, or health care clinics.
These and other mechanisms may be combined, as long as the combined feasibility is addressed and supported in the application. Simple propagation of unchanged material through printing and distribution, E-mail, or listservs will not be considered innovative or responsive to this FOA and will not undergo peer review.

Applicants must describe and support all proposed methods or mechanisms for adapted presentation and/or delivery of evidence-based health information. Applications must include a clear rationale and approach for the proposed adaptation(s) of materials, such as media requirements, cultural sensitivities, literacy and numeracy, English language proficiency, visual/educational/cognitive competencies of the targeted audience or stakeholder group members, information processing and burden, conflicting health beliefs or information sources, issues with authority or trust of information provided by the government, or other considerations. Applicants are encouraged, but not required, to assess the utility of the original evidence-based health information/tool to the proposed target(s) for adaptation, so as to identify key, generalizable gaps in content presentation or formatting, acceptance, understanding, or willingness to apply the materials in actual use situations. Such assessment would provide evidence to guide subsequent adaptation or modification of the primary material to a specific audience, system, setting, communication channel, or expanded purpose.

D. Formatting, Organization, and Page Limits of Submissions

Question D1: Are applications allowed to have appendices?
Answer D1: An application may include an appendix, but applicants should not use the appendix to circumvent the specific page limit for the Research Strategy component. Applicants should observe the page number limits specified in the RFA. An application will be rejected if it does not comply with these requirements.

Question D2: Does the 15-page limit for the Research Strategy section of the application include the Specific Aims?
Answer D2: No. The Specific Aims are limited to one page, and that page is separate from the Research Strategy. It does not count toward the 15-page limit.

Question D3: Can the tables and figures be in a smaller font size?
Answer D3: Yes. A font size smaller than 11 point font may be used for figures, graphs, diagrams, charts, tables, figure legends, and footnotes; however, the font type must follow the font typeface requirement (Palatino, Georgia, Arial, or Helvetica) and be readily legible.

Question D4: Is there a page limit for the appendix?
Answer D4: The FOA does not restrict the number of pages in the appendix, stating only that applicants should not use the appendix to circumvent the page limit of the Research Plan component and warning that an application that does not observe the required page limit may be delayed in the review process. Applicants should note the special instructions in Section IV.3 of the FOA for submitting appendices to the National Institutes of Health and AHRQ.

Question D5: Regarding the submission of appendix materials on CD for an application in response to RFA-HS-12-005, is it correct that five copies of the CD should be sent to AHRQ and none should be sent to the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Center for Scientific Review?
Answer D5: Yes. Five copies of the CD containing the appendix materials should be sent to AHRQ, along with two copies of the application; no CDs should be sent to the NIH Center for Scientific Review. The RFA states:
Applications must be prepared using the forms found in the PHS 398 instructions for preparing a research grant application. Submit a signed, typewritten original of the application, including the checklist, and three signed photocopies in one package to:

Center for Scientific Review
National Institutes of Health
6701 Rockledge Drive, Room 1040, MSC 7710
Bethesda, MD 20892-7710 (U.S. Postal Service Express or regular mail)
Bethesda, MD 20817 
(for express/courier service; non-USPS service)
Personal deliveries of applications are no longer permitted (go to

At the time of submission, two additional copies of the application and all copies of the appendix material must be sent to: 
Partnerships for Sustainable Research and Dissemination FOA
Center for Outcomes and Evidence
Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
540 Gaither Road, Room 6347
Rockville, MD 20850
Telephone: (301) 427-1600
FAX: (301) 427-1521
Question D6: Can applications be submitted electronically?
Answer D6: No. Applications in response to this RFA must be submitted in hard copy, using the PHS 398, and sent to the Center for Scientific Review and AHRQ.
Instructions for submitting an application are given in the previous answer (Answer D5).
PHS 398 application instructions are available at in an interactive format. Applicants must use the currently approved version of the PHS 398. For further assistance contact GrantsInfo, Telephone (301) 435-0714, Email:
Applications must be received on or before the application receipt date described above (Section IV.3.A.). If an application is received after that date, the application may be delayed in the review process or not reviewed. Upon receipt, applications will be evaluated for completeness by the Center for Scientific Review, NIH, and AHRQ. Incomplete and/or non-responsive applications will not be reviewed.

Question D7: Should the requirements stated in Section IV.6. be included in the 15-page Research Strategy or in another section of PHS 398?
Answer D7: Yes, the requirements should be included in the 15-page Research Strategy.
Section IV.6. of the RFA states that the application must include:
  • How the organizational structure includes, or will include, a trans-disciplinary core of investigators and institutional capacity with expertise in dissemination, translation, and implementation of evidence-based health information.
  • A mechanism (such as a community advisory board) to solicit advice/feedback from the communities of the target population.
  • An organizational structure that transcends a single study, including multiple systems of communication with and among all investigators, stakeholders and members of the target population.
  • A plan for sustainability that would include but not be limited to:
    • Exploration of potential sources of ongoing funding for the dissemination infrastructure, including professional organizations, academic institutions, governmental sources, foundations and other private sources.
    • Development of a 3-year "business plan" demonstrating how core administrative functions for the on-going dissemination and translation activities can be supported even in the absence of major funding for project-specific research.
Applications must clearly articulate a plan for building and/or expanding capacity in four key areas:
  • Development and/or strengthening trans-disciplinary research and outreach capacity devoted to dissemination and translational research.
  • Expanding the reach and strength of relationships between investigators, stakeholders and the target population.
  • Building an enduring infrastructure for dissemination and translational non-research activities.
  • Developing a plan for sustained dissemination/translation activities independent of research grant support.
Question D8: The PHS 398 instructions state that the total page limit for the Research Strategy is 12 pages, but the RFA states that the limit is 15 pages. Which is correct?
Answer D8: When instructions in an RFA differ from the general application instructions, the instructions in the FOA always supersede the general instructions. Therefore, the page limit for the Research Strategy is 15 pages.

E. Letters of Intent

Question E1: What specific information should be in the letter of intent? Is there a particular format or length?
Answer E1: As stated in the RFA, the letter of intent allows AHRQ staff to estimate the potential peer review workload and plan the review accordingly (that is, anticipate the nature of reviewer expertise that will be required). Prospective applicants may submit a letter of intent that includes an acknowledgement of interest in this funding opportunity (referring to the number and title of the funding opportunity), a few comments on the subject of the proposed research, background expertise of key personnel, the nature and role of participating institutions, and the name and E-mail address of the PI. This letter of intent is not required, is not binding, and is not considered in the review of a subsequent application. AHRQ requests that letters of intent for this FOA be E-mailed to by April 27, 2012.

Current as of May 2012

Internet Citation:
Partnerships for Sustainable Research and Dissemination of Evidence-based Medicine (R24): Frequently Asked Questions. May 2012. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Rockville, MD.

National Disability Rights Network and Emergency Management

Disaster Management

Our Position
Disaster_ManagementlargeThe nation learned a painful lesson in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina during which thousands of people with disabilities, seniors, and other vulnerable populations were left behind because no plans for their evacuation had been developed.  Since then, NDRN has been working to ensure that people with disabilities are never forgotten in an emergency again.  NDRN believes disaster management and emergency preparedness plans at the local, state and national level, as well as in the private sector, must include people with disabilities.

Taking Action
DM1MichaelRiegerFEMAIn March, NDRN signed a memorandum of agreement with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) that will strengthen the Network’s ability to collaborate with officials before, during and after an emergency and ensuring the needs and concerns of individuals with a disability are heard.  Read the agreement here.
Also in March, NDRN reached an agreement with the Red Cross to collaborate on issues affecting the disability community. Read that agreement here.

April 30, 2010: FEMA Intergovernmental Advisory FEMA Urges Residents to Get Ready for Hurricane Season
October 7, 2009 - 5 Things You Can Do to Help Prevent the Spread of the H1N1 and Seasonal Flu (Department of Health & Human Services)
November 20, 2009: New resources on H1N1 for children and adults with disabilities from the US Department of Health and Human Services, Office on Disability and the Centers for Disease Control.

Disaster Preparedness

Disability Etquette. National Disability Rights Network

TEL: 202.408.9514 􀂌 FAX: 202.408.9520 􀂌 TTY: 202.408.9521

Disability Etiquette

Reporting and Writing About People with Disabilities

The following guidelines are suggestions for using language in a more sensitive manner that avoids reducing individuals to a series of labels, symptoms, or medical terms. Advocating for media representatives to be aware of how they use language regarding individuals with disabilities and their families does not suppress freedom of speech. Rather, these suggestions are intended to guide media representatives about how words really do make a difference.
Read the guidelines here.

Words Matter

The following list depicts phrases and terms that are generally considered appropriate, as well as terms and phrases to avoid using. Please keep in mind that language is constantly evolving and not everyone has the same preference, so the best guideline when referring to people is to ASK.
Read Words Matter here.

Commonly Used Acronyms

The following list of acronyms are commonly used on NDRN's website and on our publications.
Read the list of acronyms here.

Administration for Children and Families
Advisory Council
Americans with Disabilities Act
Administration on Development Disabilities
Assistive Technology Center
BOD Board of Directors
Client Assistance Program
Consortium of Citizens with Disabilities
Center for Mental Health Services
Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (formerly HCFA - Health Care Financing Administration)
DD Act
Developmental Disabilities
Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act
Developmental Disabilities Council
Designated State Agency
FY Fiscal Year
HAVA Help America Vote Act
Individual with Disabilities Education Act
Independent Living Centers
LD Learning Disability
Mental Illness
Mental Retardation
Monitoring and Technical Assistance Review System

National Disability Rights Network (formerly NAPAS - National Association of Protection & Advocacy Systems)
National Institute on Disability Rehabilitation Research
Office of Management & Budget
Office of Special Education Rehabilitation Services
Protection & Advocacy for Obtaining Assistive Technology
Protection & Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security
Protection & Advocacy for Persons with Developmental Disabilities
Protection & Advocacy for Individuals with Mental Illness
Protection & Advocacy for Individual Rights
Protection& Advocacy for Voting Access
Program Performance Report
Public Relations
Rehab Act
Rehabilitation Services Administration
Rehabilitation Act
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Statement of Objectives & Priorities
Social Security Administration
Tech Act
Training and Advocacy Support Center (formerly ATTAC – Advocacy Training and Technical Assistance Center)
Technical Assistance Site Review (CMHS)
Traumatic Brain Injury
Technology-Related Assistance for Individuals with Disabilities Act
University Affiliated Program
University Centers for Excellence in Development Disabilities Education, Research and Service

National Disability Rights Network: 2012 Conference. June 4-7, 2012. Baltimore, MD

Register for the 2012 P&A/CAP Annual Conference by clicking here

2012 P&A/CAP Annual Conference

crowd-webWith plenty of new challenges ahead and a variety of emerging issues, the P&A/CAP network must be prepared to advance the rights of all people with disabilities.

The 2012 P&A/CAP Annual Conference presents a wonderful opportunity for you to hone existing skills and learn new ones.

Through the formal trainings and informal contacts with your fellow participants, you can renew and deepen your commitment to the work of the P&A/CAP System and become an active participant in improving the quality of life for people with disabilities.

We look forward to seeing you in Baltimore this June.

Curt Decker
Executive Director, National Disability Rights Network


Get registered in 2 steps.
2. Reserve your hotel room. (Please register by May 4th.  Hotel rooms are not guaranteed after May 4th.)

General Information

 June 4 – 7, 2012

The Conference begins at 8:30 am Monday, June 4, and continues through 5:00 pm Thursday, June 7, 2012.

TASC Conference Registration Includes:

•    Two General Sessions (Tuesday and Thursday mornings)
•    A choice of 6 full-day Institutes on Monday and over 70 sessions Tuesday through Thursday (Monday Institutes require separate registration)
•    On-site program with session descriptions, speaker and attendee lists, and general information
•    Session handouts
•    Conference CD with handouts and resources from all conference sessions
Food is not provided with your conference registration, however, for your convenience, you may choose conference services (CS) which includes breakfast, lunch, morning and afternoon refreshments, and an evening reception on Tuesday, June 5.
Attendee Payments:
Full conference with CS, Tuesday – Thursday ..............................$465
Full conference without CS, Tuesday – Thursday .........................$0
Full conference plus Institute with CS, Monday-Thursday ..............$605
Full conference plus Institute without CS, Monday-Thursday ........ $0
NITA Only, Monday and Tuesday ................................................$295
Institute Only with CS, Monday ..................................................$140
Institute Only without CS, Monday .............................................$0
Full conference with CS and NITA, Monday-Thursday ..................$605
Full conference without CS and NITA*, Monday-Thursday ............$295

We encourage you to register by Monday, May 21, 2012 to ensure you have a space in the sessions, a complete agenda book, and all materials. For assistance contact

CAP and PAIMI Subsidy: TASC provides a subsidy ($300 for CAP; $800 for PAIMI AC) for one individual from each state P&A/CAP to attend the conference. Please indicate which subsidy is being taken on the registration form. Subsidies will be sent to the agency in the form of a reimbursement after the conference.

Full-day Institutes are available Monday, June 4th, and require an additional attendee payment; please sign up early, as space is limited. The National Institute for Trial Advocacy (NITA) will conduct a two-day training Monday and Tuesday, June 4-5.  *Since NITA is an intensive course, participants must purchase conference services for those two days.

•    ADA Employment Discrimination Litigation Institute
•    Investigation Deaths and Injuries Related to Specific Events
•    Legal Directors Meeting (limited to Legal Directors)
•    NITA Training (Monday AND Tuesday)    LIMIT: 16      
•    PAIMI Advisory Council Training (limited to PAIMI AC Chairs, Coordinators, and members)
•    School to Prison Pipeline

Cancellation Policy:

Any cancellations before Friday, May 4 will get a refund less a $50 administrative fee.  Cancellations after May 4 will not receive a refund.  All cancellations must be in writing and received by 5 p.m. on Friday, May 4 for a refund.
Conference Location:
The 2012 P&A/CAP Annual Conference will be held at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, located at the edge of Baltimore’s historic Inner Harbor:
700 Aliceanna Street, Baltimore, MD 21202

•    The hotel is 12 miles from the Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport (BWI).
•    Parking is available at the Marriott at the rate of $25/day or valet parking at $38 day. Parking garage does not accommodate over size vehicles.
•    The Baltimore Waterfront Marriott is a smoke-free hotel and all guests and attendees must comply with Marriott’s policy.
•    When making reservations, Marriott requires a one-night room deposit.  Reservations cannot be made without this deposit. Check-in time is 3:00 pm; check-out time is noon.

A block of rooms with a negotiated single/double room rate of $209 per night has been reserved during the conference. When making reservations, please call 1-800-266-9432 or go to:

Please make reservations early, as reservations in the room block are not guaranteed and the room block may sell out prior to the reservation deadline of Friday, May 4, 2012. After May 4, if there are any rooms left in the block, they will be released for sale to the general public and rooms and rates cannot be guaranteed.
Accommodations: Every effort has been made to ensure that the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront is in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act. If you anticipate a need in this area, please make arrangements with the Marriott as soon as possible.  Accommodation needs for the conference itself should be indicated on the registration form.

Questions?  You may reach anyone at NDRN by phone at (202) 408-9514 or by fax at (202) 408-9520. For information concerning hotel, travel, or conference logistics, please contact Paula Hirt at (Paula is only in the office two days a week) or (Kevin is available Monday-Friday). Program questions may be directed to Nachama Wilker at

GETTING THE MOST FROM THE CONFERENCE: We want your conference experience to be the best possible. With that in mind, we urge you to take time to review the agenda at-a-glance prior to the start of the conference to decide which sessions interest you the most. Preliminary workshop descriptions can also be found online at For the most up-to-date information, please check the website and, upon arrival, the on-site program.

CONTINUING EDUCATION: Attorneys who practice in Mandatory Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) states may earn continuing legal education (CLE) credit for attending the conference. Copies of the Standard MCLE form and a workshop attendance form will be available in the on-site program book each participant receives at registration.

Certain sessions may also qualify for continuing education for social workers and rehabilitation counselors.

PASSPORT TO ADVOCACY LEARNING (PAL): As part of our commitment to provide state-of-the-art training and technical assistance to P&A/CAP professionals, TASC has identified seven areas of skill Network professionals should master to provide competent and well-rounded disability rights advocacy. Sessions are designed to not only give you the information to build these skills, but also the opportunity to practice them before returning home. For more information, please visit 

The Black Emergency Managers Association International support(s) the Sustainable Development Goals

The Black Emergency Managers Association International support(s) the Sustainable Development Goals

American Red Cross: Regional Disaster Cycle Services New and Continued Employment Opportunities: 1/17/2020

Disaster Program Manager – Sioux City, IA The Disaster Program Manager is responsible for the implementation of the disaster service...

..Haiti. We will not forget.


Mission is to increase the diversity of corporate America by increasing the diversity of business school faculty. We attract African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans and Native Americans to business Ph.D. programs, and provide a network of peer support on their journey to becoming professors.