Short letter in response to December 29, 2014 DHS Comment Period

My comments to the Department of Health Services and elected representatives

Thank you for inviting my comments regarding the Home and Community-based Settings Statewide Transition Plan as requested by the Wisconsin’s Department of Health and Human Services.


My son Greg Springhorn attends Vocational Industries in Elkhorn, WI. The workshop is a vital part of Greg’s “person centered approach” for meeting his needs. He is safe and successful in the workshop setting, as are the other individuals served there. Losing this service as part of the service continuum in Wisconsin would be devastating to Greg and the other folks who find skill development and a positive and caring workplace at VIP.  


Those that would like to see the workshops eliminated are trying to portray VIP and other workshops around Wisconsin as places of isolation. Nothing could be further from the truth. VIP works closely with the business community, drawing upon relationships established over many years. Many of the job settings are outside the workshop in the community. Disrupting this service model would be counterproductive to the disabled population.


I appreciate your extension of an additional 30-day comment period and would appreciate your waiting until the CMS guidance is completed before making any decision.


If you have not already, I would think it appropriate to hold a “town hall meeting” in the southern Wisconsin area as many out of state clients come from neighboring states and we need to work out some joint efforts with our neighbors.  I think such groups as VIP are a great source for such a meeting.

Contact:   Cindy Simonsen, VIP Services, Inc.,  811 Est Geneva St., Elkhorn, WI  53121 


Thank you for your efforts,



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