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COSAG Minutes 5/19/2011

Meeting Date: 
Thursday, May 19, 2011

PRESENT: Tracy Allen, Adult Services Librarian - Finkelstein Memorial Library
Linda Aumick, Board President - Action Toward Independence
Joann Hargabus, Director of Services - Action Toward Independence
Laura LaSusa, OrangeWorks
Mary Stuart, RSVP Coordinator - Orange County Office for the Aging
Tom Stuart, Senior Librarian - Mid-Orange Correctional Facility
Dan Hulse, RCLS Development Officer & COSAG Chair
Leslie Riley, RCLS Public Services Consultant & Outreach Coordinator

ABSENT: Florence Butler, Hearing Loss Association of America
Regina Cieslak, Orange/Ulster BOCES Team Lead/Youth Program
Jordan Jenkus, Self Advocacy Association of NYS, Inc.
Robert Knight, RCLS Board President
Bill Langham, RCLS Directors Association System Services Committee
Margaret McDowell, Hudson Valley Chapter NYS Health Care Providers
Terri Thal, NYS Parinatal Association

Chair Dan Hulse called the meeting to order at 1:41 pm. Tom Stuart made a motion to accept the minutes of the October 14, 2010 meeting and Mary Stuart seconded with the change of deleting Linda Aumicks name as she was not present at the last meeting. Motion passed.

ISSUES & CONCERNS

Leslie Riley gave those present a history of NY State Outreach funding to RCLS. She then shared the current status of 2011 Outreach Funding. She hopes to have money to use this year (2011) for sponsoring one-on-one Help for You Job Consultations. She gave the group an overview history of previous job searching assistance workshops. This year, RCLS is hoping to enable at least 17 libraries to host job search consultations in Rockland, Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties.

There are 11 RCLS member libraries that have a link on their websites to a Heres Help lab for job searching and other Job Information Centers.

Tom Stuart shared that four of his six library clerks in the Mid-Orange Correctional Facility are age 55 and older, and that once these men are released from this institution, they will have many issues to deal with in getting acclimated to the outside world. Tom feels that there should be workshops focusing on the needs of this population. Tom encouraged the COSAG group to be ready to provide services to these individuals when they are released to the general population. Future workshops should be directed at librarians to educate and sensitize them as to how to deal with persons who have just come out of prison. These sessions should also be demonstrative and provide hands-on training on how to deal with basic technologies that are now available to them. Many computer-related products and services were not in existence when these persons were first incarcerated.

Discussion took place around the table and suggestions were made as to what could be made available at libraries for those recently released from prison. Some of these recommendations were: creating a one-page How-To information sheet (for using basic technology needed for a job search); create a specific section of a librarys webpage dedicated to persons transitioning from an institution to the outside (provide both on-line and hard-copy versions).

Laura LaSusa shared that computer training is needed today for any job applicant; not only for filling out an application, but to being proficient in computer use once they get the job.

Leslie Riley reported that there were approximately 45 companies and agencies represented at the Sullivan County Community College (SCCC) Job Fair held last week and that nearly 600 people attended.

Leslie also reported on the Diffusing Difficult Situations workshop held at RCLS in April dealt with sensitivity training for library staff on dealing with patrons with mental illness. The turnout and response was excellent. The advocacy group National Association for Mental Illness (NAMI) from three counties and ATI participated that day and are available to hold these workshops as in-service trainings for individual libraries and their staffs.

ANNOUNCEMENTS FROM THE COUNCIL

Tom Stuart explained that the NY State Department of Corrections and the NY State Department of Parole have been merged as of April 2011. It will be interesting to see what the implications and results of this merger are. Tom also reported that there is a possibility that one of the correctional facilities in Orange County may be on the States hit list for closing.

Mary Stuart reported that her department and other county Offices for the Aging have been cut in the 2012 State budget. The RSVP program that she oversees has been cut by 50%. Additionally, the Senior Corps of AmeriCorps programs will not be funded for 2012.

Joanne Hargabus encouraged everyone and the agencies they represented to pool their resources and to work together to avoid duplication of services.

Laura LaSusa has her Summer Youth Program starting soon. She expects to be serving 125 youths this year. Thankfully the funding for this program has not been eliminated. Laura shared that it has been reported that Orange/Ulster BOCES will be moving their Nursing & Healthcare Training courses to Arden Hill Hospital once the new Orange Regional Medical Center (ORMC) opens in Fall 2011.

Linda Aumick shared that on September 22, Orange Literacy will be celebrating their 30th anniversary with a gala at the Fountains at the Town of Wallkill Golf Club. This will be the kick-off event for their fundraising season.

Tracy Allen reported on Adult Services at Finkelstein Memorial Library in Spring Valley. Her budget of $3,000 for Large Print books and the Homebound Delivery Program now has to be shared with downloaded e-books and other new electronic gadgets.

Meeting adjourned at 3:35 pm.

Next meeting date Thursday, October 27, 2011

Minutes Author: 
lriley
Committee: