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January 2017

West Virginia

West Virginia AgrAbility grant partners met in Morgantown at the West Virginia University Safety and Health Extension office for a brainstorming session on how to better-assist West Virginia farmers. West Virginia AgrAbility has historically relied on West Virginia Division of Rehabilitation Services for funding of assistive technology for its farmers with disabilities. Recently, every farmer being assisted by West Virginia AgrAbility and referred to their local Vocational Rehabilitation office for services has been denied assistance for the needed and appropriate assistive technology. Information was shared with the group on the policy being cited for the denials as well as information on pursuing the appeal process. Outreach was already in place with the newly elected commissioner of agriculture and governor. West Virginia AgrAbility staff will continue educating West Virginia lawmakers on AgrAbility as they work through this obstacle in securing the needed assistive technology for West Virginia farmers.

West Virginia AgrAbility continues to provide information and resources to farmers requesting assistance. During the month of December, staff provided ongoing advocacy to farmers seeking needed assistive technology and agricultural modifications. AgrAbility staff assisted with grievance procedures on behalf of the farmers.

Submitted by Inetta Fluharty