The Vermont Center for Independent Living has a new addition to its team. Ericka Jones joins VCIL as a Peer Advocate Counselor for the Rutland office. In this role, she will work with peers one-on-one and in group settings to improve options for independent living in the community.
VCIL Executive Director Sarah Launderville said, “We are thrilled to have Ericka on board in Rutland. She has years of experience in advocacy work and is a leader in the disability rights movement. It’s a difficult time in our world and we are very fortunate to have her join our work when it is needed the most. She will continue to help us bring awareness, educate and fight for stronger inclusion of people with disabilities in our community.”
Previously, Jones worked for the Rochester, N.Y.-based Center for Disability Rights. There she was hired as a systems advocate focusing on voting rights, transportation and subminimum wages. Last November, she transitioned over to the No Wrong Door program, where she worked directly with individuals to assist with anything they needed to stay independent in the community.
Jones said, “I am so excited to join the VCIL family! I look forward to working with the Rutland community to ensure the independence of disabled people through peer advocacy.”
The Vermont Center for Independent Living, a nonprofit organization directed and staffed by individuals with disabilities, works to promote the dignity, independence and civil rights of Vermonters with disabilities. Like other independent living centers across the country, VCIL is committed to cross-disability services, the promotion of active citizenship and working with others to create services that support self-determination and full participation in community life.
Although VCIL’s offices are physically closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic, VCIL is still there for the community. If you are a person with a disability who has questions or concerns or are simply feeling isolated, please call 1-800-639-1522.