Preparing Your Employees for the Impact of COVID-19: Updates from Providers

View presentation on HealthMatters Program YouTube Playlist
Date and time: Tuesday, July 7, 2020 1:00 pm CDT
Duration: 1 hour
Handouts: PowerPoint Presentation-Ed Kaul and Eligio VelasquezPrepare your Small Business and Employees for the Effects of COVID-19

Overview: This presentation will provide an overview of the development of an infrastructure to prepare employees for disruption due to COVID-19 at ARCA, along with strategies that were developed to protect employees’ health and safety in the workplace. Tips used to protect employees’ health will be discussed, along with the impact of these strategies in their workplace. Essentials for employees, business functions, and other critical inputs will be reviewed.

Learning Objectives:
  1. Review the development of an infrastructure to prepare employees for disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic in a community based organization;
  2. Identify strategies to protect employees’ health and safety in the workplace; and,
  3. Discuss essentials for employees, business functions, and other critical inputs.


Edward Kaul, President/Chief Executive Officer at ARCA in Albuquerque, NM came to ARCA, which works with people with developmental disabilities, in 1982 as a direct support professional. During Ed’s tenure at ARCA, he has seen the organization grow from a small, local service provider to a premiere, nationally recognized group. Albuquerque has embraced those with developmental disabilities, he said in a news release. With Ed’s leadership, ARCA has continued to thrive through reduced federal and state funding with innovative changes to service delivery models. ARCA is widely recognized in the Albuquerque community as a wonderful asset for contributing to a future of new and exciting opportunities for people with IDD to lead great lives.

Eligio Velasquez was named 2020 Direct Support Professional of the Year. Eligio, who has spent all 26 of his years in the profession with ARCA, manages a group home where three men with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) live. These men are able to live in the community, rather than being institutionalized, thanks to the support of Velasquez and his colleagues at ARCA. According to his nomination, Velasquez has excelled in tailoring the services he delivers to the unique needs of the people he supports. Eligio is dedication to person-centered supports and his own experiences with dyslexia has been life-changing for people with IDD to express long-time dreams and find their “voices.” He is a leader in this demanding field with an innovative and mindful approach to creating meaningful opportunities for people he supports. When he started his career as a DSP 26 years ago, Eligio believed his dyslexia would limit his abilities; today, he is a teacher, mentor and trusted advisor who recognizes the potential in every person and believes everything is possible.


COVID-19 Webinar Series is presented by the HealthMatters Program, Department of Disability and Human Development, College of Applied Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago with continued partnership with Project SEARCH, a leader in securing competitive employment for people with disabilities based at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center and with Aspire an Illinois organization providing services to children and adults with developmental disabilities, their families and their communities.


  • There is no cost for these webinars.
  • CEUs are not offered for these webinars.
  • Webinars and materials will be recorded and archived on YouTube.
  • For disability accommodations email Jasmina Sisirak ( at least 10 days before the webinars.
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