Prescott will expand his advocacy for people with special needs by serving in an
“influential” statewide position, starting at the first of the year.
Prescott, executive director of Sunflower Diversified Services, will take a seat on the InterHab Board of Directors on Jan. 1, 2020.
Sunflower serves children and adults with intellectual disabilities and delays in central Kansas. InterHab is the Topeka-based organization that advocates for clients at Sunflower and other similar entities across Kansas.
“This is a great opportunity that will benefit staff working in agencies such as ours throughout the state,” Prescott said. “It also will broaden my advocacy efforts for clients across Kansas.
“It is a real privilege that will allow me to give Sunflower and all the agencies in Kansas an even stronger voice at the state level.”
Prescott’s goal is to share concerns with lawmakers, as well as the heads of state departments that collaborate with agencies that support people with disabilities.
“I want legislators and others to learn more about staff and clients at Sunflower and elsewhere,” Prescott said. “If they can better understand how we advocate for our neighbors with disabilities, they will realize that we cannot do our jobs if they cut our budgets.
“We’ll do all we can to prevent budget cuts, while explaining why increases should be considered. The services we provide directly affect the daily lives of clients and staff. We need state officials to understand that staff members are professionals who should be compensated at a professional level.”
Prescott noted that “turnover is always an issue statewide at agencies like ours because of our need to pay better wages for the responsibilities that our professional team members fulfill.
“We touch people’s lives in a very real way and our great staff members and others around the state should be compensated accordingly.”
In addition to lawmakers, Prescott will take his message to officials at KanCare and the Kansas Department of Aging and Disability Services. He also wants the ear of the KanCare insurance companies, which are called Managed Care Organizations.
“If we can explain our concerns, we trust officials will better understand the scope and quality of our services,” Prescott commented. “When this happens, our clients benefit from the expertise of staff members who are an integral part of their lives.”
Matt Fletcher, InterHab executive director, said the association is excited to have Prescott join the board of directors.
“Jon’s extensive business experience and skills will be of great benefit to our association as we enter our 51st year,” Fletcher said. “Jon shares our passion for improving the lives of Kansans with intellectual and developmental disabilities. He will help us advance our mission in 2020 and beyond.”
Sunflower serves infants, toddlers and adults in Barton, Pawnee, Rice, Rush and Stafford counties. It is in its 53rd year.