Urgent Dispatch 510 704-2111

A Message from the EDI Board of Directors

We greatly value your input and feedback, both positive and negative. We care deeply about the community we serve because we are members of that community; every board member is a person with a disability, and, like you, most of us are EDI clients. We know there will always be ways to improve how EDI operates and provide quality of service.

We are committed to being as responsive and transparent as possible. Though not required by law, we make our monthly board meetings open to the public and provide community members the opportunity to speak during Public Comment. While we cannot respond immediately, we take every comment seriously and reply later on issues the Board and staff determine need follow-up.

There are additional ways for you to tell us what you think:

  • Fill Out Our Online Feedback & Ideas Form: easydoesitservices.org/directions-contact
  • Call our Feedback Line: 510-845-5513
  • Write a Letter: Easy Does It, PO Box 3365, Berkeley, CA 94703
  • File a Formal Grievance: If you want to report a specific incident, such as a problem with service or a problematic encounter with the staff, you can file a grievance. Request the Client Grievance Form by phone at (510) 845-5513 or download it at easydoesitservices.org (Forms menu).
  • Fill out our Survey: We send a survey by email or US mail to everyone who has used our services in the last quarter.
  • Send the Board an Email: board@easydoesitservices.org.
  • Attend a Community Meeting: Held at least twice each year, these gatherings are opportunities to ask questions and dialogue with the Board and staff.

Members of the public can also contact Michele Blackwell, our Executive Director (ED), and we understand that this may be best in some instances. However, we ask that, whenever possible, you start with one of the alternatives above, allowing her to concentrate on those things only she can handle.

We hope you will understand that to do what is required of her, Michele cannot afford to participate in any one discussion indefinitely. Every hour she spends responding to a question or comment is time unavailable for working on staffing and budgeting, preparing city reports, developing new ideas, and building strategic partnerships. It is time unavailable to ensure EDI provides that day’s emergency services. The Board relies on the ED to use judgment in continually balancing the importance of responding to community input with the extent of performing the other critical duties necessary for EDI to be there for us all.

We know EDI is far from perfect. However, in a time of unprecedented challenges presented by a deadly pandemic well into its third year, EDI has continued to provide emergency attendant, transportation, and repair services. Every person who depends on paid assistance is painfully aware of how difficult it has been to find and retain qualified help during this period. We have worked hard to grow our resources, including an ongoing grant from the University of California. We have untangled financial records and improved practices predating the current Board & Executive Director. That had the City of Berkeley on the verge of declining to renew its contract, with the only organization in the country providing emergency services that people with disabilities run for people with disabilities.

We take our duties extremely seriously. The EDI Board and management are dedicated to building and maintaining the most robust organization we can to provide the best service possible. EDI can’t offer everything every person wants, nor can we address every shortcoming at once — EDI’s Board and management have to make difficult choices on how we spend our time and resources. However, we know those decisions are better with your input. Please continue reaching out. We appreciate the passion you share with us to ensure EDI succeeds!

In Unity,

Rose Acampora | Bruce Curtis | Larry Rosenthal
Judi Rogers | Melissa Male | Janien Harrison

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