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Staff Author,  Blind Children’s Vocational Discovery and Development Program

Abstract: Joe Perez joined Texas Health and Human Services in December 2018.  Learn more about his role and goals for the Rehabilitative and Independence Services (RIS) section and the Blind Children’s Vocational Discovery and Development Program.    

Keywords: Blind Children’s Vocational Discovery and Development Program, BCVDDP, Blind Children’s Program, BCP, health care, Office of Independence Services, Rehabilitative and Independence Services, RIS, Texas Health and Human Services, HHS

JoePerez

Joe Perez joined Texas Health and Human Services (HHS) on December 17, 2018, as the deputy associate commissioner for Rehabilitative and Independence Services (RIS) where he oversees more than 200 employees. An accomplished health care executive with more than 13 years of experience overseeing and managing the daily operations of health care facilities, he ensures high-quality and efficient health care services.   

Before joining HHS, Perez worked for the Veterans Administration. He served as a combat Marine in Kuwait and Iraq for Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

“Because of my military and professional experience, I understand firsthand the importance of caring for people in need as well as their families,” Perez said. “I plan to continue that mission in my role within Texas HHS. The programs and services we provide are vital to Texas families throughout the state. I look forward to continued collaboration with key partners such as TSBVI, stakeholders, parents and the children we serve.”  

Rehabilitative and Independence Services is made up of three offices.

  1. Office of Guardianship Services establishes a relationship with people that need help managing their daily affairs due to their age, disease or injury. Learn more at https://hhs.texas.gov/laws-regulations/legal-information/guardianship.
  2. Office of Deaf and Hard of Hearing works in partnership with people who are deaf or hard of hearing to eliminate societal and communication barriers to improve equal access for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Learn more about this office at https://hhs.texas.gov/services/disability/deaf-hard-hearing.
  3. Office of Independence Services (OIS) works with people who are blind and visually impaired, have a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury, and people with disabilities to help reach their independence goals. To learn more about these services, visit the following webpages:

hhs.texas.gov/services/disability/blind-visually-impaired;

hhs.texas.gov/services/disability/comprehensive-rehabilitation-services-crs; and

hhs.texas.gov/services/disability/independent-living-services.

OIS provides specialty services to children who are blind or visually impaired through the Blind Children’s Vocational Discovery and Development Program. This program provides opportunities for children who are blind or visually impaired to learn the skills needed for personal independence, potential employment and other life pursuits. The Blind Children’s Program provides habilitative services that enhance a child’s ability to develop skills comparable to his or her peers and help children achieve financial self-sufficiency as adults. BCP specialists serve the dual functions of case managers and direct service providers.  

Each Rehabilitative and Independence Services (RIS) office provides a key service to Texans across the state.

“My goals for RIS is to continue to provide quality and timely services to the thousands of Texans we serve,” Perez said. “I look forward to meeting and collaborating with you in 2019.”