Inclusion and Exclusion Policy for VIA LINK’s Resource Database

Purpose:
VIA LINK provides a range of counseling services to the people of Louisiana.  Part of this work includes connecting people with resources to meet the human service needs they have.

To ensure we are able to connect clients with resources effectively, VIA LINK gathers, organizes, and publicizes useful and accurate information about community resources that provide direct services or information that address the needs residents of Louisiana may have. VIA LINK uses or may use community resource data and referral transaction data to: support community planning and research; publish area health and human service directories; maintain a searchable online resource database for public use; and participate in specialized programs, projects and committees, both at state and local levels.

In order to be included in the resource database maintained by VIA LINK, an organization MUST agree to comply with VIA LINK’s annual database updates and notify VIA LINK of service changes as they occur.

VIA LINK’s database contains organizations that have been operating for at least one year and are providing direct services to residents of Louisiana. Exceptions may be made for emergency services, crisis intervention, information and referral and other areas of critical need.

 

The following types of organizations may be included:

  • Federal, State, Parish or Local governmental entities providing information or services to the community
  • Public Libraries; Parks and Recreation Departments
  • Non-profit agencies providing services to the residents of Southeast Louisiana
  • Religious institutions offering human services to the general public.
  • Professional associations/organizations offering free or low-cost services to the general public.
  • Organized recreation clubs
  • Community and self-help groups
  • Toll free hotlines offering information about health and human services or direct assistance
  • Organizations (such as churches or social clubs) offering services to the community at large—not just their own members
  • Hospitals, health clinics, personal and intermediate care homes
  • Organizations outside of our catchment area providing services not available locally, but available to our residents
  • Advocacy groups
  • Toll free lines, if they can be accessed by residents in our catchment area offering social or community services (e.g., FEMA tele-registration)
  • Substance Use Disorder programs
  • Educational institutions, including Special service components within schools/school districts
  • Websites providing information about or direct access to a health and human services resource
  • For-profit agencies providing services not adequately met by the non-profit sector
  • Entities providing needed services for free, low-cost, or on a sliding scale
  • Organizations providing Medicaid/Medicare services

 

Eligibility:

Included entities must:

  • Be operating legally, with both facilities and staff that are licensed and credentialed to provide the services offered
  • Be in operation under a set of written documents of governance (policies, procedures, etc.) for at least one year
  • Offer social services available to the general public of Louisiana, not limited to members of specific groups or organizations
  • Be a 501(c)(3) organization, a government provider (federal, state or local), or a for-profit entity (LLC or Inc.) offering unique social services with a documented policy of providing that service at a significantly reduced fee for those who would otherwise be unable to afford that service

This policy does not prohibit the inclusion of any programs that target services based on age, gender, health, sexual orientation, disability or other characteristics designed to meet the special needs of targeted populations, as long as they are open to all people in those targeted populations. Inclusion to the database does not represent or imply an endorsement of an organization.

 

Other Factors:
VIA LINK may choose to prioritize the development of resource information based on the needs most urgent in Louisiana.

VIA LINK considers the number of agencies offering same/similar services and the demand for those services, when evaluating for inclusion.

 

Exclusion / Removal Criteria:
Approval for inclusion in the VIA LINK database is a privilege, not a right. Approval for inclusion does not guarantee permanent inclusion. VIA LINK reserves the right to exclude or remove an organization from the VIA LINK community resource database at any time.

Examples of reasons for exclusion or removal include:

  • Agencies violating federal, state, or local laws or regulations
  • Illegal activity, including fraud, discrimination, or misrepresentation
  • Agencies denying service on the basis of color, race, sexual orientation, gender, religious belief, national origin, or ancestry
  • Not responding to repeated attempts to acquire updated service information
  • Service non-delivery
  • Organizational philosophy not supporting the mission of VIA LINK such as one promoting hate or violence

 

Statement of Responsibility
Inclusion in the VIA LINK database should in no way be considered an endorsement of an organization or its services, nor should exclusion constitute disapproval.

VIA LINK provides referrals, not endorsements or recommendations of potential service providers. VIA LINK reserves the right to edit information to meet software and database formatting requirements, and to utilize the information in community resource directories, in publicly searchable online databases, and for community planning purposes.

This Statement of Inclusion/Exclusion Criteria serves as a foundation for the VIA LINK community resource database.

Decisions to exclude or remove an organization from the VIA LINK database may be appealed in writing to VIA LINK, provided that evidence can be presented showing that the decision for exclusion or removal was inappropriate.  VIA LINK’s Executive Director and members of its board will review the appeal and reply in writing to the organization with their decision.

 

Disclaimer

VIA LINK does not license, endorse, or recommend any provider. Agencies and resources included in the VIA LINK database are intended as referrals only. This information is maintained and distributed by VIA LINK.

 

Privacy

Your privacy is a personal and fundamental right. VIA LINK values and protects your privacy and places strict controls on the gathering and using of personally identifiable information.

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