After-School Socialization and Computer Training from Abilities United

Abilities United pic At Abilities United, families receive the help they need to stay together and care for their children with disabilities. The nonprofit offers recreational specialists and home companions to families so that their children can participate in activities that will make their lives richer. Children’s family members benefit by gaining more time to pursue their own interests.

Two of the services provided by Abilities United are computer education and after-school socialization. Its after-school programs offer a place where children and young adults up to age 22 can learn to socialize with others and integrate more fully with their communities. The programs create opportunities for young people with disabilities to form friendships and gain new skills during sessions that focus on cooking, art, reading, and physical recreation activities.

Scheduled as needed, computer education from Abilities United can be taught in the home or at the nonprofit’s facility. A variety of classes are available, and each focuses on a different topic, from the basics of computing to more advanced tasks like mastering common software applications or learning to use the Internet. Life-skills training on the computer, which is also available, covers managing time and money and conducting a job search.


What Are the Federal Sentencing Guidelines?

As the vice president and deputy general counsel for global compliance enablement at Cisco Systems, Inc., Roxane Marenberg helps the company establish compliance programs in line with a number of different legal frameworks, including the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which have been in place since 1987 and were designed to create a uniform sentencing policy within the U.S. federal courts. The guidelines apply to felonies and more serious misdemeanors. They are non-binding so as not to interfere with a person’s Sixth Amendment rights, but judges take them into account when determining sentences.

The guidelines suggest sentences based upon the seriousness of the crime, as well as the criminal history of the offender. They are quite granular, detailing 43 levels of seriousness based upon the type of crime committed and modified by special characteristics relating to the particulars of the crime. In a fraud sentencing, for instance, the length of prison time suggested is affected by the amount of the dollar loss involved in the fraud. In a robbery, brandishing or use of a firearm increases the seriousness of the crime.

Judges may also take into account a number of other factors through the guidelines. Sentences can be adjusted based upon obstruction of justice, the degree to which the defendant participated in the crime, whether or not the defendant has accepted responsibility for the crime, and other factors. To learn more about the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, visit