Action Alert: Tell Congress #WhatWeNeed in Package #4

It is a critical time for advocacy for the needs of people with disabilities and the service system that supports them.

For more information, check out this BRIEF video:

Tell Congress to address the critical needs of people with disabilities in the next COVID-19 relief package!

Tell your Members of Congress that #WhatWeNeed is:

  • Increased Medicaid funding dedicated for HCBS
  • Increased funding to support direct service professionals and direct service agencies
  • Increased funding to ensure personal protective equipment is available for providers
  • Directives to ensure information about the public health emergency is described in accessible formats
  • Increased funds to support family care providers, family leave, and sick leave to support people with disabilities

What can I do? 

Call your Members of Congress (U.S. Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121 or Google the phone number for your local office). Don’t forget to provide your name and city/state where you live.

Email your members. You can reach your members directly using this helpful portal, which was put together by NDSC.
Send a Tweet at Congress.

Example Tweet: @MEMBER-OF-CONGRESS, pass a new #COVID19 relief bill that addresses the needs of people with disabilities and their direct supports during this crisis! #WhatWeNeed #DSPsAreEssential

Uncertain who your Members of Congress are? Find out here:
Find Your Representative
Find Your Senator

Steps for State Advocacy

Tell Governors to classify Direct Support Professionals as essential staff!

Job Coaches and other Direct Support Professionals are essential to ensuring the safety and health of people with disabilities who receive employment supports. Many people with disabilities work in jobs that are considered “essential” and are reporting to work at healthcare facilities, grocery stores and the like.

However, Direct Support Professionals (including Job Coaches) are not often thought of when essential staff exemptions are established.

What can I do? 
APSE urges our members to contact your Governor and your State Legislators.
Tell them that #DSPsAreEssential, and #WhatWeNeed is for State Government to:

  • Issue an executive order designating direct support professionals as “essential workers” 
  • Publicly recognize the important work direct support professionals do in the community  
  • Encourage displaced workers to consider applying for jobs as Direct Support Professionals 

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