The midterm elections are less than a month away.
- Do you know where your legislators, both federal and state stand on these issues?
- Do you know where the candidates stand on disability issues of insurance (especially on the issue of pre-existing conditions), programs like SSI, Medicaid waivers, adequate funding of special education, transportation, and more?
- Do you even know who your representatives are? Find out by clicking here
To really be informed, please take time to look at the League of women voters guide for your area. The League of Women Voters is a non-partisan organization that puts the same three questions to every candidate and allows them to speak to the issues rather than the party rhetoric. I have found it to be very telling and surprising when comparing candidate answers. I have found it especially helpful in races where the candidates have not had a huge amount of campaign dollars to finance an advertising campaign. Find the guide for your area here.
Federal Budget Issues: The federal budget shows Fiscal Year 2019 spending to be flat in areas affecting people with disabilities despite the fact that autism and many other disabilities are being diagnosed at increasing rates. Want to take a closer look? Here is a summary table put together by the National Autism Society.
Action: Call your US Senator and Rep to both praise them for passing Keven and Avonte’s law (funding for efforts to prevent dangerous wandering) and to let them know current funding levels for disability programs are currently not enough and will be even less with inflation and increased incidence of diagnoses.
Want to understand more about how IDEA (the law that governs special education) is funded? Read this report from the non-partisan Congressional Research Service as well as this report from COPAA (Council of Parents, Attorneys and Advocates) about the perpetual underfunding of IDEA called Broken Promises.
Texas was in federal court to prevent the Education Department from withholding $33M for special ed services. A decision will come in 2019. Want to read more?
As of September 1, 2018, all Board Certified Behavior Analysts must be licensed by the state of Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists in order to provide ABA services. No one can provide therapy to individuals and call themselves a Behavior Analyst without a license. Want to learn more?
Did you miss the Texas Disabilities Forum? You can watch it here
Is your family member one of the more than 130,000 on Texas Medicaid waiting lists? The ARC of Texas wants to hear from you in this survey.
The six months political free-for-all known as biennial Texas legislative session will begin in January 2019. Schedule an appointment with your state legislator and senator in their local office. Bring your family member to meet them, tell them about issues you’re having getting state services, talk to them about the issues that matter, and let them know that you will be watching how they vote in 2019. While dollars are allocated at the federal level, it is the state legislators who decide how they will be spent. They need to know you are engaged and watching.
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