Massachussetts Legislative Priorities

2018 Legislative Priorities

Stavros Staff and other Independent Living Centers across the state spend the day of advocating for the needs of people with disabilities. You can make a call too and ask your state legislators to support the following legislative priorities for people with disabilities.

Increase funding for Alternative Housing Voucher Program (DHCD Line Item 7004-9030)

The Alternative Housing Voucher Program provides mobile vouchers for nonelderly persons with disabilities. The program was established in 1995 and funded 800 vouchers. Budget cuts and rent increases have negatively impacted the program. Vouchers are worth less than market value rent. Advocates are looking to restore the program to 800 vouchers at a fair market rate.

Align MA AAB regulations with the ADA S.1379 (Sponsored by Sen. Timilty) and H. 2498 (Sponsored by Rep. Moran)

This bill would align Massachusetts access codes and the federal access regulations of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It would provide more housing within our communities and increase access to employment for persons with disabilities. .

Support Independent Living Centers (Line Item 4120-0200)

Independent Living Centers (ILCs) help people with disabilities of all ages. ILCs provide independent living skills, peer support, options counseling, systems advocacy, information and referrals, and transitional services to thousands of individuals throughout the Commonwealth. IL funding has been cut, yet the need for our services continues to rise. ILCs are asking for an a million dollar increase to help restore funding and support our services.

Increase Funding for Transportation

In January of 2018, PVTA announced another series of service cuts due to a $3.1 million dollar budget deficit. The cuts proposed will limit services for individuals with disabilities, elders, and low income communities. PVTA has been leveled funded at $80 Million. RTAs would need $88 Million in order to maintain service and prevent cuts.

In addition to the above priorities Stavros is also advocating to:

  1. Lift the Cap on Kids (S. 34 (Sponsored by Sen. DiDomenico and H.85 by Rep. Decker) 
  2. Increase funding for the Moving Forward Program (MFP)
  3. Expand access to Healthcare for persons with Disabilities
  4. Protect funding for Medicaid (Including funding support for the Personal Care Attendant Program and the Durable Medical Equipment program

To Learn who is your legislator visit the Massachusetts Secretary of State website http://www.sec.state.ma.us/wheredoivotema/bal/myelectioninfo.aspx

SAVE THE ADA!

statue of liberty on wheelchair

The so called Education and Reform Act HR 620 proposes to give business owners even more time to make accommodations, and would require persons with disabilities to file a complaint and then wait six months to see if the problem got fixed.

Wait. What? The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)  has been around since 1990. Do you think 27 years is enough time for any business to get accessible and for business owners to learn about the law? 27 Years!

If you think this new proposal HR 620 is unfair we ask you to contact your congressperson. Let them know
that you are tired of waiting for access, and that you want MORE access, not less! We are asking you to be vigilant! The ADA and other laws are under attack and we need to defend our rights.

Contact your Congressperson let them know you won't let them take access away !