With all the focus around a coronavirus relief bill, it’s important to remember the essential rights for those with disabilities. More must still be done to support them, their families, and the Direct Support Professionals (DSP) workforce. Individuals with disabilities are more disposed to have underlying health conditions which puts them at risk for greater impact and in need of ongoing support.
Although some relief has been provided including increased funding for state Medicaid programs and expanded sick leave for workers, more still needs to be done including:
- Paid leave for caregivers to include those who care for people with disabilities
- An economic stimulus package for people with disabilities to ensure their current benefits aren’t at risk
- A permanent reauthorization of the Money Follows the Person (MFP) program which allows people with disabilities back into the community after hospitalization
- A Medicaid grant program to support access to home and community-based services
- No limitations on civil rights protections provided by the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Affordable Care Act can be included in the legislation.