2018 Advocacy Days!

Published Jan. 21, 2018

2018 Advocacy Days!

2018 Advocacy Day Schedule

Working in Harmony!

What to expect at Advocacy Day

Advocacy Day begins at 10 a.m. on Wednesdays during the legislative session. We start with an hour and a half briefing on current issues and end with an afternoon of advocacy.  While we feature a highlighted topic each  week, the morning briefing will also cover late breaking news on budget items and bills of interest relating to individuals with developmental disabilities. If you need a guide for the day, please let us know by calling 1-888-754-8798, ext. 5, or e-mail bean@arcwa.org

January 24th - Supported Living Services

Self-advocates, supported living providers as well as family members and others join to let legislators know how important living in the community is and ask them to put budget dollars into community services, not institutions. We will meet at United Churches at 10 am in partnership with the Community Residential Services Association (CRSA).

January 31st—Self-Advocacy/Disability Pride

Self-advocates will lead the way on some issues for the 2018 session that help them live in their community as independently as possible and show their pride in being valued members of society.  They have three priorities they are pursuing this session: 1) closing state institutions and building community services; 2) having real jobs with real pay (not sub-minimum wages); and 3) providing supported decision-making as an alternative to guardianship.

February 7th - Family and Multi-Cultural Services

Families provide the majority of care for people with DD, saving our state lots of money and helping individuals be participating members of their local communities. Parent to Parent, local chapters of The Arc, Parent Coalitions and Open Doors for Multi-Cultural Families will share what this means for you. We encourage parents to come to this meeting and bring your children with you. Legislators need to understand the needs of all cultures to ensure DD services meet everyone’s needs. At 1:00 join the WeeCare Coalition on the Capitol Rotunda to hear from speakers on Early Intervention services.

February 14th—Disability Protections

This session we have a number of protection issues being raised: toxic chemicals in fast food wrappers, flame retardants in children’s  electronics, protection from institutionalization due to lack of sufficient resources in the community, supported decision-making, and more.

February 21st—Transition to Employment Pays!

Having a job means that individuals with DD can be productive citizens, contributing to our economy by paying taxes while also providing valued services. Its important that the transition programs in high school for those age 18-21 provide services help students leave the program with a job (School to Work). After the meeting at the United Churches, head over to the capital for the Employment Rally in the Rotunda.

February 28th—Budget Overview

Legislators are required to do one thing during this legislative session: create and pass a supplemental budget. Our services may go in as a line item in the budget or as a proviso. It is important that you educate your legislators about the budget needs of people with DD. Learn what services and supports are proposed for cuts or increases and what you can do to help.

March 8th—Take Notes!

As the supplemental session is coming to a close, legislators are  spending most of their time on the House or Senate floor voting on bills. You still have a huge job to do! Many bills never get a chance to be voted on, not because they aren’t important, but because there is not enough time to vote on all of them. You can help move your bills up in importance by sending notes in to your legislator while they are on the floor. We can help!