When I hopped on a plane departing from Reagan National Airport in December 2013, I knew I wasn't leaving D.C. for the final time. After spending a semester studying and interning in the District through the Lutheran College Washington Semester, I was confident that I wanted to return to Washington at some point, but I knew figuring out my return would be a long row to hoe. It's funny how things work out.
LSA Advocacy and Public Policy News
"Poor people are the hardest working people in America." This is what Representative Dan Kildee (D-Mich.) told the crowd at the poverty simulation for members of Congress and their senior staff on Tuesday at the Capitol Visitor Center. Catholic Charities USA and Entergy (an energy company that works in AR, LA, MS, and TX) hosted this event that received bipartisan support and was attended by nearly one dozen members of the House.
Earlier this summer, we asked LSA members to take part in a survey about their public policy and advocacy practices and priorities. Our goal was to fine-tune our understanding about what advocacy activities are currently of the most value to our member organizations. Among the highlights of the findings: 88% of LSA's members participate in
Congratulations to our LSA-DN's Director of Public Policy and Advocacy, Sarah Meek, for her election as co-chair of the Long-Term Services and Supports Task Force of the Consortium for Citizens with Disabilities. Sarah has been at LSA since December 2012, directing the Disability Network's federal advocacy activities on issues affecting persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities, including long-term services and supports, housing, employment and transportation.
Lindsey Copeland joined the LSA team on September 22, 2014 as Director of Advocacy and Public Policy. Lindsey comes to us from the National Association of States United for Aging and Disabilities (NASUAD), where she was their Director of Policy and Legislative Affairs since 2011.
The Lutheran Services in America Disability Network (LSA-DN) has reached out to Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) to personally thank him for his tireless advocacy on and support for the civil rights of Americans with disabilities. After more than 25 years in the Senate, Senator Harkin is now retiring. Senator Harkin is the Chair of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee in the Senate and author of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
Lutheran Services in America (LSA-DN) and its member organizations are actively reaching out to both Republicans and Democrats in the House and Senate urging passage of the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act of 2013 (H.R. 647/S. 313) during the current Lame Duck session of Congress. LSA-DN strongly support the ABLE Act because it will enable individuals with disabilities and their families to save for their future just like every other American. The ABLE Act facilitates self-direction for people with disabilities, supports individuals living in the community and shifts some long-term services and supports costs from Medicaid. The House is due to vote on the Act during the first week of December.
On Wednesday, December 3rd, the U.S House of Representatives passed the Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act (H.R. 647/S. 313) with a vote of 404-17. Lutheran Services in America Disability Network (LSA-DN) applauds the overwhelming support for this legislation that will allow individuals with disabilities to save for the future without fear of jeopardizing essential long-term services and supports provided through Medicaid and other programs. The Senate is expected to take up the ABLE Act sometime next week.
Lutheran Services in America (LSA) and the Lutheran Services in America Disability Network (LSA-DN) applaud the Senate passage of The Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) Act. The overwhelming passage of the ABLE Act through both the House of Representatives and the Senate clears the way for the ABLE Act to become law with President Obama's signature.
ABLE accounts will enable individuals with disabilities to live more fully integrated lives in the community and empower them to take charge of their futures without fear of jeopardizing essential long-term services and supports provided through Medicaid and other programs.
The recently released 2016 presidential budget has initiatives built into it that are designed to help older adults. The budget proposed commitments in four key areas identified by the 2015 White House Conference on Aging: elder justice, long-term care supports and services, health aging and retirement security.