On Monday and Tuesday, June 13-14, 10 members of LSA-DN's Policy & Advocacy Team (PAT) held several meetings on Capitol Hill with key Congressional offices. PAT strategized with Karen Summar in Sen. Chuck Grassley's (R-IA) office on furthering the Transition to Independence Act to increase integrated employment for people with disabilities. We then met with David Hoppe, Chief of Staff for Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), and Ted McCann, Policy Advisor to the Speaker, on the recently released GOP Poverty Plan, its possible impact on people with disabilities, and future partnership opportunities with the network and the Speaker.
On Tuesday morning, PAT spoke with Megan Perez on Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers' (R-WA) staff about the ABLE improvement bills and overall strategy for disability policy issues in 2017. Rep. McMorris Rodgers is the current Chair of the Republican Conference Committee. And finally, PAT sat down with Connie Garner, former staffer to Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA) and head staff on the CLASS Act, about innovative talks beginning with the public and private sector about increasing access to long-term services and supports benefits. When not on the Hill, PAT did not rest! We got to work developing an in-depth strategy for in-district advocacy during the upcoming Congressional recess.
Thank you to Bethesda's Mark Hagen and Megan Meier, Community Involvement Programs' Rita Wiersma, Filling Home's Carol Slight, KenCrest's Bill Nolan, Lutheran Family Services of Virginia's Lisa Morgan, Lutheran Services in Iowa's Bill Kallestad, and Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota's Susie Schatz for their hard work and active participation!
For more information about the Lutheran Services in America Disability Network (LSA-DN), visit: http://lutheranservices.org/LSADN