This fact sheet is intended for healthcare professionals and the Center for Dignity is currently working on one geared toward people with disabilities and their family members. We will post that once it is complete.
Congress is writing the next bill to respond to the needs of Americans in this crisis. In order for the needs of people with disabilities and their families to be addressed in the next bill, members need to hear about the real impacts. Often, a short personal story is helpful for them. Below are tips and tools to share your story.
Important to include:
- How services and supports have been impacted by social distancing and how this impacts you
- Not being able to go to school, work, community activities, day program
- Not being able to have in-home or community support (Direct Support Professionals, aides, personal assistants, nurses)
- Medical and other appointments being canceled
What to send in a story:
- A picture of you at home; members of Congress need to SEE all of us
- Story template
- My name is __________________ and I am _______(a person with disability, family member, friend ). I am from _______(town and state). The COVID-19 emergency has ___________ (stopped services – explain which). I am worried about ____________ (explain what the impact is). I know you are working on the fourth relief package for COVID-19. I want to learn more about how you are going to help people with disabilities in this package. Thank you very much for your time.
- Example: (include photo of yourself)
My name is Liz Weintraub and I am a person with an intellectual and developmental disability. I am from Rockville, MD. The COVID-19 emergency has me working from home. I am worried about getting help from staff coming into my home while “stay home, saves lives.”
I need information about COVID-19 to be in plain language as its hard for me to understand and feel safe during these hard times if information is not accessible. I know you are working on the 4th relief package for COIVD-19. I want to learn more about how you are going to help people with disabilities in this package. Thank you very much for your time.
How to send a story:
- AUCD is happy to compile stories and send them to your members of Congress and to Congressional leaders. If you want us to send your story simply email it to email@example.com.
- If you want to send your story directly to your members of Congress, the best way right now is via email. If you need help locating the right email addresses for your members please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congress and the administration are responding to the COVID-19 crisis in a variety of ways. It is important in the fast-moving decision process that the various relief and safety efforts meet the needs of people with disabilities. The latest congressional COVID-19 response addressed many of those needs, but more work is needed! If you are concerned, you can read more here and learn what you can do to make your voice heard.