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What's Happening in Washington

Time is Running Out on the Disability Treaty!

The U.S. Senate has left Washington, D.C. until after the November elections. Please continue to contact your Senators in support of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). If the Senate does not debate and vote on the CRPD this session, it will probably never be ratified.

The following Senators, in particular, need to hear from their constituents: Jeff Flake (Arizona); John Boozman (Arkansas); Dan Coats (Indiana); Johnny Isakson and Saxby Chambliss (Georgia); Thad Cochran (Mississippi); Roy Blunt (Missouri); Mike Johanns and Deb Fischer (Nebraska); Dan Heller (Nevada); Rob Portman (Ohio); and Lindsey Graham (South Carolina). If you live in one of these states, please include a personalized message on the importance of the CRPD in your advocacy message.

Help us secure all the votes to ratify this important treaty this year.

Congress Passes Legislation Funding the Federal Government through December

On Friday, September 19, 2014, both the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate passed legislation funding all federal programs through December 11, 2014. This legislation will avert a government shutdown when the federal fiscal year technically ends September 30th. All programs are funded at current levels with a very small (0.0554 percent) across-the-board cut. After the elections in November, Congress will return to Washington to develop and pass a final funding bill.

Current Legislative Alerts: Take Action!

Each day, decisions are being made in Washington, D.C., that will affect people with disabilities and Easter Seals' ability to provide services to them, as well as to meet Easter Seals' mission today and for years to come. The unmet needs of people with disabilities will continue to go unaddressed if Easter Seals is not engaged in educating public policy makers about people with disabilities' disproportionate reliance on government for health, education, employment, transportation and other needed services.

Legislative Landmarks

Easter Seals has been active in public policy advocacy since our founder, Edgar Allen, lobbied the Ohio Legislature to fund appropriate services for children with disabilities in the 1920s. We continue to actively support and promote federal legislation that helps people with disabilities achieve independence.

Public Policy Priorities for the 113th Congress

People with disabilities and Easter Seals have a significant stake in government programs. For many children and adults with disabilities, their ability to get an education, earn a living and live independently in the community is dictated by the availability of services and supports, many of which come only from the federal government.

Funding History of Federal Disability Programs, January 2014 (PDF*)

This chart, developed by Easter Seals Office of Public Affairs, tracks the funding history of federal disability programs. The chart divides the information by agency, listing underneath each agency specific programs that matter to children and adults with disabilities.

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