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The week of July 25th not only marked the 27th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as well as the 52nd anniversary of Medicaid, it also marked the occasion of the 2017 ACCSES Conference held in Washington, DC. ACCSES is a national disability policy organization that represents community-based disability service providers and the individuals and families they serve. ACCSES operates to ensure that public policy provides a full array of service options and opportunities for people with disabilities.
Notably, the week was also the historic occasion of the Health Care vote in the Senate as well as the related proposed Medicaid cuts which would have been devastating to the individuals that all of the ACCSES organizations serve. Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries has been working with its County Board partners in the Greater Cincinnati area for months to make the community aware of this critical issue for people with disabilities and soliciting their support as part of this awareness effort. Nineteen states were represented during the week long conference which included face-to-face meetings with legislators.
In fitting fashion, while the ACCSES team members were on Capitol Hill meeting with their elected representatives and discussing their concerns related to Health Care and Medicaid cuts, the Senate was counting down to the final vote on the proposed Health Care legislation. The legislative advocates were delighted to learn that Senator John McCain along with Senators Lisa Murkowski, and Susan Collins were the deciding votes on the Republican side to defeat the planned legislation making it possible for millions of people with disabilities and other vulnerable citizens to retain the vitally needed Medicaid support.
Ohio Valley Goodwill was pleased to be part of the 2017 ACCSES Conference held in Washington DC and is grateful to the Senate advocates who worked so diligently to preserve Medicaid for all citizens and particularly, for individuals with disabilities.