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Old 04-25-2013, 01:57 AM
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Default Disability rights advocates testify before long term care commission after arrests

DISABILITY RIGHTS ADVOCATES TESTIFY BEFORE FEDERAL LONG TERM CARE
COMMISSION TWO DAYS AFTER WHITE HOUSE ARRESTS
*MEDIA ADVISORY FOR** **APRIL 24, 2013*

For more information contact:

Bruce Darling, (585) 370-6690
Mike Oxford, (785) 748-0832
Adam Ballard, (708) 945-3893
Janine Bertram, janinebk@mac.com

DISABILITY RIGHTS ADVOCATES TESTIFY BEFORE FEDERAL LONG TERM CARE
COMMISSION TWO DAYS AFTER WHITE HOUSE ARRESTS

Members of ADAPT, the national disability rights group, will testify in an official hearing of the Long Term Care Commission about their struggles to leave Medicaid-funded nursing facilities and institutions and live in homes of their own.

Earlier this week, 41 members of ADAPT were arrested at the White House for demanding to meet with the Obama administration about improvements to the country's Medicaid long term care system. Currently, Medicaid nursing facility services are made available by law in every state, but not community living services. While the administration refused to meet with them Monday, ADAPT will testify on their personal experiences to Long Term Care Commission member Henry Claypool, one of twelve people appointed by President Obama. Mr. Claypool is an experienced disability policy advocate and the only person with a disability on the Commission.

*WHO: ADAPT and Henry Claypool, Presidential Appointee to the Federal Long Term Care Commission
*WHAT: Public hearing on community-based long term care services
nationwide
*WHEN: 10 am to 12 noon EST, April 24, 2013
*WHERE: Discovery II Ballroom, Holiday Inn Capitol, 550 C. Street SW, Washington DC

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT:
Bruce Darling, 585-370-6690
Adam Ballard, 708-945-3893

DISABILITY ACTIVISTS SCORE MAJOR VICTORIES IN DAY OF ACTION

ADAPT Hails Renewed Talks with Labor Groups Over Work Rule Affecting the Independence of PWDS; Secures Commitment from HUD to
Release Key Guidance to Housing Authorities

Washington, DC - Following a long day of direct action, grassroots
disability rights group ADAPT celebrates two major victories. First, a new agreement to seek a compromise that considers the freedom of PWDs to direct their own attendant services and the need of
organized labor to seek the best possible conditions for those workers was reached with AFSCME & SEIU. These two unions have been at the forefront of pushing for a change to work rules for attendants that would limit the ability of PWDs to direct their own attendant care due to overtime restrictions.

"This agreement to meet again within two weeks and bring substantive
proposals for movement toward compromise was a huge win for ADAPT and people who rely on home-based attendant care today," said Mike Oxford of Kansas ADAPT.

"We don't oppose our attendants receiving improved pay and benefits, in fact, we support it," added David Wittie, an organizer for ADAPT of Texas. "And today's new agreements will go a long way toward securing higher take-home pay for our workers while also protecting the right of PWDs to control who comes in our homes and assists us with the most intimate activities of daily life, all while ensuring that we stay out of costly institutions."

Earlier in the day, ADAPT activists took direct action at the headquarters of the US HUD, demanding that HUD release a letter offering guidance to local housing authorities across the nation on complying with the Supreme Court's Olmstead decision, which affirms that PWDs have the civil right to live in the community instead of institutions. HUD officials agreed to release the letter by May 27.

DISABILITY RIGHTS ACTIVISTS TELL DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, "HANDS OFF MY BODY!"

ADAPT Community Enraged by Acting Secretary Harris' Failure to Engage All Stakeholders on Controversial Work Rule Change

Washington, DC - Carrying several banners and signs while chanting,
"Nothing About Us Without Us", several hundred activists with the
grassroots disability rights group ADAPT are protesting outside the
headquarters of the US DOL. The protesters, many of whom use WCs and other mobility devices, are angered by the Department's Acting Secretary, Seth Harris, and his ongoing failure to meaningfully engage the disability community on issues concerning proposed
work rule changes that would significantly hinder the ability of people who use attendant care to direct their own services.

"Mr. Harris, as Assistant Labor Secretary, visited our community, heard our concerns about this rule change, and promised action. Now he won't respond when we try to contact him," said Dave Atias, an ADAPT organizer from Rochester, NY.

Scott Nance of Chicago ADAPT goes on, "We have recently received signals from the Obama administration and other stakeholders, including labor unions, that compromise on the key issues with this rule may be possible. As a former personal attendant myself, I feel very strongly that DOL needs to re-engage with all stakeholders, especially the PWDs who will be impacted most, before pushing ahead with this rule change."

More information about ADAPT can be found at http://www.adapt.org/
http://www.adapt.org/freeourpeople/2013/ & http://www.doloffmybody.org

Live Twitter updates are at http://www.twitter.com/nationaladapt.

# # #
FOR MORE INFORMATION on ADAPT visit our website at http://www.adapt.org/
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