Tuesday, August 28, 2012

ADA’s Olmstead “Most Integrated Setting” Mandate Will Be Undercut. Information Bulletin #363 (8/2012). Christine Gregoire, the Democratic Governor of Washington State, is deciding if she will threaten and undercut the right of people with disabilities to live in the community by eviscerating the Olmstead decision and the ADA’s “most integrated setting” mandate. How? In response to cuts to personal care services for approximately 45,000 Medicaid recipients, disability advocates sued the State of Washington. Democratic Governor Christine Gregoire argued in court that individuals with disabilities must be already institutionalized in order to be protected under the Olmstead decision. The Circuit court disagreed with Governor Gregoire. Now, Governor Gregoire is considering an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court! She is putting the rights of people with disabilities at significant risk. If she takes the case to the Supreme Court, this Supreme Court will take the opportunity to turn back the clock on our rights. If appealed, “M.R. v. Dreyfus,” the name of the case, it will give the very activist U.S. Supreme Court an opportunity to substantially erode or completely eliminate Olmstead. The disability community in Washington State has urged Governor Gregoire to settle this case without going to the Supreme Court, but she has been unwilling to do so Disability Advocates must TAKE ACTION NOW to contact key people within the Gregoire administration and the national leaders in the Democratic Party to urge Governor Gregoire to settle this case and not take it to the Supreme Court. Our message: “Governor Gregoire should support the right of people with disabilities living in the most integrated setting in the community! Settle M.R. v. Dreyfus! No appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.” The Olmstead decision is one of the few effective advocacy tools that the disability community has to fight against state budget cuts to home and community-based services that would force people with disabilities into unwanted and unwarranted institutionalization. TAKE THE FOLLOWING ACTIONS NOW. TIMING IS CRITICAL PLEASE DO IT TODAY: Please send emails, telephone and/or twitter to: 1. Marty Loesch, Chief of Staff for Governor Chris Gregoire, (360) 902-0499. Marty.loesch@gov.wa.gov 2. Kareem Dale, White House, Kareem_A._Dale@who.eop.gov 3. Telephone the White House’s Monthly Disability call • Date of Call: Friday, August 24, 2012 • Start Time: 2:00 p.m. EDT (dial in 5 minutes early) • Dial in: (800) 762-7308 • Code: White House Disability Call Valarie Jarrett will be on this call, and she is President Obama’s point person. Tell her what you think. 4. Telephone the Democratic Governors’ Assn. at 202-772-5600 or email them at http://democraticgovernors.org/contact/ Steve Gold, The Disability Odyssey continues Back issues of other Information Bulletins are available online at http://www.stevegoldada.com with a searchable Archive at this site divided into different subjects. As of August, 2010, Information Bulletins will also be posted on my blog located at http://stevegoldada.blogspot.com/ To contact Steve Gold directly, write to stevegoldada1@gmail.com or call 215-627-7100. Ext 227.

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