Monday, March 6, 2017

Tell Congress to Not to Eliminate Disability-Specific Provisions in the ACA

From The Advocacy Monitor:
Tell Congress to not to eliminate disability-specific provisions in the Affordable Care Act and to not cap and block grant Medicaid!
Background
While the timeline keeps changing, one thing is certain: Republicans in Congress are set on repealing the Affordable Care Act and restructuring Medicaid. This means that the programs our community relies on are at risk!
The latest we’re hearing is that the Energy & Commerce Committee will hold a markup of the first reconciliation bill next week. The bill has not been released, so we don’t know exactly what will be in it. However, House Republicans released an outline of their healthcare reform plan last week, and shortly after that an early draft (inaccessible PDF) of a reconciliation bill was leaked.
Both the leaked bill and the proposal included high risk pools, Medicaid expansion repeal, age-based tax credits (that don’t take income into account), expanded health savings accounts, and Medicaid per-capita caps. While this will likely not be the final version, the leaked bill also included pieces not in the outline, including continuous coverage requirements, and importantly, the sunsetting of the Community First Choice Option. All of these proposals will be bad for the disability community. These changes will drive up healthcare costs and decrease access for people with disabilities around the country.
Take Action!
Disability advocates around the country have been setting up meetings, attending Town Halls, protesting, emailing, Tweeting – and it is working! We are consistently hearing that Congressional offices are being flooded with input from a record-breaking number of their constituents. Let’s KEEP IT UP!
Tell your members of Congress that repealing the ACA is dangerous to their constituents with disabilities, and make sure to talk to them about the disability-specific pieces of the ACA! Make sure Congress knows that by sticking to a broad repeal strategy, they will be eliminating pieces of the law that allow us to live independently in our communities. Tell them they need to #ReadB4Repeal!
As outlined in our previous alert, the disability-specific pieces include prohibiting discrimination against people with pre-existing conditions, the extension of Money Follows the Person, the establishment of the Community First Choice Option, and the authorization of accessibility standards for Diagnostic Medical Equipment.
Also, make sure to tell them how harmful per-capita caps and block grants will be to the millions of people with disabilities who rely on Medicaid. Both block grants and per-capita caps will result in MASSIVE cuts that will grow exponentially over time. Moreover, the flexibility provided to states along with these cuts will allow them to make changes like enrollment caps, benefit cuts, and waiting lists. People with disabilities account for nearly half of all Medicaid spending, so our community will be hit hard by these cuts. Congress MUST NOT make cuts to Medicaid!
Mobilize!
Get as many people to respond to this alert as possible, including IL Board, staff, volunteers, consumers, and family and friends. We have set a goal of 14,000 people contacting Congress.
Additional Resources:
NCIL’s Alerts on ACA repeal:
NCIL participates in the Disability Power for Community Integration coalition, which has coordinated two webinars about what we can expect from ACA repeal and Medicaid restructuring, and how it will impact people with disabilities. You can access all of the archived materials, including slides and recordings:
Sample Tweets:
  • #ACA included Money Follows the Person- Republican initiative giving #NewFreedom to #disabled. @realDonaldTrump #ReadB4Repeal#CripTheVote
  • #ACA included Community First Choice- giving #Liberty to #disabled. @realDonaldTrump #ReadB4Repeal#CripTheVote
  • #Liberty of #Disabled shouldn’t be culture war collateral damage. @realDonaldTrump help get Congress to #ReadB4Repeal #CripTheVote
  • #ACA gave #Disabled women access to mammography. @realDonaldTrump help get Congress to #ReadB4Repeal #CripTheVote
  • #ACA stops discrimination against #disabled by insurance. @realDonaldTrump help get Congress to #ReadB4Repeal #CripTheVote
  • .@realDonaldTrump #ACA’s Community First Choice Option let Disabled people Stay in our homes! #ReadB4Repeal #CripTheVote
  • .@realDonaldTrump #ACA included the #GOP created Money Follows the Person Initiative giving Disabled ppl Freedom. #ReadB4Repeal #CripTheVote
The Advocacy Monitor is a project of the National Council on Independent Living, a leading cross-disability, grassroots organization run by and for people with disabilities that represents Centers for Independent Living (CILs)

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