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Public Policy and Advocacy Priorities for FY23

AbilityPath empowers people with special needs to achieve their full potential through innovative, inclusive programs, and community partnerships. Our vision is a world where people of all abilities are fully accepted, respected, and included.

AbilityPath has been a cornerstone of the community since 1920. While our services expanded through the years to meet evolving needs, throughout the organization’s 100+ year history, our commitment has remained to improve the lives of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (ID/DD) in the Bay Area. Our comprehensive lifespan of services ensures every individual, from infants to seniors, can lead a fulfilling life as independently as possible. In addition to direct services, we lead and participate in advocacy efforts to amplify the voices of individuals with ID/DD. Through our Public Policy and Advocacy priorities, we envision:

  1. A sustainable funding structure
    The state has begun the process of making much-needed investment in disability services. Those investments must be protected with measures in place for long-term viability. Without a broad and sustainable service network, individuals and families who rely on certain supports will eventually be left behind.
  2. Stability and recognition for the workforce
    Person-centered, high-quality services require a skilled professional workforce. For too long, rates have not allowed for appropriate wages and support for the workforce serving people with IDD. The result is a worsening staff shortage as service providers fall behind in a highly competitive job market.
  3. Person-centered, accessible, flexible reforms
    The regional center system has a rare opportunity to modernize disability services. Reforms must offer clarity for all stakeholders, consistency between agencies, and flexibility for adapting to meet the changing needs of the people we serve.

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Legislative Priorities

Person-centered, accessible, flexible reforms

Sustainable funding structure

Pursue recognition for the Direct Support Professional Workforce

AbilityPath Auxiliary Advocacy Committee

The Advocacy Committee shall identify opportunities to advocate for those with special needs and developmental disabilities via public forums and social media in order to further our shared message of acceptance, respect, and inclusion. Additionally, the Advocacy Committee will inform our community and supporters about important legislative issues impacting individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities at the local, state and national levels, enabling interested parties to take appropriate action.

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