Disability Policy News In Brief

March 18, 2019


AUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday, from the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD)
March 18, 2019   |   Vol. MMXIX, Issue 11
AUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday, FacebookAUCD, Disability Policy News InBrief, every Monday, TwitterDisability Policy News InBrief, every Monday, SharespaceAUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, YouTube list Tuesday Morning with LizspaceAUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday, Subscription formAUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday, ArchiveAUCD, Disability Policy News In Brief, every Monday, RSS

Congressional Recess

This week (March 18-26) members of Congress will be in their home districts to connect with constituents like you. This is an important time to advocate locally on the issues you care about most.

Action Steps:

Use this Congressional recess to connect with your member of Congress face-to-face


On Monday, March 11, President Trump released his budget proposal for federal fiscal year 2020 (which starts on October 1). The President's budget proposal lays out the Administration's funding priorities and values. 

Action Steps:

Learn More:

Take Action:

Share your reactions to the proposed budget with your members of Congress. Share AUCD's 2020 Budget ask related to investments that are critical to people with disabilities:

Autism CARES 2019  

The Autism CARES Act - which has expanded research and coordination, increased public awareness and surveillance, and expanded interdisciplinary health professional training, including LENDs, to identify and support children and youth with Autism and their families - will sunset (expire) in September 2019 without a successful reauthorization. Bills to reauthorize the Act have been introduced and need co-sponsors (HR. 1058, S. 427). Currently six Senators and 25 Representatives from 14 states and territories (FL, Guam, IL, IN, KY, MA, MI, MN, NJ, NY, PA, SC, VT, WY) have joined as co-sponsors.

Action Steps:

  • Contact your Congressional delegation and make sure they are engaged in the reauthorization. 
  • Invite your Congressmembers to be a co-sponsor of Autism CARES, or thank them for their involvement. 
  • Use this easy form to send an educational email to your members about the importance of Autism CARES legislation.
  • Call your members of Congress at 202-224-3121, and advocate as a private citizen for the bill's reauthorization.

Sample Script: "I am [Name] from [State]. I have seen the impact of Autism CARES and the lives changed because of this important legislation. I urge you to co-sponsor reauthorization. Thank you."

Health Care

CMS released new guidance on how they will review and approve state applications for Medicaid work requirements, including templates for would-be applicants and instructions for evaluations. CMS already has approved Medicaid work requirements in seven states - Arkansas, Arizona, Indiana, Kentucky, New Hampshire, Michigan and Wisconsin. Applications from eight other states are still pending.

D.C. District Court Judge James Boasberg heard oral arguments in two separate cases challenging the administration's approval of programs in Kentucky and Arkansas requiring people to work or volunteer 80 hours a month to keep their coverage. Judge Boasberg previously blocked Kentucky from implementing similar rules.

The administration reapproved the Kentucky program in November after accepting more public comments, to show it was considering feedback. Those requirements will take effect April 1 if Judge Boasberg doesn't block them. The judge said he aims to issue simultaneous rulings on both cases by the end of March.


Media reports around the college admissions cheating scandal include allegations that families encouraged their children to fake a disability to get accommodations that would allow them to cheat on high stakes tests to gain college admission. The National Center for Learning Disabilities statement reflects the importance of not allowing the actions of a few families to harm students with disabilities who have a right to accommodations and the opportunity to obtain a college education. 

Action Step:

House Democrats have called for hearings to examine the role of wealth in admissions.

  • Reach out to your Representatives and share the importance of ensuring access to accommodations for students with disabilities. 

Campaign 2020

The following notable candidates have filed to run for president with the Federal Election Commission or announced exploratory committees.

Beto O'Rourke (D), former Representative from Texas, announced on March 14th, 2019
Jay Inslee (D), Governor of Washington state, announced on February 28, 2019
Bernie Sanders (I), U.S. Senator from Vermont, announced on February 19, 201
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Amy Klobuchar (D), U.S. Senator from Minnesota, announced on February 10, 2019
  • Cosponsor of the Autism Cares 2019
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Corey Booker (D), U.S. Senator from New Jersey, announced on February 1, 2019
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Pete Buttigieg (D), Mayor of South Bend, Indiana, announced on January 23, 2019 
Kamala Harris (D), U.S. Senator from California, announced on January 21, 2019
  • Co-sponsor of the Transformation to Competitive Employment Act
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Kirsten Gillibrand (D), U.S. Senator from New York, announced on March 17, 2019
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Julian Castro (D), former U.S. Secretary of HUD, announced on January 12, 2019
Tulsi Gabbard (D), U.S. Representative from Hawaii, announced on January 11, 2019
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
Elizabeth Warren (D), U.S. Senator from Massachusetts, announced on December 31, 2018
  • Co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019
John Delaney (D), former U.S. Representative from Maryland, filed on August 10, 2017


Action Steps:

Your voice is needed to ensure that disability policy is part of the campaign.

  • For candidates who are currently in office, share and elevate their position on key disability legislation as noted above. Tip: You can and should ask them to support bills of importance.
  • Check out the campaign website of each candidate (links above); use the sites to ask questions about disability policy.

Tuesdays with Liz: Contacting the 116th United States Congress!


 As you advocate for Autism CARES reauthorization, prepare to attend DPS, and engage in campaign 2020, review a classic TWL episode about sharing your voice for tips and inspiration.


Subscribe to InBrief newsletter



For more from AUCD, follow @AUCDNews and like AUCD on Facebook

For updates from our Executive Director Andy Imparato, follow @AndyAUCD.

For definitions of terms used in In Brief, please see AUCD's Glossary of Legislative Terms 


AUCD | 1100 Wayne Avenue, Suite 1000 | Silver Spring | MD | 20910