MARCH 10, 2000                                                            NO. 177


**High School/High Tech Program
**Olmstead Decision
**ASHA CDC National AIDs Hotline

Families Opportunity Act of 2000


Senators Kennedy and Grassley are working together to introduce this legislation. It will provide opportunities for families of children with significant disabilities to access Medicaid for their child through a State buy-in. This option will fill in the gaps that their employee benefits do not cover and ensure that children with significant disabilities receive the services they need.

The legislation also includes a demonstration to allow states to offer Medicaid to children with potentially significant disabilities, who without access to the health services provided under Medicaid will become more disabled.

Lastly, the legislation funds state Family to-Family Health Information Centers to help families of children with disabilities and /or special health care needs maneuver through the available health care services and support systems in their state.

This legislation is scheduled to be introduced the week of March 20, 2000. It is a very short legislative year ---- so we need to tell our stories and make known our support for this legislation NOW. Send faxes and make calls to Senators Kennedy and Grassley to show your support for their efforts. Most importantly _ contact your Senators, share your stories, and tell them to co-sponsor the bill. OUR KIDS SHOULD NOT BE LEFT OUT OR LEFT BEHIND ANYMORE FROM THE HEALTH CARE THEY DESERVE.

Tell Congress this is an important issue to families. Let them know how Medicaid benefits affect your family's livelihood and ability to be a responsible parent and citizen of this country.


*Senator Kennedy (D-MA),     Phone: 202-224-4545 / Fax: 202- 224-2417

*Senator Grassley (R-IA),   Phone: 202-224-3744 / Fax: 202-224-6020 / Capitol Switchboard: 202-224-3121

Check Out These Web Sites

For Your Information

* High School/High Tech Program
It promotes science, engineering and technology careers for students with disabilities through the creation of partnerships among state and local stakeholders. A typical program incorporates a mix of learning experiences that broadens the educational horizons of students with disabilities. These activities may include: 

It is people, not money, that makes the project successful. Corporate partners are needed to jump start careers in technology for students with disabilities. For more information contact Nellie Wild, President's Committee on Employment of People with Disabilities, at: 202-376-6200, or access:

* Olmstead Decision
The National Conference of State Legislatures has released a technical assistance report and audio tape that is intended to help state lawmakers develop options for moving people with disabilities out of institutions and placing them in less-restrictive settings. The report, titled Deinstitutionalization of Persons With Developmental Disabilities: A Technical Assistance Report for Legislators, and audio tape, titled "After Olmstead: Community Care for People With Disabilities," are products of NCSL's Forum for State Health Policy Leadership. Copies of the report (item #6683, cost $15) and audio tape (item #6730, cost $10) can be obtained by contacting NCSL's publications department at 303-830-2054.

*ASHA CDC National AIDs Hotline
The American Social Health Association Announces enhanced STD and AIDS Services for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) National AIDS Hotline provides service in English, Spanish and via TTY, and the CDC National STD Hotline offers information in English. CDC National STD and AIDS Hotlines 1-800-243-7889 - TTY Service (10:00AM - 10:00PM, Monday - Friday); 1-800-344-7432 - Spanish Service (8:00AM - 2:00AM, 7 Days a Week); 1-800-227-8922 - English Service (8:00 AM - 11:00PM, Monday - Friday); 1-800-342-AIDS(2437) - English Service (24 Hours a Day, 7 Days a Week).


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