Accessibility is all too often overlooked by the state legislature. Massachusetts needs representatives who will work with disabled people to ensure that our state is inclusive and accessible to all. I promise to always fight for justice for people with disabilities.
As your State Representative, I will...
1. Invite disability rights advocates, especially people with disabilities themselves, to the table and make sure their voices are being heard.
One of the founding principles of disability rights advocacy is “Nothing About Us, Without Us.” All too often, decisions that affect disabled people are made without taking their opinions into account. I will fight to make sure that every commission, for issues from transportation to economic policy, has a representative from the disabled community. Furthermore, I pledge to consistently reach out to disability rights activists to make sure that they are included in the conversation and decision-making process.
2. Ensure that the Americans with Disabilities Act is executed properly across the Commonwealth.
This July will mark the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act, a massive victory for civil rights. However, a law is only as effective as its execution, and unfortunately, the execution of the ADA in Massachusetts is lacking. I will ensure that all buildings are actually ADA accessible, as well as expand access to ASL interpreters and closed-captioning services on the state and local level so that Deaf and Hard of Hearing individuals can fully participate in the democratic process. I will fully fund services for students with disabilities, including the Individuals with Disabilities Education act (IDEA), and make sure that our schools are providing accommodations for disabled students properly.
3. Fight for social and economic justice for people with disabilities.
Disabled rights are human rights, and we must treat them as such. I will hold our medical system—whether it be our hospitals, our mental health facilities, or our group and nursing homes—accountable to ensure that disabled people are being treated with dignity and respect. I will vote in favor of H.123, which bans abusive “aversive therapy” for intellectually disabled and autistic people. Finally, I will support initiatives which provide employment opportunities for people with disabilities, which provide good benefits and pay a living wage.