Action Alert: March 30, 2015

Ultimate Advocacy Challenge

Today, March 30, Access Living’s Advocacy Director issued an advocacy challenge to stop State Cuts to vital programs that support the independence of people with disabilities.

Below is the call to Action from Amber Smock, the Director of Advocacy.

Today, I have two important actions to ask you to take to help stop budget cuts to state funded programs like the Home Services Program, the Community Care Program, Centers for Independent Living, public transit and paratransit, permanent supportive housing, community mental health supports, community developmental disabilities services, and more. It’s time to show legislators that we mean business. We have to stop the cuts!

First, House Speaker Michael Madigan wants to hear why you are worried about the state budget, and why it could affect you. Yes. That’s right. Speaker Madigan wants YOUR STORY. He wants to know how state programs save lives and support independence. If you take some time to write out your story, you can either send it to your state representative or to me at, and we will get it to the Speaker’s office. This is really important---please write in THIS WEEK. The Speaker’s request is a good sign, but we need to answer the call.

Second, we need to make sure that ALL the legislators working on the budget hear from you! We have an easy way to make this happen even though there are a lot of them. Just like last Friday, when you sent almost 500 emails to the top six legislative leaders, we can do this through sending to six at a time (system limit). There are 36 Senators and Representatives on the Senate Appropriations I Committee and the House Human Services-Appropriations Committee, which we’ll focus on today. I challenge you to send emails at all six links below!

Group 1: Click on this link to send an email to Senators Steans, Kotowski, Biss, Delgado, Hastings and Hunter.

Group 2: Click on this link to send an email to Senators Manar, Stadelman, Trotter, Van Pelt, Murphy, and Barickman.

Group 3: Click on this link to send an email to Senators Bivins, Duffy, and Rose, and Representatives Harris, Gabel and Bellock.

Group 4: Click on this link to send an email to Representatives Acevedo, Davidsmeyer, Demmer, Feigenholtz, Ford and Frese.

Group 5: Click on this link to send an email to Representatives Golar, Hernandez, Jesiel, Kay, Leitch and Lilly.

Group 6: Click on this link to send an email to Representatives Manley, Mayfield, Meier, Mussman, Unes and Willis.

I know that’s a lot of action to be taking, but state funding for disability programs are a serious matter. Thousands of Illinoisans with disabilities and seniors need help speaking up for themselves. The proposed budget cuts are an attack on people in their homes and in their communities. The budget cuts are not fair---and they are life and death to us. YOUR VOICE MATTERS. Please take some time today to take action and write a story.

Let’s go Illinois!

Amber Smock
Director of Advocacy, Access Living