4/2: COVID-19 Updates From Access Living


April 2, 2020 | by Amber Smock

4/2: COVID-19 Updates From Access Living

Dear Access Living friends and allies,

We have a mix of updates for you today. Please be sure to read them all so you don’t miss anything important.

Daily Reminder, Contact Congress: Don’t forget that Congress is now working on a FOURTH stimulus package for COVID-19 response. So far, there are still several areas of disability supports needed and we need your help to remind your members of Congress to include them. You can do this easily using this email tool. Persistence is very important so please, try to contact them at least once a day.

COVID-19 Class Action Filed on Behalf of Illinois Prisoners with Disabilities/Pre-Existing Conditions: Per this press statement, a number of civil rights groups have filed a federal class action lawsuit against the State of Illinois to reduce the number of people with disability being held in Illinois prisons and at risk of serious consequences due to COVID-19. The legal groups representing the class include the Roderick and Solange MacArthur Justice Center, the Community Justice Civil Rights Clinic at the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, Illinois Prison Project, Uptown People’s Law Center, Loevy and Loevy, and Equip for Equality.

More Facts About Recovery Checks for SSI Recipients: Late yesterday, the U.S. Treasury Department announced that those who have Social Security benefits would not need to file a tax return in order to get COVID-19 recovery checks. This story from Business Insider has more detail. There was a major public outcry when people realized that millions would need to file tax returns, and need assistance to do so, at a time when resources are strained.

Public Charge, Immigrants, and COVID-19: In case you missed it, we’d like to remind you that Protecting Immigrant Families has a Know Your Rights page at this link to check out what you need to know about accessing healthcare and social services during the COVID-19 crisis. Seeking healthcare for COVID-19 would not be considered in a public charge test.

National Resource on Medical Rationing: The Center for Public Representation has a new webpage dedicated to compiling resources across the states on defending people with disabilities against discrimination in medical rationing. Here in Illinois, we are pleased to share that our state administration is actively working on state guidance against this kind of discrimination, but this is not the case in every state. Check it out.

Again, thank you for your advocacy during this very stressful time.