Policy Advocacy at Access Living

Disability policy advocacy is a powerful way to win social change, especially in tandem with our legal and organizing work. Access Living has a long and proud history of involvement with key policy initiatives, including the Americans with Disabilities Act and countless local, state and national programs and regulations. Our policy recommendations and initiatives are of, by and for people with disabilities.

Our core areas of disability policy advocacy are:

Education : ensuring the right of all children with disabilities to a free and appropriate public school education, with meaningful transition outcomes.

Education Policy Analyst: Rod Estvan, (312) 640–2149 or restvan@accessliving.org .

Employment policy: ensuring the right of people with disabilities to seek and secure meaningful job opportunities.

Employment Policy Analyst: Rene David Luna, (312) 640–2108 or rluna@accessliving.org .

Health access policy: ensuring the right of people with disabilities to receive quality health care free of environmental or communication barriers.

Health Access Policy Analyst: Judy Panko Reis, (312) 640–2184 or jreis@accessliving.org .

Health Access Policy Analyst: Marilyn Martin, (312) 640–2133 or MMartin@accessliving.org


Community Development Organizer for Health Care (Health policy related to community integration, including Medicaid long term care): Tom Wilson, (312) 640–2127 or twilson@accessliving.org .

Housing policy : ensuring the right of people with disabilities to live in affordable, accessible, integrated housing in the communities of their choice.

Housing Policy Analyst: Terence Simms, (312) 640–2177 or Tsimms@accessliving.org

Manager of Community Development:
Beto Barrera, (312) 640–2111 or abarrera@accessliving.org .

Other active areas of policy of concern to our staff are immigration, Latino and women's issues as they affect people with disabilities.

For questions regarding specific policy areas, contact the folks listed above. For general questions about our policy work or to get involved as a volunteer, contact Amber Smock, Director of Advocacy.