Washington, Sept. 7 – With just 61 days until Election Day, RespectAbility is calling on all candidates for governor or Senate to complete the #PwDsVote Senate & Gubernatorial Disability Questionnaire.“PwDs” stands for “people with disabilities.” So far, Hillary Clinton and 15 candidates for Senate or Governor from both parties have done so. Now we’re calling on you to help to encourage the remainder. A number of candidates, including Donald Trump, have yet to fill out a nonpartisan candidate questionnaire on issues vital to America’s 56 million citizens with disabilities!
Call and tweet candidates and demand that they respond to the questionnaire. Tell them why it’s important to you!
This is the first time down-ballot candidates have been asked to complete a questionnaire about disability-related issues on such a wide scale. Why are we focusing on candidates for governor and U.S. Senate? The reason is simple. We hope that voters who care about disability issues will have the opportunity to compare how the candidates responded to the same questions in their own words.
The questionnaire itself has been written in a way that is acceptable for 501c3 nonprofits, is nonpartisan and is not electioneering. RespectAbility is nonpartisan and does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes.
The linked Excel list (shown below with some information as well) includes candidates’ email addresses, phone numbers, appropriate contact person (where we could identify) and Twitter handles. When a candidate responds, the spreadsheet is updated in real-time to include a link to their responses that have been posted on The RespectAbility Report.
Early voting starts soon, and many members of the disability community vote absentee. The responses will be used for individualized state voter guides presenting answers from all candidates in their Senate and/or gubernatorial races. The RespectAbility Report also will be covering these races from a disability angle throughout the political season.
Sample Tweets (replace @ with the candidate’s Twitter handle):
- @ Please fill out @Respect_Ability’s #PwDsVote disability questionnaire: bit.ly/PwDsVoteQ. We’re 20% of country!
- @ Don’t ignore 1-in-5 Americans! Fill out @Respect_Ability’s #PwDsVote disability questionnaire: bit.ly/PwDsVoteQ
Call the candidates’ HQ or email their campaign office. Please find a table of contact information below, which is accurate as of Tuesday, September 6. The linked Excel document will be updated in real-time as candidates submit more responses or new contact information is shared.
Email Lauren Appelbaum: firstname.lastname@example.org.
(As of September 6, 2016 – will be updated throughout season)
|State||Name||Email Address||Twitter Handle||Response|
|Delaware – R||Colin Boniniemail@example.com||@colinbonini||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteBonini|
|Delaware – D||John Carneyfirstname.lastname@example.org||@john_carney|
|Delaware – R||Lacey Laffertyemail@example.com||@laceylefferty|
|Indiana – D||John Greggfirstname.lastname@example.org||@GreggForGov|
|Indiana – R||Eric Holcombemail@example.com||@HolcombForIN|
|Missouri – R||Eric Greitens||Press@EricGreitens.com||@EricGreitens|
|Missouri – D||Chris Kosterfirstname.lastname@example.org||@Koster4Missouri||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteKoster|
|Montana – D||Steve Bullockemail@example.com||@BullockForMT|
|Montana – R||Greg Gianfortefirstname.lastname@example.org||@GregForMontana|
|New Hampshire – D||Mark Connollyemail@example.com||@MarkConnollyNH|
|New Hampshire – D||Derek Dextrazefirstname.lastname@example.org||@derekdeztraze||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteDextraze|
|New Hampshire – R||Frank Edelblutemail@example.com||@EdelblutForGov|
|New Hampshire – R||Jeanie Forrester||Info@JeanieForrester.com||@JeanieForrester|
|New Hampshire – R||Ted Gatsasfirstname.lastname@example.org||@gatas4governor|
|New Hampshire – R||Jon Lavoieemail@example.com|
|New Hampshire – D||Steve Marchandfirstname.lastname@example.org||@marchandsteve|
|New Hampshire – R||Chris Sununuemail@example.com||@ChrisSununu|
|New Hampshire – D||Colin Van Osternfirstname.lastname@example.org||@ColinVanOstern|
|North Carolina – D||Roy Cooperemail@example.com||@roycoopernc|
|North Carolina – R||Pat McCroryfirstname.lastname@example.org||@PatMcCroryNC|
|North Dakota – R||Doug Burgumemail@example.com||@DougForDakota|
|North Dakota – D||Marvin Nelsonfirstname.lastname@example.org||@nelsonfornd|
|Oregon – D||Kate Brownemail@example.com||@KateBrownForOR|
|Oregon – R||Bud Piercefirstname.lastname@example.org||@BudPierce4Gov|
|Utah – R||Gary Herbertemail@example.com||@HerbertForUtah|
|Utah – D||Mike Weinholtzfirstname.lastname@example.org||@mikeforutah|
|Vermont – D||Sue Minteremail@example.com||@SueMinterVT|
|Vermont – R||Phil Scottfirstname.lastname@example.org||@philscott4vt||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteScott|
|Washington – R||Bill Bryantemail@example.com||@BillBryantWA|
|Washington – D||Jay Insleefirstname.lastname@example.org||@JayInslee|
|West Virginia – R||Bill Coleemail@example.com||@BillColeWV|
|West Virginia – D||Jim Justicefirstname.lastname@example.org||@justiceforwv|
(Candidates as of September 6, 2016 – will be updated throughout season)
|State||Name||Email Address||Twitter Handle||Response|
|Alabama – R||Richard Shelbyemail@example.com||@SenShelby|
|Alabama – D||Ron Crumptonfirstname.lastname@example.org||@Crumpton_US_Sen|
|Alaska – R||Lisa Murkowskiemail@example.com||@lisamurkowski|
|Alaska – D||Ray Metcalfe||@Ray4AKSenate|
|Arizona – R||John McCainfirstname.lastname@example.org||@TeamMcCain|
|Arizona – D||Ann Kirkpatrickemail@example.com||@ann_kirkpatrick|
|Arkansas – R||John Boozmanfirstname.lastname@example.org||@boozman4AR|
|Arkansas – D||Conner Eldridgeemail@example.com||@connerforar|
|California – D||Kamala Harrisfirstname.lastname@example.org||@KamalaHarris|
|California – D||Loretta Sanchezemail@example.com||@Loretta2016|
|Colorado – D||Michael Bennetfirstname.lastname@example.org||@BennetForCO|
|Colorado – R||Darryl Glennemail@example.com||@darrylglenn2016|
|Connecticut – D||Richard Blumenthalfirstname.lastname@example.org||@SenBlumenthal|
|Connecticut – R||Dan Carter||info@CarterforSenate.com||@dancarterct|
|Florida – D||Patrick Murphy||info@MurphyforFlorida.com||@PatrickMurphyFL|
|Florida – R||Marco Rubioemail@example.com||@marcorubio|
|Florida – R (lost primary)||Dwight Youngfirstname.lastname@example.org||@dy4senate2016||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteYoung|
|Georgia – R||Johnny Isaksonemail@example.com||@JohnnyIsakson|
|Georgia – D||Jim Barksdale||Info@JimBarksdale.com||@jimbarksdale|
|Hawaii – D||Brian Schatzfirstname.lastname@example.org||@brianschatz|
|Hawaii – R||John Carollemail@example.com||@carroll4senate|
|Idaho – R||Mike Crapofirstname.lastname@example.org||@crapo4senate|
|Idaho – D||Jerry Sturgillemail@example.com||@sturgill4idaho|
|Illinois – D||Tammy Duckworthfirstname.lastname@example.org||@tammyforIL|
|Illinois – R||Mark Kirkemail@example.com||@markkirk|
|Indiana – D||Evan Bayhfirstname.lastname@example.org||@EvanBayh|
|Indiana – R||Todd Youngemail@example.com||@ToddYoungIN|
|Iowa – R||Chuck Grassleyfirstname.lastname@example.org||@ChuckGrassley|
|Iowa – D||Patty Judgeemail@example.com||@pattyforiowa|
|Kansas – R||Jerry Moranfirstname.lastname@example.org||@moranforkansas|
|Kansas – D||Patrick Wiesneremail@example.com||@wiesner4senate|
|Kentucky – R||Rand Paulfirstname.lastname@example.org||@RandPaul2016|
|Kentucky – D||Jim Grayemail@example.com||@grayforKentucky|
|Louisiana – R||Charles Boustanyfirstname.lastname@example.org||@cboustanyjr|
|Louisiana – D||Foster Campbellemail@example.com||@campbellforLa||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteCampbell|
|Louisiana – R||Joseph Caofirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Louisiana – D||Caroline Fayardemail@example.com||@FayardforSenate||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteFayard|
|Louisiana – R||John Flemingfirstname.lastname@example.org||@FlemingforLA|
|Louisiana – R||John Kennedyemail@example.com||@JohnKennedyLA|
|Louisiana – R||Rob Manessfirstname.lastname@example.org||@RobManess|
|Louisiana – R||Abhay Patelemail@example.com||@patelforLA||http://bit.ly/PwDsVotePatel|
|Louisiana – D||Josh Pellerinfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Maryland – R||Kathy Szeligaemail@example.com||@KathyforMD||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteSzeliga|
|Maryland – D||Chris Van Hollenfirstname.lastname@example.org||@VanHollenForMD||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteVanHollen|
|Missouri – R||Roy Bluntemail@example.com||@RoyBluntMO|
|Missouri – D||Jason Kanderfirstname.lastname@example.org||@JasonKander|
|Nevada – R||Joe Heckemail@example.com||@heck4nevada|
|Nevada – D||Catherine Mastofirstname.lastname@example.org||@catherinefornv||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteMasto|
|New Hampshire – R||Kelly Ayotteemail@example.com||@KellyAyotte|
|New Hampshire – D||Maggie Hassanfirstname.lastname@example.org||@Maggie_Hassan|
|New York – D||Chuck Schumeremail@example.com||@chuckschumer|
|New York – R||Wendy Longfirstname.lastname@example.org||@wendylongny|
|North Carolina – R||Richard Burremail@example.com||@burrforsenate||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteBurr|
|North Carolina – D||Deborah Rossfirstname.lastname@example.org||@deborahrossnc||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteRoss|
|North Dakota – R||John Hoevenemail@example.com||@hoeven4senate|
|North Dakota – D||Eliot Glassheim||:info@Eliot4ND.com||@eliot4nd|
|Ohio – R||Rob Portmanfirstname.lastname@example.org||@robportman|
|Ohio – D||Ted Strickland||press@TedStrickland.com||@Ted_Strickland|
|Oklahoma – R||James Lankfordemail@example.com||@jameslankford|
|Oklahoma – D||Mike Workman||Workman4OK@gmail.com||@workmanistan|
|Oregon – D||Ron Wydenfirstname.lastname@example.org||@wydenfororegon|
|Oregon – R||Mark Callahan||Mark@CallahanForOregon.com||@callahan4oregon|
|Pennsylvania – D||Katie McGintyemail@example.com||@KatieMcGintyPA||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteMcGinty|
|Pennsylvania – R||Pat Toomeyfirstname.lastname@example.org||@PatToomey|
|South Carolina – R||Tim Scottemail@example.com||@votetimscott|
|South Carolina – D||Thomas Dixonfirstname.lastname@example.org||@dixonforsenate|
|South Dakota – R||John Thuneemail@example.com||@johnthune|
|South Dakota – D||Jay Williamsfirstname.lastname@example.org||@jay4senate|
|Utah – R||Mike Leeemail@example.com||@MikeLeeforUtah|
|Utah – D||Misty Snow||Genevra@mistyksnow.com||@mistyksnow|
|Vermont – D||Patrick Leahyfirstname.lastname@example.org||@patrickleahy|
|Vermont – R||Scott Milneemail@example.com||@milneforvt|
|Washington – D||Patty Murrayfirstname.lastname@example.org||@MurrayCampaign|
|Washington – R||Chris Vanceemail@example.com||@chrisvance123|
|Wisconsin – D||Russ Feingoldfirstname.lastname@example.org||@russfeingold|
|Wisconsin – R||Ron Johnsonemail@example.com||@ronjohnsonwi||http://bit.ly/PwDsVoteFeingold|
These are the questions RespectAbility submitted to the campaigns. They also provided each candidate with a 10-page resource guide to help with answering these questions. View it here: bit.ly/PwDsVoteQ.
Please first start by answering YES or NO regarding if you have a plan/answer on this issue or not. Then include specific details of your plan up to 250 words for each answer. In addition, if you have more to say on an issue, please link back to the appropriate place on your website for people to learn more.
- Do you have designated advisors and clear processes for making decisions on disability issues? If yes, please describe.
- Is your campaign accessible and inclusive to people with disabilities? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a proven record on improving or a plan to improve the lives of people with disabilities? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan/commitment to reduce the stigmas about people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a proven record on enabling, or a plan to enable, people with disabilities to have jobs, careers and to start their own businesses? Do you have specific strategies for youth employment for people with disabilities and/or sector strategies such as jobs and careers in STEM, hospitality, healthcare and elder care? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to enable students with disabilities, including those from historically marginalized communities and backgrounds, to receive the diagnosis, Individualized Education Plan (IEP) and accommodations/services they need to succeed in school and be prepared for competitive employment? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to reform the benefits system (Medicaid, Medicaid buy-in) to enable people with disabilities to work to the best of their capacities without losing supports they need to work? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to ensure people with disabilities are eligible for affordable health insurance regardless of pre-existing conditions? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to provide home and community-based services to people with disabilities who would rather live in their own homes instead of institutions, and have the community attendant supports they need to work? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to ensure that individuals with disabilities receive services that would prevent them from being swept up into the criminal justice system, divert individuals with disabilities who are arrested to treatment options in lieu of jail where appropriate, receive needed accommodations in the criminal justice process and while incarcerated, and offer appropriate re-entry support to help individuals with disabilities leaving jails and prisons re-integrate into their communities and secure jobs? If yes, please describe.
- People with disabilities are twice as likely to be victims of crime as those without disabilities. People with disabilities also are far more likely to suffer from police violence, partially because manifestations of disability can be misunderstood as defiant behavior. Do you have a plan to address these issues? If yes, please describe.
- Both children and adults with disabilities are more likely to be victims of rape or sexual assault. Do you have a plan to address this issue? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan for veterans with disabilities facing barriers transitioning from active duty to civilian employment? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan for accessible, affordable, integrated housing to allow people with disabilities to live in the communities where they work or are seeking work? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to address the lack of accessible transportation options that is a barrier to work for people with disabilities? If yes, please describe.
- Do you have a plan to advance innovations (i.e., assistive technologies, devices) that can help people with disabilities become more successfully employed, productive and independent? If yes, please describe.
- (SENATORS ONLY) In your foreign policy and national security plan, do you plan to continue America’s tradition of standing up for the rights of oppressed people, including people with disabilities, around the world? If yes, please describe.