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Category: #PwDsVote 2020 Questionnaire

2020 Disability Voter Guide

As a nonpartisan national nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so people with disabilities can participate fully in all aspects of community, RespectAbility has invited all candidates in the presidential race on both sides of the aisle to submit their answers to a 2020 Disability Voter Candidate Questionnaire. This questionnaire covers some of the most important issues impacting people with disabilities including employment, education, immigration, criminal justice and accessibility. 

Several high-profile candidates recently submitted their completed questionnaires: 

Klobuchar Completes Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more

headshot of Amy Klobuchar smiling
Amy Klobuchar

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 14 – Presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to all of the major presidential campaigns on both sides of the aisle and will be posting all responses on The RespectAbility Report. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Klobuchar’s responses follows:

1. What policies and actions do you support to reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality?

Senator Klobuchar believes we must do more to combat the stigma of Americans with disabilities and advance their rights and full participation in society. As President, Senator Klobuchar will prioritize strong enforcement of civil rights legislation, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Rehabilitation Act, the Olmstead decision, the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, and other laws that protect the rights of people with disabilities.  She will support full funding and staffing for the various Offices of Civil Rights and the Department of Justice’s Disability Rights Section offices to ensure disability cases are fully investigated.

Senator Klobuchar is also committed to promoting financial stability and security for people with disabilities. As President, she will work to pass the Raise the Wage Act — which she co-sponsors in the Senate — to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 for all workers and guarantee that all workers are paid at least the federal minimum wage by eliminating the subminimum wage for workers with disabilities. She is also committed to expanding and improving employment training programs for Americans with disabilities. She helped pass the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act in 2014, which strengthened workforce training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities. As President, she will oppose attempts to weaken the definition of competitive integrated employment. She will also expand the Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration, which provides funds and administers grant programs that offer training and employment assistance to people with disabilities.

In addition, Senator Klobuchar will expand tax credits — including the Work Opportunity Tax Credit, Disability Access Expenditures Tax Credit, and Architectural and Transportation Barrier Tax Credit — for employers who hire individuals with disabilities and make workplaces more accessible to those employees, and she will also support inclusion training programs for employers to address discrimination in the workplace. 

In the Senate, Senator Klobuchar has championed policies to ensure that people who want to stay in their homes and communities can do so. She is a co-sponsor of the Disability Integration Act of 2019 and as President she will push to pass this legislation and address institutional bias in Medicaid to expand access to home and community-based services for people with disabilities. She will also promote remote monitoring technology and telehealth services in Medicare and other programs that improve the quality of life and expand access to quality home care and emergency hospital services in rural areas. Read more about Senator Klobuchar’s plan to protect equal rights and provide opportunity for people with disabilities here.

Buttigieg Completes Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more

close-up of pete buttigieg's face
Pete Buttigieg

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 12 – Presidential candidate Mayor Pete Buttigieg has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to all of the major presidential campaigns on both sides of the aisle and will be posting all responses on The RespectAbility Report. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Buttigieg’s responses follows:

1. What policies and actions do you support to reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality?

As President, I will strive to build a culture of belonging for everyone. We need both a massive shift in federal policies and a more inclusive and welcoming society to break down barriers to employment, dignity, independence, and inequality for people with disabilities. I will retrofit our government so it works for, and not against, people with disabilities. I will use the office of the presidency—and all the levers of government available to me—to tirelessly advocate for people with disabilities, so they no longer have to do it on their own.

People with disabilities should have every opportunity to live the life of their choosing, and that includes having a fulfilling, well-paying job and career options to achieve community integration. Yet today, only three in ten Americans with disabilities are employed, compared to about seven in ten people without disabilities. For Black Americans with disabilities, the employment rate is less than two in ten.

That’s why I am committed to dramatically increasing opportunities for competitive integrated employment. Embracing Senator Tom Harkin’s goal, my administration will work on a national campaign to double labor force participation for people with disabilities by 2030, the 40th anniversary of the ADA, with a focus on closing racial inequities. This will require support from different federal agencies, states, and stakeholders across the private and social sectors. Together, I believe we can dramatically reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities by committing to bold goals, shifting federal policies, and creating a culture of belonging for everyone.

Sanders Completes Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more

close-up of Bernie Sanders smiling while wearing a suit and a tie
Bernie Sanders

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 11 – Presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to all of the major presidential campaigns on both sides of the aisle and will be posting all responses on The RespectAbility Report. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Sanders’ responses follows:

1. What policies and actions do you support to reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality?

We recently celebrated the 29th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Despite the progress we’ve made, we unfortunately still live in a world where people with disabilities have fewer work opportunities and where the civil rights of people with disabilities are not always protected and respected. We must recommit to championing the rights of people with disabilities. As a nation, we have a moral responsibility to ensure that all people with disabilities have their rights protected.

We must guarantee people with disabilities the right to live in the community; truly integrated employment that pays a living wage; affordable, accessible housing; and the right to health care, including mental health care and home and community based services and supports.

Every person with a disability deserves the right to live in the community and have the services and supports they need to pursue the American Dream. This right must be available to all, free of waiting lists and means tests. It is our moral responsibility to make it happen.

When Bernie is in the White House he is committed to having an administration that looks like America to help show every person in America that not only do they belong in the White House that the White House needs them, their experience, knowledge, and advocacy in order to create an America that works for everyone.

As President, Bernie will create a National Office of Disability Coordination focused on coordinating disability policy making to advance the full inclusion of people with disabilities, including ensuring every aspect of our public resources are ADA compliant and that the civil rights of people with disabilities are enforced. This office will be run by a person with a disability.

Warren Completes Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more

Elizabeth Warren smiling wearing a blue suit
Elizabeth Warren

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 7– Presidential candidate Sen. Elizabeth Warren has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to all of the major presidential campaigns on both sides of the aisle and will be posting all responses on The RespectAbility Report. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Warren’s responses follows:

1. What policies and actions do you support to reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality?

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the ADA, and the 100th anniversary of the Vocational Rehabilitation program. Though we have made significant progress for the 61 million Americans living with disabilities, we have a lot of ground left to cover. People with disabilities are still fighting for economic security, equal opportunity, and inclusion – and they are not fighting alone. As president, I will work in partnership with the disability community to combat ableism. I will fight alongside them for justice across all aspects of life and to fulfill the four goals of the ADA: equal opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self sufficiency. I’ll start by making clear that disability is a priority in my administration, creating a National Office of Disability Coordination to ensure that federal programs work together to support people with disabilities. 

Building economic security for people with disabilities means rewriting the rules of the economy to foster inclusivity, value their labor, and end labor market discrimination and exploitation. As president, I’ll fight for economic security for individuals with disabilities by supporting opportunities to participate fully in the economy at a fair wage and to ensure financial security for all. My administration will also support children with disabilities and their families by providing crucial early interventions and ensuring meaningful access to education. When children with disabilities are supported and included, they can excel. But right now, we are failing on our country’s promise to give them a great education. My administration will invest in providing a meaningful, free and appropriate public education to students with disabilities by fully funding IDEA and will tackle discriminatory policies and practices in education head-on.  

Experts have sounded the alarm about the potential for artificial intelligence and algorithms to discriminate against individuals with disabilities across a variety of areas, including automated job screenings and housing. As president, I’ll create a taskforce that works across relevant federal agencies to promote enforcement of existing anti-discrimination laws, new regulations that specifically address discrimination in current and emerging technology, and guidance to the industry to promote compliance. My administration will ensure that technology is used to advance the interests of people with disabilities.  

Systemic failures to consider and include people with disabilities have resulted in unconscionable limitations on their freedom to participate in our society and barriers to housing, transportation, and health care. As President, I’ll protect the rights and civil liberties of people with disabilities in areas like voting, criminal justice, and parental custody. My administration will also fight for affordable, accessible, and green housing, accessible public transportation, and environmental justice. We’ll ensure consistent access to affordable, high quality health care, and lead the fight for disability rights around the world. Read more about my plan here: https://elizabethwarren.com/plans/disability-rights

Yang Completes Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more

close up of Andrew Yang smiling wearing a white collared shirt and gray suit jacket
Andrew Yang

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan, 6 – Presidential candidate Andrew Yang has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to all of the major presidential campaigns on both sides of the aisle and will be posting all responses on The RespectAbility Report. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Yang’s responses follows:

1. What policies and actions do you support to reduce the stigmas of people with disabilities that are barriers to employment, independence and equality?

Andrew believes that people with disabilities have much to offer society, and that their contributions are regularly impeded due to the lack of enforcement of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). People with disabilities make up a large portion of the population, and everyone loses when these individuals can’t fully participate in society due to structural and systemic barriers. We need to rewrite the rules of our country so that they apply equally to everyone. 

Addressing the barriers and stigma around employment should start at the federal level. The government should lead by example through hiring people with disabilities and valuing the contribution of people with disabilities in the workforce. The federal government should also ensure that all of its services, websites, and materials are accessible. 

If the government improved enforcement of the ADA, people with disabilities would have more opportunities to find work and integrate into society. Andrew is committed to the consolidation of federal agencies that enforce the ADA into a synchronized single entity, ending the problematic fragmentation of our current system. He will appoint people with disabilities to positions to ensure that they are represented throughout the decision- and policy-making process.

Andrew supports policies that strengthen the enforcement of the ADA and ensure that the civil rights of people with disabilities are protected as the law requires. Andrew supports the Disability Integration Act (DIA), as well as increasing funding for special education. 

RespectAbility Releases 2020 Disability Voter Candidate Questionnaire

RespectAbility, a nonpartisan national nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of community, has sent its nonpartisan voter questionnaire to of all the viable presidential candidates on a variety of disability issues. The outreach is being done in conjunction with…