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Voter Guide for 171,000 New Hampshirites with Disabilities

Guide Highlights Presidential Candidates’ Responses to 2020 Disability Candidate Questionnaire

Manchester, New Hampshire, Feb. 10 – As New Hampshire voters get ready to go to the polls in their state’s primary election, the nonpartisan disability rights nonprofit RespectAbility has released its New Hampshire State Voter Guide. According to the 2018 Annual Disability Statistics Compendium, there are more than 171,000 people with disabilities in New Hampshire. There is no early voting in New Hampshire’s presidential primaries. However, absentee ballots can be requested until the day before the election (February 10, 2020) and must be received by the day of the election (February 11, 2020) at 5:00 PM. This is a useful option for people with disabilities whose disability keeps them from voting in person. Voters with disabilities also can have an election judge or a person of their choice assist them with voting in person, as long as that person is not the individual’s employer, union representative, or a candidate running for office.

Research conducted in the 2018 election shows that 74 percent of likely voters either have a disability themselves or have a family member or a close friend with disabilities. The upcoming elections and their results will have an impact on people with disabilities, so it is important to become familiar with the candidates’ positions on certain issues.

Presidential Candidates, Disability Benefits & Jobs

Washington, D.C., Feb. 2 – 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. 

Question 11 in the Questionnaire was: “The federal law and benefits system punish people who want to work or whose families want to help them. For example, currently people with disabilities who are on SSI are prohibited of having more than $2,000 liquid assets at any one time. Furthermore, current law limits parents and grandparents to helping their children financially who acquired their disability prior to age 26 but not if they acquire a disability after age 26. What will you do to ensure that people have more options than being forced to choose between access to supports, benefits and service or the opportunity to pursue work, careers and an income?

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Preventing Attacks on People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Feb. 2 – 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. Question 6 in the Questionnaire was: “People with disabilities are twice as likely to be victims of crime as those without disabilities. This includes the fact that both children and adults with disabilities are more likely to be victims of rape or sexual assault. How would you address these issues?

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Veterans

Washington, D.C., Feb. 1 – 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. Question 13 in the Questionnaire was: “What are your plans to ensure that the bureaucracy of the Veterans Administration supports and serves veterans with disabilities? What is your plan to support veterans with disabilities, especially female veterans with disabilities?”

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Preventing Police Violence Against People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Feb. 1 – 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. Question 8 in the Questionnaire was: “People with disabilities also are far more likely to suffer from police violence, partially because manifestations of disability can be misunderstood. How would you address these issues?

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Housing for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Feb. 1 – 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. Question 10 in the Questionnaire was: “What are your thoughts on ensuring that people with disabilities have the option to live in their homes instead of institutions and still have the community attendant supports they need to live? Do you have a plan for affordable housing and to reduce homelessness for people with disabilities?

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Access to Healthcare and Jobs

Washington, D.C., Jan 31 – 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. Question 9 in the Questionnaire was: “How would you ensure that people with disabilities have access to healthcare and the benefits they need while enabling them with opportunities to work to the best of their capacities without losing the supports they need to live? This relates to private healthcare as well as SSI, SSDI, Medicare and Medicaid.

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Including People with Disabilities in their Campaigns

Washington, D.C., Jan 30 – 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. Question 15 in the Questionnaire was: “Are your office, website and events accessible to people with disabilities? Have you identified a process for including people with disabilities in your staff and policy advisors? If yes, please describe.

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Advancing Assistive Technology for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Jan 30 – 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. Question 12 in the Questionnaire was: “How would you advance innovations (i.e., assistive technologies, devices) that can help people with disabilities become more successfully employed, productive and independent?

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Education for Students with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Jan 30 – 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. Question 4 in the Questionnaire was: “The jobs of the future will largely require post-secondary education or other credentials. Today 65 percent of students with disabilities complete high school. What policies do you advocate to support the academic and career success of students with disabilities, especially for students from historically marginalized communities and backgrounds?”

Below, read the answers from the five candidates who responded:

Presidential Candidates & Criminal Justice Reform for People with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Jan 29 – 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…

Presidential Candidates Court Voters with Disabilities With Plans to Reduce Stigmas

Washington, D.C., Jan 29 – 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…

Presidential Candidates Reveal Plans to Enable Success for Immigrants with Disabilities

Washington, D.C., Jan 28 – Yesterday, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a major 5-4 ruling allowing an expansion of the definition of “public charge” to deny green cards to people who may need government aid. This ruling will directly impact immigrants with disabilities who would qualify for Medicaid. Meanwhile, with only days…

Presidential Candidates Court Voters with Disabilities With Youth Employment Strategies

Washington, D.C., Jan 28 – With only days before the Iowa Caucus, presidential candidates are reaching out to voters with disabilities and their loved ones with specific plans for youth employment. According to the CDC, approximately one-in-four adults living in the community have a disability. Research conducted in the 2018 election shows…

DNC Chair Perez Calls for More Inclusion of People with Disabilities

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 20 – The majority of Americans either have a disability or a loved one with a disability. Yet, disability is very rarely addressed on the debate stage. 

Democratic National Committee Chair Chairman Tom Perez spoke to RespectAbility prior to last week’s debate about the importance of including people with disabilities. He touted his work on ensuring that people with disabilities can live in the community and that employers provide accommodations for employees with disabilities. 

“We got to stop focusing on the first three letters of the word disability and focus more on the last seven letters of the word disability and you will see that in our platform,” Perez added. “You will see that in everything we do. You will see that in Milwaukee, the most accessible convention ever.”

Yang: “Need to do Much More to Help People with Disabilities Access Opportunities and Jobs”

Ames, Iowa, Jan. 19 – Businessman Andrew Yang talked about employment opportunities for people with disabilities at a town hall earlier this week. While saying “much more” needs to done to ensure people with disabilities have access to opportunities and jobs, he also repeated a talking point that people with disabilities – and all people – have value regardless if they are working. 

“Do we need to put much more in the way of resources to help people actually see the abilities of people who have different capacities and then have them enjoy that kind of independence and work? 100% yes,” Yang, who has a child on the autism spectrum, said at a town hall in Ames, Iowa. “But does that need to be the standard that people are at in order to live a good fulfilling happy life? No. It’s like — we should be investing in everyone’s happiness and fulfillment regardless of whether or not they can slot into a corporate role.”

Klobuchar Talks Education and Housing for People with Disabilities

Perry, Iowa, Jan. 18 – Sen. Amy Klobuchar said voters with disabilities contribute to elections “in a big way.”

Answering questions at a town hall in Perry, Iowa earlier this week, Klobuchar talked about the importance of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), which covers educational funding for children with disabilities from birth through high school graduation or age 21, whichever comes first. IDEA has yet to be fully funded by the federal government since it was first passed in 1975. “My mom was a teacher, so I get this,” she added. 

Buttigieg Calls for Equal Voting Access – And Funding – for Voters with Disabilities

Des Moines, Iowa, Jan. 17 – Mayor Pete Buttigieg called for equal voting access for people with disabilities at a town hall in Des Moines earlier this week. He also said it is important to ensure funding for the equal access. 

“Part of our plan on disabilities is to make sure that we’re supporting ways for people with disabilities to have equal access to the vote, because you know, that’s 1 in 4 Americans,” the presidential hopeful said in response to a question about voters with disabilities – asked by a voter on the autism spectrum. “And those who don’t face disabilities might in the future, so we all have a stake in doing something about it… And we need to put funding behind it.”

Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s Plan for People with Disabilities: “Economic Security, Equal Opportunity, and Inclusion”

Massachusetts Senator and presidential candidate completes RespectAbility Candidate Questionnaire

Washington, D.C., Jan. 7 – Posted last week on her website, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s campaign has released a comprehensive statement on disability policy covering critical issues such as employment, health care, education, technology and the social safety net. Subsequently, the campaign completed the 2020 Disability Voter Questionnaire by the disability advocacy group RespectAbility.

Her responses to questionnaire reflect technical expertise drawn directly from diverse leaders in the disability community. 

“People with disabilities are still fighting for economic security, equal opportunity, and inclusion – and they are not fighting alone,” Warren said. “As president, I will work in partnership with the disability community to combat ableism.” 

Further, she aligns her campaign commitments to the “the four goals of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act): equal opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency.” Establishing a new “National Office of Disability Coordination to ensure that federal programs work together to support people with disabilities” is one way she intends to keep her promises if elected. 

Yang Releases Major Disability Ideas, Pledges to Tackle Barriers and Stigmas

First Candidate to Complete RespectAbility Candidate Questionnaire

Washington, D.C., Jan. 6 – For the first time this campaign season, businessman Andrew Yang has provided more detailed information regarding a variety of disability-related policies – from education and employment to immigration and community integration. Responding to a questionnaire by the disability advocacy group RespectAbility, businessman Andrew Yang outlined his views. 

In responses to 15 questions submitted by the organization concerning people with disabilities, Yang noted the stigmas that exist that “incorrectly label them as liabilities.” He pledged to “incentivize businesses to hire people with disabilities by offering tax benefits to those that provide adequate job training for people with disabilities.”

Regarding immigration, he called for a reversal of the public charge rule that impacts immigrants with disabilities. “In addition to making sure the U.S. does not discriminate against immigrants with disabilities at the border, we must also ensure that immigrants are sufficiently cared for throughout the immigration process,” Yang added.