ADAPT Fights Back re: Nation’s Low Income People with Disabilities Left Behind in Election Year Agendas
Who: ADAPT Community (500 disability rights activists from all over the country.) ADAPT is the nation’s largest cross-disability grassroots disability rights organization.
What: News conference to announce opening of DUH City.
When: 10 a.m. on Monday, September 15, 2008
Where: The plaza outside the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development,
451 7th Street S.W.,=2 0Washington, DC 20410
Why: The 2008 election campaigns have included rhetoric about tax breaks for middle income families, and media coverage has included stories about families who have children with disabilities.
Left out of all the election rhetoric are the candidates’ positions on and commitments to those babies with disabilities who grow into adults with disabilities who all-too-often survive on extremely low incomes (less than 30% of the median income). These extremely low incomes are often the fixed benefit amounts of SSI and Social Security.
In 2006, according to Priced Out in 2006, the federal SSI benefit was $603/month and the average cost nationally of renting a studio/efficiency apartment was $633/month.
There are not enough AFFORDABLE, ACCESSIBLE, INTEGRATED housing units to handle the current demand in communities across America. When the Community Choice Act (S 799, H.R. 1621) passes, and older and disabled people can choose to live in their own homes instead of being forced into nursing homes and other institutions, the need for affordable, accessible housing will increase. And as the baby-boomers continue to age, the demand will grow exponentially.
HUD, Congress and the Administration have broken promises, cut funding for housing stock and housing subsidies and enforcement of anti-discrimination housing laws, and simply ignored the nation’s low-income people with disabilities altogether.
ADAPT has established “DUH City” (reverse of HUD) to bring attention to and document the struggle of low income people with disabilities. When the average rent for even an efficiency apartment is more than your monthly income……where do you wind up? All too often you’re forced out on the street or into a nursing home or other institution. DUH!
ADAPT’s tent city will be typical community complete with its own newspaper, TV coverage, and other services.